Oct 062015

Hi Steve & Brandon,

I was fortunate enough to fly to The Philippines for the second time this year, this time though, it wasn’t in the sunny tropical island of Borocay for work but the concrete jungle of Manila for a sports competition. I brought my X-Pro 1 and the 35mm f1.4 and 18mm f2 Fujinon lenses as a travel kit to have around me all the time without getting in the way, it certainly did a great job and took better photos than any phone could. Check out my full blog on http://jemoresantos.com/sojourner-philippines/




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Oct 052015

Hi Steve,

first of all, many thanks for all the hard work and insightful knowledge and experience you share with your many readers through your excellent site. I’ve been swallowing it up recently as I’m saving up for an A7RII (though having a newborn son doesn’t help that cause).

I’m writing today to share a slice of a project I created earlier this year. The project, titled Apstracted, began as an artistic response to the notion of a photograph being taken on an iPhone. My works are literally taken on an iPhone, specifically the surface of the glass screen. Just as each photograph taken with an iPhone is an individual and personal perspective on the world, I became interested in the unique physical actions performed in the process.

While one’s handwriting is singular to one’s self, surely nothing is more personal than one’s fingerprint. My photographs capture the surface imprints and smudges created by my touch upon the phone when using a variety of apps. For each composition I started with a cleaned screen, used the particular app for a minute or so, and then took my Canon 6D and Sigma 50mm Macro lens down to the glass to capture the remaining marks, each a temporary “oil on glass” painting. My surroundings at the time reflect in the screen to give each shot its hints of color.

I do hope you find the project interesting and will consider it for your Daily Inspiration column, it would certainly be an honor to be featured. A portfolio link would be most appreciated if so, it’s http://www.hamishrobertson.com
With warm regards,





Oct 022015

Hello Steve & Brandon,

I’ve just returned from another trip providing me with some more interesting photo opportunities, so I thought I’d send you a few impressions that might make for a nice set of ‘daily inspirations’.

Once again I brought along my Sony a7II and a couple of new & vintage lenses, and thanks to the subjects in front of the Sony I found myself using my Voigtlander 15mm Super-Wide Heliar Aspherical III the most. One word about the lens: it’s amazing, but tricky. Luckily I had time for extensive testing and after my return I must say that it’s not an easy lens to use, needs fixing in post (now not a big problem with newly available profiles in PS / LR – note that the ‘II’ profile does’t work well on the ‘III’), and is risky to use when shooting professionally and don’t have the luxury to screw a shot up.

However, after becoming close friends with this ‘character’ lens, I find it a fantastic addition to my lens collection that I would’t want to miss. It really has minimal distortion, is very sharp, light and small, and cranks out really impressive wide shots outdoors and indoors.

So, here I am sharing a few photos from the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Abu Dhabi – the world’s second largest mosque. All hand-held – they are actually promoting photography (even have an annual contest), but not necessarily tripods :)

1. CHANDELIER 2.0 – This is a shot of the mosque’s centre pieces – one of the gigantic chandeliers hanging from an impressive ceiling which is a beautiful architectural masterpiece that defines the character of the mosque’s interior.

Sony a7II; Voigtlander 15mm at ISO 800, f/22 – hand-held.


2. WOWKWAY – This is a shot taken ‘inside’ the outer walkway of the mosque that leads all around in a square arrangement (around a gigantic courtyard) and ultimately guides you to the entrance once you leave this large corridor halfway at a centre point. As I went very early that day, I was lucky to get a clear shot without (many) people, and as a bonus caught this female visitor taking her own pictures with a phone. I feel I was a really lucky to get this kind of combination.

Sony a7II; Voigtlander 15mm at ISO 100, f/22 – hand-held


3. TAKING A STEP BACK – Finally, this shot was taken opposite the main entrance to the mosque’s interior wing, all the way back and outside the actual structure, looking back across the corridor and the central square it surrounds, catching the nice floor pattern in front of the mosque.

Sony a7II; Voigtlander 15mm at ISO 100, f/22 – hand-held


Thats’s it for now – hope these impressions are worth sharing with the community.

Thanks a lot and best wishes,



J (Jens Niedzielski)

Bangkok, Thailand


Sep 282015

Hello, my name is Ilya Perfilyev, I am based in Russia, China and Thailand
My main gear is Sony RX1, everyday camera Ricoh GR, sometimes i use my wife’s e-p5 and sometimes Leica m6

I love all my cameras – all of them are unique: Ricoh GR is a ‘ninja’ camera for street photography, RX1 is the best compact fullframe travelling camera!

