Thursday, November 30, 2017

Powered by Creative Market


If you are launching your business it always helps if you can save time designing things yourself and focus on other important tasks. So, using ready-made resources is one way you can save time and money. Checkout the magnet UI kit on Creative Market. At $8 you are getting a lot for your money. When you are on the Creative Market web site be sure to sign up for their newsletter and get yourself 6 free products a week... yes every week! That's 312 great products from some of the very best designers around, all free.

Magnet UI kit will help you to create a beautiful launch page for your business. Easy to find the screen, change its location, size and color. All items are based on grid.

Each category contains 6 to 7 screen cards. Header, Fixed layer controls, About, Booking, Feature, Contacts and etc.

You can create landing pages for your agency, barbershop, desktop application, fitness gym, flower shop, mobile application, restaurant, spa salon, and travel.

Well organized and very easy to customize. Magnet is a better way to present your business, desktop and mobile app.

This stylish set comes in .PSD formats.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Are you looking for some seasonal graphics for your own projects?

Powered by Creative Market

Powered by Creative Market

Creative market is an excellent source of high quality resources in cluding vector graphics, web themes, marketing material, photos and templates. Check out these resources and have a look around their site. 

Creative Market has 1,847,553 products and if you sign up for their newsletter you get 6 free products each week! Just click on any of the mages above to visit the site.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Still time to get Photolemur 2.2 Black Friday Deal!


There is less than 24 hours to go before the Black Friday Deal (saving 60%) on Photolemur ends! Use this link here to get the new version.

Check out the new features:



Also, here are some before and after examples:





So, hurry and grab the deal before it expires!

Tech requirements:

Mac

  • MacOS 10.11, 10.12
  • 2 GB of free hard-disk space
  • 2 GB of RAM
  • 1 GB of VRAM


Windows

  • Windows 7, 8, 10
  • 2 GB of free hard-disk space
  • 2 GB of RAM
  • 1 GB of VRAM

Monday, November 27, 2017

Cyber Monday and Black Friday Deals on Luminar 2018, Aurora HDR 2018 and Creative Kit are almost over!




There isn't much time left so get your skates on and head over to the Macphun site using the links below. Don't forget to use the discount code NEWBELTANE to get extra $10 off the price.

Note: code works for Luminar ($10 OFF), Aurora HDR ($10 OFF) and Creative Kit apps (10% OFF).

Luminar 2018 link


Aurora HDR 2018 link

Creative Kit link

Sunday, November 26, 2017

2 days left to get Black Friday Offer on Macphun Software!

Luminat 2018 Black Friday offer

Time is running out to get the Black Friday Offer on Luminar 2018, Aurora HDR 2018 and the rest of the Macphun stable. To purchase or upgrade and get the free bonuses you need to act soon. Remember you can use the discount code NEWBELTANE to get $10 off.

Aurora HDR Black Friday Offer

Remember that as well as Luminar 2018 and Aurora HDR 2018, you can use the discount code to purchase them as well with $10 off.


So, remember the discount code is NEWBELTANE.


Powered by Creative Market

Check out Creative Market if you are looking for resources for your website, design business or latest project.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Act now to get Luminar 2018 and Aurora HDR 2018 bonuses and use discount code!




Luminar 2018 is still available to purchase or upgrade with free bonuses. It has also received it's first update. You can still use the discount code NEWBELTANE to get $10 off the price (use same code for Aurora HDR 2018 as well).

The 1.0.1 update includes various enhancements, bug fixes and features enhancements for the Windows and Mac versions.

Luminar 2018 users on Windows and Mac can update to this version by updating inside of the App.

Below is the list of fixes and updates.

 

Luminar 2018 version 1.0.1 for MAC:

  • Fixed crash on saving to .PSD format
  • Fixed bug when Adobe Photoshop Elements is unavailable.
  • Fixed bug with Luminosity Mask preview on filter
  • Fixed "Image Cannot be saved” issue with Adobe Lightroom 
  • Fixed RAW Develop\Develop issue when converting Panasonic files
  • Added support for more Adobe Photoshop plugins, including Topaz Labs plugins
  • Improved RAW processing on opening file
  • Improved Windows preset preview
  • Improved accuracy of the filter collapse/expand triangle control
  • Improved application and Batch processing UI 
  • Fixed RAW Develop/Develop issue with DNG files
  • Plus other performance improvements and fixes to the reported issues.
 

