Landscape

A Photographer’s Easter Egg Painting

Mountain Forest

Mountain Forest | Lungau | 2018

Approaching Easter Sunday, The Significant Other and the Kids diligently colored some Easter Eggs. I decided to work on a photographic Easter Egg for myself, trying a technique I read about on the web but have never explored so far. For a bit of how to continue after the jump…. (more…)

Good Friday

Mystic Mountain

Mystic Mountain | Lungau | 2018

The Friday preceding Easter Sunday is Good Friday,  a Christian holiday commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. It is also known as Holy Friday, Great Friday, and Black Friday. 

We are spending Easter at a very good friend’s house in the Lungau region in the Austrian Alps. Not really the place for Street Photography, but the opportunity to capture some monochrome landscapes.

The weather was not all that great, rather fitting for the subdued mood of Good Friday. While the kids took to the slopes, the Significant Other and I hiked up the Weißpriachtal along the Longa River. Readers of this blog might remember my post about High Contrast Landscape Photography, where I took some Ansel Adams like images on a sunny December day in the very same valley during an earlier visit.

Today there were only low hanging clouds, nothing spectacular to photograph, so we just enjoyed the hike. Only when returning, I took my Olympus OM-D E-M1 with the 12-100mm F/4 Pro Zoom out of my backpack and shot a few detail shots of what nature gave me. Kind of zen-like. Probably nothing anyone apart from me would look at, but really satisfying me as a visual artist. I will share these images tomorrow.

My photo of the day was that of the mountain above us, in a brief moment when the clouds opened up and gave us a vista of a moody mountainscape. Perfect for a Good Friday.

Image specs are 1/640 sec @ f/7.1 and ISO 200, focal length 100mm (equals 200mm full frame equivalent).

Wish you all a great start into a hopefully splendid Easter weekend!

Marcus

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Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Abandoned or Alone

Some thoughts on monochrome shooting

Where the river meets the ocean

Monday Mountains (8)

Snowcapped Pyramid

Snowcapped Pyramid | Washington | 2018

I haven’t done a “Monday Mountain” in quite a while, but I thought I show off this photograph of a rugged, snowcapped peak in the Northern Cascades. Unless previous episodes, where I wrote about particular mountains, I have no clue how this peak is called. If anyone recognizes this quite distinctive shape and has an idea, please leave the name in the comment section.

Image specs are 1/800 sec @ f/7.1 and ISO 200, focal length was 100mm (200mm focal length full frame equivalent). The photo was taken with my OM-D E-M1 and the mZuiko 12-100mm F/4 Pro Zoom a few minutes after takeoff in Seattle, on our way towards Canada, while we were still climbing to cruising altitude.

Raw- and monochrome conversion in Lightroom CC Classic

I finally got home from Portland at Saturday evening, in the middle of a little snow storm. And I made the birthday party with only one hour of delay.  Next time I set a foot into an airplane it will be for a week of vacation in NYC with the Significant Other. Less than three weeks to go. Life is not too bad 😉

Wish you all a great week!

Marcus

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Kissed By The Light And Happy

Aurea Borealis

Aurea Borealis | Northern Atlantic | 2018

I made it safely to Amsterdam, where I will be stuck for the next eight hours due to my canceled flight to Nuremberg. I tried various options to get home earlier, but nothing worked out. I hope that at least my 16:45 flight is on time so I make it to the birthday party of  a good friend the Significant Other and I are invited to.

But at least the heaven tried to cheer me up, and this with much success. I was kissed by a magic heavenly light show high above the Northern Atlantic, just as the Delta Airbus left North Western Canada (Baffin Island) for Greenland. And this time I saw the inflight Northern Lights sitting on the right side of the plane, the window facing south. For my how-to and more photos continue after the jump… (more…)

Travel Day (11)

Mt. Rainier

Mt. Rainier | Washington | 2018

My return travel to the Streets of Nuremberg got off to a bad start this morning, when just after 6am I got a text message from KLM that the flight from Amsterdam to Nuremberg tomorrow (Saturday morning) has been cancelled.

Well, let me guess, if KLM cancels a flight from their home airport 20 hours before it actually happens, it probably won’t be due to a malfunctioning aircraft or the weather (which will be fine, I already checked). Maybe because the flight to Nuremberg on a weekend morning had a low load, so it’s cheaper to cancel and cope with a few angry passengers?

Just speculating…..not the first time that happened to me…Lufthansa does that regularly with their short haul connections from Frankfurt or Munich to my city (but here I can get at least on a train). And we got already notified that Air France cancelled the originally booked morning flight Paris to Nuremberg in coming August when we return from our vacation in the Pacific Northwest on a Saturday morning. We get to wait an extra 10 hours in Paris before eventually being transported to Nuremberg on the evening flight….anyone seeing a pattern here?

Now you could argue that I shouldn’t complain as long as I eventually get safely home in one piece. But I’m just not looking forward to this 8 hour layover in Amsterdam when I could be home with the family. And to make things worse, I will need to go directly to an evening event in my clothes that I’ve been wearing for 28 hours by the time I land, because I won’t have time to head home to shower and change. Thanks KLM, much appreciated! And a platinum status card doesn’t help either….

