Yearly Archives: 2007

Did some experimenting with HDR. And for a first shot I have to say that I am pleased with the result. For those who are not familiar with HDR please come back later. I intend to write an article on this subject. But in short I can explain the principle. HDR stands for “High Dynamic Range”. Black is not just black and white is not just white. There are different shades of black and white. In photography we refer to different shades of grey (stops). Film sees the world differently than our eyes do. One of the challenges of photography is learning what those differences are so we can successfully put our vision on film. The human eye sees millions of colors and color variations at the same time. The eye sees all shades of white: off-white, cream, egg, ecru, soft-white, etc. Same for colors such as purple, magenta, pink, auburn, fire engine red, orange, sunset orange, and so on. The palette of colors available for oil paints is not as varied as the eye can see. Film is more limited. Unlike our eyes, film sees across a range known as the exposure latitude. This is the range of “tones” film can see between absolute black and absolute white. Film sees about 7 stops, and the same goes for a digital sensor. So what does HDR do in relation to this. You shoot multiple frames of the same subject (typically 3 shots) with different exposure settings (-2, 0, +2) so this gives you a higher range of light and dark. With special software you combine these images into one picture that shows more that the standard 7 ‘shades of grey’ So you get more detail in your shadows and more detail in your highlights. But as said before, more on […]

Last weekend, I finally decided to upgrade my gear. I drove to my preferred camera shop in the other end of Holland with my pocket filled with money. I was determined to by the latest edition of Canons xxD series. The 40D. I was curious about it’s new features and had been playing with this body for a while inside my head. On my list were also several new lenses, because i had decided that I would upgrade my glass to f/2.8 all the way. So I did my research on the Internet and made a short list of combinations that I could buy. I was eager for the Canon EF-S 17-55mm F/2.8 iS USM, and the Canon EF-S 10-22mm F/3.5-4.5 USM, in combination with my new 40D. But this left a gap between 55mm and my Canon EF 70-200mm F/2.8 USM. So I also had an eye on the Canon EF 24-70mm F/2.8 L USM. When we arrived at the camera shop (Kamera-express.nl), (Yes, we. My wife accompanied me for moral support), we were welcomed with a nice cup of coffee in the prof room at the back of the shop. And I was sitting at a large table looking at three bodies. My own 20D (which I brought for comparison), a new 40D and a 5D. I had this idea in my head that the new digi III processor would produce more colorful picture then my current digi II processor. So I made some tests with all three bodies. the 20D to see what I had up to now, the 40D because I was eager to buy this. And the 5D because the guys from the shop (let’s call him Gijs) told me that this was nice with colors as well. I never had the idea to buy […]

Just returned from our trip to Firenze (Florance) and Roma (Rome). Traveling two weeks by car through beautiful Italy. We decided to go on this trip just two weeks before we actually left so we had a lot of last minute arrangements to make but at the end everything fell into place and we had a smooth trip. I never went to Rome before, don’t ask me why, it just never happened. And the same for Firenze. But after these two weeks I am wondering why not because it was worth the trip. We saw so many beautiful things, too  much to describe. So I do hope the photos will say enough. Click here to go to the gallery

So you got your folders organized? You have given your photofiles a name that does make sense (to you)? And you are still not able to find this very special shot that you made several years ago? Start using keywords….. Many programs that act as photo library offer the option to set keywords or labels to you photos. So start using this option and it will make your life a lot easier. Personally I use Adobe Lightroom which offers to set keywords, but there are other programs available that you can use. An other program I have used is Picasa, this program uses labels, which is almost similar to keywords. Just search for ‘photo library software’ on google and I’m sure you will find many options. (a page with a big collection that i found: click here) When you are using a library program that offers the option the add keywords make sure that you are using keywords that make sense to you. Yes I know that I am repeating myself, but maintaining a library all comes down to setting up a system that does make sense. So pick your keywords (or labels) carefully. I’ll give you an example: If you make a close-up serie of flowers, let say red roses. You could use the keywords, roses, red, flower, close-up. This should be enough. If you add words like nature or garden it wouldn’t harm, but if you start to add more keywords, it might get confussing. So don’t start giving a full description of your red roses in your keyword list. Okay I do hope these articles will help you to get your library organized and give you the overview you need. Good luck with it. previous: “Organizing your photos (part 2)”

