Warm Sunrise

As I was about to upload another photo to my smugmug portfolio, it dawned on me that I’ve been posting photos with quite a bit of blue recently. So let’s warm it up a little with a sunrise from Namibia.

I took this photo with a D600, I’ve recently sold it, it’s an excellent camera but owning a D4 and a D800 means that it got very little love. It was mainly used by my partner when we travelled to Africa together, as that won’t be on the cards for a while it made sense to sell it.

People like to hold on to cameras and talk about them being investments. Cameras aren’t investments, in this day and age they are replaced by newer tech every 2 or 3 years. In some instances that newer tech is worth the money. That’s becoming less common, there haven’t been many game changing cameras of late. Especially when it comes to DSLR.

You’re better off spending your money on good lenses and accessories Like a good tripod, I have a really right stuff tripod and I know it will outlast any camera I own. It has already taken a beating in the last four or five years I’ve owned it and it still functions flawlessly. The only maintenance I ever do on it is to rinse it with a hose or in a sink.

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Moving Skies

I dig photographs with the streaky sky effect in it. It’s a pretty easy effect to do, it works best on a windy day when the clouds are hoofing by. You still want to have as slow a shutter speed as possible. Get yourself a remote that can hold your shutter open for longer than the standard 30 seconds available on most cameras. You only need one of the cheap ones with the button on it, not the fancy intervalomter kind. Put your camera on a sturdy platform, preferably a tripod. Set your camera to manual and bulb, leave your ISO as low as you can and press and hold the remote trigger. Remember to block out the viewfinder if using a DSLR, I usually hold my hand there or stand really close to the camera, I have got some strange thoughts when I do that. Once you’ve taken your first shot you’ll start to get an idea how long you’re going to have to hold the shutter open for. If it’s too dark you need to leave it open longer, too bright shorter, if your remote release doesn’t have a timer, use your watch or iphone, it’s not an exact science, just a bit of trial and error to get the desired effect.

This photo was 64 seconds at F9.

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Venice Grand Canal

Venice is full of tourists most of the time, if you want photos without all the people head out after dark or very early in the morning. It was raining a bit the evening I took this photo, a little bit of rain has never concerned me much. Cameras are pretty resilient to a bit of water, I’m not saying they can be drowned in water and will survive but a bit of rain won’t hurt them one bit.

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Miserable in the rain

Does this happen to you? Sometimes something that I see or do reminds me of a photo I have taken. I took this photo back in 2008, so it’s pretty dated in digital terms. I’m not sure what reminded me of this lioness looking very unhappy at the beginning of the rainy season. But something did so I thought I would share this photo.

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Hendricks Gin

In the right setting and lighting, even rather simple subjects can be made to look interesting.

I must admit I don’t really drink very much, but on the odd occasion it helps, I guess killing a few brain cells is useful once in a while. Especially when they seem to be fighting up there with one another. Reading that sentence makes me wonder whether or not I am in any form of control at the moment…

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Native Kiwi Bush

Louise says this looks really kitsch, I like it. Look up the word on Wikipedia, it’s a rather odd description but I like this description the best: Kitsch is used to describe cheap, popular, and marketable pictures and sketches.

I’ve wandered through plenty of forests and kiwi bush seems so tropical compared to the forests of Europe, maybe it’s because european forests have been “farmed” for so long and the naturalness of them has gone. Or perhaps it’s just that I spend too much time in Switzerland and that’s what they do here.

 

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Monument atop One Tree Hill

 

I find it quite difficult when processing HDR photos to get blue sky right, especially when photographing just after sunset. The colour of the sky is so majestic yet Photomatix has a tendency to make it quite gray.

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Mangled Tree

I have to admit I like seeing what nature does to things. Be it man made structures or objects of the natural kind. This sandy area of the marienfluss was covered in these short trees that had very few leaves and were all bent in the same direction, obviously years of the wind blowing has made them grow this way.

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Sueda Elephant

I’ve spent hours at this waterhole, I’m pretty sure it’s called Sueda. Wildlife photography isn’t always about big cameras and lenses sometimes you can get a great photo without using a telephoto lens. This was taken with a small Fuji X-E1.

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Namibian Campsite

One of the greatest things about driving yourself around when you travel is the freedom you have of staying where you want. In Namibia there are some awesome campsites like this one. The structure with the round metal disks is the toilet, it’s open on one side so you get a great view while sitting there. The weird thing with the chimney is for hot water. The best part about loads of the campsites in Namibia is you don’t share your facilities with any other campers. There’s enough space for each campsite to be hundreds of meters apart.

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