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danielm last won the day on 18 March

danielm had the most liked content!


350 of my posts have been liked

About danielm

  • Birthday 27/01/1957

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  • My Real Name
    Daniel M
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    Photography, history, travel
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    Montreal, Canada
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  1. Street Art is very prolific in Guadeloupe and more particularly in Pointe-à-Pitre, the city of the inter-islands which celebrates their artistic works not only in the street but also inside their open-air museum located in the now discontinued renovation building of their former Art Center. Many of these murals beautify old buildings and prevent their unwelcome facades from being a rather depressing sight for onlookers. There is also a sense of sociological expression about the people who live in Guadeloupe but also about other human beings around the world and its history that inspires street artists. What is significant is the lesser presence of graffiti compared to many major North American metropolitan areas. Guadeloupean street expression is culturally deeper, more articulate and more appealing than just repeated graphic garish lines. Here are some examples of how artistic expression can be popular and highly sophisticated. Photos Daniel M: Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R
  2. Gwadloup Carnets: Seashore tourist watch It's instinctive for most of us, let's say: looking at the sea! It's captivating, it's soothing, it's spiritual, etc., etc. It is also one of the last humble exercises that we as humans still consent to do. Perhaps because we understand that the sea cannot be mastered in the end by small creatures like us, even with all our pompous attempts to try it. And the sea is an endless spectacular sight to watch and be a little scared of. Photos Daniel M: Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R
  3. Gwadloup Carnets: The Sargassum Dilemma You can smell thembefore seeing them deposited on the beaches of the Guadeloupe coast. They are present and they represent a kind of dissuasive tourist trap for those who seek the landscapes of the old postal beaches. They represent the modern tourist "threat" of Sargassum. You can see them coming from the sea by observing gradually overgrown coastal areas and when fully settled they prevent an idealistic swimming practice in the clear ocean water. But many don't know that there is a Sargasso Sea (located loosely in the center of the Atlantic Ocean) that has been around for centuries, if not millennia. And no, its characteristic brown algae is in no way the result of a polluting activity but rather a very natural phenomenon. In fact, the Sargasso Sea has been and still is seriously polluted by plastic waste (a direct result of irresponsible human activities) of all kinds now present in the water. True, vacationers do not like the sight, the smell, the general discomfort caused by the additional presence of Sargassum. The same disgust applies to those who use motor boats because of the obvious inconvenience that brown algae can cause to propellers or turbines for example. Episodic phenomena surely obsess the greatest number more than the few who prefer to ignore it, but it is part of our geo-climatic reality that it would be almost impossible to prevent and control in the near future and is part of the life of our planet. When the sargassum comes, isn't it time to take a break from our hectic lifestyle? The question remains there... Photos Daniel M : Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 12-42mm II R
  4. Gwadloup Carnets: Church Presence It is always surprising how much the presence of the church (temple) if not its precedence in our Western society is still visible even knowing that the majority of people are no longer practicing (if in fact we tend to reserve this religious involvement for the most, should we say, "fanatics"). In Guadeloupe, religious faith is part of the Caribbean cultural society which proves that human spiritual thought remains alive despite the apparent media (and Internet) secularism of today's communication exchanges. Through all the natural disasters experienced by the Gwadloup Islands, their temple-churches have been preserved or rebuilt over time. In many cases they are interesting examples of the Art Deco style designed by the architect Ali Tur who took part in many reconstructions of civil buildings during the 1930s following the devastating cyclone of 1928. Here are some examples that you can see during a visit to Guadeloupe. Photos Daniel M: Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R
