Yearly Archives: 2011

North Sea Jazz Festival, July 10th 2011. It was five years ago when I went to the North Sea Jazz Festival for the last time. So I was happy when I got invited by my mate. I looked forward to all the good music and the opportunity to take some nice shots Most of all I loved the fact that Prince was doing a full show. It was many years ago that I saw a live performance by Prince, so just that, was already worth a visit. But also the other artists that we saw were more then just entertaining. It all started with the preparation of my camera kit. What to bring, and where to put it. This year they only allowed compact camera’s or camera’s with fixed lenses. Personally i do not see the reasoning behind this. If you look at the quality and options of the modern compact camera’s. Some of them can easily compete with some ‘not so old’ DSLR’s. But anyways, I decided to take my Canon 5D Mark I body with a 50mm prime lens. (the smallest configuration), and my Canon G12. I gave my 70-200mm lens to my mate, who putted it in his bag. The check at the entrance was though but I was terrible lucky that the doorkeepers were paying attention to some visitors that started a discussion. So they let me pass without a real check. So we were inside. We enjoyed Raphael Saadiq, Tea for 3 (with Dave Douglas, Enrico Rava and Avishai Cohen), and of course Snoop Dogg, one of my favorite subjects to photograph. Nowhere we were bothered whilst taking pictures. Below some examples of the shots, I was able to take. For prince we had to leave the main building and went to the large arena. […]

A year has passed and I thought it would be fun to re-shoot a studio session I did with Nickita, my daughter, a year ago. Unfortunately we were not able to let her wear the same dress (little girls grow fast), but at least I was able to use the same props. The biggest difference I noticed was the fact that she was more aware of what we were doing. At moments this resulted in her playing a role as she was acting. Another side effect was that it was even harder to keep her attention. There were moments she wanted to walk away to start playing with her toys. So we had to dose the amount of time we were actually shooting. With a little help of mom we managed to get the required shot (for her birthday card). Below there are a few more shot made during the shoot. If you want to see more just click on one of the photos to go to the gallery.

Ever wondered how to attach your Canon E1 hand strap? I did. Luckily I found this little manual a while ago. (sorry can’t remember where I found it, otherwise I would have credited it). I discovered that I did it all wrong, and with the help of the pictures I managed to do it the right way, which gave me a more secure feeling. At the end it is your (expensive) body that hangs on a thread. Keeps me wondering why I never received instructions with the product……

I have been cleaning up my archive and found some shots I made last summer. I made some close-ups in the garden while i was enjoying the nice weather. This was the first summer that we had wasps in our garden. Normally I am happy when this little bug(ger) stays away, but this time I was glad that I could make some shots. (it is a wonderful creature after all). All shots were taken with my Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 L USM Macro and my Canon 5D mark I We also went to the zoo (Artis in Amsterdam) where we visited the butterfly garden. This is paradise for the close-up fans. Sometimes the butterflies even land on your shoulder, which can be frustrating and wonderful at the same time. (You have a nice close-up view but it is impossible to take a nice shot) We went together with Nicki, my daughter, so it was not really possible to concentrate on the pictures, so this is definitely a place to go back to (when i am alone)

Change of the seasons, always a good moment to go outside with your camera. [Canon 5D Mark II – Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L USM – Canon Speedlite 580EX II with diffuser]

Just some experimenting within Lightroom. I did like the result so I wanted to share them here, click on the photos to see a larger version. Or just go to the gallery. More experiments to follow soon

I just realized that I never published anything about my new water drop setup. So here it is. I have been busting my head for a long time on how to get around the issue of spending way too much money on an expensive drip installation and an electric trigger system. And finally I saw the light. I needed a medical drip. So I started my search on the net and it took me a while to realize that it was a quest with no end. III asked around if someone knew somebody that had access to medical supplies. But no luck. Finally I found a website here in Holland that would sell drips to private an address. But only the drip system and not the bags that you need to fill up with liquid. I decided that I would figure something out and ordered two sets. When I received the package I opened it as soon as possible and examined the system. Never paid any attention to stuff like this so did not know what to expect. Luckily one end had a thick sharp end, and I figured that I would be able to push this thru the cap of a lemonade bottle. And so I did. I filled the bottle with water and found out that it was not working. I took a while to realize that I needed an extra hole in the other end of the bottle to let air in. And guess what, I had a system that produced drips that I could regulate. So still no trigger system. I decided to go with the old fashion system – good luck. See below for my first umbrella drops. Next phase will be to get the lighting right and the background / color. So still more […]

Love black and white? Equally love HDR? Why not combine the two techniques? I have been playing with the idea for a while and I thought it was time to show the result. So basically you have two ways to approach this. (In this example I used a single shot HDR.) 1) Make a HDR of the original and then edit that to black and white 2) Make a black and white edit of the original(s) and turn that to HDR. In this example I went for option one. Just because that way I only had to produce one black and white edit instead of three. To be honest I can’t tell the differences in result between the two options but that is for a later moment to try out. See below for the results. (click on the images for the larger versions) I love the way how you get the detail back when you use HDR. Just compare the trees from the original edits with the HDR edit (both B&W and color version). Make sure you get your transformation to B&W correct. I personally am a lazy bastard and have a preset that I use in Silver Efex Pro from NikSoft. (one of my favorite tools) It also gives you the old fashion look by adding the original film grain (based on type of film). I also like to add extra drama to the image during the B&W transformation. Just play with contrast , levels, etc…