Thursday, April 30, 2009

Learning Nikon's CLS

Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
I'm making very slow progress but it's progress nonetheless.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

River boat

River boat
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Another fine example of my current problem with photography. It's got nice colors, I like the simplicity of the scene and I already know that it won't draw flickr crowds.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Why I always have a large plastic bag in my camera bag

Wild pansy or Heartsease
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Noticed a clump of these tiny wild flowers. The flower was about 8mm in length and at most 5 cm of the grond. So a very low shot. Fortunately I always carry a big plastic bag in one of the side pockets of my flipside 300.
Simply a matter of unfolding it, kneel on it, take the shot. Shake the sand of the bag, fold it again and stow it. You don't get dirty and it's hardly any extra work.

Friday, April 24, 2009

pouring concrete

pouring concrete
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Starting of yet another new shopping area in the center of my town. We already have at least one shop from just about every leading chain. The rest is filled up by small retailers. I really can't see why we'd need another 10000 m3 but hey, that's morons, sorry, property developers for you.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Schiphol panorama

Schiphol panorama
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
On my way to work I noticed what a vista you have on Schiphol. So I took a late lunchbreak and lugged my tripod up a hill. I was a bit careless with the overlap, this is the only one that worked out well. Shot with the tokina 100mm and an ancient Velbon tripod I got on long term loan from my dad.
Thing I learned with panorama is that you want everything manual, WB, exposure, everything.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Obligatory spring shot

Obligatory spring shot
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Still haven't found the time to drive to the coast and get some bulb fields shots in. This field is a lot smaller and closer to home but it does manage to convey a nice mood I think. The man inspecting the hyacinth flowers really balances the shot for me.

Monday, April 20, 2009

contrast and not

archery for beginners
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Took this pic as a family snap at the time. At home at the pc it strikes me how nice the similarities and the contrast here are. The positions are so identical and you have the other contrasts in outfit, skin color and gender.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The shot that saved my morning

Swan closeup
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Some time before this I spent 40 shots at a group of deer. Kept getting low contrast, somewhat overexposed shots. Then I met a couple of swans, one of them came so close that I had to switch my sigma to macro mode. Only started hissing when I walked away.

Felt better after I reviewed this on the computer.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Putting in some flash practice

Rhianne and Wendy bear
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Trying something I read in Thom Hogan's book. Set the camera to manual, underexpose by about a stop, put the flash on the camera and use it to make up the difference. Takes a few shots to master but I like it.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
You can't win them all. This is a good shot, I think, but it misses the wow factor of the landscape in sepia. Still, it's not shabby either. Perhaps I'll get the chance to shoot something better soon.

Monday, April 13, 2009

worth getting up early for

toned tree
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
At easter monday.

I'm now getting the feeling that I can make that D300 sit up and sing.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

D300 at iso3200

first high iso shot
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
I've used one of the custom settings banks for family gahterings where image quality isn't as important as getting the shot. This one turned up at iso3200. I'm baffled. This is more usabel than iso1600 was on the D50.

Snapshots a snap with the D300

Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Saw this bird sitting on top of a display case. Some netting in the background. Still had the 100mm mounted, decided I'd try it anyway. I got an af point on it's eye and squeezed off half a dozen shots. Every one of them as clear and colorful as this one.

flickr continues to amaze me

Take this. Piss poor shot of a tulip. Yet it manages 23 views and about as many comments.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Getting it right the first time

feeding bee
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
Noticed this bee, took a dozen frames as fast as my camera would go. Why a dozen? Because focussing is very tricky if you are this close and if there's enough breeze to move the flower.

This one I choose, chopped a bit of the right and.. well... there wasn't anything to process really. I'd nailed the exposure, contrast and colors. Was quite proud of that actually.

Thom Hogan wrote in his D300 review that when moving from an amateur DSLR such as the D50 to the D300 you need to step up your game photographically. He's right, I did, I still do but it's fun and shots like these are the encouragement you need to keep at it.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Got invited by Getty Images!

Some time ago flickr added the option to allow Getty to review your pictures to see if anything had potential. I agreed and expected never to hear anything about it.

Yesterday I found an invite in my inbox. Getty had selected 16 of my images! I feel so proud!


Now the hassle begins, I need model releases for these. For most this is no problem because the models are family but there’s also a few that feature people I don’t know. So I’ll have to drop those. Still leaves quite a few pictures. Would be very nice if some would actually sell. Some cash to spend on the hobby and the fun of getting your work published.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

heron cleaning

heron cleaning
Originally uploaded by j_wijnands.
This shot is a lot better than the earlier one. Or is it?

I seem to be expecting national geographic quality from me, an amateur with my sigma 70-300, a lens costing as much as a pro will spend on a single filter.

Sometimes you shoot pics you know are not going to be popular

And yet, you enjoy them. Typical dilemma if you publish on sites like flickr. Are you going to shoot what you want or what you think your audience wants to see?

This morning I got up early enough to catch the morning fog.


This might me more of a crowd pleaser:


Ah well, there’s always Melody Gardot and a good glass of whisky!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Went for a much needed walk today

At the moment it’s busy at the office. Not only my regular work but the workscouncil is also very busy. So, this afternoon I took a few hours and went walking.

The weather was nice, very bright, blue sky, never good for my landscapes so I looked elsewhere. Had the 28-105 with polarizer on my d300.

First I noticed this huge pike, 70cm at least. Just hovering there, not doing much.

A bit further along the path, these plants.

Also spotted this cow, liked the contrast between it and the trees.

These roam free to control young trees, especially the american Black Cherry (Prunus serotina) which otherwise takes over the area completely.

And of course, there’s trees, big trees!

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

My One And Only Thrill

Is the latest album by Melody Gardot. Wow! What an album! I can’t believe she’s only 23. A very adult sound, hint of French in it. Excellent rhythms. One of those albums you need to listen to at least half a dozen times to start appreciating it.

Highly recommended!