In September, our local photo group „Fotofreunde Herborn aka. DieFotoMafia“ held a photo completion on the subject „Eyes“. As my 6-year-old daughter as my usual favorite model did not show too much motivation this time, I thought of an alternative. As „eyes“ also occur on dice and the German word for the grease drops on a soup etc. is „Fettaugen“ („fat eyes“), I improvised and turned a champagne bowl, some vegetable oil, water, syrup and two dice into my setup for the shot, and lit it with my mobile’s torch.
The result was stunning, I think, and it turned out at position three in the competition. I am quite pleased with this result.
These days, my family, some friends and I went exploring the fairy tale hike „Little Roothaar“ near Bad Laasphe. Apart from the lovingly prepared stations for the kids, I encountered some of the minute beauties next to the footpaths. They were please to model for some shots and the outcome was quite pleasant, I think.
Over the last couple of years, I kept shooting a similar setup whenever we went for the final night picknick on the beach. This year was no different and the picknick on the beach of the German Baltic Sea in August resulted in this:
In previous years, these shots looked „same, same, but different“…
As usual, some photo friends went on a walk on April 1. This time, we chose to look for motives in the historic park of the VITOS clinics. The weather was fine this time. Unlike our previous attempt to shoot there last winter. This time, I was able to get quite a few nice shots of the architecture, the plants, and the historic cemeteries.
Recently, a couple of photo friends and I went on a photowalk in the historic town of Wetzlar (Germany). The sky was overcast, the snow had almost fully melted and an almost constant drizzle lowered our expectations of good shots to a minimum. However, I accepted the bad lighting and weather as a challenge and here’s what came out:
I think, they came out not too bad at all. What do you think?
These days, we experienced a foggy winter’s day in the valley and drove up the hill to find that there’s sun above the cloud. Then I, moreover, found that the sundown behind a castle ruin just peaking out above the clouds is created a wonderful color gradient, and painfully regretted not having brought my digital DSLR.
On the other hand, the time to set it up would have ruined the photo opportunity anyway as I only had a few minutes before the sun would have moved out of this spectacular range.
So I picked my mobile phone, enabled the RAW mode camera and did the best I could using the car roof as a tripod.
However, the colors I saw did not seem to be captured in the image at first. It looked pale and flat on the screen , instead of the breathtaking colors I actually saw with my own eyes.
But since I shot in RAW disappointment was soon giving way to hope and with a few sliders moved in Lightroom later, the magic evolved and the image came out just as I envisioned it.
This is the photographer’s dream come true and the true benefit of the RAW format. All the true potential of an image shot is stored in the RAW information and can be exposed to match what the photographer saw.
So, photographers out there, use RAW whenever possible, even on you mobiles! It’s well worth the hassle and the additional storage is not wasted.
These days, around Halloween, when it is getting darker, our little town of Herborn lends itself for an eery tour and our municipal marketing provides these tours, telling tall tales and spooky stories from the past while they go (only in German).
I was asked to take some pictures for later marketing of these tours and joined the guide last week.
However, the light and some settings were quite challenging as I did not have a chance to „stage“ any scenes but had to shoot them while the tour was running. Thus, I had to take what I could get and add some spookyness later, partially decreasing the saturation and sharpness and adjusting other bits and pieces in Lightroom.
On that day, the weather was sunny and the museum was interesting. However, my highlight was a bright red dragonfly sitting on a wooden railing. Pure photographer’s luck, with the lake and the reconstructed stone-age buildings in the background.
Luckily, I had my trusted Sigma 18-250 mega zoom mounted so that I did not have to worry about object distance, bokeh and focus before the main motive escaped.
The insect stayed put and I had the chance to shoot a few different perspectives.
The results were stunning: the light, the background and focus shifts perfectly setting the scene for the main motive.
Meanwhile, I offered the museum’s marketing department to use the images. In return I got some free tickets for my next visit.
Not bad for some accidental free-hand shots, don’t you think?
On occasion of our shortbreak at the Lake Constance, I recently visited Salem with its zoo/monkey enclosure. Currently, the site is home to more than 200 monkeys. With the very large area, this allows for (almost) natural conditions. This and the golden autumn sun were perfect for some „wildlife“ photography.
These are some of my favorite shots with an apparent insight into the monkeys‘ psyche: