OPTIC 2016 Trip Report: Outdoor photo extravaganza courtesy of B&H Photo

OPTIC 2016 Trip Report: Outdoor photo extravaganza courtesy of B&H Photo

I’m just back from an East Coast swing including some fun bird photography on the Eastern Shore (hands-on with the coming soon!). The highlight, though, was definitely B&H’s OPTIC 2016 conference & tradeshow. Now in its second year, OPTIC was bigger and better this year, with more sponsors and more speakers. The tradeshow floor featured a wide-variety of cameras, lenses, accessories, and photographic service offerings. My thanks both to B&H (David Brommer, Deborah Gilbert, and the rest of the team) for hosting, and especially to DataColor for sponsoring my talk on Photographing the Bears of Alaska (based on the 17 years I’ve been capturing them on film and digital, and 15 years of ). Here are some of the highlights of the show for me...


UPDATED: My talk on

The event had plenty of action, including some great talks, which were not only live streamed, but will be available online courtesy of B&H for free viewing. John Walrath from Datacolor and I also manned the Workflow room and helped people learn about color management, colorspaces, as well as monitor and printer profiling. Back at the Datacolor booth, they were offering free profiling for anyone that brought their laptop. However, the unquestionable highlight of the conference was the evening cruise on the Hudson River, sponsored by Canon. We had perfect weather and amazing light. NYFD treated us to a waterworks show right in front of the Statue of Liberty in the sunset. Luminaries including Ralph Lee Hopkins and Jay Dickman were on board, with Ralph providing some advice on shooting from a boat, and Jay patiently posing for selfies with fans.

David Brommer may be the head honcho of OPTIC,
but his team was more interested in getting a selfie with Jay Dickman during the sunset cruise.
Who can blame them?

Ralph Lee Hopkins – Linblad’s Photo head --
captures this lucky couple in the sunset in front of the Statue of Liberty

Towards sunset the light levels dipped dangerously low,
but views were still dramatic.
(ISO 6400 on the RX10 wasn’t ideal, but its optical stabilization helped)

Some of the other talks you’ll be able to view online include main stage presentations from John Paul Caponigro, Ralph Lee Hopkins, Ron Magil, and Jay Dickman. The event was staffed with plenty of great B&H employees, who were super-helpful, and always eager to discuss the latest gear or photo techniques. B&H even showcased its new Outdoor Equipment offerings, including tents, backpacks, and just about anything the wilderness-inspired photographer would need to complement their photo gear. Fujifilm sponsored a photo print contest for attendees – and Canon even offered free prints while we were on the cruise.

B&H was selling products at the show and the store.
Datacolor’s Spyder Pro was the deal of the day and flew off the shelves

Aspiring photographers were offered the option of having their portfolio reviewed by experts, courtesy of Sigma, and once the main conference wrapped up there was a Linblad-sponsored walk in Central Park (I had to leave before the walk, which is happening today, but it looks like conditions are ideal for some great photography). If you’re reading this today (Wednesday, June 7), you actually still have time to catch the tail end of #OPTIC2016 at B&H on the 8th. Kevin Gilbert will be speaking about his illustrious career, Clay Taylor will be speaking about super-telephoto photography, and Rob Sylvan will speak on behalf of Adobe – All free, and all at the B&H Event Space tomorrow (more details at the ).

Datacolor team getting ready for the show to open, and a steady flow of interested attendees.