Daily Inspiration #427 by Suryo Widjaja

Hi Steve,

I have been following you since the earliest era of Leica M9 and following your truly inspirational “Daily Inspiration’s pages”. Since my last post about my transition of using OMD-EM5 in your Daily Inspiration, last year in November 2012 and once again you have influenced me to get SONY RX1 as my additional kit. Although OMD-EM5 is already good enough to cover my photography activity, I am still feeling that we still need full frame sensor to get much richer pictures in micro detail and freedom of editing and cropping.

I am now carrying both camera for extreme photo hunt and only SONY RX1 for my daily use (Street Photography). By carrying both camera, i found like they were supported each other. In OMD-EM5, i pair it with 75mm f1.8 lens and off course Sony RX1 is with 35mm, with this setting I mostly get what i want the pictures to be.

You can see on the example I have taken with both camera, “Another Rider Story part 1 and 2” were taken using Sony RX1 and “Morning Rider part 1 and 2” were using Olympus OMD-EM5.

I was amazed how RAW file from SONY RX1 can turn out to be…is like we do not need HDR Software to pull out all Dynamic range, with just a little bit touch from ADOBE CAMERA RAW processing and NIK color effect, ordinary picture from SONY RX1 can turn out to be very amazing. Different from OMD-EM5, The Raw file still need to be “well cooked”, and need more ingredients and spices.

Well, that’s all I can share at the moment, hopefully those images can be inspired enough.

warm regards,


Another Rider Story

Another Rider Story2




  1. These photos are beautiful, stunning and inspirational. Thank you for sharing them. Thanks for the website too x

  2. @Suryo: I envy you Suryo 🙂

    I went to Mount Bromo just a month a go and about three years ago only to be disappointed with cloudy morning… no sunrise, no morning sun 🙁

    Great works!!… it show different view of this place than the commonly taken angles..

    PS. To the people that is interested to visit Mount Bromo… spare your time to visit Kawah Ijen (Ijen crater, about 6 hours from Mt. Bromo plus one more night stay and 1.5 hours hiking up), which could show the sulfur mining with blue/green gas fire in the very early morning… and the lake with blue/green water (as a lot of sulfur in it)

    David (BSD, Tangerang)

  3. Fantastic work and post-processing, Suryo. I am impressed by the cohesion of the images. Very stately images through and through, and you deserve the acknowledgement.

    • Hi Ashwin! Thanks you so much for your support! Been following you on Steve’s Daily Inspiration’s pages.

  4. Perhaps I should have written artist instead of painter. What I meant was that you can create BEAUTY with your tools (cameras, lenses, software). Your photos are art and art is manipulation. Thank you for sharing.

  5. Suryo
    keep up the good work

    u do photo to show what u see in ur mind … present it to other
    there is no exact right or wrong

    I personally are moved by ur Bromo Photos

    William Jusuf

    • Wahahahaha Susy…noooooo, off course Sony RX1 is better, what i mean is better file. As for both, they have their own signature and that is why i wrote “they are supported each other” in my opinion.

  6. VERY inspiring. All your photographs are stunning the last however, is OVER THE TOP STUNNING.
    Thank you for sharing.

    • I agree. The images are highly manipulated. They are not photos. They are nice, and started as photos but not photos any longer. They are digital art. How else can you see color and detail in the shadow side of the horse and rider? The images have been worked on a fair bit.

      • So, I take it neither of you have ever worked in a darkroom… That or you’re just trolling. The main point of this article was not these outstanding images (and they are regardless) it was in fact the dynamic range these cameras are capable of without using HDR.

        Back in the day, when we had a film with detail and dynamic range that exceeded the paper we had decided to use (nearly all papers had less DR than slower film BTW), we would burn, dodge, and even manipulate with various developers and agitations to massage the detail out into the finished print.

        There were many masters of this, Adams and Weston to name just two. However, using your analogy (or criticism), these masters rarely produced photographs too. I would enjoy seeing your comparative works, you know, as a reference point.

        Well done Suryo, I could not equal your work here.


        • My point is the OP should tell the crowd they photos have been manipulated, for the uninitiated. Manipulated, fine. I have no issue. To stay mute on the point is disingenuous. I never said I didn’t like the images, BTW.

          • Still don’t understand what you mean by manipulated… would you rather he just post the raw file? Is that considered a photo to you? What photo isn’t tweak in some way?

            Like Bradley said, people have always massaged photos. It’s part of taking a photo.

            Suryo, people pictures!

          • Sorry, but you are incorrect. Please learn what a photo is. When it no longer shows reality and cannot be used in the news, for example, it leaves the world of a photo and enters the world of being manipulated. No not all photos are manipulated to the extent these are. Again, please learn the definition of a photo. TYVM.