Luminar 2018 version 1.0.1 for Windows:

  • Workspaces 
  • Luminosity Mask
  • Image Resize & Sharpen on Export
  • Improved Hotkeys support
  • Improved RAW opening & processing
  • RAW support for more cameras, including Nikon D850
  • Fixed bug when launching Photoshop with a blank image
  • PLUS; Improved performance and fixes for a number of reported bugs, including the fixed issue with LowRes image preview on layers with masks;
  • Fixed progress bar for opening images.
The Luminar 2018 Black Friday offer will be available until November 29.



Aurora HDR 2018 is also in the Black Friday Offer and you can also use the discount code NEWBELTANE to get an extra $100 off the price (inc. upgrades).

About Aurora HDR:


Aurora HDR is not just a tool for merging bracketed images, it also provides numerous tools and countless options to create perfect HDR photos for every taste - from one-click presets and advanced tone-mapping, to layers, noise reduction and powerful luminosity masking controls.

Offer Availability:


The Aurora HDR 2018 Black Friday offer will be available from November 22-29

Pricing:

  • Current users of Aurora HDR may upgrade at a Black Friday price of $49 ($39 with your coupon code)
  • New users can purchase Aurora HDR 2018 for $89 ($79 with your coupon code)
A collection of bonuses will also be included with every purchase.

Bonuses:

  • Trey Ratcliff Deep Dive video
  • Realistic HDR preset pack (40 presets) by PresetPro
  • Powerful Imagery Ebook by Mitchell Kanashkevich & Photzy
It's also worth noting you can use the same discount code for any of the other apps from Macphun during the Black Friday Offer - end 29th November so time is running out!



To benefit from any of the offers during Black Friday event just click on the any of the images above and then enter the discount code when you enter you payment details.

Powered by Creative Market

Check out these Lightroom Presets. I personally think they are great!

29 improvements to Luminar 2018 already and Black Friday Offer still on!


Black Friday is not yet over and already Macphun/Skylum have released 30 improvements to Luminar 2018! For Windows users in particular there are some important ones including workspaces. 

Here is the full list:


WINDOWS


  • Added Workspaces
  • Added Luminosity Mask
  • Added RAW support for Nikon D850
  • Added Image Resize and Sharpen on Export
  • Added Hotkeys
  • Fixed RAW Denoise on opening files (OpenCL issue)
  • Fixed issues with .DNG converted files
  • Fixed pixelization issue with low res image previews
  • Fixed issue with low res image on layers with masks
  • Fixed issue with non-system disk as installation destination
  • Fixed progress bar for opening images
  • Fixed bug when launching Photoshop with a blank image
  • Fixed crash on exit
  • Improved Performance
  • Updated large number of RAW camera file formats

MAC


  • Added support for On1 plugins
  • Improved RAW Denoise on opening file
  • Improved Windows preset preview issue
  • Improved accuracy of the filter collapse/expand triangle control
  • Improved application and Batch processing UI
  • Fixed RAW Develop/Develop issue with DNG files
  • Fixed localizations
  • Fixed crash on saving to .PSD format
  • Fixed bug when Adobe Photoshop Elements is unavailable.
  • Fixed bug with Luminosity Mask preview on filter
  • Fixed "Image Cannot be saved” issue with Adobe Lightroom
  • Fixed RAW Develop\Develop issue when converting Panasonic FZ2000 .rw2
  • Fixed “green band” bug with Batch Processing
  • Fixed issue when saving presets when using Photos for Mac

More good news!

The next update is due 7th December 2017 which underlines the determination Macphun/Skylum has to make Luminar 2018 even better.

Also, you can still get Luminar 2018 with a bunch of free bonuses. Also, if you follow this link to purchase or upgrade and then use this discount code NEWBELTANE you can get an extra $10 off! You need to hurry though as offer is only available until the 29th November 2017.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Black Friday Deal on Photolemur 2.2 Spectre


Photolemur 2.2 Spectre will revolutionise your image-editing.


If you are someone who takes photos and likes to edit them on your computer but doesn't really want to become a power user of the likes of Photoshop or Lightroom then here is something for you. It's called Photolemur and the latest version is on offer during this Black Friday period.  There are just over 5 days left to get it for a 60% discount with bonuses.

So, why would you want to purchase Photolemur? Well, for a start its built to do all the thinking for you (well almost all - you still have open an image and choose whether to accept the AI's result or tweak easily with just one control slider. Oh, you then have to save it!

