SlippersGeek: F2 Cameracraft Take Two?

Hi Guys!

I am back in my comfy place, slippers and a magazine on my lap. However there is one small difference… slippers!! I’ve bought two new pairs so my feet I am never far from my comfort in life, warm feet.

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New fluffy slippers featuring Bramble the labrador

My magazine of choice today is F2 Camercraft magazine issue no.83. This is a magazine I have never heard nor seen before but though it worth a quick glance as I am always open to giving anything that promotes creativity a chance. I later discovered that, according to Icon Publications, Camercraft has merged with fellow photography enthusiast magazine F2 Freelance Photographer to become the publication now in front of me. Weirdly, other than that one article, I could find not find many online sources that mentioned the magazine or even the reason for merging of the two.

Icon Publications publishes these issues and has offered a short description of what the zine entails:

“f2 Cameracraft is written for the advanced photographer with aspiring to professional or gallery standards, with an interest in technology, equipment, methods and trends. Every edition includes news and product reviews, one main portfolio, a set of photographer interviews on a chosen topic, two or three major features on photographic projects, and columns by contributors”

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Front Cover

So it is apparent that this publication is for professionals or semi-professionals at the least. It certainly has a more technical agenda than some photography-inclusive magazines but this does not necessarily set it apart from others such as Digital SLR Photography, Digital Photography and Professional Photographer who also have a hand in the technical side. It also features far too many advertisements which can be interpreted as a pro or con depending on your personal taste; on the one hand it provides a boost for advertised companies but for me it just diverts my attention from the article it should be prioritising.

This is in contrast to a variety of statements on the Friedman Archives site:

“we believe the world is ready for a new photo magazine which returns to the forgotten roots of great photography and spends more time talking about light, composition, mindset, backstory, and the things that give photographs an emotional edge.”

“And while it will contain some ads, the intention is to publish for like-minded readers and not to chase the mass circulation demanded by today’s advertisers.  And while it will contain some ads, the intention is to publish for like-minded readers and not to chase the mass circulation demanded by today’s advertisers.”

Where is the edge? Where is the emotion? It’s a little ironic that this article claims that the magazine will contain some ads and will “not chase mass circulation” when thats all I can see whilst I’m trying to concentrate on the backstories they supposedly publish. So far I’m not impressed.

So as to provide a fair judgement, I would like to comment on the achievements of F2. Firstly it includes one subject matter that I don’t think is covered enough, student photographers. Being one myself I often feel our contributions are left out or belittled because photography isn’t our full time commitment. But F2 has included a nod to students on page 8 of this issue to which praises The British Institute of Professional Photography for its student recognition in Scotland in which 4/10 of their annual award categories are student work; it also highlights the work made my Edinburgh college students that has been rewarded with a years subscription to F2 Cameracraft. I’m guessing thats free or I’d feel a little ripped off. Another article worth noting is on p22’s ‘Turning The Dream To Reality’ which shows how Kickstarter campaigns can aid your photographic career by giving you that all important financial benefit. In this case, Gay Nicholls benefited by raising £60,000 in a month to shoot steampunk fantasy trilogy! Now we have to all agree that is an amazing result and the photographs themselves are just that, amazing and worth a look in Nicholls book trilogies entitled ‘The Imaginarium’.

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©Gary Nicholls


Despite some pretty inspiring articles, I am just not convinced F2 Cameracraft is a magazine I would purchase on the regular. Perhaps I am favouring modern magazines but it’s just too cluttered for my taste, F2 doesn’t have that personal feel where the reader can connect with the publishers and it generally needs a bit of revising to catch up with the eye catching magazines of the times.Even the front cover seems a bit 90’s.It would seem that F2 should use this merging opportunity as a “take two” in which they could improve their outputs and I hope they do because F2 Cameracraft promises so much that I would love them to deliver.


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