architecture, cityscape, culture, history, photo-of-the-day, photography, street, travel, world

Monochrome Monday 7-39

 

Inside the castle of the former king of Saxonia. To the right, you can see the colonies of the former royal stud. Now, people using the area to cut short from the river Elbe or the new town on the other side of the river to come to the old town.

Take care!

 

art, culture, photo-of-the-day, photography

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 133: “My Photography Journey”

This week, it’s fun to participate in The Lens-Artists Photo challenge. Amy is our host is week.

MY photographic journey started early. Very early. I guess I was in the second year of secondary school (6th year of schooling. So, I might have been 11). The funfair came to our town, as usual, each year in June. My grandfather, my father, and I went to the funfair (I can’t remember if my brother was also with us. He’s 5 years younger than me). In one of the raffle ticket booths, they had a camera as a prize. My grandfather was often very lucky with buying fortunes. So, I got my first camera. My father bought me a 6×6 roll film. I guess, there was room for 12 images. When the film came back from the lab, we noticed, the body wasn’t lightproof. Sometime later, I got a Kodak 126. This camera is still anywhere.

When I finished school, I went to Bavaria for a few weeks to visit my uncle and his family. A friend of mine lent me his Rollei 35. When I earned my own money a few months later, I researched for buying my first SLR. Finally, I got a Minolta X-500 with a manual 35-70mm lens. It already had a lightmeter build in, but no AF. It was already invented but with very poor performance. For the next years, I changed lenses as well as camera bodies. A good friend of my father was a professional photographer with his own studio and lab. So, I got an introduction on how to work in the lab one evening. Buying a used enlarger, the necessary tools, and chemicals, and my own lab was ready to run. In the meantime, I also got an 80-200 tele-zoom and a 60mm macro. The introduction to laboratory work was the final step to prepare me for bringing final drawings of i.e. logos from paper to serigraphy for a small advertising company.

In 1999 I got lent a digital point-and-click camera. Very expensive, bad results, and very high consumption of battery power. 5 AA batteries lasted for only 3-4 images. So, I went with a cable drum and the power adapter attached through the garden for taking photographs. About 2 years later, I bought a cheap digital point-and-click, which was replaced by a better one another 3 years later when I got it in a sale for a reduced price. And in 2008 I finally went digital with my SLR.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t happy with that camera: APS-C + 18-55 and 55-200. Way too slow and I didn’t get used to the focal lengths. Changing the camera body, replacing the wide-angel zoom to 18-105 after only a few months were the right steps ahead.

In fall 2012 I went full-frame. Finally not only the bigger sensor but also faster lenses.  Especially the wild-angel lenses are very slow for APS-C sensor cameras. I still have an APS-C camera, but only for my wildlife photography. Over the decades, I guess, I did nearly all possible kinds of photography except microscope and underwater photography. Landscape, nature, bird, and travel photography started already when I had my Kodak, people photography with my first SLR. My first astrophoto was in 1985. I learned much by trying or from books and magazines. At that time, there was no Youtube or browsing the internet. Go to a library and find the necessary information.

But I have to admit, the results became faster better after switching to digital. The learning was much slower with the film. You had to write down the settings and compare it with the results when the developed film came back from the lab and there was no possibility to improve the result. Only when doing the development in your own lab, you were able to take action for improving the results.

In the gallery below, I tried to include a bit of many different kinds and tried to show images from many different years. Below each image, I show you the year when it was created. In the second last row, you can find a scan of a print taken with my old film SLR and developed in my own lab. I guess it was an Ilford HP5 film because that was my preferred film in those days for everyday monochrome images. Unfortunately, I don’t know any further details like shutter speed, lightning, f-stop, or paper.

landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography, travel, winter, world

Monochrome Monday 7-38

Under normal circumstances, I probably would have been on Helgoland last week and this post might have been entitled with “I’m back …”. Unfortunately, that’s currently not possible and, to be honest, not suitable. During the pandemic, everyone should travel as little as possible.