So, what does it's interface look like? Well here is a screenshot and a short video.




Easy wasn't it! Photolemur will make you life much easier and you will wonder how you ever managed without it. Also, the software can only get better as the AI engine that drives it is improved. It has lots of new features over the previous version.

Photolemur has 12 smart technologies that help it to automatically analyze and adjust your photos. From faces and objects to colors, horizons, and the sky, it understands it all. And it works its tech magic from there.


New features:



So, if you like what you see why not head over now by using this link: Photolemur 2.2 Spectre Black Friday Deal.



7 Street Photography Images from my 'Walks of Life' Solo Project

Passing time...

Rendezvous
Walking Woman meets Scooter boy

Please don't pass me by...
Going nowhere...

Glancing by...

Collision course...
These 7 images were taken as part of my ongoing solo street photography project, Walks of Life. Inspired by Sean Henry's sculpture 'Walking Woman' I decided to use it as the jumping off point for a street photography project. The thing about Colchester is that as well as having this sculpture on the main street of the town, there are also streets that have the word 'walk' in them. So the image of the man and boy waiting inside the opticians was actually taken from Lion Walk. Also, other images were taken in Sir Isaacs Walk (none of these... will post those in next day or so).

As well as taking images in streets with the word 'walk' in them, I also took images that in some sense are about 'walks of life' - a term used to describe what people do for their job. Also, taking it literally in the sense that my subjects (or at least some of them) are physically walking. When you freeze this act at the instant of firing the shutter, depending on the camera settings, some will be sharp and appear motionless or still, whilst others will be blurred and so a sense of motion may be conveyed. This, for me, is a representation of the fact that we are all going through life (often described as a journey) at different speeds.

Then there is the interaction between the sculpture 'Walking Woman' and passing members of the public. When the sculpture was unveiled many folk wanted to pose next to the sculpture and have their photo taken. After a few weeks more and more people just passed by, as if the sculpture wasn't there, whilst others interacted with her, like the young boy on the scooter who physically touched her as if giving her a 'high five'. Others just glanced up at her as if seeing her for the first time. I also took images of people who seem to mimic the 'walking woman' in their stride (those mages I will post later).

I am still exploring the theme so eventually I hope to have enough images to put in a book and hopefully there will be an exhibition. If you would like to help towards that please check out my Patreon Page bu clicking on the button below.Become a Patron!

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Black Friday Deal with Discount Code!


If you don't know what Aurora HDR 2018 is but if I told you it was another application from Macphun, you might guess it has something to do with image editing. You would be right of course.

About Aurora HDR:

Aurora HDR is not just a tool for merging bracketed images, it also provides numerous tools and countless options to create perfect HDR photos for every taste - from one-click presets and advanced tone-mapping, to layers, noise reduction, and powerful luminosity masking controls.

Offer Availability:

The Aurora HDR 2018 Black Friday offer will be available from November 22-29

Pricing:


  • Current users of Aurora HDR may upgrade at a Black Friday price of $49 ($39 with your coupon code)
  • New users can purchase Aurora HDR 2018 for $89 ($79 with discount code - see below)

A collection of bonuses will also be included with every purchase.

Bonuses:


  • Deep Dive video tutorial from Trey Ratcliff
  • 40 realistic presets by PresetPro
  • A Special Ebook
If you are wondering what Aurora HDR 2018 can do, check out these 'before' and 'after' images:

Brazil Before (с) 2013-2017 Dmitry Sytnik

Brazil After (с) 2013-2017 Dmitry Sytnik
Moraine Lake - © Jim Nix
Moraine Lake After - © Jim Nix
So, how do I get the discount I hear you asking. Simple, just click on any of the images above and it will take you to the Aurora HDR 2018 site and then use this code (NEWBELTANE) to get your extra $10 off (applies to upgrades as well). Remember though, the bonus offer and discount only apply during the Black Friday Offer (ends 29th Nov).

PS Don't forget to check out my earlier post as you can also get a BLACK FRIDAY OFFER discount off for Luminar 2018 too!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Black Friday Offer from Macphun. Get Luminar 2018 and bonuses for just £64! Discount code available too for extra $10 off!


For Black Friday macphun have a great offer on. Purchase Luminar 2018 (or upgrade) get a pack of free bonuses (worth $130)! If you order using the link below (or by clicking on any of the images) you can then use this discount code - NEWBELTANE - to get a further $10 off! (just the word, not the hyphens).