You can find some of my pictures here

and all of my uploads are here




Sep 272015

Hi, Brandon, Steve and every one,

My name is Val. Back in 1977, I got my first camera as my ten years old birthday present (it was Smena 8M), and I am seeing life through the viewfinder since then. In the old days, my favorite one was Contax III – quiet, shake free, and discreet. It was always with me ready to capture the moment. I used to have scales and photo chemicals at home and went through all possible film developer recipes until I found what I was looking for – a stock solution that had all four developing substances plus preservatives etc (some people would call it crazy!). It produced so nice and tiny grain and a wonderful tonal range, especially with overexposing one stop and slightly under developing.

After moving to digital, I enjoyed the Sony 727. It served me well for four years, until one day all of a sudden its shutter stopped and the old trusty friend departed to the camera’s heaven (which is at the shelf with my old cameras). Currently, I am shooting with the Olympus OMD EM1 and I am very happy with it.

I like taking photographs of the life around me – landscapes, people, events, macro objects – anything and everything. People are my favorite. Not all my pictures are technically perfect, and even less of them have any artistic value. Still, each of them is a reminder of my life experiences, places that I have visited and people who I have met. I like flipping through my old and not so old photographs, and even more I like to get out and shoot something new.

The first picture is taken at the Maverick Air Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. It was shot with the Oly and PL 25 mm f1.8. To lift up the in-hangar details, I’ve combined three shots 2 EV apart from each other into a one HDR image. Nothing too special but it did the trick. The biggest challenge were the people watching the airplanes. After taking a couple of pictures of that airplane from inside of the hangar, I wondered around the field taking pictures of the other crafts. When I came back to the hangar about forty minutes later, those three guys were still there chatting if they were glued to the ground. Probably, they were destined to be in the picture. So, here they are.


The second picture is taken in Rapid City at the Art Alley. Rapid City is a photographer’s paradise, and the Art Alley is one of my favorite places there. What makes that alley special is its graffiti. Most of the graffity is a real piece of art. Anybody is allowed to draw anything and everything with the only one rule – the new graffiti needs to be better than the one it replaces. For that reason, this alley is never the same. It is very possible that when you visit the alley this graffiti will be replaced with something new. If there were no “three pictures only” restriction rule at this blog, I would post a couple more pictures from that alley with the graffiti that are already gone. By the way, the camera and the lens used for taking this picture are the same.


The third picture is taken at the recognizing Native Americans event not far from Vermillion, South Dakota. There were about half a dozen models. This lady was with her son and daughter dressed in the native costumes who you could enjoy seeing in the other picture if there were no  … you know the rest.The picture was taken with the same Oly and the Zuiko 75 mm and an external off the camera flash. The photo shoot took place about 7 pm which seemed to be the dinner time for the local mosquitos. The model’s son and I instantaneously became the mosquitoes’ favorites, so I quickly took a couple of pictures and then ran for my life. I was lucky to have a light and portable Olympus system which disappointed those blood thirsty half-inch sized vampires a bit. The other photographer was not so lucky – she had a Nikon 800 with 24-70 and 70-200 zooms, an 85 mm prime and a strobe on the wheels. As expected, no happy Oly owner was harmed, and the happy Nikon owner stayed alive too … eventually.


I still have no web site but I will make it some day.

Happy shooting,


Sep 222015

Hi Brandon & Steve,

I’ve been a reader for several years and have submitted a few daily inspirations over that time. I continue to enjoy the balance of gear/photography content that you publish on your site. Keep up the great work!

I thought my GAS was cured a few years back when I purchased an RX1. Unfortunately, I have since switched to an A7, back to another RX1, then back to an A7II, and now I’m shooting an RX1R exclusively! Every time I think I want to move back into an interchangeable lens system, I just miss how compact, discreet & high quality the RX1 is! For me, it really is the perfect camera!

I just got back from a week-long family vacation in Little Current, Ontario in Canada, and I thought I would share a few of the shots I took with my RX1 that show how I put it to use in a variety of situations.

The 2 black & white shots, as well as the sunset shot were all taken with a Ricoh GW-3 .75x wide angle adapter attached to my RX1. It’s a 49mm thread, so it screws right on! The image quality is garbage at f2, fuzzy between f2.8 & f4, but after you stop down to f5.6 & beyond, it’s tack sharp corner to corner, with very little added distortion! I also used a 9 stop neutral density filter on top of the GW-3 for the river shot.

