One of the attractions of LW for me is also the quality of the printing, so I don't really have interest in the CD. I recently sold off my back issues of _View Camera_, but _LensWork_ is a keeper.
"So you're reading the paperback version of APUG? (Sorry...couldn't resist.)"
Actually, I don't really read that much on APUG or any other website simply because I don't like reading from a monitor. I used to print what I wanted to read from websites but that proved to be impractical. Now I just kind of skim along the sites and threads that look interesting. For the same reason, I hardly ever look at anyone's galleries.
If APUG was a tactile publication (another impracticality), I would read more of it and be more involved. I love the concept and most of the content of the site, I just can't get too interested in the presentation. Sorry.
Lens Work is the only photography magazine I buy regularly. I feel that it is pretty much the only magazine about photographs and its photographers. Every other magazine is intoxicated with commercial ads and articles and are oriented towards equipment and they lack of any kind of beauty within its pages. I believe I buy Lens Work because it is a beautiful magazine. The paper is beautiful and the printing is great, the best I have seen in any photography magazine, and the writing is most the times, thought inducing.
Extra material on CDs seems like a great idea but I can not see myself buying it. May be I'll buy a couple of issues to see what it is about but I will be loosing the pleasure of turning real pages with my own hands. The computer screen is no contest here.
I am curious though, to see the first one.
I, too, have mixed feelings. I buy a lot of magazines and Lenswork is always one of my favorites. This is not only because of the art inside but the magazine itself is well crafted. I know of no one who finds reading articles on the computer as aesthetically pleasing as reading a book or magazine. The same with pictures. There is one electronic magazine that I receive via download but it's a computer magazine so I consider it in a different catagory from my photo magazines. I'll subscribe to the electronic Lenswork for the first year mainly because, after shipping, the single issue sample cost is 50% of a year's subscription. I can't imagine it being as satisfying as the print edition, but I hope to be surprised.
I bought the back issue CD with the idea of getting the essays and interviews. Being able to print them out a few at a time to read at leisure is how I use the information. The images are very good for something on a monitor, but i suppose the quality really depends on your own monitor.
I am glad i got it. But it would have been nicer to have been getting the hardcopy from the start.
"Fundamentally I think we need to rediscover a non-ironic world"
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I ordered Lenswork Extended last night. Looking through the website today I see that APUG's own Joe Lipka has a portfolio published within. That will make the issue all the more interesting.
Thanks for the feedback
Thanks one and all for your thoughts on this. Believe it or not, I agree with you about the print version of LensWork. If I were to have a choice of one or the other only, I would definitely choose the print version. Nothing replaces the tactile feel and presence of the book in one's hands. No contest -- and I'm the publisher of the new CDs!
Our rationale for the CD is simple -- some people have asked for more, I might even say pressured us for more. We are encouraged by this, but quite frankly the magazine simply cannot be larger than 96 pages with a serious price increase (which we are very reluctant to do) nor more frequent than bimonthly unless you want to visit me in the rubber room and watch me drool.
The core idea behind the CDs was that we can offer more images from each portfolio. Once we opened that door, it was an easy leap to include audio and video to expand the content into these moving media -- especially with the advent of Acrobat 6 which allows compressed audio (MP3) and compressed video (MPEG). Since there is so much room on the CD, heck, why not just keep adding more and more content until it is filled? The EXTENDED Gallery, the extra articles, things we cannot yet perceive because we are new at this -- we certainly have more we'd like to publish than we have room for in the magazine!
As some of you have pointed out, the "market" for the CD will very likely remain smaller than the magazine for the obvious reasons. Hence our main focus will still be the magazine. We do hope, however, that we can provide enough extra material on the CD to make it worth your time to view them and our time to make them. If not, you'll let us know, I am sure. We are hopeful that there will be value to both, even though they are different in so many ways.
I remember when we started LensWork, we had advisor after advisor tell us we were foolish because no one would buy as magazine that was so different. We had faith that we were not the only ones who wanted a discussion about photography and the creative process and it turns out there are a whole bunch of us. Thanks! We have the same kind of blind faith in the CDs, but time will tell. Please let us know what you think and what you see we could do better to make the CDs more useful and pertinent.
BTW, for those of you who don't like to read on-screen, again I agree. That's why the articles can be printed to your desktop printer for reading on real, old-fashioned paper. In the easy chair.
Thanks for the nice words about the magazine. Glad you approve.
Editor, LensWork Publishing
Written Sunday, February 27, 2005 at 8:03 PM.