When you have setup your folder structure, you are ready to move to the next step. When you copy your photos from your memory card to you PC you will end up with the files on your PC that still have the names as provided by your camera. (ex. img_12345.JPG) Now that is a useful name, isn’t it? Nope! We can do better. Basically it is similar to setting up your folder-structure. You should name your file in such a way it makes sense to you. Again, amongst you there are very exeptional and gifted people who will be able to memorize all the numbers linked to the images, but again. I’m not one of them, and I need more logic in my file-names. So when I import my photos, I use a template that sets the filenames of my photos while they are being imported. There are many programs in the market available that will be able to do this for you. And there are also programs that can do this after you have imported your files (I used to use ACDSee, which had a batch rename function.) At the moment I’m using Adobe Lightroom for importing my photos from my memory card and this program offers a rename functionality during import. You have to realise that it is a batch rename (whole bunch of files in one single go), so it won’t offer you the possibility to rename the files one by one on import (but you can still do this afterwards). My advice is not to rename every single file. By doing so you will loose the overview. So let’s say you went on a trip to the zoo on a sunny day during the summer of 2007. Then you could create a folder in ‘Days out’ […]

I was always frustrated with the fact that  my ‘standard’ lens was too dark. So I went looking for a new lens with a bigger opening. I wanted to be able to shoot without flash. So I had three options…. I could go for the f/1.8, the f/1.4, or the f/1.2. But the main drive was the price which ranged from €100,- to €1300,-. Knowing that €1300,- would be way too much and I probably would be unsatisfied if I bought the cheaper one. I went for the f/1.4. And I have to say that I am very satisfied. Please find the specs below. Features -Focal length and maximum aperture: 50 mm f1.4 -Lens construction: 7 elements in 6 groups -Diagonal angle of view: 46° -Focus adjustment: Overall linear extension system with USM -Closest focusing distance: 0.45m / 1.5ft -Filter size: 58mm Crisp images with little flare are obtained even at the maximum aperture This standard lens features superb quality and portability. Two high-refraction lens elements and new Gaussian optics eliminate astigmatism and suppress astigmatic difference. If crisp images with little flare are important to you, they can be obtained even at the maximum aperture with this robust lens..

Ever wondered how to make a macro photo? Ever wondered how they manage to take that beautiful photo of the scary insect? Ever wondered how to get close enough?   So did I, and therefore I started a quest to discover the wonders of close-up photography. And my journey is still going on. So for the time being you shouldn’t expect too much. But I just wanted to share the things that I have encountered. before you start trying to make macro or close-up photographs I think you should understand what the theory behind it is. The definition of close-up photography is that the image projected on the “film plane” (i.e film or a digital sensor) is close to the same size as the subject. In the last few years they have used the term ‘Macro’ for lenses that make it possible to show your subject in real size on the actual print, this only requires a magnification of 1:4. Most most lenses at the moment are able to get a magnification of 1:2. A real macro lens will get you a magnification of 1:1, which matches the definition of macro. When you have an all-round lens that has a macro setting you will be able to get close to your subject but the performance will be less. This means that the focus quality will be less then when you use a ‘real’ macro lens. Macro lenses come in different focal length. The longer the lens the further you can be from your subject while you still get the required magnification. So if you are only shooting stills you will more then happy with a short focal length. If you are trying to shoot a live object like insects it might be handy to use a longer focal length, so you can maintain more […]

Trying to look for the needle in the haystack? Got lost in your archive? Want to know why the world is turning? Hmm I’m reluctant to answer the latter, but I do have some ideas on the first issue. Get organized, it is that simple. You can do this several ways, but before I continue I have to make a distinction between a digital and an analog collection. I see no reason to explain how you could organize your films, negatives and prints. Because for me it would be a simple sollution because I am used to do it this way for 25 years. Put them in a cabinet and make sure you make contact sheets and don’t forget to number them. How you number them, how you place them in your cabinet, thats all up to you. So lets focus on your digital work: Every time you use your camera you download your pictures to you pc Your library starts to grow One day you want to show that very special photo to your grandma. But you get lost in your own archive. Nightmare! So you need to get organized. You can do this on a simple way and most digital camera’s and their software offer an option to add a date or timestamp you your digital image. So now all you need to do is remember when you took the photo and look for that date and time…… Some programs even offer the option to download you images from your camera and place them on your PC in separate folders based on the date. So now you have a bunch of folders that look like this: “12th of March 2007”. Wow you got organised, of course you will remember the date of you wedding or your birthday. So […]