Thanks again for all the great content you provide! Your site continues to be at the top of my list!




Sep 212015

Hi Brandon/Steve,

I regularly check your website for inspiration posts as well as gear reviews and I really enjoy visiting it. It’s helped me decide which camera to buy in the past and also which lenses.
I wanted to take some photographs of cycle racing with my M9, looking for a chance to get some interesting shots that as a group showed the narrative of a bike race and the atmosphere.
The biggest challenge with the M9 as you will already know was focussing on the fast approaching cyclists in the race. Pre-focus for me was an absolute must and I’ve not yet progressed to tracking shots but that’s my next project.

I hope you like them, they were all taken with the Leica M9 and 50mm Summicron, ISO 160 with high shutter speeds.

Many thanks
Matt Randall

If you’d like to see more of the series please go here:


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Ilkley_Steve_Huff 2

Sep 172015

Hi Brandon, Hi Steve,

I’m a french photographer living near the french Alps. I’ve been taking photos more and more seriously over the last 6 years, and I’ve been shooting lately with an Olympus E-P5 with 17.5mm f/1.8, and its VF-4 EVF (a great add to this excellent camera), along side with a Pentax WG-2 (waterproof, very useful in some case).

I’ve been reading your blog for 2 years now, and it’s been a great source of inspiration for me (the articles and reviews, as well as the daily inspirations and other users reports), hence my submission today.

Here are a few pictures I took last month as I was in Amsterdam with my wife for her birthday. The city is quite beautiful and inspiring, with its bikes everywhere, its channels and monuments. The weather was quickly changing during our stay, from full sun to heavy rain, so shooting was really interesting.

You can see the whole serie here:

And my flickr/facebook:

Thanks for reading this,
Jerome Doutaz

“The wall of bikes”
Olympus E-P5, 17.5mm@f/3.5, 1/250s, ISO 200


“Let the coulds escape”, Anne Frank House
Olympus E-P5, 17.5mm@f/5.6, 1/640s, ISO 200


“Bikers in the rain”
Pentax WG-2, 9.1mm@f/4.4, 1/60s, ISO 


Sep 112015

Hi Steve and Brandon,

First of all thanks for a great website! I visit your site weekly and it has been one of the main inspirations for me to start my own journey into photography. I’m a Danish guy living in Bangkok close to Chinatown. Street photography has become an important way for me to relate to a culture so different from my own, and are bringing back the curiosity I had for the place when I first arrived 8 years ago.

The picture of the monk shaving his friends head was taken at Wat Thong Thammachat in Thonburi, Bangkok. The temple is from the Ayutthaya period, before Bangkok was the capital of Thailand. Thonburi is one of my favourite places to shoot, and is a very laid back area compared to downtown Bangkok.

The cockfight picture is shoot close to my own neighbourhood. I have been trying to avoid cockfights as I wasn’t sure how I would react to it, but when I started taking pictures of this young boy and his rooster, his father arrange a quick little fight in my honour. It was clearly that the boy was closely connected with this gamecock, and didn’t like it when his cock took some beating. It was less aggressive than I thought it would be, but then again, this wasn’t a real match.

The street portrait is also from my neighbourhood. The old man used to be an engineer, but didn’t managed to save enough for his pension, and are now working as a valet for a restaurant in the area. He has a wonderful personality, and are always good for a story.

The first two pictures are taken with a Sony A7II, with the Loxia 2/50, and the picture of the engineer with a Sony RX1.

Hope you enjoyed the pictures. If you would like to see more, please visit my Flickr page at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bangkokexposure/
Best regards,

Peter Griebel

Monk Getting His Head Shaved


The Old Engineer

Sep 062015

Hello Brandon and Steve!

My name is Andrea and I write from Italy, and in December this year will pay my first forty years !! To be honest, I was never interested in photography … But about three years now, I do not live on the other !! He did bring another passion, and now here I am. Thanks to Steve’s blog, I got a culture of cameras and lenses. My first camera was, and is, the Olympus OMD-EM5. Wonderful !! And after so many sacrifices, I could also have a Leica M8 first, and then M9. Amazing !!

I also created my blog ( https://niceshotblog.wordpress.com ), where I collected photographic experiences that fascinated me most in recent years.

