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Who am I and how did I get here?



Hey,

I'm Daniel and I grew up in Portland, Oregon, USA. I took photos for fun with point and shoot cameras occasionally in High School but didn't really get into photography until I began travelling in 2014. I had done real-estate photography with simple point-and-shoot cameras for a few years as a Real-Estate Agent, but never really used photography as personal expression. My first camera was a digital Nikon, the D3300. It was a great SLR and took amazing photos, was affordable, and I took it with me to Bali in 2016. It was big and had no direct way to transfer photos to my phone, so I switched to an Olympus OM-D 10 mkii. The smaller sensor didn't provide as much depth I felt, but the variety of lenses, smaller body size, and wifi sharing to phone/pc was perfect. I used the Olympus for 3+ years.


I discovered Drone photography in 2016 and got hooked on creating artistic compositions from the sky, treating the frame of the photo like a canvas and thinking about the forms, colors, and textures in each shot. I began to sell my work online and founded Loft Visual in early 2018 as a website and market for my work.


In late 2018, just before I moved to Hanoi, Vietnam, a friend gave me a Pentax K1000 film camera as a gift. I tried a few rolls before leaving the USA, the lab gave them to my client instead of me in a mix up, and I haven’t seen the photos from those original rolls. Once I arrived in Hanoi, I bought a few rolls of Kodak Gold, expired Fuji 200, and tried out film. There was just something so special about the tiny silver grains and the look of the photos that can’t be emulated exactly by digital. I fell in love with Hanoi and with film photography.


While film is very expensive per shot compared to digital, the cameras themselves are much more affordable compared to full-frame digital. Also, many of the cameras have incredible lenses, are compact, and have advanced features which make a small mirrorless digital camera seem large and overly complicated. One of my favorites is the Minolta TC-1, which is pocket sized and has an incredible 28mm lens, automatic exposure/focusing/film winding. Another great pocketable marvel is the Rollei-35 which has a 40mm lens, is fully manual but has a built in CDS light meter to help the user set the shutter and aperture to properly expose the photo. I just love film cameras and walking around Hanoi taking shots.


Shooting street photos is fun, but now I’m becoming interested in Architecture photos and Real Estate photography. These are both very challenging because the eye/brain can notice if there are errors in the photograph, creating the additional challenge of expert editing. This choice has brought me back into digital photography, but I will always shoot film daily too!


Recently, I also began listing my photographic work for sale as an NFT, or Non-fungible Token. While I don’t have the space in this post to explain fully what they are, I think of NFT as a blockchain copyright on my work that I can sell, along with both digital and film negatives of the work to create a highly collectible unique item.


If you’re interested in hiring me to do some photography editing, please send me an email at driderdesign@gmail.com. Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to stop and photograph the flowers!

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