Foxvideo Productions

July 2012

CameraBag 2, Simples!

(For non UK visitors, the "Simples" remark in the title is a light hearted reference to advert currently running on UK TV)

I've used an older copy of Photoshop for years, it's always done what I needed and I never saw a good reason to spend several hundred pounds for the newer features, I used Actions within PS considerably, there's hundreds of free ones out there to give you just about any effect you could ever want.

I recently 'retired' my PC and now use just a Mac which meant my copy of Photoshop would only work using Parallels, not really a problem but not ideal. I'd managed to pick up Elements 9 for the Mac in a bundle deal a while back which I'm using, but Actions are not as widely available as those for Photoshop.

I spotted a web article about CameraBag 2, Professional Photographer magazine was quoted as saying "Nevercenter, the creators of CameraBag, have created another revolution for photo editing" and that prompted me to download the 30 day trial from the website - even to buy it's only £16.99 from the App Store.

It's simplicity itself to use, there's no need for a manual, either drop a photo on the App or use 'File' > 'Open', it supports a range of image formats including most RAW files. There's 100+ adjustable filters and Styles, a "roll over feature" allows you preview any of the Styles instantly. Your own Styles and filter combinations can be saved to a Favorites location.

There's not much else to say about the App, it's better seen in use than described and adds a huge amount of time saving to give 'an edge' to your photo's.



Has eBay peaked?

I've been using eBay for years, since October 2001 according to my profile. I'm not a prolific buyer or seller, I've sold some stuff and bought stuff, sometimes I've made a few quid, other times I've not got what I expected when selling but, I've also had some good bargains that make up for any losses and that's the nature of an auction site.

I browsed the Professional video / audio section daily, occasionally I'd spot something I'll put a bid on or buy, a few weeks back my bookmarked page didn't work, eBay had changed many categories and the section was now 'Video Broadcasting and Recording', browsing this over the past few weeks it's obvious there are far fewer items listed, instead of around 200 items for sale in a 24 hour period there's now probably less than 50, I understand many items are probably now listed elsewhere in other categories but I'm not going to bother trying to find them unless I'm looking for a specific item with a search, the new category has taken away the 'browse and buy' shop element of looking in a specific area of interest that existed before.

I do also wonder if seller fees now make the site far less attractive to low volume sellers, it can cost anything from 10% upwards to sell. A forum I read regularly recently had a posting from a guy who sold a higher value item on eBay and complained over 20% of the final price was deducted in fees and charges by eBay, PayPal (owned by eBay) and dispatch costs, he complained to eBay and was refunded £40 as a "goodwill gesture"!

I've currently got an item for sale but decided against selling on eBay, it's now on at a fixed cost of less than 1% of the asking price, with 2 HQ photos for 30 days with no commission to pay if / when it sells and it even shows up in Google when the term "Tricaster for sale" is used.

eBay is now more of a buyers market but that's only going to exist as long as others are using it to sell items buyers want, if those lower volume sellers decide it's just too expensive to sell those items, buyers won't bother to even browse and eBay will become more of a 'tat' market, full of useless stuff. If others have spotted this slight / slow decline in the popularity of eBay for lower volume sellers I wonder how long before a viable alternative comes along?