Studio Name: David Tomek Photography
Studio Location: Gold Coast, Australia
What is your background and how did you get into photography?
I got into photography around 3 years ago after seeing some HDR images for the first time. That’s when I saw photography in a completely different light. The images drew me in and I was able to make an emotional connection – not just visual. That’s when I decided I wanted to take up photography.
What type of photography do you shoot?
I shoot mainly landscapes, seascapes, cityscapes, nightscapes, auto, and street photography
What is your favourite type of photography?
Definitely seascapes and landscapes. There’s just something magical about heading out to the ocean, before the rest of the world wakes, and capturing the start of a new day. Sunrise and sunset are my favourite times to shoot.
What is your photographic style? How did you develop this style?
My style is vivid, pseudo HDR. I love the dynamic range in HDR images, and I tried to learn the techniques of photographers like Trey Ratcliffe and others. However I found I’m not a fan of taking bracketed shots. I take a lot of seascapes photos, and I found taking bracketed shots just didn’t work.
I developed my own style of HDR photography that involved taking only one shot – instead of 3-5. I’d then make virtual copies of this single shot at -2E to +2E and export all 5 into HDR software to create a merged HDR image. I’d then work on this image to create a final product that I’m happy with. It takes me 30-60 minutes to create a final image I’m happy with.
What is in your photography kit?
I know so many people who have spent thousands of dollars on cameras only to never use them because of the effort involved. And of those that do use them, many produce images that, if I’m being completely honest, are not very good. They just don’t pack the visual punch you’d expect.
For me, the best camera was always going to be the one that goes with me everywhere, all the time. (I’m a spontaneous shooter. If I see something that grabs my eye, I go for it).
Here’s the thing – my only gear is a SONY RX100 and a tripod. That’s it. This compact camera has all the manual controls of a DSLR, but fits in my pocket. Sure, it’s not a full-frame camera, but using the right settings, it takes great images.
Software largely makes up for the cameras smaller sensor. I guess I made it my goal to prove you can make big and striking images with a tiny camera.
What is one piece of photography kit you just couldn’t live without?
My SONY RX100 and my tripod!
What post processing tools/software do you use?
I use Adobe Lightroom and Nik Software plugins (HDR Efex Pro 2, Colour Efex Pro 4 and Define)
What is your best photography tip and post processing tip?
Take lots of photos and spend at least as much time learning to process them.
I’ve seen so many photographers take pretty good shots, but they spend little to no time on processing the images. They end up with an image that may be nicely composed, but one that could have been so much better.
Photography is a skill but it’s also a form of art. It takes a lot of practice and fine tuning to create an image with a ‘wow’ factor. Strive for that. It’s worth the time and effort.
What was your greatest challenge so far as a professional photographer?
I’m self-taught. That was challenging enough. But also proving to myself, and others, that I didn’t need to own the latest and most expensive DSLR to make images that have an impact.
The other challenge was there are literally hundreds of thousands of great photographers. At first, it can be disheartening to see their work and feel as though my own is so far below their level.
This can really hit your confidence. But keep going – keep shooting, keep practicing your processing.
What is your favourite InkFX medium to have your work printed on & why?
Without a doubt its the Aluminium HD Metal. My style of vivid pseudo HDR really pops on this medium. My customers love it too.
If you were able to give any advice or recommendations to someone starting out in their Photography career what would it be?
Value your own time and effort, and others will too. For me, photography is a passionate hobby. But that doesn’t mean my work, time or processing comes free. If you’re proud of your work and product, don’t feel bad charging for it.
Any last words of wisdom or advice?
Learn from others, but don’t copy them. Take the time to develop your own unique style.
Before you know it, people will recognise your work without even seeing your name to it. Finally, use social media to showcase your work and get your name out there!
Gold Coast, Australia
6 thoughts on “Photographer Spotlight – David Tomek”
Wow all of his shots that you have shown are awesome
Agree its not just taking a good shot .. you have to also develop your own processing style .. Leran the tricks and develop them your own way … Nice work David .. Cheers Lachlan
Good work David. It’s all about how you use the gear. Not the gear itself!
Wow! These are some seriously stunning images!
Loving the ocean shots!
Well done Shane, another great interview. I have been following Dave’s work and FB page for a while now and love his whole concept on Photography and capturing his Landscapes and Seascapes. I love his post processing to his images and his final results for that “WOW Factor ” Dave is one Photog that is high in my list of Favorite Photographer. His whole concept that you don’t need a big camera to obtain big images is so true. Well done Dave, keep up tour amazing work. Well done Shane @ InkFX PRINTING for your work in presenting these interviews. Keep them coming.
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