Yesterday we’ve had another meeting of the “IBM Klub Frankfurt, Abteilung Fotosparte” – or whatever the correct and “official” name might be, which I haven’t figured out yet. I guess the name is not that important.
I joined that club to learn some new and interesting things, to become active with some of their meetings, events, walkabouts, and/or workshops, and to share some knowledge of my own if I can. Not everyone there knows me because the attendants of those meetings aren’t always the same, so the first thing should be an introduction of myself. Well you can learn most of what you might want to know right here on this blog – I left Facebook and most other “social” sites some time ago, and don’t plan to get back in there. You could also have a look at my “most interesting photos”, according to Flickr. The rest are in my stream there, and in some sets.
From the plans for next year, and from the photos shown and questions asked so far, I can tell that some of the members of that club are pretty good photographers, exactly knowing what they’re doing or at least what they’re after. Others asked questions like “aren’t flashes expensive?”, or what tripod to buy. One of next year’s topics will – again – be splash photography, another one is doing mostly landscapes but didn’t know the sources I mentioned. So for my colleagues, let me list some links which might be of interest (and maybe they will be of interest to the general public also?).
There was that question about flashes, and a planned offer of an off-camera lighting workshop. To those who are interested in that, you might want to read the “Strobist” blog, and to learn your first steps doing the free lighting 101 and 102 courses there. I learned with a couple of very good books from Kirk Tuck (in fact I have all of his books; they’re absolutely worth it), but in his first one, even he mentions David Hobby’s Strobist as the source to learn. And since the available pdf versions are under a CC license, I can even offer the German translation of his lighting101_de as a free download right here from my page. Thanks David!
Some of my colleagues seem to be interested in splash photography, which they did already, and will offer and do again. Splash photography as they understand it is mostly throwing some liquids at models, tho the general topic is much wider of course. They might want to have a look at this video (and the site linked therein) of Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz, for me the master of that technique (and of the needed Photoshop image manipulation to get results like his). But like mentioned already, this technique is of much wider use than just getting some models wet. It’s of great value for some product photography for instance, and you can/could learn a lot from people like Alex Koloskov for instance.
For the – aspiring or already great – landscape photographers: a really good source of information is “The Luminous Landscape” of Michael Reichmann and others. I learn from them all of the time.
I mentioned Salgado’s latest TED talk yesterday, so here you have the link to it. And I have and love his latest book, which I’ll bring to one of those next meetings.
And the one blog to read about photography? For me, that is “The Online Photographer“. There are many good blogs from photographers, but this is without any doubt the most important and valuable one. Even the readers’ comments are mostly really good, and sometimes from people who have good contents on their own pages.
Gear? Not that important in my humble opinion. Of course it’s interesting if you hear about the failure (and death?) of a 7D in the Andes, while a 60D survived the trip and gave some impressive images. And the colleague who was asking for the right tripod was given some advice by another colleague and by yours truly – we told her what to look for when deciding, that’s all. Oh, and yes, we spoke about the Nikon Df yesterday, something which was even admired by Canon users. Also mentioned: the two new Sony cameras, and Fuji (one of the colleagues who wasn’t there yesterday has an X-Pro1, and it’s great).
But gear really isn’t that important anymore; today’s cameras are more or less all capable enough to take a good picture. It’s what you do with it what counts – and that is why I joined that club. And it’s great, I really enjoy it. Looking forward to next week’s portrait and group shot sessions (by Cengiz and myself), and also to our next meetings.
Oh, and please come and join our Flickr group if you haven’t done so already. If you even don’t have a Flickr/Yahoo account yet: well you’ll get 1TB for free. What’s not to like?