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Friday, December 30, 2011

Watching with anticipation...

The crowd awaits the third empire's decision at the cricket.

                                                          Leica M9 50 mm Summarit

Look at the detail in the shades of this guy...

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Pirates at the cricket...

Got these two pirates at the cricket. SA vs Sri Lanka.

                                                        Leica M9 50 mm Summarit

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Life on the river...

When we went past this family on the banks of the Chao Phraya river in Bangkok. Look at the dog on the pole in the water. Perhaps he swam there and is taking a rest?
The boys are all swimming and playing in the water while dad works on the boat.

This is precisely why I love traveling, - that look through the window of other peoples lives, how they live, love and do life.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Images in a ballet theater...

Not having an All Access Pass during a show, - weather it be a rock-show or theater should not stop you to make nice images if you want to. Here we were watching Swan Lake in Prague and was seated in the middle of the audience. I set the camera on silent mode, not to bother people around us, - you can get some serious rolling eyes if you disturb people!

                                          The lens was set on F 2.8 and the ISO was around 1200.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Happy holidays...

As we all go our separate ways at the end of another year I wish to give you some holiday advice;

Don't lose your head, - take it very easy...

Get lost! Whether with your loved ones or on your own, - it is good to get away from the usual...

Take lots of naps...

Stare-out at the world without taking part...

Spend some time under palm-trees if possible...

Travel a bid, sleep in a strange bed...

Eat some strange food...

Watch some sun-sets...

Sit around a lot and visit old friends...

Read a good book...


See you all next year, - happy holidays!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Music help with teaching the youth...

In one of the suburbs near Johannesburg a brother and sister are helping the less fortunate youths in a unique way.
Both are extremely talented musicians and unselfishly use their talent to care for children.

After school, over weekends and during holidays they teach children in their area music. At a local school they are using a classroom and uses their own musical instruments. Now no one need to tell you how expensive musical instruments are, and yet they do not let this stop their progress.

Both brother and sister also teaches the children life skills and help them with schoolwork were possible. Gao, the sister, have a passion to work with kids and wants to expand their musical teachings to a musical school. Over weekends the children are also given a hot meal during practice. (Due to the fact that her brother is recording professional albums we where asked not to publish his name.)

After seeing and hearing the music these young ones are making and seeing the joy it brings to their lives, - I have to salute Gau and her brother for this project.

To these two exceptional young people we say, - let the music of passion, help and care keep on playing!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Once upon a time there were Rhino's...

At the end of 2011 over 400 Rhino's would have been poached in South Africa! At this rate the Rhino will be extinct in less than 6 years. What big five animal will then be next?

Just think about it, - if you have a baby now, by the time he/she is ten you will only be able to talk about the big four and can only show him pictures of these once great animals.

If we don't act now, it will be to late...

The horns are smuggled to the East where it is believed to cure certain illnesses.
Of cause no medical evidence can confirm it.

Stop the killings!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Rainy, lazy days in December...

Saturday we woke up to a rainy day. No problem, we love rainy days and spend this one going to a movie, hanging around in a coffee-shop with a bookstore in it. Just another lazy day...

This is one of the reasons I love the Leica M9, just look at that colors and bokeh! No PP here, strait out of camera.

                                                  M9 50 mm Summarit ISO 500 F 2.5 50/s

This time of the year...

Don't forget what this time of the year is about...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Find images in the details...

Wherever you are out shooting, - spend some time looking at the details in the subject. There might be some small details that can make for some interesting images. Here are some examples;

                        The top of a Cappuccino machine in a coffee shop. JHB International Airport.

                                            Setting sun reflection on building in Las Vegas.

                                                  Empty seats before award ceremony.

                                                        Hotel building, Bangkok.

                                                                      Blue-crane feathers.

                                                                         Tortoise skin.

I have used some of these images on backgrounds for web-designs and various other backgrounds for designs when doing work for Advertising Agencies. Not only can you use it for this and more, but it also sharpens your eye to look more closely at the world around us and you will learn to spot images in different things.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Equestrian events...

