Photo tech

My main photographic interests relate to people and intercultural matters, seen through my personal perspective (see My goal).

Typically autodidact, I learned photography techniques and exercised them as often as possible beside my main activity. My robust intercultural know-how, a few workshops, abundant online readings, and regular shooting practice, constitute my main sources of creative and technical improvements.

Shooting style

To me, photography is foremost a matter of vision, inspiration, social interaction and decisive moment, rather than the product of complex photographic techniques.

Before shooting, I pay a particular attention to light and composition. I can wait long until the missing element fits in, or the unwanted elements leave from, the scene. I also proactively prepare a given situation, if needed. For instance, I often spend time in facilitating the enabling environment for a good street photograph or portrait.

I better describe my shooting style as what it is not. I do not rely on paparazzi shooting techniques, such as hiding or shooting from far away. On the other hand, I only marginally look for fully arranged portraits. My people’s photography intends to capture the essence of social encounters to which the photographer is either a discrete witness or an active participant.

While witnessing or creating social encounters, the photographer needs much discretion, anticipation and instantaneity to document the elusive and decisive moment(s). When directly involved in social encounters, the photographer’s social skills help creating an enabling and conducive environment.

Much of my people’s photography is made on photographer-as-witness mode. I like also to openly meet people of photographic interest, engage a discussion before shooting pictures. I rarely request for formal authorisation, while leaving room for declining the shot. In my view, the positive energy produced by the encounter often more than fully compensates the loss in spontaneity.

I am a prime lens-lover. I like shaping my vision according to the focal lengths available to me. I shoot mostly in priority to aperture or manual modes with no flash. 

My travelogue presents a mixture of colour and black-and-white photography. The latter are converted from colour files. Black-and-white photography fits my fondness for simplicity, composition, and expressivity. It guides the reader quicker and deeper into what the photographer intends to express. While the colour seduces the eye, black-and-white charms the soul.

The composite colour/black-and-white photographic approach is also meant to facilitate the reader’s two-way journey between a vision close to ‘the reality’ (colour) to a more artistic and subjective representation (black-and-white).

Photo gear

Between 2000 and 2006, I shot films. Posted pictures dating that period are made of scanned negatives. I switched to digital photography only in 2007.

I like full-frame digital photography as much as technical simplicity. My camera is best full-frame, mirrorless, producing high-quality pictures with simple functionalities.

End of 2011, I purchased a Leica M9 rangefinder. While shooting with a rangefinder is a very different experience as compared to DSRL, I found quickly my own marks. After 12,000 happy shutter cycles, I shifted to a Leica M10 body.

I also acquired four Leica primes: 24mm Elmarit, 35mm Summilux, 50mm Summilux and a 90mm Summicron. Beautifully crafted, little these gems deliver astonishing digital files. 

Post-processing

I shoot RAW digital files and process them with Photoshop software, enhanced with various Nik plug-ins. Black-and-white pictures are created from colour digital files using Nik Silver Efex converter.

I worked hard to upgrade my post-processing workflow, and learning is till in progress indeed. By doing so, I better valorise the creative potential of my files. Post-processing photographs is like cutting and polishing a raw gem.

Last updated 12/12/2021