ethervizion

about

Me

I'm Karl Martin — my day job is CEO of Bionym Inc., a biometrics, security, and privacy company that I co-founded in 2011. Not too long ago, I got my Ph.D. at the University of Toronto. I was profiled in the Toronto Star in relation to my work on privacy protected video surveillance. Earlier on, I attended Earl Haig Secondary School (academic gifted program and Claude Watson School for the Arts music major in clarinet), and the University of Toronto (Bachelor of Applied Science in Engineering Science – Electrical Option, and Master of Applied Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering).

I was born in Singapore, but I have lived in Toronto since before my first birthday. As should be obvious from this website, one of my main hobbies is photography (the other is cycling). Whether it be going out on a photo-shoot, or processing some shots on my computer, much of my spare time is spent on photography related activities.

Music is also an important part of my life. I have grade 10 level clarinet performance from the Royal Conservatory of Music and I have also played the alto sax and bassoon (AKA farting bedpost). These days, my involvement in music is mainly limited to listening to recordings (constantly) and attending performances (as often as possible) of mostly classical and jazz music. My favourite composer is Dvořák, with Mozart coming in a close second, and my favourite jazz musician is the late Dave Brubeck. I also enjoy a lot of indie rock, especially stuff coming out of the local Toronto/Canada scene. My favourite bands (in no particular order) are: Beirut, Owen Pallett, Arcade Fire, Sigur Rós, and Belle and Sebastian.

ethervizion.com

This site was born in late 1999. I started it as a place to display my 3D art, and it slowly morphed into a photography site as that became my main hobby. It is currently in its fourth design version, with layout and presentation done completely using CSS2.1. The backend has been coded entirely from scratch using PHP and MySQL so that it works exactly the way I want it to.

What does "ethervizion" mean, you ask? Not much, really. It is simply what I came up with when racking my brain for a domain name (I shall eventually invent a better story). That's it.

This site uses Trebuchet MS as the primary font. That makes it look nice. If you do not have that font, you will likely see Arial, which is less nice. You can download Trebuchet MS here (for Windows). I doubt I'm supposed to make it available here, so shhhh, don't tell anyone.

Photography

I photograph anything that I think will make an aesthetically pleasing photo. That's pretty much it. I do specifically enjoy night photography, which unfortunately requires me to carry around a tripod. You may notice a lack of photos containing human beings. I am not averse to such photography, but at this point it is not something I'm ready to master. To see some of my photos which may not be displayed on this site, check out my flickr page.

I was shooting 35mm film with a Nikon F80 SLR camera up until August, 2006. From then, until December, 2009, I used a Nikon D200 digital SLR. Since then, I have used a Nikon D300s DSLR. The following is a relatively complete list of my relevant equipment:

Cameras:
Nikon D300s Digital SLR
Nikon D200 Digital SLR
Nikon F80 35mm Film SLR

Lenses:
Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX DC HSM
Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8G ED-IF AF-S DX
Nikon 85mm f/1.4D IF AF
Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S VR
Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Macro

Film (most used):
Fuji Provia 400F
Fuji Provia 100F
Fuji Superia Reala 100

Support:
Gitzo GT-2530 Carbon Fiber Tripod
Gitzo GT-1541T Carbon Fiber Tripod
Manfrotto 3001/190CL Tripod
Manfrotto 680 Monopod
Arca-Swiss Monoball Z1 SP Ball Head
Markins Q-Ball Q3 Traveler Ball Head
Really Right Stuff L-plate

Lighting:
Nikon SB-800 AF Speedlight

Scanners:
Minolta DiMAGE Scan Elite 5400 Film Scanner
Epson Perfection 3170 Photo Flatbed Scanner

3D Art

I started messing around with 3D art in 1997 using POV-Ray. But after a while, its text-based approach got a little annoying, so I used Moray as a modelling interface for POV-Ray, and things got a little more interesting. It was around this time that I took notice of Vue d'Esprit, a nice little piece of software used for rendering realistic natural environments. It was previously shareware, but version 2, now a real commercial product, had been recently released. I have stuck with this software ever since, and it has now grown to be a major force in the industry. In 1999 I created the Vue d'Esprit Users Webring, and it is still running today. I've also added Rhino to my toolbox, a great NURBS-based modeller.

Unfortunately, it's been a few years since I've been active working on 3D art. However, I keep some of my old work up, and perhaps some day I will pick it up again.