Greg VdB

Lives in Earth
Works as a Geoscientist
Has a website at www.pbase.com/gbleek
Joined on Sep 6, 2002

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On article Sony a9: Why being better might not be enough (746 comments in total)

Very interesting article, Richard, thanks. With the inertia of the big photography agencies in mind, it makes sense that Sony's first FF mirrorless offerings were aimed at tech-savvy enthusiasts, before expanding from there. At the same time, it means Canon and Nikon didn't need to panic straight away - they have the luxury of sticking to their tried-and-tested flagship dslr ranges, while observing what Sony does and deciding if/when/how to implement the new tech a few years down the line.

Link | Posted on Apr 24, 2017 at 12:22 UTC as 147th comment
In reply to:

NCB: Is it just me, or are these pics not very good?

Tastes differ, nothing wrong with that. Personally I liked them, and I'm happy I found the gallery these shots were selected from:
https://www.frederikbuyckx.com/personal-work/wolf
You surely need to be a fan of dark, gloomy atmospheres to enjoy these... (and in fact I think it's quite a feat to make almost purely white images look gloomy)

Another of his galleries I enjoyed was the one on life in Albania:
https://www.frederikbuyckx.com/personal-work/moving-albania
I like this type of documentary-style photography, especially when the images show excellently balanced compositional elements.

Link | Posted on Apr 21, 2017 at 16:57 UTC

A fellow Belgian who works freelance for the newspaper I read. I approve!

More importantly: the consistency of the gallery, with dark accents in a white world, is very nice indeed: https://www.worldphoto.org/sony-world-photography-awards/winners-galleries/2017/professional/shortlisted/landscape/photographer
I wish I could see large prints of these.

Link | Posted on Apr 21, 2017 at 14:29 UTC as 14th comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Impressive camera - too expensive for the masses as yet, but some of the goodies should trickle down soon enough. It might also kick Canikon hard enough in the *§$s for them to produce high-end mirrorless options of their own (one can dream...). Competition is good!

Nikon is definitely in a bit of a pickle right now, but (even if I've never owned Nikon gear) I certainly hope they bounce back with some exciting gear in the not too distant future. Canon has recently made progress on the mirrorless front, and as this technology matures, I'm sure we'll see FF options from them at some point. Considering that the size advantages for telelenses are negligible for mirrorless vs. dslr, I hope/dream that they might introduce a new mount (and WA lenses), with an adapter ensuring backward compatibility for EF lenses.

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 19:05 UTC
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Btw, the cynic in me can't fail to notice the following: DPR fails entirely to address the controversy surrounding "Sony becomes 2nd largest in ILC market", and a few days later they get advanced access to an a9 and produce several items about it. I'm not saying you produce *more* items on Sony (you don't), but please explain why none of you commented on the wide-spread criticism on a post that garnered 700+ comments, in contrast to several critical editorials on other photography websites. The silence was deafening...

@RubberDials: I fully agree with your sentiments that DPR should not let user comments inspired by fanboyism get in the way of good journalism. At the same time, I hope that the good folks at DPR HQ are able to distinguish criticism born out of fanboyism from valid criticism. The references linked to by Weerterbos and myself underline the validity of the criticism on Sony's recent "news" article. And yes, the brand wars in the comments sections are ridiculous, but by no means are such attacks only directed at Sony - you find fanboys in every corner...

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 18:47 UTC
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Btw, the cynic in me can't fail to notice the following: DPR fails entirely to address the controversy surrounding "Sony becomes 2nd largest in ILC market", and a few days later they get advanced access to an a9 and produce several items about it. I'm not saying you produce *more* items on Sony (you don't), but please explain why none of you commented on the wide-spread criticism on a post that garnered 700+ comments, in contrast to several critical editorials on other photography websites. The silence was deafening...

Thanks UneVache - I think we mostly agree, and that the truth about DPR's reporting might lie somewhere between my cynicism and your naivety ;-)

Thanks PAntunes, weertebos and rythie as well - even if I didn't agree with what one of you wrote, you actually contributed to the discussion rather than just wanting to score likes.

