How I get to pass 10 blog awards…

Last week when reading dikkie’s blog I thought I saw my name … rubbed my eyes twice … wait a minute, that is my name …. I was all smile.

“Talking about strobist skills, Tom Leuntjes is a very talented guy as well.
Iโ€™m following his blog only since recently and his work is really nice.
The very original lightning in his portraits makes them outstanding.”

First off I’d like to correct a couple of things, I’m rather flattered that dikkie listed me in between Bert Stephani & Pieter Van Impe, two of my big examples… but here is the truth.

I started taking pictures about a year ago, we bought a 400D to take on our trip to Thailand.
Before that I couldn’t keep apart FStops from a cows behinds, I owned a small compact camera and I never liked taking it out the bag to snap a picture. How things can change … I fell in love with the sound the shutter makes when you press that button, I fell in love with the feeling of holding a dSLR.

So a year go I got myself a flickr account, wanted to do a self portrait project like arkworld, couldn’t keep that up, found out about strobist .. and got hooked. I read lots of books, tinkered around with some DIY gear and did lots of test shots. The camera gear got upgraded and teddy bears got replaced by more interesting models. People started to react to my pictures, I started blogging and took even more pictures …

… and here we are now :

1. Strobist
A logical #1 for me, A blog, a scene and a way of taking pictures. Founded by David Hobby.
“This website is about one thing: Learning how to use off-camera flash with your dSLR to take your photos to the next level. Or the next ten levels.”

2. Bert Stephani – Confessions of a photographer
He is my #1 Belgian photographer, I’ve first noticed some of his work with the video series “Confessions of a Photographer”. What I love about Bert is that he still takes time to give something to the community, sharing his priceless tools of the trade. And he uses small strobes with big results. This also a part of why I started this blog, I wanted to give something back to community. Maybe not as high tech but I hope someone somewhere does pick up a couple of things.

The thing that makes Tom’s work stand out from the other is the sheer level of fun during shoots. (And his trusty DIY beauty dish)

4. Pieter van Impe
Pieter is an international wedding & engagement photographer. To me this looks like one of the hardest things in the business, it takes great skill to capture the real emotion between two people.
Week after week you get presented with the same basic theme, but Pieter’s style keeps evolving & and he keeps on adding new elements into his work.
He recently turned full time pro and I wish him the best of luck with that.

5. Joe McNally
I learned about light, fstops, shutter speeds, got to know my camera inside out but I wanted to be able to ‘create’ things, I wanted to be able to ‘see’ things. After reading Joe’s book “Joe McNally: The Moment It Clicks” I guess something did click. Shame I’ll never be as funny as him.

6. Chase Jarvis
Obviously this guys doesn’t need my kind of attention but honestly, who wouldn’t want to be in his shoes. Shame he’s a Nikon shooter, Canon could really use do with a better promo video.

7. Tim Freh, he wants to get away from the “industrial photographer” label … but I hope he doesn’t go away to far. Amazing pictures.

8. Gekiekt
Steven Meert, a guy with a similar back story to mine. Maybe that’s why I like his work.
His latest series demonstrate strobist efficiency, some very clever flash shots taken at an art exhibition.

9. Bart Claeys: Not really a blog but you can subscribe to a flickr feed too.
Another niche in photography : Event-photography (I-take-my-camera-everywhere-photography was not a real word) I give you Bart Claeys.

Rounding out my personal faves are Jimmy Kets, Artur Eranosian and TDN Photography, guys who excel in fields that I will never truly master: street photography/journalism. I guess I should go out more often, walk around with a fix lens and get over my camera-agoraphobia. (when I’m not on assignment)

There you have it, these are the guys that teach and inspire me. Making a top ten was actually harder to do than I though, there are a lot more guys who deserve the attention.

As for me, I’d like to thank everyone who takes the time to watch my pictures & read my blog.
Without your support and the support of my friends & family I’d probably would never have picked up on photography.

11 thoughts on “How I get to pass 10 blog awards…

  1. Chase Jarvis says:

    Thanks for the nice mention Tom. Contrary to your point in here it really IS the attention from individual blogs like yours and not necessarily the mass media that has helped elevate my personal brand and photography generally. The backstory to the Nikon D90 vid helps illustrate how we as photographers are taking the lead in the new media while bigger, clunky brands -who don’t really know what their customers want anyway- are taking a back seat. Thanks again for the mention.

  2. tomleuntjensphotography says:

    Steven, welcome ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Julie & sofie: dank u.
    Chase : I’m honored by your visit (and I feel like a kid in a candy store now), thanks. Had I ever suspected you reading this I’d do a double truck feature about you ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. tdn says:

    Wow, there goes my ego up in the sky…;)

    Seriously, thanks a million Tom. I’m honored to be even mentioned between such great names ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. tomleuntjensphotography says:

    David: I need to hank you for all your effort you put in the strobist community. Thanks for taking time to visit my blog. *awesome*

    Tdn: you are welcome, like I mentioned. journalism , event & street-photography are not my cup of tea and by watching images like yours make me see things differently.

  5. Pingback: TDN Photography » Blog Archive » Photography Blog Awards

  6. Dikkie says:

    Just one year of experience?? Didn’t know that. I picked you up in Flickr’s Benelux Strobist Pool. Are you a (semi-)professional? Because that’s what I thougt ๐Ÿ™‚

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.