On our combined Kenya – Tanzania trip we saw too much, yes even for me that is possible. People we know me, know that it is never enough for me. And so it almost was on our trip. To be honnest I must say that we didn’t see enough but when we came back we had to organise all the photos we made (and videos). And that was way enough. We took 6900 photos and 24 hours of video. So you can imagine that it took a while to go thru all. Below you see just a few, and in the Tanzania gallery there are a few more. (I did make a selection (80 pcs.)) When we entered Tanzania we already did many gamedrives in Kenya and we were getting the hang of it. We learned to be patient and most important we had learned where to look. What realy intreged me were the zebras. I love their paterns. We saw many hyenas on the road, mostly lying in the mud or eating. They weren’t scared of the visitors and you could approach them very close. Persoanly I think they are scruffy looking animals with no beauty at all. And 9 out of 10 times they looked angry. When I took the photo of the eating hyena, we could hear the bone cracking. It made it even more realistic then it already was. To be continued………

In 2006 we made a trip to Kenya and Tanzania, on this page you will find a selection of photos that were made in Kenya (for Tanzania go back and select ‘Tanzania’) We made the trip in February and the rain season was just starting.During this period you will be able to see many new born animals. And so did we. We saw many lion troops with their cubs, and to be honest it was hard to resist not to leave the car and walk over to them, just to pet them. We had made the choice to take a private safari and therefore we could decide for ourselves if we wanted to spend more time at a specific location. This giving us the opportunity to see what we wanted to see. In Kenya we spend the most time in the Masai Mara, a nature park that connects to the Serengeti (Tanzania). In this park it is still possible to leave the road and come up real close to the animals. Sometimes a little bit too close! This young elephant bull wasn’t very happy to see us, or wanted to make a statement in front of his little herd. He was really showing of and making a lot of fuzz about our visit. Later that day we encountered a solitaire elephant bull, and that was when it became scary. As soon as he spotted us he started to wave his head and making clear to us that he was not going to move. For us it was almost impossible to escape by driving backwards due to the difficult roads. We waited for some very exciting minutes and finally we saw a little opening. Our driver steps on the gas and we were able to get behind him. Luckily for us […]

After my time at the academy, I stopped photographing for a while. due to many different factors. When I was introduced to digital photography I discovered that I was still enjoying it very much. Thanks to the internet we can now share our work the easy way with the rest of the world. And so am I. The result is this webgallery. The complete collection can be found in my main gallery. This gallery can be accessed via several links that can be found on the other pages, but if you are impatient you can enter the the gallery from this page. But then you will miss out on the introductions and highlights. In the gallery you will only find photos and no text. To enter the main gallery, please click on the image

Sometimes you take a picture and you know its the right shot, and sometimes you have a bad feeling during the photoshoot but after leaving the darkroom you discover that when you combine several photos that you have an excellent serie. On this page I will show you some of my best pictures and series.   First of all, a very emotional serie. When I was 19 my mother got breastcancer. A lot of greef and fear controlled our lives. And for some strange reason we both had the urge to capture this awfull moment. It took us 4 years to gather the guts to actually do it. And we are both very happy with the result. Regardless of the bad emotions there was also a lot of happiness and laughter. Hence the combination of the two photos. The end result is a serie of 4 photos which can be found in the main gallery. And my mom? she is still here, and still being my mom…. Another serie is “Dogs”, playing with them and chasing them on the beach was the fun part, cleaning the equipment afterwards was less fun. When I started to develop the first film in the darkroom, I saw some personallity in the dogs and that intregued me. I tried to see the dogs as humans with their own character. I decided to return to the beach and try to add some mistery to the images. I worked with long exposure times and used a flash to freeze the image. The golden labrador is named Balder and he was my dog, Unfortunately he is no longer with me he died at the age of 14.

Having a Canon Digital IXUS, gives me the possibility to take pictures anywhere, anytime. I love to have this camera with me. And take pictures of unknown situations and places. Besides that it also gives you the oppertunity to photograph everything that you want to be remembered. Without thinking about light, composition, and technique. In other words just plain and simple snapshots. I think that some of them are worth sharing with you so if you are interested click in the photo to enter the snapshot gallery In this gallery you will also find pictures that were taken randomly so I had difficulty placing them in one of the other galleries.