          • Or, conversely H2o, you might read any of the three standards on photography: The Camera, The Negative, or The Print. You are quite incorrect, initiated or otherwise…

            How absurd to refer to Adams’ work, either scientific or artistic, as disingenuous! I am not sure how you could possibly illustrate better ‘not getting it’.

            The ‘photo ‘ Moonrise over Hernandez was manipulated to an extreme extent in Ansel’s own words. But these words were only brought forward in collegial dialogue, not to disqualify the image itself.

            I would agree with your position when we place people in locations they never were, but the details on the shadow side of the horse that causes you stress were there, the shooter just brought them forward. Messing with exposure, color-shifting (which B&W is BTW), removing the third dimension (pix are 2D), using polarizers, are all examples of manipulation.

            Again, your qualifications and classifications need refinement (or mild manipulation 😛 )


          • manipulated has a negative connotation (more on that later). And I would disagree on not calling this photography. As the raw material is all taken from a photograph and nothing outside is added, but rather transformed into something more beautiful. to think that photography is just about capturing reality is a bit naive. there are many processes between ‘reality’ and the end photography, and that includes the moment, the angle, the lens, the film (sensor), the development and the print. now your intention could be to leave the final product as natural or as close to reality you think you saw it, or it could be to make it as beautiful as you can… and in-between these two there is an infinite gradation of positions, and there is no objective fine-line where you say this is a photograph and this is not. now. your position is that these photos crosses that line, I respect and disagree with your opinion. I would push that line a bit further, like when you introduce external elements into the photography. Another issue is when a photography that is present on a context of veracity (such as newspapers etc) is ‘manipulated’ to show something that is not, now that is manipulation because it is trying to fool the watcher to think something that is not. Take an example of the last world press winner: http://www.bjp-online.com/british-journal-of-photography/news-analysis/2269913/world-press-photo-controversy-objectivity-manipulation-and-the-search-for-truth
            which finally has been decided to be not fake.

            And sometimes it is where the limits are, when you can’t tell if it is real or not, that photography can really shine. In any case, my prise to the photographer, really beautiful images. Well done!

          • Matt/Bradley:

            Is that all you have? Jealous, me? A no. just a realist and truth teller. Seriously, did you notice the light on the shadow side before I pointed it out? I think not.

            Furthermore, I am correct. I encourage each of you to Google what the acceptable limits of manipulation (or lack thereof) are for the press or major contests, like Nat Geo, for example.

            As for Mr. Adams and his darkroom burn/dodge technique, I am well acquainted, TYVM. However, do not put words in my mouth or imply that I wrote, “How absurd to refer to Adams’ work, either scientific or artistic, as disingenuous!” Those are your words not mine.

            I feel no need to defend my position. My position is based in fact and I am simply pointing out to the uninitiated photographer that the images were manipulated because no camera would show highlights and color on the shadow side of the critter and its rider.

            Again, I never said I did not say I didn’t like the images, but as I state above, lets be realists and tell what is going on, especially to to new user. Simple as that.

          • 98% of enthusiasts who shoot for passion, fun and because they love it manipulate their images. It is part of the process. It doesn’t end with snapping the shutter. SO WHAT if the images were processed! They SHOULD be. Those RX1 files are amazing and you can do wonderful things with them due to the DR. When I shot film I dodged and burned like a madman..same concept but now it is 2013, not 1956. For those who are crabby and come here to bitch and moan about someones beautiful and stunning work because they did some PP is ridiculous. Enjoy it for what it is, amazingly beautiful photos taken by a talented individual.

          • Wow, quite crowded discussion here….ok here are the point of my Post, as a back up on Steve’s review on Sony RX1/RX1R, on one of the sample photo, Steve has shot one portrait and he got the result under but in someway using ADOBE RAW PROCESSING (digital dark room) he can pull out all the detail and the dynamic range, that Steve want to explain how good the Raw file from Sony RX1/RX1R is. That is why i wrote to Steve this Daily page to show that i agree with his review. Those first two photos, when i opened the file, is just like ordinary photo…but when i adjust the highlight and shadow, hue color slider….my jaw was dropped, i was surprise all the sudden, the detail and micro detail just show all over the picture.that show, the camera was actualy recorded those detail already. Yes, i added some color effect on the first photo, that was because i want to tell my audiences what i felt when i took that photo, cold windy and sunlight was peeking, hiding between clouds, like to try to warm up that cold windy atmoshere. If audiences were not sure if the cloud on the photos were real or digital manipulation, i guarantee you….those are real.

          • Having studied Adams and others extensively in the past (BA), my point remains respectful and intact. Virtually all of the Masters ‘manipulated’ their images and made no disclaimer. This work stands on the merit of its content, as does all artwork, regardless of absence or presence of any footnotes or fine print.