That means current users of Luminar can upgrade for just $39  (instead of $49) and new users can get Luminar 2018 for just $59 (instead of the normal $69)!

This discount will expire at the end of the Black Friday event on 29 November. So don't miss out!

You get the Urban Preset Collection by Contrastly:



You also get the Creative Looks LUT Collection:



as well as the Ultra-Wide Landscape ebook by Ian Plant:



and last but not least, you also get Aerial Photo and Video Training Video by Matt Granger.

Luminar 2018 is already getting rave 5 star reviews:


So, don't delay and grab this deal whilst it's still available! Just follow this link to Macphun's web site. The deal is available from 21 - 29 November. Don't forget to use my discount code NEWBELTANE to get a further $10 off! Ends when the Black Friday event ends on 29th November.

12 Christmas Gifts for your relative's camera bag.

Christmas can be a difficult time for lots of reasons, some serious and some pretty much a question of not knowing what present to buy someone. Well, if they are at all interested in photography, why not look at one of these gifts? They are only possible purchases and they cover a broad range of prices so there should be something there for everyone. You are not obliged to buy any of these of course but if you do, or if during the same browser session you purchase something from the Amazon store you will be helping me out in a small way, without any cost to yourself.

Here are my suggestions. Just click on any of the images below or use the search box to find exactly what you are looking for.


  • Batteries - cameras eat battery power for breakfast. You never have enough, so either get Lithium-ion rechargeable ones or check if their camera takes standard AA ones.
  • Memory- these days with digital you need something storage and as file sizes increase so the need for more storage. Check if they use SD or CF cards and whilst you are at it, ask them if they use their camera for video. If they do they might need cards that cope with the bit rate. if unsure go for at least a Class 10 card.
  • Cleaning kit - a lens cloth, a little blower to remove dust from the sensor and some cleaning fluid especially for camera lenses.This would make an affordable but useful gift.
  • Camera bag - maybe theirs is getting a bit old and tired looking, or they have more kit and need a bigger one. If they are particularly active and go out in all weathers make sure you choose one that can cope. It will say in the product info (waterproof or comes with a rain cover) or you can check on the manufacturer's web site if it doesn't say on Amazon.
  • Gorilla tripod - these are great for fixing your camera in place when in awkward situations. They are flexible and come in various sizes.
  • Book - sometimes we photographers just like to relax with a good book, either one that is practical (e.g. 'How to shoot portraits' or one full of inspirational images by one of the greats (Ansel Adams for instance if they are into landscape).
  • Extension tubes - you amy wonder what these are but they go between lens and camera body and are used for macro photography. make sure you buy ones that are compatible with their camera gear. If they have a camera that has a fixed lens you can instead by close-up adapters that go on the front of the lens like filters do but give greater magnification. not quite as good as a macro lens or extension tubes but easy to use and reasonably priced.
  • That brings us to filters. Maybe they scratched their UV filter and need a new one. Maybe they didn't buy one when they got the camera. Find out what size they need - you can do this when they are not looking by checking the front of their lens - it should say what size filter thread it is in mm.
  • If you are feeling generous you may go to the expense of an extra lens. Check before buying that it's for the same brand and model of camera that they own. Also, you will want to get something that either covers a focal length they are lacking in their kit or is a much better quality than their kit lens that came with the camera. So, if they just have a standard kit lens of say 55-200mm that goes from F2.8 to F4.5 and they are interested in landscape, a wide angle lens with a focal length of say, 28mm would be ideal. Alternatively, they may have got interested in wildlife photography so a lens that covers from 200-400mm or a 300mm prime lens would be an  ideal gift.
  • Studio lighting - if they have acquired an interest in portrait photography then a pair of studio lights with stands, umbrellas, cables, honeycomb, snoot, flash meter etc would get them started. Kits range from basic to professional level. Pricewise you are looking at £250 upwards (Pro systems cost thousands!).
  • Courses - if they are wanting to learn how to become proficient at certain types of photography this could be right up their street. There are literally hundreds of courses, online and in person. You can learn wedding photography, macro photography, portraiture, wildlife photography, even street photography. Just search Google and make sure you use the filters to just search UK ones (or US/Canada etc). You could even search in Google with a search term like "photography courses London" and it will come up with a map and likely candidates. Or, alternatively buy them a photography magazine (it will have courses advertised) and then surprise them with the course!
  • A new camera! - maybe they haven't yet dipped their toes into photography but have expressed an interest. A camera kit (body, lens, batteries and charger etc) would make a great gift.
So, those are the kinds of gift you can look at purchasing for your loved one. If nothing suitable shows up in the widget below just use the search box at the top of the widget. If you do this you will be helping me out in a small way, for which I am very grateful. 



