In the early 1970s, I got the chance to use my father’s analogue still camera to take pictures of family, friends, vacations and other adventures.
In 1978, I got the chance to film with a Philips monochrome camera connected with a 15 meter long cable to a Panasonic VBT200 VHS video recorder. At that time in our town I was one of the first to film with video. A few years later the monochrome camera was replaced by a color tube camera and a portable Philips Video 2000 recorder. This set was followed up by a Technicolor video recorder which I only used once because, sadly it got stolen. I still have one tape left with recordings I have never seen after I made them.
The next generation of cameras came from Sony in the early 1980s with Video 8 tapes. This shoulder camera was smaller, lighter, had a built-in VCR and a black and white viewfinder. I used that camera for years before I switched to a Digital8 camera. This had the same tapes, but wrote everything digitally to tape, like cameras with DV tapes. Around that time, editing on a computer went from analog to digital, along with the first versions of Adobe Premiere.
DV and Digital 8 were followed by my HDV cameras in 2004. We filmed events, concerts and festivals with our Canon XH-A1 cameras. After four years we switched to DSLR HD cameras, digital still cameras that could also film. Tape cameras disappeared from the market pretty quickly after that.
With the Canon 7D, the first PAL DSLR video camera, we continued filming all kinds of events. The editing also went from tape to digital and the workflows got better by the year.
In late 2009 I traveled to London for a DSLR meetup with Philip Bloom and in 2010 I organized the first DSLR meetup with Philip in Amsterdam. Hundreds of his fans attended that day. Those meetups were repeated in the following years and often around IBC. More and more people came, and with Philip came many well-known people from the film and video business with him. The meetups had a relaxed atmosphere, we shared drinks, exchanged social media contacts, and had fun discussing all sorts of topics.
In 2012, Vincent Laforet visited Amsterdam for the World Press Photo exhibition. Like Philip, he was one of the pioneers of the DSLR video business. Together with Adobe Benelux and Canon Netherlands we organized ‘An evening with Vincent Laforet’ in the Beurs van Berlage, where more than 500 photographers and videographers enjoyed Vincent’s stories about his work.
Twitter is still my favorite place to make those contacts and then meet up to meet up. The platform brought good friends, who we always welcome them when they visit us.
Twitter also brought many opportunities to visit special and beautiful locations in and around the Wadden Islands.
From now on I will continue again in the photographic footsteps of my father, who passed away on May 20, 2021. In his house we found many photo books filled with his memories. I wanted to continue making my own digital memories, so I decided to continue my photography hobby by purchasing my first mirrorless camera – the Sony A7RIV with a selection of matching lenses.
Analog film and cameras like my father used remain tempting, but I prefer to work with digital cameras. This is my timeline and I hope one day my two daughters will continue my work, in their own unique ways.
As you’ve read, my workflow has gone from film and analog tapes to digital and memory cards. I still have most of my work in a digital file format. These days I only work with digital cameras. I edit my work in Adobe Lightroom Classic, Photoshop CC, Capture One Pro, and my videos in Final Cut Pro or DaVinci Resolve Studio, supplemented by many tools such as MotionVFX. My cameras have gotten smaller and my memory cards have grown considerably in capacity.
I work on land, sea, and air with Canon, DJI drones, GoPro Hero’s, Panasonic, and Sony cameras. I edit and share the raw photo and video material via my Apple Macbook Pro.
Photo above was made at the Beurs van Barlage in Amsterdam at the Adobe & Canon event ‘And evening with Vincent Laforet’. Made by Henkjan of Punkmedia.NL specialized in event photography.
I like to share my knowledge and images via the Internet. I take my cameras with me every day when I’m on the road to capture images if I can and/or may do so. Teaching knowledge about technology, photography and video lies close to my heart.
I call that workflow sharing. Every technique, whether it is my professional knowledge or one of my hobbies, has a certain workflow and all that knowledge has grown in many areas over the years.
Buying a camera is just the start of your imaging journey. You have to start working with that camera as much as possible. That also applies to all the tools that you purchase with the camera. My goal is to improve every aspect where possible. Whether it concerns image or sound, every part deserves the best quality.
Don’t look at the camera someone else is using, there are always better ones out there. Look at the images and try to find your own niche within the world of images and sound. Make the most of what you work with, stay positive towards others, stay curious about their knowledge and above all: keep enjoying what you can do with those great devices. But never forget to also look over the camera to soak up the atmosphere or nature. That beautiful place deserves it.