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 15:47 UTC
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Btw, the cynic in me can't fail to notice the following: DPR fails entirely to address the controversy surrounding "Sony becomes 2nd largest in ILC market", and a few days later they get advanced access to an a9 and produce several items about it. I'm not saying you produce *more* items on Sony (you don't), but please explain why none of you commented on the wide-spread criticism on a post that garnered 700+ comments, in contrast to several critical editorials on other photography websites. The silence was deafening...

Direct quote from the 'Sony a9 first look video' article: "We got some additional time with the camera...". I see that for instance the more critical people from Imaging Resource had similar access, so that soothes the cynic in me. That said, I'd still like to hear from DPR staff why they didn't place the same question marks at the "Sony overtakes Nikon" press release in the first place, or followed up on this like others (e.g. Petapixel) did.

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 10:14 UTC
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Btw, the cynic in me can't fail to notice the following: DPR fails entirely to address the controversy surrounding "Sony becomes 2nd largest in ILC market", and a few days later they get advanced access to an a9 and produce several items about it. I'm not saying you produce *more* items on Sony (you don't), but please explain why none of you commented on the wide-spread criticism on a post that garnered 700+ comments, in contrast to several critical editorials on other photography websites. The silence was deafening...

And the same from Petapixel (starts at 6:30 in the podcast) https://petapixel.com/2017/04/16/ep-168-sony-takes-number-two-spot-nikonbut-not-fast-sony/ and Imaging Resource http://www.imaging-resource.com/news/2017/04/14/sony-overtakes-nikon-in-the-us-full-frame-ilc-camera-market (last paragraph)

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 09:11 UTC
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Btw, the cynic in me can't fail to notice the following: DPR fails entirely to address the controversy surrounding "Sony becomes 2nd largest in ILC market", and a few days later they get advanced access to an a9 and produce several items about it. I'm not saying you produce *more* items on Sony (you don't), but please explain why none of you commented on the wide-spread criticism on a post that garnered 700+ comments, in contrast to several critical editorials on other photography websites. The silence was deafening...

@UneVache: not sure if you missed that post from a few days ago, but to clarify this is what I was talking about
- DPR "journalism": https://www.dpreview.com/news/1896381164/sony-is-now-2-in-the-us-full-frame-interchangeable-lens-camera-market
- example of how it could (should?) be: https://photographylife.com/sony-overtakes-nikon-in-full-frame-sales/

My question to DPR still stands...

(and I won't respond to ad hominem attacks)

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 08:09 UTC

Btw, the cynic in me can't fail to notice the following: DPR fails entirely to address the controversy surrounding "Sony becomes 2nd largest in ILC market", and a few days later they get advanced access to an a9 and produce several items about it. I'm not saying you produce *more* items on Sony (you don't), but please explain why none of you commented on the wide-spread criticism on a post that garnered 700+ comments, in contrast to several critical editorials on other photography websites. The silence was deafening...

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 07:39 UTC as 41st comment | 18 replies

Impressive camera - too expensive for the masses as yet, but some of the goodies should trickle down soon enough. It might also kick Canikon hard enough in the *§$s for them to produce high-end mirrorless options of their own (one can dream...). Competition is good!

Link | Posted on Apr 20, 2017 at 07:38 UTC as 42nd comment | 2 replies
On article Light's L16 camera is in final stages of testing (300 comments in total)

This is not the right camera for people with OCD...

Link | Posted on Apr 17, 2017 at 14:40 UTC as 13th comment

THIS is the type of balanced reporting I'd like to see from DPR, instead of today's clickbait approach:

https://photographylife.com/sony-overtakes-nikon-in-full-frame-sales/

Link | Posted on Apr 15, 2017 at 08:24 UTC as 60th comment | 2 replies
On article Fujifilm GFX 50S Review: Modern MF (899 comments in total)
In reply to:

Greg VdB: Or when the law of diminishing returns teams up with the laws of physics... (moving all that glass around)

Don't get me wrong, it's a fantastic effort by Fuji and I'd love to use one, but perhaps in digital photography the "sweet spot" for high image quality + usability is FF rather than MF? (The difference in image quality in the film days was much larger, and that's before considering digital techniques like sensor shift.)