When you shoot equestrian events, whether for a client or for yourself keep certain things in mind.
First the owners, riders and horses are quite nervous and should not be stressed further.

                                                  Trainer and rider warming up for the event.

Secondly, try to shoot from a distance as not to spook the horses. If you do approach, move slowly and make sure the rider and horse see you. Do not sneak-up on a horse, - unless you liked being kicked by one.

                                                                      All show ready.

Normally there is big prize money at stake for the contestants so show some respect and shoot in quiet mode as not to spook the horses.

                                                                      Look for details.

Remember to enjoy the show, it's not often you see man and such big magnificent animals in harmony.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Abandoned buildings...

Abandoned buildings have always had a sort of attraction to photographers. Maybe it is the decay of something that once was, or maybe it is the hope of finding some image to be made that feels like finding a hidden treasure?

                                                   Abandoned structure in Cape Town.

I have liked the stillness in this structure. It was really quiet and eerie. And of cause I was not the only one visiting the building. I found an old goat searching for something to eat.

                                          A father and son was looking for some scrap metal. 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Young Community Shapers Project international interview...

Recently I was interviewed regarding the YCS Project by the New York based La Vida Leica Photographic website.

Find the interview here;

Helping the special ones...

This young man not only crept into our hearts with his project but he is also such a soft spoken, big hearted child that became one of our best recipients of the Young Community Shapers Awards. Since he won the competition a while ago he has gone from strength to strength. Let me explain.

This is a young man with a heart as big as life itself. I met Lesego in a far-off rural area about 500 km from Johannesburg. In this rural village people, and especially children with special needs are left behind. Lesego has a sister that was born with brain injuries and as she was growing up he saw how poorly the community was equipped to deal with these kinds of people.

Lesego and his mother have no help from any official department and rely solely on donations from the very poor community. A local school made a small two-room building available in witch the day care center function. Lesego and his mom are currently looking after about twenty children with special needs.

Since they started the project an old couple joined the staff and cares for the children as well. They have been married for over 45 years I was told.

Apart from teaching and playing with the children these caretakers also feed the children one warm meal a day. With no kitchen available in the facility this all takes place outside on an open fire. Toys to stimulate the children are not plentiful and the special equipment that is needed to stimulate them are expensive. This does not stop Lesego and he continues to care and love each child in his care.

After the Gala Event where Lesego won the competition and was awarded the prize money I asked him on what he was going to spend the money first? He said without thinking that he would build a ramp for the wheelchairs to get into his care center!

Since then things have really improved for him and his care center.
After the exposure through our competition a French company got involved with them, he moved his care center to the nearby town where they can serve more children with better facilities.
Lesego himself went to France where he was taught special skills to help the children in his day care center!

All and all this have proven to be a huge learning curve for Lesego and we are glad to say he grabbed the opportunity with both hands!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Well done my boy...

I previously posted an image of my boy studying hard for his exams.
Here he is with the exams results just in.
He got six distinctions for all his subjects. He also received a Gold medal for being the best in his grade!

Well done my boy! We are so very proud of you.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Youth Club with a different outlook...

Just like any other country in the world, Africa has the same problem, - to keep children occupied after school and during holidays. We all know that idle hands are very often found doing evil things, and so it is that this Youth Club came to be. After seeing many young girls fall pregnant and many young boys turning to drugs, gangs and crimes, Lerato chose to start a Youth Club with the view to help each other.

During school semesters the group gets together to help each other with schoolwork. Older children are appointed as caretakers and mentors of younger children. They also take the initiative to the streets, - they do clean-up operations in their area over weekends.

Some of the young ones have asked Lerato to start doing exercises in the morning and so the fitness-club of the activities started.

In order to keep the creative juices flowing, the Club participates in drama classes, poetry, drawings and modeling classes. During the modeling some participate as designers and some are the models. In this way both boys and girls can participate and it helps each child in developing self-confidence.

The Club boasts members of all ages and everyone is welcome. With initiatives like this the youth are realizing that they have to start making deference themselves and should not sit around and wait for someone else to help them.