My wife is here in Nebraska with me now and I have been busy finding a house to purchase while finishing up my job training and thus kicking photography to the curb for the time being. For some reason I didn’t want my archives on this site to skip the month of February, so I will quick upload a shot I worked on a while back that I thought was only so so before I jump into bed for my midnight shift. This shot is looking off into the Cappadocia horizon with little rock churches strewn about with Mt. Erciyes looming in the background. I believe this stitch is from about three or four shots as well.
We took a trip to a swamp in Southern Georgia with a crazy sounding name, Okefenokee. The swamp is pretty massive and full of spiders, alligators, snakes, and godless killing machines, aka bears. Consequently, I am not about to go camping here anytime soon! I took this 4 vertical shot panorama from the top of a lookout tower that was about 50 feet high. AutoPano Pro is pretty amazing software for stitching. I had a tripod set up for these shots, but the wind was blowing and 3 people on top of a lookout had the top swaying quite a bit, yet it still seems to have stitched even the foliage without a hitch.
Not Dodge as in the auto maker, but dodge as in a little dodging here and a little burning there really helped make this picture have an almost three dimensional feel to it. The four exposures ran through Photomatix HDR process helps with bringing out a unique look to the textures as well. I must say I love the new version. It is stupid simple to get rid of ghosted objects and even has a bunch of presets to get you to a starting point for getting your shot to look how you would like it. Anyways, I found this truck a while ago and wanted to come back with a camera during a sunset or sunrise. Got lucky on a trip to Andersonville and hit this as the sun was setting on our way back.
I finally bought an Arca-Swiss plate for my 70-200 tripod foot so I can start getting some landscape and architectural shots with this most excellent lens. I have really liked the results, although, if it gets very windy, I find that my carbon fiber tripod is a little bit too much on the travel size to be able to handle long exposure shots with the 70-200 mounted up there without getting a little blur. It was a bit windy this evening, so I had to hang my entire bag on the tripod to ensure all exposures would come out sharp.
This friendly local fly fisher saw me shooting pictures of the sunset on my tripod and tried to communicate with me, asking if it was okay to move to the area my camera was pointed. Above and beyond respectful and I would never expect anyone to stay out of the way of a photographer in a public area like this, but I was actually quite glad he was going to position himself close to the setting sun rays reflecting off of the water. I hurriedly moved my tripod into place for a better composition with my freezing cold wife in tow and snapped these off.
School has started again for me and it is rudely encroaching on my free time to work on my photos.. Damned dirty school! What did you ever teach me about photography? Nothing!
Well this was the evening that I took about 60% of my shots for the entire trip to Thailand. The majority of shots taken here were mostly unremarkable highlighted by a huge series of vertical panorama multiple exposure shots I took of the entire 360 degrees of Railay Beach– that were unfortunately kind of overexposed since I was too good for my histogram or meter during the series. We’ll see if I can save it in the future.
Okay, this feels good. I haven’t touched any of my photos for a very long time. I completely forgot how fun it was to go through and process each shot and go back into time when each shot was taken. I need to do at least one or two each day, there isn’t really any excuse. Tonight I kind of went all out compared to what I usually process, although, I felt kind of rusty in achieving what I wanted and just did everything really quick.
Last weekend I joined a group of local photo enthusiasts on a Cappadocia tour trip specifically geared towards photography. I kind of had my doubts since I have taken a tour once before and thought it was absolute crap, plus I have been to Cappadocia many times and kind of prefer to do things on my own. This tour surprised me though. We saw everything. It was relentlessly good!
Cappadocia kind of reminds me of back home around the the Southern Utah area. Southern Utah has some of the most unique scenery that you can possibly fathom, so that is a good thing. The biggest difference is that there is deep history associated with this area. The convoluted sandstone scenery is full of ancient dwellings carved out by hand and can be found everywhere in this region. I have quite a few shots of these dwellings, but why not just show you a modern, hand-carved representation taken by my new friend The Bokeh Maker?
Did I mention that my friend The Bokeh Maker is sharp as a sword even when wide open?
There are 2 fortresses that you can climb in the area. They are massive sandstone formations jutting up out of the ground like mother natures skyscraper. Thousands of years ago people decided to carve out room and pathways within the skyscraper up to the very top. Here are 2 HDRs taken from the largest one during an amazing sunset.
Here are some cool cats I found at the top of another “fortress”. They thought it would be helpful to hold my tripod legs to steady it while I was taking shots, thus transferring every movement of their body into my shots. It was fun explaining to them how this plan was not going to work… I did let each one take turns with my camera. They thought that was çok mükemmel!
If you are into pottery, or patterns of pottery to feed your camera.. I recommend a visit to Cappadocia.
And lastly, I promised a shot of me for my sweet, sweet wife. Turkey sucks honey! I cannot stand it here.. Don’t be jealous that you cannot be here yet. It was hot in Cappadocia and I got some dust on my sensor!!!
I haven’t been posting much and I really had to fight with myself to find the motivation to even process this photo real quick. I have roughly 5,000 photos in Lightroom from this year alone that I need to either delete or process and upload and I think this daunting task wears me out just thinking about it! Of course, many shots are multiple exposures, but that means a lot more work to propperly HDR, DRI, or both, then merge with the best exposure. Here is another shot during our trip to the Japanese Alps taken with the last remaining light of the day, looking towards Tsubakuro-Dake. It was extremely cold by this time and I am highly impressed with the people who decided to sleep in those tents that night. I have never had a warm night camping on snow, and I have never even tried to do it on the edge of a windy ridge.
I think I burned sunspots into my eye as the sun pierced my ocular cavity as I peered into the viewfinder trying to quickly compose this shot before the sun disappeared behind the horizon. Without corrective lenses or contacts, I am legally blind. So either I shouldn’t worry about sunspots or maybe I should be more careful..
I came across Flickr member Erroba’s photostream and he happened to have a nice little tutorial on how to stitch together a vertorama. So here is my 1st attempt… Surprisingly easy to do in Photoshop, but I need to find a better foreground next time.
We headed back up to Lake Motosu for a long weekend of camping for a third time and found a nice campsite kind of separated from the main crowd of campsites.
We had thought it was free but the first morning we were visited by employees collecting money at the rate of ¥2,500 a night. Kind of disappointed us as we thought we found the rarest of rare in Japan, something free!
We brought our bikes up this time and rode around the lake once each day. Towards the end of the last ride I was stung by an unidentified insect on the back of my right leg. This little sting became infected the next day and turned into cellulitis covering the entire back side of my hamstring area! Itching and burning ALL the time, the itching is still bothering me as I write this 5 days later. My doctors were worried it would creep into main ducts in the body as it moved onto my ass at one point. Luckily strong antibiotics and laying around with my leg elevated all week has almost completely killed it. The ride was fun though!