Every other year, the whole photo industry looks to Europe. Come a little closer and see, they are looking to Germany. Over there, in the west-north-western part of Germany is a big city called Cologne. Here, in the Cologne fairground is the Photokina held every other year for a week. This year they are also celebrating 175 years of photography.
This was my third visit in a row. After 2010 and 2012 I’m here again, walking through the huge fair halls looking at the new products. Cameras, lenses, tripods, bags, software, monitors and other gear is presented to the public. It’s always very interesting, although it was very crowded as usual.
As always the big companies i.e. Nikon, Canon, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina, Hasselblad, have huge stands filling nearly half of a hall each.
Many companies offered presentations. Some presented their software, other have had invited famous photographers telling where and how they shot the photographs used in the companies advertising using that certain gear. Other have had organized show shooting, when a photographer demonstrated the gear in a commented live shooting on the stage where the results were instantly displayed on a huge screen to the audience. And again, many stands were equipped with beautiful female models to be a subject to be photographed for the people.
In my opinion, this years fair is quite lame. None of the big companies has something really new to show. No really new products, no new trends. Even some stands of the big companies were empty and you were able to touch and test some of their products. I guess, the fair was also a bit smaller than the last times.
The only new trend I was able to recognise was the lack of printed brochures at the stands of nearly all major companies. Instead, there were QR codes printed beside the products to direct the interested people directly to the corresponding material available online. A good choice for the environment and a good choice for the carrying shoulder.
As usual on an outside area they had birds of prey and let them fly free.
I put a few impressions in my gallery below.
The fair lasts until Sunday. So, you still have a chance to have a look on your own.