5 facts about speed hillclimbing you might not know.


5 Facts about Speed Hillclimbing you might not know:

  1. It's one of the oldest forms of motor sport. The first recorded hillclimb event took place in La Turbie near Nice, France on 31st January 1897!
  2. The oldest hillclimbing event that has continued uninterrupted is the hillclimb event at Shelsley Walsh, in Worcestershire. It was established in 1905 and has been held on the same course throughout.
  3. Hillclimbing is popular around the world, not just in the UK. Even Romania, during the rule of the dictator Nicolae Ceausescu events were held. In fact the history of hillclimbing goes back to 1930 when it was part of the European Hillclimbing Championship.
  4. Switzerland even banned all motorsport in 1955 after a fatal crash at the 24 Le Mans Race. However, as hillclimbing was a race against the clock and only indirectly against other drivers, it escaped the ban! Hillclimbing is still popular and Switzerland offers some spectacular courses due to it's mountainous terrain.
  5. Hillclimbing is not just for the the 'professional' driver but is open to the spectator too. You can even compete in your own vehicle! This makes hillclimbing as a sport very accessible and means even someone of modest means can be an active participant. There are numerous classes which cover almost every type of vehicle, whether one that is purely for competition or is a road legal vehicle, modified or unmodified.
In this post is another short video of one driver (Paul Nutter) and his vehicle (a Mk2 Ford Escort) taking part in a hillclimbing event at Harewood Speed Hillclimb circuit. The circuit was established in 1922 and is a very accessible for spectators, with access to the paddock and great viewing positions close to the track. This also means that even if you a modest camera you can still get plenty of great shots. You can get great shots at Farmhouse Bend as cars make their final run up to the finish line.

Check out the Harewood Speed Hillclimb site here.

Harewood Speed Hillclimb Circuit

Become a Patron!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Third 4K video from my trip to Harewood Speed Hillclimb. Taken with Fuji X-T2.


This is the third 4K video taken at the Harewood Speed Hillclimb back in June. Its a short video that was taken mainly to see how the 4K video capability of the Fuji X-T2 performed in the hands of a novice (with the camera and shooting video with a large lens).

Have to say I was pleased with how the camera performed and that my lack of experience with the kit didn't mean I ended up with rubbish! I didn't have a microphone attached so sound is what the camera's internal mic recorded.

I am looking forward to trying the camera out with some time lapse videos. We live not far from a large nature reserve and there is lots of potential not only for wildlife shots but great sunsets over the reservoir.

Thanks for reading and do leave a comment. If you feel able to it would be great if you signed up on Patreon as a Patron too. You can find the link below.


Become a Patron!

6 Free Gifts from Creative Market for designers, blogger and graphic designers.



Creative Market is a great place to find resources for your website, blog, social media accounts, designs (business cards, brochures, greeting cards etc). Not only does it offer a vast number of resources at reasonable prices, it has special offers running where you can buy a bundle of resources with huge discounts.

Best of all though, if you sign up for their newsletter, each week you get 6 free resources each week! So, if you are looking for the perfect font, vector graphic, stock photo or website theme, why not check them out now. You can click on the image above and it will take you straight to their site or use this link here.

4k Video on Fujifilm X-T2 with X50-140mm F2.8 and 1.4x TC


Here is another short video captured on my Fuji X-T2, 50-140mm lens and 1.4x TC. It features Graham Cox driving his Mitsubishi Lancer at Harewood Speed Hillclimb, 4th June 2017. The event was the Jim Thompson Hillclimb for the Jim Thompson Trophy.

Once again I am pleased with the result obtained with my kit, especially as I had only recently acquired the camera and lens. The X-T2 has garnered plaudits for not only its excellent stills capabilities but also for its video performance. 