  5. We cannot summerzise an entenry geographical entity like the Guadeloupe archipelago in a short description because all those islands represent a continent of geology, vegetal, animal and human different testimonies. We can only surface the very mean of them and we can only do a short and fragmented survey of what has been and still is as a maritime civilisation that may be opposed to our urban views and bias. We are voyagers with very limited observing senses and with a very narrow memory capacities and even if our archival finds seem to be extended, we have gradually lost our historical curiosity in profit of a flashing live of secured and low grade emotions. Collecting destinations stickers on our virtual luggages wont replace the true experience of getting a real taste of the unknown countries and peoples. Guadeloupe can be seen as a segmented human society in its economic and cultural sectarisme, an obvious fact that nobody cannot really denied and which is also the case of many human settlements around the world. But this relative absence of multilateral exchanges of any kind is creating a more static view than an evolutionary one. For an outside observer like me, it means also that everything in Guadeloupe has not really changed since my last visit six years ago. A land of contrasts between the favorite ones among the natives, the seasonal, the visitors and others. And sometimes thoses contrasts can be observed side by side. In brief, a true human kaleidoscope that is very interesting to photograph! Photos Daniel M: Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R
  6. It is a kind of refuge from our never ending winter. Thanks for your appreciation, Dallas.
  7. Photos Daniel M: Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R
  8. (Lucky Daniel M will spent the next month in Guadeloupe) The charming “butterfly” archipelago of Guadeloupe is part of the French Antilles located into the Caribbean sea. Alongside with its richer sister island of Martinique, Guadeloupe is a refuge in many ways for its habitants human or not. Seen by many short or long-term visitors as a paradise, it is fair to say that Guadeloupe has also its own challenges with poverty and ecological issues and still depend on outsiders contributions. During this monthly stay in Guadeloupe, I will challenge myself to document visually and to write short impressions about the islands and its society. Tourism have become an essential "industry" for many south destinations such as Gwadloup (native creole name). It transform the society that is facing basically two kinds of visitors: the short term one (as myself) and the long term one (mainly French people coming from, as they call, the metropole France). So even for the touristic activities and especially lodging and restauration, a large part of it is controlled by mostly French natives or mid-time habitants. Two distinctives islands (or lands) are forming the Guadeloupe achipèl (archipelago in creole): Basse Terre and Grande Terre. They are geographically different and reunited by the Pointe-à-Pitre area which is not by the way the official Guadeloupe capital city (Basse-Terre). The two islands have a very distinctive geography. Basse-Terre is a volcanic formation dominated by the Soufrière. The mountainous interior offer you spectacular sites such as the Carbet falls. many small and narrow beaches are secluded and naturally preserved. Grande Terre is a more flat land that has been mainly used in the past for the sugar plantation purposes have beaches that are larger with a lot of marine attracted activities like scuba diving, surfing, fishing.. Outside those two main islands, there are beautiful smaller islands (Desired, Saint, etc) that are accessible via boat rides or even small charter planes. The entire Gwadloup archipelago may ask an extended stay (or multiples short ones) to properly embrace its diversity. Photos Daniel M: OM-D EM10 Mark III
  9. danielm


