Just a little over a week ago I had one of the most memorable photographic weekends ever when I attended the workshop “Conquer Your Fears in Street Photography” with Street Photo Legend Eric Kim in Berlin. For my in depth experiences from the workshop plus a bunch of both “behind the scenes” images and my workshop “results” continue after the jump…
After pouring rain for most of the weekend, the Oregonian liquid sunshine turned into some real one on Sunday, so I took my Olympus PEN-F and headed into downtown for some late afternoon street shooting (and a visit to the photography book section of Powell’s City of Books).
Last week Adobe released a new version of its mobile Lightroom apps as well as a rebranded update of the Lightroom desktop version. While using the rainy part of the weekend to try to make some sense out of it, I now needed some fresh street shots on my SD card for some real life testing ( I have never used previous versions of Lightroom Mobile before). To read about my experiences and see some more photographs from the Streets of Portland continue after the jump… (more…)
I’m safely back home from my trip to Portland. Crossing the Atlantic Ocean on a very northerly route, that took my Delta Airlines A330 over the center part of Greenland, I was on the lookout for Northern Lights, as I had a window seat on the left side of the plane. A few weeks ago I saw a Blog Post from someone who actually photographed the Aurea Borealis from a plane. As it is a dream of mine to see the magnetic lights in the sky, I stayed up (watching “The Accountant” with Ben Affleck – a super movie) and waited for the green flares to appear, but I didn’t saw any. As it turned out, I might have missed them by just one night, as from this fantastic blog here I learned the Aurea Borealis was active the night before.
But I got lucky on two very important aspects on my return flight. The first you see in the photo to this post, I was blessed with an incredibly colorful dawn high in the sky above France. The colors were insane. I took the photo with the Olympus PEN-F and the mZuiko 14-150mm F/4.0-5.6 Travel Zoom pressed to the window. Image specs were 1/10 sec @ f/4.9 and ISO 1600. The photo is a jpg out of camera.
Almost more important was the fact I saved 4 hours of lay-over at Paris Charles De Gaulle. The Delta flight got in 30 minutes early, which gave me an outside chance of catching the 8:35 morning flight to Nuremberg instead of the 13:00 connection I was booked on (and believe me, waiting 4 hours in the remote Terminal 2G of CDG is no fun). I gave up hope when we taxied in for 15 minutes and then on top parked at an apron position where buses took us to the terminal 2E once everybody was out of the plane. But then security control went so smooth and there was an immediate shuttle bus connection to Terminal 2G where I arrived just when Boarding started for the Air France / HOP flight to Nuremberg. I went directly to the Transfer Counter (where there was also no other passenger) and asked if they can put me on the early flight. The lady there told me it would not be possible as I was on a Delta ticket, and rebooking that would take too long as boarding was already in progress.
Refusing to give up I went directly to the boarding gate to try my luck once more. And there you go, the great guy at the gate typed something in his computer, made a phone call and then printed my new boarding pass. The flight was not even 1/3 full. Instead of coming home Sunday afternoon I was home in time for breakfast with the family, what a treat!
So the lesson learnt here is: Never give up, always try! Works wonder in travels! And: try to fly with carry on baggage only. With a checked bag this would not have been possible. I can live up to 6 days out of my carry on, I’ve optimized that over the years, so I never check bags unless I absolutely have to.
Have a great Sunday!
On this blog I also want to talk about the gear I use. Typically a ring light is not something needed for Street Photography. But besides my focus areas of Street / Urban / Travel I also do some portrait shooting for family and friends.
For her upcoming high school graduation ceremony my daughter was asking for some portraits all dressed up. For that occasion I decided to look for a ring flash to evenly light the face of the model and get some nice round catch lights in the eyes.
After looking around on the web I decided on a real budget solution that still should provide great results. Instead of investing in a real ring flash (and here you talk really big bucks) I found an attachable round light softbox with a donut shaped form that can be attached to the on camera speed light and lens.
I found two providers, the original Round Flash (close to 100 € / $) or a low-cost version from Neewer for one-third of the price. Read my review after the jump. (more…)