The Sony α9: Canon, patience is running out

The first camera I ever bought was the Sony Cybershot DSC-F717. That’s when I first had enough money to be able to afford my very own digital camera and really take up photography as a hobby. At a price of around 1000 USD it wasn’t exactly cheap either and it was definitely more of a prosumer camera. Soon after that I upgraded to the newer model, the Sony Cybershot DSC-F828, and after that the Sony Cybershot DSC-R1.

I shot my first small paid assignments with the Sony DSC-R1. It was an awesome camera — the first fixed-lens camera to feature a large CMOS sensor with live preview. In an older post from 2007 I had already described what I liked so much about this camera. Specifically the live preview and electronic viewfinder simulating the exact exposure before you took the shot, the fact that you could focus anywhere on the screen by moving the autofocus point around with the joystick button, and the articulating LCD screen that made it possible to take pictures from very difficult angles and positions. In fact I very rarely used the viewfinder and preferred working with the LCD screen, because it was also more comfortable that way and made it easier to communicate with people when shooting portraits.

However, as I grew as a photographer the relatively slow speed (slow contrast detect AF and small buffer and write speed) of the DSC-R1 started to become a limiting factor. In addition I wanted to be able to use different lenses. But at that time Sony hadn’t gotten into the DSLR business yet (it would take a while before they bought Konica/Minolta and started offering DSLRs), so there were no other options for me than to look at Canon or Nikon as an alternative.

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Choose Pussy over Pain

Cidny G. Green published a video on Vimeo where she discusses the problem of sexual suppression and repression on social media these days, making many good points. I highly recommend watching it. She does a very good job of exposing the double standards and the hypocrisy in societies around the world when it comes to (female) sexuality. What triggered Green to make this video was her Instagram account being deleted because she had posted an image containing nudity which violated their guidelines.

I admire Green’s courage and enjoyed her good sense of humor. Actions such as Green’s will help a great deal with exposing the bullshit and hypocrisy surrounding human sexuality in societies around the world; it all needs to end as soon as possible.

In the past I had already posted specifically about Facebook’s hypocritical policies with regard to female nipples and nudity. I’ll have much more to say about this in the near future.

Messages from the Universe – Part 3

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Continuing where I left off in the previous post in this series, in the months following that post, I experienced what I can only describe as an onslaught of the numbers 3, 6 and 9 in various combinations of 3 digits. It seemed as though the timing in so many events in my life were synchronized according to those numbers. Every time something significant happened I’d look at my phone and the time would be a combination of 3, 6 and 9 (e.g. 9:36, 6:39, 3:33 etc.). And the meaning of those number combinations would completely make sense in the context of what I was experiencing then, to the point of providing exact guidance on what I needed to do.

And this is still going on today, but the events related to the above image just completely blew me away.

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Model Photo Shoot: Daryola Brandon

I did a photo shoot a few weeks ago for a beautiful young lady named Daryola Brandon. For this session we first went for a ‘natural’ look and after that a look with some heavier makeup. The focus was on taking portraits, although towards the end I also quickly took some other types of shots. I used this opportunity to experiment a little with the lighting, trying a number of different settings and positions to get a more dramatic look. The makeup was done by the talented Tanielle Seauw.

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Hellstorm: The Genocide of Germany by the Common Enemy

Change your plans for this evening, because this is a documentary you have to see. Yesterday I saw another amazing documentary titled “Hellstorm” made by Kyle Hunt, and based on the book “Hellstorm: The Death of Nazi Germany, 1944-1947” by Thomas Goodrich. You can watch it for free on Vimeo (embedded below), but you can also order DVDs from the official website. If those options don’t work, look for a torrent here.

Not surprisingly, this documentary has consistently been censored on YouTube ever since its release in 2015. I was able to find some German translations when I searched YouTube last night, but the official English version has been taken down.

This documentary is an excellent companion to another great documentary on the same subject titled “Adolf Hitler: The Greatest Story NEVER Told” (TGSNT) which I blogged about in the past.

A screenshot from “Hellstorm”

As they often say, history is written by the victors, and this is most certainly the case here. For many years we’ve been fed a completely fabricated and false version of what actually happened during World War II. We’ve been conditioned into believing that Hitler and Germany were the problem, when in actual fact they were the victims. They were the victims of great evil that still has the world enslaved today as I mentioned before. This evil is the “common enemy” as mentioned in the title of the above video on Vimeo, “international Jewry” as Hitler often called them, or the Zionist financial and banking elite as I usually like to refer to them.

After watching this documentary, you’ll realize that the ethnic cleansing and genocide happening in Palestine these days is simply business as usual for these people. In fact, together with TGSNT, this documentary will help you better understand much of what’s going on in the world today. Check it out ASAP!

About the voice-over for my website intro

When I started working on the intro for my new website in late 2015 I knew I would eventually want some voice-over to go along with the titles appearing on screen. I had looked online for voice talent on websites like voices.com, and had found a few people that had the type of voice I was looking for. One of them — my first choice — was L. Harvey Gold.

Seeing his client list however (National Geographic, Discovery Channel, ESPN, Toyota, Super Bowl etc.), and judging by the awesomeness of his voice, I doubted that I would be able to afford him. I went back to focusing and working on the technical parts of the intro and it wouldn’t be until months later, by the end of 2016, when I would consider adding a voice-over again. At that time I had much of the intro sequence working with the titles appearing on screen.