On a brighter note, I got another nice view of Mt. Rainier while approaching Seattle. With the sun pretty much behind it, it was difficult to shoot, colors were dull, for that I already had a B&W conversion in mind when taking the photo at 1/2000 sec @ f/4.5 and ISO 200. Remember, when shooting out of an airplane window, make sure you use a wide open aperture to minimize degrading effects through a dirty or scratched window. Camera was my Olympus OM-D E-M1 and the mZuiko 12-100mm F/4 Pro Zoom.

Now I’m sitting in sunny Seattle waiting for my flight to Amsterdam to board. In the end all will be well. I hope!

Have a great Friday!

Marcus

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Hiking on the Oregon Coast

Cascade Head Trail 09

Panorama from Cascade Head | Oregon | 1/500 @ f/11 and ISO 200 – 29mm focal length

My free weekend in the Pacific Northwest was kissed by an unusually warm spring sun, that brought record temperatures for this time of the year (we hit 70F today). Around 10am I left Portland for the 75 mile drive to the Oregon Coast near Lincoln City, arriving just after noon. The trail I selected for my Sunday hike was the Cascade Head trail. The trailhead is at a parking just three miles north from the intersection of OR18 with US 101, at the mouth of the Salmon River. For the photographs and some descriptions continue after the jump… (more…)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Out of This World

Dusk at Storms River Mouth in Tsitsikamma National Park

Out of This World” is the theme of this week’s WPC.  A place where I always feel detached from the hectic and challenges of this world is at the seashore, taking in the ever present magic light and the roaring surf of the big ocean.

Shooting becomes something truly meditative, I set shutter speed to about 6 seconds and click, moving the camera ever so slight, creative experiments with the impossible mission to transfer the sights and sounds of an ocean evening onto the sensor of my camera…..

Dusk at Storms River Mouth in Tsitsikamma National Park

Dusk at Storms River Mouth in Tsitsikamma National Park

Dusk at Storms River Mouth in Tsitsikamma National Park

I wish all of you a great and relaxed weekend!

Marcus

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations on a Theme

Quiver Tree Variety

Quiver Tree Variety | Namibia | 2017

Variations on a Theme” is the challenge from Ben Huberman of “The Daily Post”. I wish I had more variations in my life this past week, but it was a totally crazy work week with no room for anything else but the job that pays the bills. I didn’t even have a chance to touch my blog in the past 6 days. Once I got home, it was just collapse on the couch. No desire to go out and be creative. But I guess I’m not the only one feeling overwhelmed at times.

So here we are, approaching the weekend, and the Weekly Photo Challenge is my chance to finally get a post out. While browsing through my photo book from last summer’s Namibia vacation the other night, this panoramic view from the Quiver Tree Forest near Ketmanshoop caught my eye, the wide variety of silhouettes of these ancient desert trees against the still gold sky after sunset would make a good entry for this week’s challenge.

Taken with the Olympus PEN-F with the mZuiko 12-40mm F/2.8 Pro Zoom, 1/100 sec @ f/3,5, ISO 200 and 19mm focal length.

I wish everyone a peaceful and relaxing weekend!

Marcus

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Travel Day (8)

Clockmanagement

Clockmanagement | Schiphol | 2018

My first business travel of 2018 took me once more from Nuremberg via Amsterdam and Seattle to Portland, Oregon, where I arrived in surprisingly warm and dry weather after 19 hours total travel time at 2pm in the afternoon. For the airport I went straight to the office for an afternoon of meetings, before I collapsed in my hotel bed at 8pm in the evening and logged 8 hours of sleep before waking up at 4am this morning, a surprisingly long night considering the jet lag effects. To sum it up, back to business as usual for the job that pays the bills.

While connecting through Amsterdam Schiphol I saw a lady taking shots of the famous video screen clock in the international terminal area between the D and E gates. As during previous visits to AMS I myself have taken quite a few shots of the man inside the clock drawing, erasing and re-drawing the hands, I took my Ricoh Gr II I brought along as camera on this trip and shot this monochrome photo of a fascinated fellow traveler.

After the jump you find my original color shot of the video clock, a few photos of passengers on the walkway between B and C gates before I finish off with the high contrast monochrome landscape photo of a “broken mountain” that I took with my iPhone from the window of my Alaska Airlines Dash-8 on yesterday’s last leg from Seattle to Portland…. (more…)

Fogged In

Zen Castle

Zen Castle | Lichtenegg | 2017

As I find no time to hit the streets these days, another monochromatic landscape shot I took during the holidays when we visited the ruins of Lichtenegg Castle, not far from Nuremberg. The storied castle was built in early medieval times and already destroyed during the 15th century.

Just like today, it was a very foggy day and we didn’t see anything of the normally fabulous 360 degree panoramic view one enjoys from the ruins that sit on a spectacular hilltop.

But what I did enjoy was the sight of the silhouettes of the pine trees on and in front of the crumbled fortifications. Another example that there is no bad weather for photography. You just need to work with what Mother Nature gives you. You just need to be flexible enough. If the spectacular view you intended  to capture isn’t there, look for details, interesting textures or silhouettes, as I did in this case. There is always the opportunity for an interesting photo, trust me. You just need to learn to see.

I took the photo in the high contrast monochrome mode of the Olympus PEN-F and my 12mm prime lens. Image specs new 1/400 sec @ f/5 and ISO 2oo.

The photo is of a certain calmness and serenity, something I already miss again, as the job that pays the bills has taken over my life again. Next Monday is my first travel day of the year, as I head once more across the pond to Portland.

Have a great Wednesday!

Marcus

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Summer over the Imperial Castle