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One of Us #24: pegelli

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    Posted: 10 November 2008 at 23:41


One of Us #24: pegelli


Dyxum member pegelli writes....


I fell off my chair and was very honored to be asked by brettania to write the 24th “One of Us”. There are so many great photographers on Dyxum that I never expected this to happen to me.

Beginnings with Leica

My "real" name is Pieter Gellings and I was born 52 years ago in Amsterdam and from age 6 until 26 lived in Enschede, very near to the German border. When I was 14 I received the first serious camera from my father (dyxum member pauljg), a Leica IIIf with an Elmar 50/3.5. About 2 years later a 2nd hand Elmar 90/4 was added which completed my “system” for the first years. I mainly shot my hobby subject of steam trains, as well as some landscapes. Photography was actually my second hobby in addition to my first real passion, which was restoring and driving steam trains at the Museum Buurtspoorweg, which ran between Haaksbergen and Boekelo (~ 10 km from my home town Enschede).

Two from that time with the IIIf:

The Ffestiniog railway in 1973:


Included for alanfrombangor, a steam train shooter from Wales.

And a landscape “FBN horse”



At that time I shot mainly B&W and developed and printed in my father's darkroom, but never truly mastered it, despite reading and re-reading the books by Ansel Adams. In 1977 the Leica IIIf was exchanged for a Leica M2, mainly for user friendliness, as the rangefinder from the M series was miles ahead of the old numbered series. This camera went with me on many vacations to France, England and the picture below is a musician street shot taken in Poznan during a bicycle tour through Poland in 1979.




The road to the a-Mount

In 1982 I graduated in Chemical Engineering from the Technical University Twente and moved to the Rotterdam area and got my first job in the Chemical Industry. That’s where I found my next camera, a 2nd hand Leica R3 with 3 great lenses (35/2, 60/2.8 macro and 135/2.8), this was my first SLR which was used for color slides while the M2 did B/W. Unfortunately the R3 and lenses were stolen during a vacation in Greece. It was replaced by a Canon T90, which I sold quickly since I absolutely did not like that camera. Then I bought an OM2SP as the foundation of my next system with 2 bodies, 2 zooms and 6 primes (still have them all, but not used anymore). After graduating I got married in 1983 and over the following years a son and two daughters joined the family and with that and a busy job the photography hobby went on the back burner (same happened to the steam trains by the way). I was still an active photographer during vacations, shown by a picture of my youngest daughter having bungy fun in Blankenberge, a shot from the last roll of color slide film in my OM4 in 2004. Before that time I already went digital with a Nikon Coolpix 990, which was mostly used for family snaps.

From my last color slide film in July 2004:



After playing around with my father's 7D in 2005 I started "itching" again and I felt I “needed” a DSLR and was impressed with the anti-shake so a 5D was bought in January 2006. In the following 6 months I added two lenses to my kit and was a happy shooter. I started to do more and more macro, with my busy work schedule it’s easy to go out in your own garden or neighbourhood for an hour or so. With a DSLR I finally had much more control that I (n)ever mastered in the darkroom. I find that the quick feedback on mistakes speeds up the learning curve, for me the biggest advantage of digital.

A few months after getting the 5D I found Dyxum and slowly developed a high degree of GAS (Gear Addiction Syndrome) which manifested itself mainly in severe LL (Lens Lust), the desire to own G lenses was unstoppable (I have 3 now). For non-G glass there is a too large collection ranging from the Sigma 10-20 up to the KM100-400 APO. An A700 was added in Jan 2008, so if I go out the trouble is what to take, since there's no way I can carry it all. A small consolation is that I found out I'm not alone after attending (and helping organize) several Dyxum meetings. Antwerp in April 2008 was a well attended and very inspiring get together, but also Nijmegen in November 2007 and Planckendael in July 2008 were all unforgettable.

Dyxum has really become part of my life. I learn a lot from other members (thanks for that) and try to help out others with questions that I (think I) know the answer to. I also try to post at least one picture per day next to some “pure text” posts. I post most of my pictures in themed views (I loved the letter threads, thanks Bob) and even started some threads myself with good response (eg. the squirrels). Also did some of the assignments and participated in week 50 and April Foolishness. Not much activity in DPCs yet. I feel I have to become better first. I submitted the odd picture but never got selected for the final round (rightfully so, seeing the others). Next to photographing the get-togethers with friends and family as well as our pets I mostly do landscapes and macro and recently started to take my camera along for city outings. I try the odd streetshot, but still have a mental hurdle pointing my lens at unknown strangers. I also learn a lot from looking at other people's pictures and reading other people's comments about them. I usually know when I like a picture or not but cannot always say why. Some of the Dyxum members are good critics and really hit the nail on the head with their comments.