After much hesitation I decided to send an email to Harvey just to see what it would cost if he would do a voice-over for me. I totally expected it to be way above what I could afford, but my intuition told me,  and kept nagging me, to go ahead and try anyway. So I sent an email on December 25th 2016 — the first day of Christmas — inquiring about the costs.

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An explanation for my website intro

There’s a lot of thinking that went into the creation of the intro sequence that I have on the homepage of my new website. It’s based on years of my personal research into trying to find out more about life and about the reality that we live in, much of which you can read about in my post on the All Seeing Eye and the Cycle of Life. In this post I’ll go through the sequence and explain what you’re seeing.

On the load screen you can see the equilateral triangle with the numbers 3, 9 and 6 which are related to the fundamental energy — spirit, consciousness or “god” — behind the universe and all of creation. I go into more details on this in my post on the Cycle of Life. Many people know this as the Divine Trinity (from Christianity and other religions and philosophies), though very few realize quite what it actually means.

Right behind the equilateral triangle you can see the geometry that’s popularly known as the Flower of Life. This geometry is a blueprint for all of creation — our physical reality — which is the product of consciousness as it travels through the points 3, 9 and 6.

These 3 points stand for creation (3), experience (9) and learning (6). As consciousness repeatedly travels through these points in a cycle, it continuously creates, experiences and learns while giving rise to our physical reality. This is the purpose of life and the reality that we live in. The universe is a gigantic simulation designed for us to learn and develop our consciousness in order for us to reach higher states of awareness and understanding. We keep creating, experiencing and learning until, through our gathered knowledge and experience, we reach absolute wisdom or enlightenment. As long as we fail to learn the lessons we’re supposed to learn, we’ll stay in this cycle and won’t advance much further (we’ll keep getting born (created) in this physical reality in order to learn until we finally ‘get it’). So as a person, you may choose to stay stubborn and refuse to learn and change, but it only means that you’ll return in another life for another chance to try again.

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My new website went live

Yesterday I launched a brand new design for my main website at kareldonk.com. It was long overdue considering that the previous design was launched all the way back in May of 2011. Six years is a long time on the Internet, and the old design was technically just not up to today’s standards anymore.

I began working on this new website design in early 2015 mostly in my spare time. So keep in mind when you visit the website that you’re seeing work that was done in the course of 2 years. 🙂 Building a website like this is a ton of work especially when you do almost everything by yourself from scratch and are also somewhat of a perfectionist. At the same time it was an opportunity for me to also check out some new concepts and technologies and keep my skills up to date with the latest developments. Lots of time simply went into R&D and learning, and in the course of those 2 years I also implemented much of what I learned in the work that I do for my clients.

I have also finally updated my portfolios so you’ll see some new work there along with older work. And now that my main website has been updated, I’ll continue to work on getting the design for my blog updated as well. I hope to have it finished before the end of this year.

I’ll probably write a longer post in the near future about some of the technical details of building the main website (especially the intro) and perhaps also place some of the code on GitHub. For now, check out the website, and any feedback you may have is welcome. 🙂

Persuasion, Influencing and Selling are Mind Manipulation

Mind manipulation is deeply ingrained in our societies around the world as a result of thousands of years of deliberate effort and policy. It’s one of the essential ingredients in the current anti-social system of enslavement that we live in, where children are being exposed to mind manipulation (‘education’) starting at a very early age. It’s so pervasive that you’ll even find it in seemingly innocent places if you know what to look for.

In our daily interactions with one another we’re constantly exposed to mind manipulation, and indeed, we may even be guilty of it ourselves without realizing it. For instance, many people don’t yet realize that ‘persuasion,’ ‘influencing’ and ‘selling’ all amount to mind manipulation. And this is mainly because they lack a fundamental sense and understanding of morality and where it comes from.

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Governments and Basic Income: Why they don’t go together

Scott Santens published another excellent article a few days ago on basic income titled “True Freedom Comes With Basic Income.” As the title already gives away, the article is about how a basic income can help to give people more freedom in their daily lives. Santens argues very convincingly, with real world examples, that having an unconditional basic income will give people more freedom to refuse to make choices that they don’t want to make:

Consider that word: “choice.” What is choice, really? When it comes to any real choice in life, what it all boils down to is the ability to simply say “No.” Without that ability, nothing is truly voluntary. All work isn’t voluntary. All relationships aren’t voluntary. All market exchanges aren’t voluntary. The choices we make that we think are choices aren’t truly voluntary whenever the option to say “No” is off the table. Therein lies the full potential of the idea of a universal basic income and it lays bare the lack of power many of us are under the illusion of having. Having a basic income creates the ability to look someone in the eye who holds more power than you, and firmly say, “No. Not today. Not until things change. These are my terms. Take them or leave them.

That power only arises with unconditional access to the means of survival, which is what a basic income essentially is. As long as we are refused access to the resources required to live, we will make choices we would not otherwise make.

It’s true that being able to unconditionally cover one’s basic needs gives every individual a lot of power and freedom. But every time I read articles on basic income the writers fail to address one of the biggest threats to every individual that exists today worldwide, namely governments and the anti-social system that they’re a part of, better known as “Statism.”

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