Photowalk in Herborn – Vitos park

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.

Photowalk in Wetzlar (Germany)

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?

RAW’s hidden treasures

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 created a wonderful color gradient, and I 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.

However, I shot in RAW so that my disappointment was soon giving way to hope: with a few sliders moved in Lightroom, the magic evolved and the image came out just as I envisioned it.

Castle Greifenstein in Greifenstein (Hesse, Germany)

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.

Spooky tour of the town of Herborn

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.

Here are my highlights:

Lucky shots at Lake Constance

Recently, we spent a family short break at Lake Constance in Bavaria. A visit to the archaeological museum on the lake shores gave me the chance to take some photos of the stunning scenery.

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?

Monkeys in Salem

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:

Classic cars in classic setting

Last month, our group of photographers got the chance to shoot 30+ classic cars in a deprecated factory setting. The opportunity was unique and my results alone were quite satisfactory.

A couple of weeks later, we were asked to follow-up on these shootings in a historic private park/estate, which was great again.

Here are just a few highlights.

Find more on our group website here.

Lines, lines, lines

Today, browsing through my snaps of the past weeks, it suddenly occurred to me that I seem to be obsessed with lines and perspective. Unknowingly, I shot some images with quite similar composition in various different situations out of the spur of a moment.

The first picture was taken on occasion of a little walk with my family. The lines of the footpath leading to the horizon with the dog on the leash just providing a litte welcome distraction from being sucked into the image fascinate me.

The second image was taken on the runway of London City Airport with the plane taxying to the terminal. Again, the power of the lines seem to have got the better of me.

The third image is a shot taken while passing through an underground passage towards the tube stations in Kensington which I  immediately envisioned in black and white. Here again, the little details at the far end with the minute persons being just about visible keep my eye „in“ the picture rather than just following the lines towards the „golden cut“

The images were instinctively taken and edited in this way but they show just how powerful linear structures are to make everyday images fascinating and artistic.

By the way, all three images were not taken with extensive equipment but shot as cell phone RAWs using the LR mobile camera app on an iPhone 8 plus.

Bubbles and colors

Hi there, again!

These days I quickly snapped a few shots of my daughter doing soap bubbles. Some of them came out in the most amazing colors. The combination with the refections is stunning, isn’t it?