Capture One’s CEO Rafael Orta drops a lot of possible hints at what’s coming to Capture One in the future.
Capture One has a new CEO: Rafael Orta. His background begins as an engineer and evolved into critical technological advancements. It’s no surprise that folks have been asking more of Capture One. It’s not the fastest photo editor, but it’s still the one that gives the best colors. In an interview with us, he didn’t rule out a number of possibilities. In fact, we’re fascinated by Rafael’s responses. And there are hints of AI, support for video, and the long-overdue mobile workflow.
Phoblographer: Congratulations on your new position as the CEO of Capture One. In your years working as an engineer, you’ve done work in the technology advancement field. How do you feel Capture One needs to evolve in the coming years?
Rafael Orta: Indeed, I started professional life as a Computers Engineer and the through-line in my career since then has been my ever-growing conviction about how technology makes the world a better place.
There’s never been a more exciting time to be at the intersection of photography and software.
High-end cameras are evolving at the fastest pace ever and we’re extremely excited about the recent and future announcements from manufacturers, many of which we partner closely with, like Leica, Sony, and Fujifilm.
There are huge industry-wide shifts in the technology industry, including mobile, cloud, and AI, which are widely and easily available at an unprecedented scale for software companies like us.
The emergence and consolidation of the Passion economy has allowed more people than ever to embrace their passions and interests as a viable full-time or part-time career path.
All of the above will shape our future plans, we’re excited about their potential and how we will grow the role we play in helping photographers achieve their vision by building the most powerful image editing software.
Phoblographer: Your open letter to the community mentions the word, “Selfie.” As a long-time C1 user, I was a bit shocked by that, but also interested. Am I reading too much into this when it makes me believe that the future of C1 is Mobile and involving AI technologies?
Rafael Orta: Mobile and AI are two of the most important paradigm shifts in the history of technology, they have transformed and disrupted entire industries.
We expect the same will be true for photography, we’re excited about the possibilities these platforms will bring to our software, they compel us to continue finding new and innovative ways to help photographers achieve the vision they have for their images.
Phoblographer: Sports is another area mentioned in your letter. It’s an area where C1 traditionally didn’t really tread. However, it excites me as a journalist. Is this to mean that C1 is paying close attention to the sports and photojournalism markets at all?
Rafael Orta: One of the most inspiring things about entering the photography software industry has been experiencing the extraordinary diversity and creativity of the photography community.
The range of applications and scenarios is endless and only limited by our imagination.
As we grow, we look forward to engaging and serving an ever wider range of disciplines within photography.
Phoblographer: What do you believe are some of the biggest challenges are in the photography software space these days?
Rafael Orta: Similar to many other software verticals, the pace of change and innovation is breathtaking, while the war for talent rages on.
Over the last couple of years, we’ve invested significantly in expanding our Product and Technology teams, including opening an Engineering Site in Athens and reinventing our work practices to enable us to deliver software faster and on a more continuous basis.
We will stay very focused on building great software, reinforcing our core strengths and ensuring that our customer obsession and love of imaging shines through in everything we do.
Phoblographer: We like to call the modern, dedicated camera user as Passionate photographers. There are hobbyists who love dedicated cameras with all their heart. And there are hobbyists that just love taking pictures and don’t think any more of them. Conversely, there are professionals who love their job. But there are also professionals who hate the act of taking pictures. Those of us who care about the photography process are all passionate photographers. With this said, how does Capture One see and interpret the market?
Rafael Orta: We’re very excited about the rapid and accelerating development of high-end cameras at a variety of price points and how quickly the leading-edge features and capabilities trickle down the range.
We hold the very strong belief that, irrespective of application, photographers will always value our core strengths of exceptional image and color rendering, efficient workflow, and integration with camera hardware.
We have never met a passionate photographer who doesn’t want their images to be the absolutely very best they can be, matching pixel by pixel the vision they imagined.
Phoblographer: Do you believe that a part of Capture One’s future lies with the moving image at all?
Rafael Orta: While we will continue to be doggedly focused on building the most powerful image editing software, we have noticed the great interest and potential of multi-image processing like HDR and focus stacking and how that blurs the boundaries between static and moving image.
Equally, with the capabilities of the latest hardware, the lines between photographer and videographer are blurring.
We’re excited about the future and staying very close to the needs and wants of our customers and incorporating tremendous technology and innovation into our software.