On the 23rd of March I had the pleasure to be representing Olympus at the Professional Imaging photofair (PI). This included giving two presentations about my work and my collaboration with Olympus and an interview with Photostories podcast (see end of this blog). PI is generally seen as the biggest photo fair in The Netherlands, people cue up in front of the door at 9:30 a.m sharp, so you can imagine it was pretty exciting to share my vision on photography.
Definitely the most fun part was that I could share this experience with the Dutch Olympus crew and the other Visionaries who were there that day – Thanks Richard Terborg, Gerrit de Groot, Sterre Fenna & Belgium Visionary Thomas van Puymbroeck for the support! It’s a very cohesive group of people. You don’t just ‘get’ a camera setup and that’s it. You’re among a bunch of addicted photo junkies who want to share creative vibes.
It was also a bit surreal, since I’ve been building my photography for a couple of years and I’m only a Visionary for almost a year by now. So it is very motivating and humbling when you notice quite some people coming for you to hear you talk about your approach on on your work. I’d like to thank everybody for showing up and for the continuous support.
Here are a couple of key points I’ve been talking about.
When I started a bit more serious with learning photography about 4-5 years ago I was first shooting with a compact camera (Sony RX100MIII). Portable, quick and given the chip size good quality images. So when I wanted to move up with my system I kind of compared brands for speed, image quality, lens offerings and budget (in that order).
After a free Olympus Test & Try for a couple of days (which you can do too) it didn’t take me long to make a choice for Olympus. Yes, sure, other brands are good as well, there is no perfect camera, it’s about what you produce with it. However, I think there can be a better or worse fit with equipment. You need to feel comfortable and confident to reach those creative results.
What do I need and how does Olympus help me with this?
- On the streets I need to be able to quickly capture what I think is going to be a good shot, while at the same time also being able to quickly adjust settings while shooting (fast shutter speed, auto focus and electronic viewfinder help a lot → realtime changes).
- I want to make shots in lower lighting conditions without tripod or having the option of a High Resolution shot (Image Stabilisation is 7,5 stops in the latest E-M1X – about 6-10 seconds handheld shots made quite easily).
- I like crazy angles and still like to see what I’m doing (180 degrees tiltable screen).
- I need a high class lens selection (Zuiko Pro lenses by Olympus are generally considered to be high class lenses).
- I want everything as lightweight as possible since carrying all your gear for day, or even just 1 camera/lens setup, can be quite the weight.
What means urban photography to me?
People in general still don’t really have a feeling with the term ‘Urban Photography’. It is often interpreted as Urbex Photography and although that could very well be part of Urban Photography, that’s not really how I see it for myself.
To make it easy, for me Urban basically means everything with concrete :). Architecture, street, cityscapes, (street/urban) fashion and, to some extent, even interior photography could fit in here. It’s about capturing a certain mood/feeling through lines, energy and colors. Find your own angle on this.
If you’re curious to learn more, I’ve several creative urban & street photography workshop offerings on basic and advanced levels: bit.ly/reginarworkshops
Which camera and lenses do I use the most and why?
My setup at this point is:
- Olympus OM-D E-M1X
- Olympus OM-D EM-1 MII
- M. Zuiko Pro 12mm-40mm f2.8
- (favourite all round lens from the start, my go to lens when I walk out the door)
- M. Zuiko Pro 7mm-14mm f2.8
- (crazy wide angle!! Use for street & architecture)
- M. Zuiko Pro 25mm f1.2
- (depth of field and light sensitivity are so nice. Use for portrait, product, close ups, street, fashion)
- Other gear: Tripod, Monopod, ND filter, LED light, Reflectors.
Interview by Photography podcast: Photo Stories
Thanks a lot to Gijs de Koning of Photo Stories for the opportunity to go a bit more in depth on my choice for Olympus, the gear, how to find your own creative angle and some tips to progress in the photography world. Interview is in Dutch. Listen on Spotify or iTunes.