            Respectfully, I was not commenting on your preferences, just your obvious error in qualifying and classifying.

            That said, I do respect your opinions and meant no insult. 🙂


          • Ridiculous. There is this things called art. It means you can do what ever you want.

        • Oooo once again…also on the horseman…i am not gonna move him from his original potition or adding blank empty landscape with horseman, but i appreciate H20engineer thought, maybe i “cooked” my photos to much, but that what i wanted to be. I welcome all critiques, positives and negatives, coz those will make me better Photographers. Cheers..and keep shoting! Please keep aside all anger and never discussion…next time i will post again with more detail information how i shot the photo and how to “cooked” that photo to be better Photograph.

      • They are still photos as in what you see is what was there when he pressed the shutter. Using the dynamic range that is available in todays cameras does not turn it in to “Digital Art” but “Photography Art”. You may be surprised to know that most of what you see shot on film or digital that hangs on walls is almost ALWAYS processed in some way. Just a fact of life. Those who display out of camera JPEGS or images that are not processed to the photographers vision are usually those who have no clue how to do so. With todays tools photos can be made to either be dull and lifeless (out of camera) or they can be post processed using what is there in the file and image to be remarkable. These are beautiful photographs. Just because we used film in the 50’s and 60s and 70s does not mean we have to stick with old ways. Dodge and Burn in the darkroom is now Dodge and Burn in the digital darkroom. Not cool to belittle someones work for doing what 99% of those of us who shoot seriously do. THEY ARE PHOTOS. Period.

        • These are fascinating images and the photographer is to be congratulated. I agree with Steve. It is the artist’s choice to finish and present the images as he wishes.
          I have recently seen two superb exhibitions in Kansas City. The Kemper is currently showing very large scale landscape images taken in the Sawtooth Range of Idaho by Laurie McPhee, and recently the Nelson-Atkins Museum had a stunning show of the work of Terry Evans, who is best known for her stunning aerial images of the Great Plains, as well as studies of residents in dying Kansas towns. I am quite sure that neither artist has chosen to show out of camera images. But I am also quite sure that is an irrelevant fact, except perhaps to understand, as an academic matter, something of how the particular effect was achieved.
          Anyone interested in seeing the images can google Kemper Museum and see the exhibition or go to Terry Evans web site.

          • I have read everyone’s comments here. Artur and h20 got the ball rolling with their observations and criticism and everyone else piled on top of them. Sure, their comments were direct but, instead of the personal slander, why not answer their critique with rational arguments instead of name calling?

            There are great photographs that are made straight out of camera and great photographs that are made great in post.

            For evidence of the later, look at the before and after images of Ansel Adam’s, Moonrise over Hernandez. Would you say that the final image was a painted image and not a photograph? I don’t think it matters what it is called. Nor do I think it is inferior because it is not what resulted from the negative.

            Check out Ansel Adam’s thoughts on this process:

  7. Awesome quality on these images Suryo, I especially like the 3rd and 4th. We are privileged to see your photos and you are privileged to live in such a beautiful and photogenic part of the world. I look forward to your next inspiration 🙂

    • Hi Mo Han: thanks to NIK software color effect! Sadly these photo only got “Mark of Excellent” from “i-shot-it.com” Q2 premium Category. LOL.

  8. I agree these are powerful images and maybe I need to be more open to HDR, so in that regard they are inspirational.

  9. incredible photos! i like the last two the most and i was surprised to see that those were taken with the olympus.

    i think these are the ‘best’ photos i have seen on this site. breathtaking.

  10. Extraordinary images.I particularly like number thee–dawn –in profile.Memorableset.Congratulations.

  11. Another vote of Awesome!

    Steve, hope you check back with this guy in a few months and get another “Daily” out of him.

  12. Thanks all, @Don Ravine: yeah i like to keep it light and make big DSLR users think when i get around them, “what the hell this amateur doing with his pocket camera” LOL.

  13. Beautiful mate. Have to say I am more partial to the rx1 shots over the omd…but they are both beautiful cameras either way. Congratulations. 🙂

  14. Some of the best photos I’ve seen in a while. Wonderful, especially the last two. Well done. And to think how compact your kit is!

  15. Wow…now those are inspiring! And I know what you mean about those Sony files…that’s exactly how I feel about Fuji. I swear, I prefer my X100 (original) files compared to my 5DIII in terms of what I need to do in post. There’s just something about those colors… If and when Fuji releases a full frame camera I’m selling all my Canon gear. Not even kidding!

  16. The last shot is the most amazing photo I’ve ever seen! Wow & Wow!! Are you selling prints of this? I would love to have that hanging on my wall.

    Many Thanks,


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