No qualms with your assessment, Rishi, and it'll be interesting to see what the future brings. For instance: sensor shift of a future-generation MF imaging chip ;-)

Link | Posted on Apr 5, 2017 at 18:42 UTC
On article Fujifilm GFX 50S Review: Modern MF (899 comments in total)

Or when the law of diminishing returns teams up with the laws of physics... (moving all that glass around)

Don't get me wrong, it's a fantastic effort by Fuji and I'd love to use one, but perhaps in digital photography the "sweet spot" for high image quality + usability is FF rather than MF? (The difference in image quality in the film days was much larger, and that's before considering digital techniques like sensor shift.)

Link | Posted on Apr 5, 2017 at 18:08 UTC as 119th comment | 7 replies
In reply to:

PhotoKhan: I am working on a piece on what deep sea diving and music composing have in common.

I am having a bit of trouble because I practice neither. :)

Seriously, Allison, you can interrelate any 2 human experiences, if you use as a far-fetched "bridge" as needed but, no, roller derby and photography don't have much in common except for instances, like in your case, where someone practices both.

2 facts and a piece of advice:

1. No matter how one excels at roller derby, it will never be "Art".
2. Contrary to Roller Derby, one's photography will never improve as a direct function of one's fitness.

Disconnect these two great hobbies in your head ASAP. The more you interrelate the two, the more your photography will suffer.

This geeky rant ended, I must say...I would love to see you "roller-derbying". :)

(PS: There are no "heroes" in neither Photography nor Roller Derby. It is more a concept related to Military and Public Service activities.)

"No matter how one excels at roller derby, it will never be "Art"."

I disagree. I don't see why a perfectly executed action in sports, requiring a skills level that can only be attained by years of training and a good dose if innate talent, could not be considered art. If perfect body control in other disciplines (like ballet and other forms of dancing) can qualify as "art", then why not in other sports?

Link | Posted on Apr 2, 2017 at 11:26 UTC

Nice perspective, Allison (or should that have been "angle of view"?). I can't draw a parallel with roller derby, but learning curves often entail elements that are similar, as you aptly described.

As far as photography goes, the moment I had the feeling that I was getting somewhere was when I realized that I looked at the world differently. Before, I would just shoot scenes that were presented to me; after, I was constantly "framing" in my mind, balancing the quality of light with compositional elements and subjects of interest. It's that moment when you realize that you can anticipate if a photo will "work" or not even before you aim the camera. It makes you find beauty where you otherwise wouldn't have noticed it, helped by the realization that one step more to the left or right could make or break a scene. Sure, I had to learn (for each new camera) how to get the best out of my tools, but learning how to *see* is the most important step in any photographers development, imo.

Link | Posted on Apr 2, 2017 at 10:45 UTC as 20th comment | 1 reply
On article Canon EOS M6 sample gallery (114 comments in total)
In reply to:

Contra Mundum: The gallery failed, not because it's poorly executed, but because of the subject, which is of no interest to an average photographer. The DPR staff going to a shooting assignment should always ask themselves the questions about the purpose and goal of that exercise. It would be better if they are handed a check list with the subjects they need to photograph.

Where are the landscapes, seascapes, cityscapes? All that industrial/abstract/random style photos are of little interest to a large portion of the photographers. You can shoot a detour sign with any camera/lens and it will look fine, I only doubt there are too many people who are interested in having those pictures in their collections.

What Toni said, and on top of that DPR usually add different kinds of photos after having had more time to play with the cameras.

Link | Posted on Mar 28, 2017 at 18:02 UTC
On article Canon EOS M6 sample gallery (114 comments in total)
In reply to:

wootpile: Please send Mr-Spencer on a how-to use a digital camera course. Camera shake & lack of focal interest point on so many images makes this sample gallery a disservice to us the buyers, and to Canon.

I actually liked quite a few of the compositions in this gallery - but hey, that's largely subjective. What is objective are settings like shutter speed, iso, aperture etc, and going through the gallery I couldn't find (m)any grave errors on the reviewer's part. Did you notice that the lenses used on shots with longer shutter speeds were wide and/or stabilized?

Link | Posted on Mar 28, 2017 at 11:58 UTC
On article The Leica Summaron 28mm F5.6 is old-fashioned fun (189 comments in total)

This is way too mainstream - I'm holding out for the "Gold" edition with small diamonds around the front lens for added character.

Link | Posted on Mar 27, 2017 at 07:31 UTC as 26th comment
Total: 586, showing: 1 – 20
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