Dré de Man studied Dutch and photography. At the age of thirty, he developed an interest in exact subjects, and added mathematics, physics
In 1998 he started working in the IT sector, where he was trained as a DBA and programmer. At the beginning of
Over the course of 23 years since then, his knowledge of digital photography has greatly increased. From the onset, he preferred researching and testing himself over the often incorrect technical information on the internet. As early as 1982 he started developing his own test method for photographic lenses, then using microfilm and a microscope. He has continued to perfect this since the rise of digital photography. But he has also his own method to test the dynamics of cameras/sensors, which not only measures the shadows but also the lightest parts. When testing color fidelity, he uses a color swatch specially developed for him with colors that are very difficult to display. His knowledge of color management is not only based on theory but also on printing many photos on his professional Epson printer and on the production of print-ready PDFs for his books. (Dré de Man has done the layout for all his books since 2014 – with the exception of Photographing in Paris.)
Because of his experience with Nikon equipment since 1974, he has become a Nikon expert, who has no equal in the Netherlands and probably beyond, apart from some Nikon employees of course. He keeps a close eye on all new developments and is often one of the first to test new equipment, even before it is on the market. As a result, he knows better than anyone how progressive and promising the new mirrorless Nikon Z system is. At the same time, he still appreciates the existing Nikon F system, which still forms a very good basis for taking the very best photos and that will remain for many years.
DigifotoPro and even more technology
Since a few years, he has been testing for the magazine DigifotoPro all common brands of cameras and lenses. He does this in a technically very objective way with fixed test criteria and therefore has knowledge of the technical quality of almost all brands. He is strongly committed to objectivity, even though he does not hide his enthusiasm for the Nikon system. That is not necessary either, because Nikon has always produced special cameras and lenses and has succeeded better than ever in recent years. However, he closely follows the developments at the other brands. He is particularly enthusiastic about the technological innovations that result from the fierce competition in the field of full-frame mirrorless cameras. In addition to the increasingly powerful computers and the use of machine learning, this has raised the quality of lenses for the new mirrorless mounts of Nikon and Canon in particular. He also follows the developments regarding the competitive mirrorless AF techniques of Nikon, Sony, Canon and Panasonic with fascination. In recent years, he has become one of the few in the world who combines digital and analog photography expertise with the ability to write.
In 2014, Dré de Man produced a magazine about drones. As an extension of this, he has bought a drone from the client, which he uses in combination with a mirrorless Nikon camera, the first mirrorless full-frame Nikon camera, specially made for him by Nikon Service Point in Beverwijk. He was among the first to successfully pass the exam to use drones professionally. In practice, however, it appears that absurdly strict Dutch policy for professional use makes making money with a drone impossible. Only in North Korea, the rules are stricter. He doesn’t use it professionally for now – and waits for the application of European rules. He’s from time to time compelled to sell or trade this unique camera, a great collector’s item that has hardly been used. If you’re interested, let me now.
As an IT journalist, he has in-depth technical knowledge. One of his strengths is that he grasps complex technical and business topics quickly. Specialties include programming and architecture, but of course, he also has knowledge of operating systems, databases, storage, offshore, big data and other technologies and practices such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. In 2012 he wrote the book IT Leaks. It is a history of IT, told as a succession of failures. It explains in particular why there are so many problems in our society with regard to security and the efficient use of IT.
A series of articles on various topics related to Germany appeared
Du holde Kunst
With effect from 2019, Dré de Man is also a publisher. Because he carries out all activities except for the correction of the texts himself, the overhead in producing books is very low. Therefore, already in the first year, six books have been published and written by him. The publishing house is called Dré de Man, but in practice, the imprint dr3book will be used more often. The name refers to the functions of author, photographer, and designer united in one person.