    Thank you Dallas. Have a good day!
  10. danielm


    Photos Daniel M: Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R / ED 40-150mm R / Lumix G 25mm F1.7 ASPH
  11. danielm


    Photos Daniel M: OM-D E-M10 III / M.Zuiko 14-42mm II R / Lumix G 25mm F1.7 ASPH
  12. In still photography or simply in photography, doing prefocus has been a technique that many of us have adopted to make sure that the subject or part of it that will be sharp and detailed. Even in action photography prefocus has been used to precisely select the position and the specific photographic moment. Today with the huge autofocus system advancement in term of predictability and reliability, only very few of us are still working that way for active subjects. Prefocus is demanding a good among of anticipation and analyst to get good picture results and it is not surprising that the technique have lost so much ground in popularity because it isn't a spontaneous reactive behavior. It is part of a pre-visualization scheme that will dictate the composition and the photographic taking moment of the picture and the long-time value of the picture is often related to the time and the effort we have consecrated to produce it. "Auto" Pre-Focus. With the introduction of the actual and competent camera autofocus system, many if not most photographers are privileging that way to do focus on their subject. It can be done continuously (AF-C) or in a single or stop manner (AF-S). The latter is representing the electronic version of the traditional manually pre-focus method. Single or stop focusing imply that your subject will stay still in terms of position and distance from the photographer. If your main subject is not already in position, the pre-focusing has to be performed on a substitute subject that will be at the same place. This is not different from the older way to do it manually except the fact of maintaining the shutter release button half-way to prevent the lost of your selected focusing point. To counter this obligation, you can use the memorizing autofocus functionality of the camera that is often coupled with the auto-exposure metering one (AEL/AFL). In that case, most camera model configuration systems allow you to program this function in alternance of focusing and metering or in combination of both. Many systems will ask you to press and maintain pressure this function button in order to keep the focusing point memory or more conveniently to press first to activate and press again to cancel it. Each system has to be learned and can be configured to fulfill your personal preference. "Manual" Pre-Focus. Manuel pre-focus and hyperfocal settings have been associated with the analog-film era for several decades of analog photography for doing action, travel, street, journalism, etc. In those times the cameras had to be set manually in regard of their camera shutter speed, their lens aperture and their lens focus point. The most convenient way (and fastest) was to "pre-set" your photo device as much it was possible and be ready to take the picture (although that you were not able in these days to see the picture end result before processing the film). Du of the lack of dynamic range of the analog-film, exposure metering was a tricky business with almost no latitude (less than one stop/EV in many cases). So anticipation was a popular way of doing for the photo takers of the time. Today only few photographers will not rely on the camera automatic exposure metering system that has a lot of pre-recorded light situation algorithms to compare and analyse the subject and its particular context. Moreover light and color/tone appreciation can be altered automatically via film, filter, scene options already available into the camera ready to be selected by its user. The same apply for the auto-focus system although the camera interpretation of a main subject can differ from the one you decide to privilege. At this point, the photographer can simply override the camera automation and manually focus its lens. It can be done fully from the start or on a final fine tune intervention. Both method are good and accurate as long the user keep a good picture reference with its electronic viewfinder or its live viewing monitor. Hyperfocal aperture setting is also possible through an appropriate and specific aperture selection but the big problem is that most modern electronic optics have lost their visual aperture reference scale that was showing the distance focusing range as it was engraved on older manual focusing lenses (except now for certain exotics optic providers). But you can still have a ruff appreciation of the deep-of-field by using the camera menu option or the function button designed for this but it can cumbersome to use with. Some lenses such as the wide-angle ones are more prompt to offer you a larger deep of field which is useful for the more contextual photographic subjects. __________________ The Pre-Focus place in modern digital photography is still important even considering the excellent automated performances of the actual digital cameras. And the todays photographers can be more than simple operator if they want to put their interpretation and their creativity underline and share an original visual experience to his/her other human fellows. It is up to us to put the extra but also valorizing effort and get a better self-appreciation of our work and our pictures. © Photos Daniel M
  13. With the "new" D version of the Panasonic Lumix G95, it appears interesting to revisit this Micro Four Third (MFT) camera model as Panasonic have decided to maintain its offer into their current line-up (as for its predecessor the Lumix G85). The "original" G95 and its "upgraded" version are in fact almost identical except for the LCD rear screen that has been substitute in reason of, we can suppose, of its specific manufacturing part availability. So, there is nothing to add from our initial review of that model in regard of its basic characteristics. To know more about these similarities and sparse differences, you can consult this Panasonic Web page. Is the Pana Lumix G95D a perfect camera? Of course not, but for those who are more familiar with the manufacturer digital offer and in particular in the video field, they have been appreciated for years even considering certain limitations like for their (infamous) autofocus system. Over the past decade, I have the chance to work with several of them (GM 5, GX7, GX8, GX85, GX9, G85, G95) and I was really impressed not only by their interesting ergonomics and interfaces but also by their picture performances. In one word, they are better