Here are the technical details:


4K Video:

  • Crop 1.17x
  • Output resolution 3840 x 2160
  • Input resolution 5120 x 2880
  • Bit Rate 100 Mbps

Full HD Video:

  • Crop 1.0x
  • Output resolution 1920 x 1080
  • Input resolution 3000 x 1687
  • Bit rate 100 Mpbs
The X-T2 not only captures beautiful 4K but you can also have the Film Simulation of your choice on during video recording. In addition, with an external external HDMI devices you can also get F-Log with a custom LUT. 
Here are the file details for movies on the X-T2:

  • Movie File Format: MOD
  • Movie Video Compression: MPEG-4 AVC / H.264
  • Audio: Linear PCM/ Stereo sound 48KHz sampling

Let me know in the comments what the video or if you have experience with the X-T2 and using its 4K video you wish to share. I will be posting more video captured on the X-T2 in upcoming posts.


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Sunday, November 19, 2017

How does the Fuji X-T2 rate for 4K video?




I switched from Sony to Fuji back in the summer. The main reason was that the Fuji X-T2 was getting rave reviews and it had the features I needed at a price I could afford. It was also lighter than say a Nikon D500 or a Canon 7D and as I suffer with arthritis, lighter the better for me. Also, the X-T2 can record in 4K and comes with two memory card slots. I also love the retro look with actual controls that mean you can change lots of important settings without getting lin lost in the menu system (unlike with the Sony menu system).

I was really looking forward to my 60th birthday treat, a weekend at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone and I needed kit that could cope. As it happened, I was able to put my shiny new Fuji kit (X-T2, 50-140mm F2.8 lens, 1.4x TC and speed booster grip with higher FPS and longer battery life) to the test before the GP. I attended the Jim Thompson Hillclimb event at Harewood Speed Hillclimb in Yorkshire on 4th June 2017 and was able to get plenty of practice in with my new kit. I was able to, crucially, get plenty of practice in of panning to get those critical shots where the vehicle is in focus (or least the critical parts like driver) whilst the background is blurred to effectively convey a feeling of motion.

Panning is a tricky technique to master and I knew that I had zero experience so this was my opportunity to finesse my technique in time for the big event, the British GP at Silverstone. Throughout the day I was able to literally shoot thousands of images and some video (more of that later). Of course, not every image was in focus as the cars were only a few meters away and coming round a corner before passing in front of me at about a distance of maybe 7 - 8m away. Not the easiest circumstances in which to learn panning! However, a sufficient proportion were (I estimate my hit rate in terms of focus was about 80% - not bad for an amateur!).

My mistake probably, was not to remove the tele-converter as it meant that although a shot was in focus I didn't capture the whole car due to it being close and my focal range was equivalent to 107mm-299mm in the 35mm format. Even wide open, when the car parallel to me, 107mm meant I couldn't fit some cars in the frame. The smaller cars such as a Mini where ok but longer cars were partly out of frame. Also, my panning technique wasn't always up to scratch and some cars were partly out of frame. If my panning technique had been better I'd definitely have got more cars in frame.

Anyhow, this post poses the question about how well did the Fuji X-T2 cope with video and did it do a good job? Well I leave that your judgement. Check out the video above and feel free to leave comments.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

How to get yourself a Black Friday deal.

Black Friday started off as a US thing in the run up to Thanksgiving. As usual, it has now crossed the big wide pond to the UK, and it seems like it's been here forever. Hate it or love it, you can hide away from the fact that it's happening. 

Before I go any further, a word to the wise - make sure you follow the golden rules of buying stuff that is advertised as on sale or discounted. Over here in the UK we have a wonderful organisation called "WHICH" who act on behalf of consumers by reviewing everything from bank accounts to washing machines etc. Their latest report points out that what may seem a good deal during the 'Black Friday' event are not always so. 

Retailers are out to make money and if they can get away with something, they will. So, the legal requirements to be able to say something is on sale or discounted vary from country to country and no doubt from State to State in some places. An item may even have been cheaper earlier than it now is at the so-called discounted price. As long as it was at a higher price at some point, the retailer gets away with it. So, be sure to check prices elsewhere and make sure the 'deal' you are being offered is actually a deal. WHICH actually found that around 60% of deals were actually cheaper earlier in the year.

Their advice is to follow some simple rules:

  1. As already said, check online for competitors prices. Just because an item is discounted on one retailer doesn't mean its not available elsewhere at a cheaper price.
  2. Read the small print whether on the 'Sale' notice in a store or online (usually tucked away in the Terms & Conditions!
  3. Check whether the Recommended Retail Price is correct. You should check the RRP on the retailer's site (or in store) is the same as the manufacturer's. Not all have a RRP for their products but if they do and it's different from the what the retailer says then their figures for the amount of discount/saving is wrong and might even infringe the law!
  4. Mistakes happen so if unsure about the stated discount do follow the 3 steps above to reduce the risk that you are buying an item that has mistakenly been priced incorrectly.
So, once you have done your research, where are the deals? Well, for one thing, many retailers don't have Black Friday Deals on Friday, many run it over several days (some even started yesterday). So, don't wait until Friday but get looking now.