Less talk, more pics

Enough talk about me I’d say. There was a famous saying among my friends at college: don’t speak too much about yourself, we’ll take care of that when you’re not there. So here are some of the pictures I enjoyed taking and looking at. I hope you like them too.


First one from my passion for steam trains in 2006:



After getting a KM 100/2.8 macro couldn't stop making shots of small stuff:



Flamingos with a loaner A700 with my own Big Beercan at the Dyxum/Sony/Grijpink meeting in Nijmegen:



One of my better week 50 submissions (imo):



The 100-400APO comes in handy when shooting squirrels in our yard:



April foolishness made me try stuff I never did before:



A street shot during the Antwerp Dyxum meeting, using DaveK's 200/2.8 (now I have one myself):



I also brought my 10-20 along to Antwerp, this is the ticketing hall of the central station:



One day during April foolishness I shot this "illegally" with my 100/2.8 macro:



Probably my best April Foolishness shot (Helios 35/2.8):



A very patient model, always willing to pose (for a cookie):



You can do fun stuff with the 10-20, this is a Ford Popular (really a small car)



From the Dyxum meeting in Planckendael:



This summer in Bordeaux, a beautiful old shopping arcade:



Last but least a street shot, inspired by all the Dyxum members who are masters in this genre. Still need to learn more (and drop my bashfulness).



TFL
Pieter
 



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glass-hoper View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote glass-hoper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 November 2008 at 23:54
congrats for the election in the dyxum fame club! well deserved - now, after the tradition started with your father, we just have to see your son acceding to this fine dignity in couple of years!
mehr licht!

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Post Options Post Options   Quote YourFunnyUncle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 00:00
Congratulations, Pieter! Thanks so much for sharing your shots and your interesting story.

I have to agree that it is so much easier to learn with the instant feedback of digital, although that musician shot from 1979 shows that there was some talent there all the while!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote DavidB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 01:00
Very nice work and well deserved recognition pegelli. Your postings here are varied and of a consistently high quality!
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Post Options Post Options   Quote dogears Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 03:33
Congratulations Pieter! That's a very interesting story - specially about your passion about steam trains :) and it's good to read your path to LL|GAS, oops I meant A-mount
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Bob J Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 07:40
Pieter,

Many thanks for your story and the many great images, both here and elsewhere on Dyxum - my eye keeps on being drawn to your arcade shot - a lovely example of symmetry and vanishing point...

Bob
 



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Post Options Post Options   Quote DaveK Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 07:49
see later post..

Edited by DaveK - 14 October 2009 at 23:22
Best regards, Dave
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Frankman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 09:43
Pieter, it's wonderfgul to learn a bit more about you. You have such a diverse range of subject matter and techniques, which is good, since it justifies the lens lust .

Frank

Edited by Frankman - 11 November 2008 at 15:35
*** Sony A850 * A700 * Minolta 5D and other stuff ***
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Post Options Post Options   Quote dd001 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 10:05
Thanks for sharing your story Pieter, it was an interesting read.
And congrats for this very deserved recognition
David - My Gallery
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Octupi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 14:41
Congratulations, it's much deserved. Your posts are always inspiring and to get to know the man behind the picture is nice for all of us.   
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Post Options Post Options   Quote alanfrombangor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 15:11
Congratulations on making the elite list Pieter, and you can never have too many steam train photographs
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Post Options Post Options   Quote pegelli Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 20:02
Many thanks all. You all make Dyxum the inspiring place it is for me

I'm currently on a business trip with very irregular internet access and a very old/small uncalibrated screen, so will react a bit more extensive to you reactions and other posts when I'm home next weekend.
You can see the April Foolishness 2021 exhibition here Another great show of the talent we have on Dyxum
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Post Options Post Options   Quote pauljg Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 20:30
Hi Pieter: well earned to be one of us

even if only because you introduced me to Dyxum last year and I am still enthusiastic about it and as my professor in Leyden said (more than 60 years ago) "one is never too old to learn" and I find out everyday that this is very true indeed

And I'm glad that my introduction of you to this hobby has been so succesful that we together are now "two of us"
pauljg - NL - see also my blog and

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Post Options Post Options   Quote MichelvA Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 November 2008 at 20:50
Well done Pieter! I always like your contributions. Hope we will meet one day and i can learn a little from you
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