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DAFOS Photo World


To catalogue my thoughts and experiences on things photographic and related topics, aiming to promote open-minded creativity and respect that hopefully contribute in some way to general peace and well-living.

Feeling chuffed

Pictures Posted on Fri, May 06, 2016 20:13:01

I won a prize!

I submitted this picture for a Viewfinders Club Challenge, as a print. Being a B&W photo I had worked hard on to get that rich black silhouette look, it was just crying out to be a print.

And it won! smiley

I got some really helpful critique from the judges, too.

Actually, the winning print aside, that was among the best “Challenge” meetings we’ve had at Viewfinders. Judges Bart Ramakers, Tim Buelens and Steven Johns (google ’em, or look them up on Facebook), and a whole bunch of Viewfinders members who’d sent in some crackin’ images really made it a night to remember…

Poets, priests and politicians…

Pictures Posted on Fri, May 06, 2016 20:02:53

… have words to thank for their positions… To quote “the Police”.

Pictures speak thousands of them, so they say (but then, they say so much…), and this is supposed to be a photo blog so some pictures may be a good idea.

The picture at the top of this page is of the “Kurzaal” (Casino) in Oostende – self-declared pearl of the Belgian sea-side. And I think it is – I really enjoy going there. Good places to get out and take pictures, too.

Here’s the whole picture

(the sky really was that colour, though a polariser helps !)

In case you were wondering…

General Posted on Fri, May 06, 2016 19:38:24

DAFOS. Where did THAT come from?

(People often ask me this, or think it’s actually my family name!)

It’s a name I chose for my business, back when I (had to) set it up.

It’s based on a nick-name I had when in school (one of the polite ones !)

“Foster” became “The Fozz”, like Fozzy Bear in “the Muppet Show” (how cute ! smiley ).

“The Fozz” then of course got distorted into “Da Fozz”.

Which if you say it quick comes out like “Da Foss”.

Whence “DAFOS”.

Happy now? smiley

“Nice photo. You must have a really good camera…”

Things Digital Posted on Fri, May 06, 2016 19:06:55

Anybody who has ever worked as a photographer comes across this one. We know it’s a statement made (if a little misguidedly) just to be friendly, but can still get irritated at times. So, I’ll come clean. I do have a Really Good Camera – just like most people, actually.

Today’s technology has put the ability to capture a technically “correct” image into everyone’s hands. A “dilution of the art”? Maybe, but it does mean that more and more people are exposed (excuse the pun) to just how hard it can be to capture that image, so I prefer to see this as a very positive trend.

When I set up as a pro, (and after the unfortunate theft of all my kit and laptops and everything… smiley ) I invested in a Canon 5D-II and 7D body, with 24-105 L and 70-200 L f2.8 lenses, with some third-party wide-angle lenses to complete the set up. I later bought the famous “nifty fifty” f1.4 for night-time walk-abouts. And that’s my kit and (though I say so myself) I get very nice results from it thank you. Still: even when manufacturers throw ever more tempting kit and compact mirrorless bodies and this and that at us. My kit lets me take reasonably good photos and I’m happy (as are clients…).

Why Canon? They make excellent cameras (as do others) that understand how a photographer needs to work (as do others) and I already had a bunch of Canon accessories dating back a million years (give or take)… That’s the main reason. And I’m happy so don’t don’t feel the need to change. For now, at least…

I did invest in Capture One Pro though. I’ve never got on with Adobe software somehow. I’m an engineer and it doesn’t “talk” to that side of me. All these layers an things… Phase One – who make delectable cameras with monster pixel counts and oooh-if-I-ever-get-another-camera-oh-my-that-would-be-IT – are kind enough to support a huge range of pro cameras with their Capture One Pro image management and processing software: it’s kind of “Lightroom” equivalent, but then some (from what I have read). I used Canon’s own “DPP” for many years, which is solid (if a little slow) and gets the job done. But wow, what a revelation a truly high-end RAW converter can be…

Over the years I’ve applied my own technical knowledge alongside fantastic experiences at workshops (from some amazing people who are of international renown as photographers) to try and get “better” at making photos: photos for whatever reason happens to be important at the time (a job, pleasure, posterity, a duty, fun. Yeah, fun’s a good one). One technical item which stepped up my perception of making a good image was the switch to a truly professional post-processor like Capture One Pro. It’s so intuitive to use for me (as a computer geek) and gives such spectacular results in a logical way that it works as its own reward for making better images. Seeing one of your “fav” shots from a day go from “something not quite like I remembered it” to an image that really pops off the screen is just amazing…

Something to get started

General Posted on Fri, May 06, 2016 18:26:49

Just a bit about myself, really.

I regard myself as a “experienced Photography practitioner” rather than an “expert”.

Being introduced to photography at a very early age by my father, many years of practical experience as an amateur, a few years as a working events photographer (i.e. “professional”, as it pad my bills, though nowadays only as a part-time activity) and several years active participation (including being President) of an international photography club here in Brussels have lead to me having the honour and experience of meeting and learning from many fantastically creative and knowledgeable people along the years, in photography and in related industries.

I have a scientific / electronic-engineering background (so am certifiably a geek) and have approached photography from this angle, learning about the artistic views from all those people I met along the way.