devices that many may first thing. The Panasonic Lumix is made in China and so what? Are you seriously thinking that because it is labelled from an otherwise manufactured country, it will be a real different camera? The answer is obvious especially for those if not all who are buying computer, tablet and smartphone products. Let's forget that "Ken Rockwell" emotional like factor to move on about the design of the Lumix G95D. The ergonomic is good to very good. It would exceptional if the covering of the hand grip was not so much "grippy" (like it use to be on the previous G85). No joystick to rely but the rear D-Pad is versatile enough to compensate this absence. We must mention the excellent focus switch located at the back which is far more convenient compare to the front ones from other camera models. The menu and the interfaces of the Lumix G95D are comprehensive and are an exemplary simplicity while being very extendable if necessary. In brief, the Lumix G95D is highly configurable and customizable. On the other hand, many aspects of the Panasonic Lumix G95D are less glamour such as its Micro Four Third (MFT) 20MP image sensor, its limited 2.39MP electronic viewfinder (EVF) from in other age it seems, the already mentioned absence of joystick, its only one memory card slot, its older generation USB port, etc. If you are easier influenced by the the last novelty siren, the Lumix G95D will not certainly appeal to your search of the latest of the latest. The electronic viewfinder (EVF) thing. Sure we love to have on hand a very detailed electronic viewfinder (EVF) with a fast refreshing image rate and a high magnification not forgetting a long viewing eye point. You wont find these latest technical developments when you are considering the Lumix G95D. But what you will see instead is a proved competent and clean EVF sufficient to help you in manual focusing, an accurate color reproduction with no rainbow effect in the low light areas when looking at a high contrast backlight scene which phenomena you can adversely observe with some notorious "pro" models. True to say also that the Lumix G95D can generate a grainy (noisy) picture in very low light situations but even though it is manageable for the photographer (at least you see something...). The (rear) live monitor (LVF) thing. Unlike the original Lumix G95 (without "D") the TFT rear screen has been replaced by an OLED one which got a bit less resolution (1040 dots/G95D versus 1240 dots/G95) but have a better side view rendering. Honestly the difference should not be so noticeable in real life photography since if you need to have a better focusing view for specific works (tabletop, reproduction) you can rely on the optional image part magnification functionality. The Lumix G95D back screen is fully orientable and can be totally protected by turning it face on the camera body. Hocus Focus? Nobody is perfect and the Panasonic autofocus saga is raging since already a time ago in this digital world. Is it so bad as you may ask? Under specific situations with moving subjects, it is simply and entirely true. Moreover the viewfinder rendering cannot confirm or not if the focus is obtained which can be really annoying. The problem seems to be finally addressed with the introduction of the newest model (Lumix S5 II) that combine contrast and phase detection. But for the Lumix G95D contrast detection stay alone to perform the autofocus of the camera. Using the single autofocus setting (AFS) should be the best focusing option to select with the Lumix G95D although if you can cope with the limitation of the continuous autofocus setting (AFC), it can be manageable to a certain extend. High battery consumption. Battery consumption when you are using any mobile electronic devices has been always a strong discussion debate. The Lumix G95D battery consumption is highly demanding for the rather small Panasonic BLC-12 power pack. The solution is to have on hand sufficient replacements for the entire outing duration. Moreover you can add the optional Panasonic BGG-1 vertical power grip that will double your camera autonomy and will give you a better handling comfort when using bigger lenses or doing portrait (vertical) orientation pictures. However finding the original Panasonic manufactured BGG-1 can now be difficult and rather expensive. Weather Resistance (WR) feature rules the game. It is a common fact that electronic don't cope with adverse conditions such high humidity and furthermore with direct contact with water (especially with the salty ones). They need a more advanced protection that seal them from the outside elements. The Lumix G95D is qualified s dust and splash resistant (but cannot go underwater obviously) and can operate in humidity ranging from 10% to 80% as for temperature from 0 to 40 degrees Celsius (No, you cannot boil the camera!). Knowing that, the Lumix G95D should be a competent outgoing companion in most circumstances. Versatility is on your own. You can do a lot of things with the Panasonic Lumix G95D. It will be almost impossible to experiment truly all the possibilities of the camera configuration. In fact many of them may rest unused for the lifetime of the Lumix G95D. But the important thing here is that the Lumix G95D offers you many specialized photo taking opportunities as long you are ready to learn how to program them. So the potential is there for almost everybody. No, it is not a "pro" camera (the Lumix G9 is the one that Panasonic have designed for this intensive use) although it can easily do (within its limits) that king of work if necessary. The quiet introduction of the new Panasonic Lumix G95D version have permitted us to revisit a versatile and competent camera model that is following a tradition inaugurated by the Lumix G series. Even its actual selling price is a strong temptation to adopt this digital camera model. Don't prevent you to try it and you may be surprised of its conviviality and performance. © Photo-illustrations Daniel M
  14. Most of the wood used in Canada for the housing constructions is provided through the resinous species very present in Canadian forest. That can be pine, spruce, Douglas, etc. Different types of "hard" wood (like maple, oak) may be used of specialized purposes such as structures, floors, wall coverings. Presswood of all kinds can be another favorite. On an average an single house or a multiplex can be built in only 15-16 weeks in Canada even during the winter period! P.s. the Canadian gouvernment have prepared an intructive and complete document on how to build a house using wood.
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