My Sunday Miracle

Miracle | Moosbach | 2017

Like many places on this planet we were blessed with plenty snow this weekend. As I’m fighting a really nasty cold I didn’t use the opportunity to head into Nuremberg to photograph in the snow covered city. But Sunday late afternoon my significant other more or less kicked me out of the house for a little walk in the woods and fields behind our house. Initially I didn’t want to take a camera, but then again, which photographer leaves the house without one?  So I grabbed the PEN-F and we headed out the door.  And sure enough, in the trees just behind the house my little miracle happened.  For the story and a couple more snowy sunset photos from Frankonia continue reading after the jump…..

We headed up through the pine trees toward an open field behind our village. And then I caught a glimpse of the setting sun between the trees. I thought that was quite amazing, as the forest is still quite dense there. This was my little Sunday miracle, the sun finding a hole between all those trees and hitting my face. So camera up to the eye, pressing the shutter. I had the mZuiko 12mm f/2.0 wide angle attached, lately my go-to lens on the PEN-F. I knew the lens is sharp enough even at f/5,6 where the first image was taken. But then I remembered I need to really stop down to actually produce the rays of the sun. So I went to aperture priority and dialed in f/11. This gave me 1/13 of a sec shutter speed, which is still possible to hand hold due to the 5-axis stabilizer of the PEN-F. Shooting and checking the image on the camera screen I knew I got my rays.

Even this is nowhere a spectacular image, to me it means a lot that I was able to capture it. And this is an important aspect of my photography. Primarily, the images I take need to satisfy me and only me. If I’m happy with the result of my photography, for whatever reason (technical, composition, a special memory) then it was a good outing. If someone else likes the image too, even better, but this is a bonus. This way, I can never be disappointed when a photo I publish isn’t as popular, doesn’t get as many likes or is criticized. Still, feedback is always welcome, especially critical one, because it helps me to improve my photography.

Below are two more photos from this little walk as we exited the pine trees and came out on the open field behind our village. I’m glad I took the camera, even if I initially wasn’t in the mood.

Winter Sunset
Winter Sunset | Moosbach | 2017
Winter Ways
Winter Ways | Moosbach | 2018

Have a great week!


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61 thoughts on “My Sunday Miracle

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  1. Woaaaah I love when you get a picture you love like this. I can totally see why these are so special too. Awesome that you got snow, I’ll start living vicariously through you right about now since mine has melted. Feelin inspired after this to make such a cool photo!

    1. Thanks so much Holly, your comment means a lot! We got plenty snow and the temperature this morning was a whopping 5 degrees F (-15 Celsius). It will stay cold and sunny for at least a week. The thing is, I’m flying into the Portland rain on the weekend, according to my iPhone weather app :-). So I can’t really resupply you with fresh snow photos…

      1. You’re welcome. I don’t always have the time to read the narratives. Sorry for that. The photos tell me a lot and sometime, well in many cases with yours, they stand on their own.

  2. So beautiful and just now got to read about your beautiful adventure. I had to smile realizing that we both posted independently about the rays of the sun / light and our souls must have rested in the same places. They do say great minds think alike 😉

    1. Thanks so much 😊🙏! And yes, Winter and travel are not best friends 😉, so I take the rain in this case. I save the Portland sun for future trips, there will be many more this year….Marcus

  3. Amazing and beautiful! I love the rays but my favorite is the bottom photo. I almost wouldn’t mind being out in the cold to try to capture that.

  4. What brilliant captures. I agree with your significant other that taking a walk when you feel like hell ALWAYS makes you feel a little better. You know what i love about sunsets – everyone who can see, can see them, whether you are rich or poor, or clever or stupid, or afraid or happy or sick or healthy. The sky is above us all and there is always, and sometimes only, just that ray of dying sun and all those with eyes can see it and wonder at it and smile. Lovely post. c

    1. Thanks for the great comment, really appreciate it. Lighting conditions on the first and second image were not all that difficult, more so on the last one. I always shoot in raw because it has so much more reserves in the lights and shadows that can be brought out in Lightroom.

  5. I, too like taking pictures of sunsets. On a technical matter, how do you meter for the sun? I mean, you have huge contrasts to take into account that are lieterallynight and day.

    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment! In the first image I really didn’t consider the sun, it did not affect my metering. In these kind of conditions I dial in -0,7 exposure compensation because the cam tends to blow out a bit due to the dark trees. That way also orange in the sun was retained.

      The second photo with the silhouette trees also wasn’t all that difficult because I exposed for the sky, rendering the trees black.

      More tricky was the last image on the open field. Here I used matrix metering with + 0,3 exposure compensation. As I shoot in raw I knew the raw file retains enough info in the highlights and shadows to have a sufficient dynamic range in the final image. As I normally don’t use ND-Grads I use Lightroom CC to apply a Grad-Filter over the sky and carefully bring up the shadows. Worked here quite ok.

  6. Beautiful sunset – one of my most favourite subjects. I especially love the one through the trees.

  7. What I like about these is that they lack pretense. They simply record what was. And what was, was lovely. Nice work and thank you for sharing it!

  8. I just got back from a photography class to learn how to use all the features of my Panasonic Lumix. I’m always really impressed when I meet people who really know how to manipulate their cameras. Don’t know if I’ll get there but I love taking photos and I did learn a few things today that I didn’t know before. Beautiful photos. I love the sunset through the trees.

    1. Thanks for taking the time to write this nice comment. It is so important people know their cameras and what they can do with them. Instead of always buying new cams with new features people should learn to work with what they have. Really knowing how to handle their existing gear will advance their photography much more than buying a new fancy camera! So you took the perfect approach! Have a great week ! Marcus

  9. Ein richtig schönes Foto-Set, Marcus. Das ist was ich meine mit dem extra im gewöhnlichen zu sehen. Du hast dafür ein gutes Auge, nicht nur bei Sonnenuntergängen. Für mich gehören solche Aussichten zweifelsohne zu den schönen und liebenswertesten Erscheinungen und Erinnerungen.
    Liebe Grüße,

  10. I’m happy you’re sharing the photos you like. But those little stories are what photography is about. Capture the moment, or let’s say, capture YOUR moment. If you like the photo then the mission is accomplished, and if other adore it, then it’s a pleasant bonus 🙂

    My mother-in-law once asked me what photos I like to take or what I look out for when taking one. I said that I dunno and it’s very spontaneous.

  11. Oh, this is beautiful nature and I miss it so much. We don’t have the forest like this where I live; only high in the mountains.

    Marcus, these are spectacular photographs! Hope you feel yourself better and some day will get to snowy Nuremberg:)

  12. Wow Marcus! I’m glad you are enjoying the snow. I still say BRRR. But I LOVE these. I actually love them in reverse order. Winter Ways is my favorite! and I love how it makes me feel like I’m in it… heading towards the sunset through the snow. 🙂 Glad you took the camera on your somewhat involuntary walk. 😉

    1. Thanks, Janet! I’m so glad you like those, reverse order is just as fine. If it wouldn’t have been for that special moment I would probably like them in reverse order too. Actually my wife liked the one on the field best too 🙂 . Remembering situations like this one always let my bring my camera in the end…

  13. What stunning sunset photos Marcus taken in such a winter wonderland! It must have been good to get outdoors to breathe some fresh air when fighting off a heavy cold and what a reward you returned home with! Hope you feel better soon!

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