San Francisco with the Leica M-E

If you read my post from earlier in the year, you’ll see I made the decision to try out a Leica M6 in an effort to find a system camera that was more suitable for taking along with me when I travelled. After putting a bunch of films through the camera, I was quickly convinced […]

Gear Review: Nikon 200mm F/2G VR

I’ve owned this lens now for 5 years, and have been meaning to provide a write up for a long time. I guess I just haven’t used the lens enough, for reasons I will explain during my blog, to do it full justice, but enough is enough, it’s time to write up my experiences….. This […]

Back to Analogue – Leica M6

I began ‘serious’ photography back at university, when digital was only just getting going. At the time I didn’t have much money, so scrimped and saved to buy myself a semi decent analogue camera kit based around the Nikon F601. I was the picture editor/photographer for the college paper, so ended up spending a fair […]

Gear Review: Nikon 24mm f/1.4G

I’ve been using the Nikon professional zoom lenses for a while now, and have built up quite a nice kit. However, when combined with a full frame body such as the D3, it becomes a heavy outfit to use when traveling. So for my recent trip to Japan, I decided to travel lightweight (by my […]

Camera Stores in Tokyo

I am currently on vacation in Japan, and we started our trip by spending a couple of days in Tokyo. One thing that always impresses me when I am in Tokyo is the abundance of photography equipment that can be bought in the shops. There are a couple of large camera stores in Japan, and […]

Safari Photography: Supporting a big lens

I’ve been lucky enough to visit South Africa a couple of times now, and knowing what gear to take is always the big question before I leave. In discussing this with other photographers, through my blog, and on forums, one question that people often ask me is what sort of camera support system they should […]

Giromania reaches Amsterdam

Today the first stage of the 2010 Giro d’Italia started in Amsterdam with an 8.4km time trial. With just under 200 starters, the cyclists kept the streets of Amsterdam busy for over 3 hours. I went out with the D3 and my 200mm f/2G VR lens and took some photos along the Ceintuurbaan in Amsterdam […]

Nikonians Amsterdam Get Together

Some time ago we put a call out on the Dutch Cafe at Nikonians for a get together in Amsterdam. This is something we have organised a couple of times in the past, although the previous trips were more based around out of town vendors. This time we decided upon a city meet, so planned […]

You’re not from round here, are you?

in Travel by on January 20th, 2007

Abandoned House
Originally uploaded by DigitalHeMan.

During a recent trip to Dallas took the opportunity to venture out for a day to Fort Worth, a couple of miles down the road. The differences between the two cities were fairly stark – Dallas on the one hand is a thriving metropole, set up by the oil business, and maintained by the computer business, placing Dallas on the edge of America’s second Silicon Valley. But Fort Worth still appears a fairly run down midwest place with a small town mentality. Although the center has some evidence of modernisation, the suburbs are still well and truly placed in the early 80s. Houses look like they would quiver, shake, and fall down at the slightest sign of a hurricane, and a lack of money has left many of them in a state of disrepair. Compared to Dallas, the citizens seem to be suffering from a lack of cash, and the large American vehicles they are travelling around in are definitely not this year’s model.
Still, it’s an interesting place for some photography, if you can escape without upsetting too many of the locals. I was with a friend, Philip, and on a number of occassions people came out to take a look at what we were doing. And the size of the dogs some people had roaming in their porches unleashed meant we didn’t stay around too long in some places.
The photo here, severely warped with the help of a fisheye, was taken under the watchful eye of one of the locals. We had discovered some old derelict buildings on the edge of Fort Worth, which invited us to walk around some and take some pictures. As we arrived at the place, which was located near a factory of some sorts, the workers seemed to be leaving, and one big Ford F150 driver took an interest in us getting out of our car, stopping his truck next to ours. As we walked off, he drove down the street very slowly, and parked up adjacent to where we were taking photos (we were off road). Then as we moved along the site, so did his truck. He didn’t say a word to us, but just kept gazing blankly at us. In a state where it is perfectly legal to carry a firearm around with you, it didn’t make me feel particularly easy 😉
I discussed this with a friend later in the evening, and he told me that he had been out shooting in some woods a couple of years ago, also near Fort Worth, with another friend. At a certain point a couple of trucks pulled up, and a bunch of shaven headed white guys stepped out. They asked my friend if he had seen a young black boy in a white tshirt and jeans anywhere close that afternoon, as they would ‘like to have a little word with him’. When half of the guys have baseball bats, it definitely makes you think…..
The Midwest, it would seem, still has a lot of steps to take to catch up with the rest of America……

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Car park management is not liable for any loss or damage to yourvehicle……

in Travel by on January 18th, 2007

Was recently in the US, in Dallas, Texas, where I picked up two new lenses: the Nikkor 10,5mm Fisheye, and the Nikkor 12-24mm wide angle zoom. Spent some of my spare time playing around with them and trying new things out.

For this photo I used the fisheye, which has the ability to make a very ordinary scene look special. Here’s an example of just that – this was a car I found on the top layer of a multi storey car park that I had originally had entered to try and find a good vantage point to take some night shots of Dallas. It seemed the car park was also in use as a junk yard for abandoned/stolen cars, and there were a number of cars up there in various states of disrepair.

This photo was taken at around 11pm, with only a small amount of light being provided by a couple of car park lights. The actual exposure used was 30 seconds at f7.1, and I exposed for so long to enable me to get the surreal colors, as well as the movement from the trees (it was a fairly windy night).

On a side note, one thing I learnt from the trip was always to take the right accessories along…. I had a tripod together with my Markins M10 ball head, but the camera plate on my D200 had become loose…. and of course I didn’t have the allen key with me. Luckily I could fix it by jamming a few business cards between the mount and the body, and it didn’t cause me too many issues.

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2006 – Getting back into photography

in General by on January 17th, 2007

2006 really started at the end of 2005, when I met up with fellow Nikonians at a Nikonians Christmas get together in Brussels. One of the presentations was from the 2005 trip to Helgoland, and it wasn’t too long before Ferd, Patrick, and Claus had convinced me to go along on the 2006 trip to Helgoland in Germany in April.

I travelled up to Helgoland together with Ferd, and on arrival realised my rather modest photo outfit paled in significance to some of the big guns that were on display there. Luckily Claus had arranged with Nikon Professional Service in Germany to borrow some of their loaners, so there was enough big glass to get me hooked (and to provide me with a long shopping list once I returned to the Netherlands.)

Once I returned, having enjoyed 10 days of early morning to shoot the seals, and fun afternoons on bird’s rock, I made a visit to my dealer, Foto Konijnenberg in Den Ham, and returned home with all the goodies I would need for future trips, including a Nikon 200-400 VR, and the 70-200 🙂

Some of the photos from that that trip can be seen in my Flickr account, but here’s one for starters:

Northern Gannets
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Welcome!

in General by on January 17th, 2007

Welcome to my blog, thanks for stopping by. Not sure how this is going to progress, or how regularly it is going to be updated, but my intention with this blog is to share with you some of my photography, my impressions and opinions about photography, and what I am currently up to. Let me know what you think, and please feel free to leave me a comment!

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