The key though is be sceptical and don't just accept what is offered as a deal until you have done some checking. If you have then start with the big retailers such as Amazon, eBay, John Lewis etc. Once you have identified what looks to be a good deal, check online for what other retailers are selling the item at. You can do this whilst in store by using your smartphone. If you are online at home checking the website, even better.

Also, be sure to check your local small retailers (who aren't part of a chain) as they may have good offers available for the item you are interested in. If they have a website it's even easier to do this. Small retailers can't compete with the larger ones but sometimes they will have bigger discounts on some items as they need cash flow more than the big retailers do. Sometimes they match the price but offer a better warranty or free installation for white goods such as cookers and refrigerators. 

Recommendation: If you are having problems with wi-fi in your home in that there are places around the home just don't get a reliable wi-fi. maybe you have tried various solutions without success. Well, I had this problem too and over the years have spent plenty of money on solutions that didn't live up to expectations. recently however I found a solution that has literally banished dead spots around our home! Its the BT Whole Home Wi-fi. I bought the 3-pack but if your apartment/home is smaller than our 3 -bedroomed you might find that the 2-pack will suffice. I can recommend it as the best solution around. It even got the top-rating in a review. The review came out after I bought the product so it was reassuring to know I'd made the right choice. If you are interested please click on either of the images on the top right.

So good luck and I hope you find a real bargain! BTW if you feel like helping me out at no cost to yourself please click on the banner below to start your search online at Amazon.



11% Discount Code at Photo4me.com!


If you are looking for a print to buy for yourself or someone else then check out this image. Visit Photo4me and use this discount code: PHOTO4ELEVEN. This code is only available to readers of my blog (there is a 10% discount code for Black Friday valid for 17th - 26th Nov).

Whilst you are there why not check out my other images too? Just click on this link to see my other images too. Just remember to use the code above to get that extra 1% discount (11% compared to 10% of Black Friday event).


How to grab yourself a bargain in time for Christmas!

If you are thinking of buying a nice print to go on your wall or as a gift for someone else, why not grab yourself a bargain in time for Christmas?

You can use the code PHOTO4ELEVEN and this link here to get a discount of 11%. 

To help you visualise what the image above would like on your wall here is a mockup for you.


Friday, November 17, 2017

Time is up I am afraid to take advantage of the pre-order discount and bonuses for Luminar 2018


If you were thinking of getting the pre-order discount and bonuses that come with Luminar 2018 then I am afraid you are too late. However, it is still worth considering purchasing Luminar 2018 and when you consider some of the other options it is still good value even at £64.

In particular, if you a Windows user I would say that you should seriously take an in-depth look at what Luminar 2018 has to offer. Here is a brief rundown of what is available on the Windows version and where it differs from the Mac version.


Support of third-party Adobe plugins:

This will mean that if you have invested in third-party plugins for Photoshop you will be able to use them within Luminar. This feature for Windows will be arriving early 2018.


Adobe Photoshop Elements plugins:

You will have to wait though for 2018 to be able use any Adobe Photoshop Elements plugins to work in Luminar 2018.

Batch Processing:

Both Mac and Windows version will be getting this feature in 2018.


Clone & Stamp and Shortcuts:

Window users will have to wait until 2018 for these features to become available.


Feather & density for masking brush:

This is another feature that Windows users will have to be patient for as it will also be coming in 2018.


Blend modes for layers, Luminosity masking and Merge layers & stamped layers are also due on the Windows version in 2018.


Rotate and flip, Native format saving and Sharpening and resize on export are also due to appear on the Windows version in 2018.


Finally, Transform tool and Workspaces are due on the Windows version in 2018. 

As to why Macphun (soon to be Skylum) have not implemented them from the start I'm not sure.  I do have confidence though that they will implement the missing features as soon as possible.

So, on balance I would argue that the missing features are not a deal breaker and it's worth going ahead even if you are Windows user. If you wish to purchase or upgrade please use this link and you'd be helping me out at no cost to yourself. Thanks for reading!

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