If someone wants to visit, I will greatly enjoy. But getting back to the images for the “Daily Inspiration” …

The first I shot with a Nikon D90 of a friend, with its 35mm f1.8 @f5, 200 ISO and 1/4000s. You see the skyline of Siena, taken one morning shortly after sunrise, from the hotel room where I was staying. 


The second I shot with a Leica M8, with a Voigtlander 35mm f1.4 @f4, ISO 160 and 1/500s. A view of Brooklyn, this January.


The third I shot with a Olympus OMD-EM5, with the lens kit, 50mm f6.3, ISO 6400 and 1/20s. The interior of a PUB, in Reggio Emilia … my city.


Thanks and sorry for my bad english !!

Sep 012015

Hi Brandon & Steve

As is mandatory, thank you for your wonderful site that I have now been following for some 5 years if my memory serves me. However, whilst I have commented on various posts over the years, this is my first Daily Inspiration submission.

I hail from down under; Tasmania in fact, a small island state below the south-eastern tip of mainland Australia. I have been in, out and back in to photography as an enthusiast for over 25 years, albeit there was a reasonable gap in between where the shift from film to digital occurred. Regardless, I’ve enjoyed the digital age since purchasing a Fuji X 100 around the same time I connected with your blog. I still have it today, along with a couple of DSLR’s and a Leica M9 thanks to you (an indulgent 50th birthday present to myself).

These shots were taken with a Nikon D7100 & 35 1.8, my throw around, take anywhere rig. It’s remarkably light in DSLR terms and to be honest, I prefer it to the Fuji as I find that frustratingly small at times. I also feel less precious about the D7100 at the beach, etc. Teamed with the 35 1.8 DX lens, it really delivers IMO and I enjoy its sharp AA free output.

Some background about the shots in this set. They were taken at Noosa, a seaside holiday town in the state of Queensland, Australia. The little fella is my son, the next one up, my stepson and lastly, my twin brother. It was a rare opportunity to have everyone together, let alone be on holiday enjoying a beautiful location in January this year.

I had my now 2 ½ year old son late in parenting life at basically 50 and he’s been a real treat. His uncle and step-brother also love him to bits and I set out to capture his joy of that relationship and their care for him. I hope that comes through.

All the best and thanks

Gary Cumberbatch
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.




Aug 242015

Hi Steve,

Still a fan of your site (and quite disappointed on the days where there is nothing new), still living in a small town in Lorraine, still 71 and still making b&w pictures with my Fuji X30. Here are three more from January 2015:


I liked the contrast between our very geometrical sports centre and this little tree.


Swamp Selfie 

As you my have noticed I like selfies where there’s not too much to be seen of me; on this one you just see my shadow in a rather large puddle.


Nice Haircut

Of course this is just a tuft of grass, but to me it looks like the hair I wish I still had.


Thanks again for running this great site of yours, I hope you liked these pictures.

Many greetings from France


Aug 212015


Thanks for a great site but some very inspiring content!

My name is Tobias Dantoft and I was featured here earlier this year capturing autumn colours. Now its summer and I have been shooting the same set up in Shibuya here in Tokyo (Leica M240 + 50 sumilux)

Summer here means tons of people out + very hot and humid. Especially the humidity goes well with the neon lights of Shibuya, it gives a hazy feel to the shots. You can almost feel the heat coming out of the picture!

Here is my flicker:

and here is my previous autumn post here:




Aug 182015

Hi Steve and Brandon,

I’m a portrait and music photographer based in the UK and I recently got back from a six week trip to India. The last time I was there was eighteen years ago, it was a chance to see family out there, have a look round and of course take pictures.

The equipment I took was my Nikon D3, with various Nikon lenses, and my “carry with me” was a Panasonic GF1 with 20mm f/1.7. The other camera I had was my mobile phone, not an expensive high end iPhone or flagship Samsung, but a budget Motorola Moto G. Even though a GF1 is small, it’s not exactly pocket-able, especially if you’re in a t-shirt and jeans because of the heat, so on many occasions the only camera I had was my phone. As expected it struggled in low light, but in daylight it worked remarkably well. All these images were shot on my mobile and processed in Lightroom, Photoshop and Silver Efex.

My Moto G survived six weeks in India without a scratch, but a few days after getting back home it slipped out of my hand and shattered after it hit the ground. Thanks for looking at the images, if you have any questions or comments please ask.

Harvinder Sunila







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