Instead, I picked my swap disk containing my backlog of undeveloped images. One folder on that disk contains a couple of folders with images taken during quite larger trips. One of the oldest folders on that disk contains the images taken 5 years ago on Helgoland. So, I transferred them to my computer again and started developing them. In the past, I already developed some of the images. Maybe 20 or 30.

My plan is, to have the images developed by mid-February this year!

The image above is taken on day 1 on the island when we were on our first trip to the seals. Suddenly, a snowstorm started and snow was collected by the stones laying on the beach.

Take care and stay healthy!

 

landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography, travel, winter, world

Monochrome Monday 7-36

Snow! Because of the pandemic, traveling is currently not possible. So, no skiing vacation in Austria, Switzerland or Bavaria. Instead, people try to go to the Eifel (an average mountainous region near the Belgium border) or the Sauerland (an average mountainous region in the middle of North-Rhine Westphalia with hills up to 800 meters). Both regions would be reachable among an hour’s drive and attracting skiing tourists in ‘normal’ winters. But, everything is closed there, too. Why should I go there? Personally, I don’t ever go on a winter sports trip. But, many, many people are going despite the skiing tracks, the ski lifts, the restaurants, the toilets and even the parking lots are closed. Why do they go???? The TV news reported about people from all areas up to 300 km around these areas were found in that areas despite the closing! You can say very easily where people are from because of the licence plate on their cars. The letters in front of the dash in the licence plate are referring to the town or county, where the car is registered.

The above image is taken on Saturday afternoon. It’s neither Sauerland nor Eifel. I simply drove uphill in my town for about 4 or 5 kilometres. Coming from 200m above sea level, where we have no snow anymore (despite we got some the night from Wednesday to Thursday), to 250-300m I saw this right beside the street.

Stay home and us the opportunities you have in your county instead of carrying the virus throughout the whole country, I would like to say to those driving to touristic attractive locations despite the pandemic. This year is not a normal one. Survive the pandemic and you can go skiing again without regulations.

Take care and stay healthy!

 

art, culture, photo-of-the-day, photography

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 130: “It’s a Small World”

This week’s Lens-Artists photo challenge is hosted by Anne and she takes us with her in the tiny world of macro photography. She’s right, one can discover a lot with a macro or even a micro lens. Macro photography is defined by everything up to a scale of 1:1. When using a lens able to use at scales between 1:10 and 10:1 you’re talking about micro photography.

A common macro lens is usually working up to the scale of 1:1. But, there are options available to boost the scale being this i.e. by involving extenders, bellows and reverse adapters. I own a set up extenders and a revers adapter und use them sometimes.

Below, I assembled a collection of images taken with my 105mm macro lens, a 35mm prime lens attached via retro adapter or with a 400mm telephoto lens by using extention tubes. You see, there are different ways to do macro photography. Btw. the easiest way is using a macro lens, but the most fascinating one is the retro adapter (end even the cheapest one😊). In case your interested in a howto, drop me a line and ask, what you want to know😊.

Btw. you can find many more examples here in my blog.

culture, landscape, leisure, nature, photography, seasons, travel, winter

Traveling in times of the pandemic

This is my first bi-lingual blog-post. Text in Deutsch weiter unten.

A friend of mine started a challenge to inspire the reader to travel without leaving the room and and calls it Zimmerreisen,which translates to room-travel. The German word can be a plural noun as well as a verb. I really liked the idea and I wanted to participate. As she writes her blog in German and addresses people living here I would also write this post in German. But, the majority of my followers don’t understand German, so I decided to write this post in both languages.

Puzzleblume named a few of rules for the challenge:

  1. each second Friday of a month a new turn
  2. pingback to her post
  3. 1,500 words should be enough (per language)
  4. Not only images. Tell us a story!
  5. use the tag #Zimmerreisen (and #roomtravel)
  6. use the given letters as stimuli for your imagination to find places or things starting with the given letters
  7. First we start with “A”, “B” and “C”. Use at least one of them for your post

I’ve chosen “Alpes”, “Balloon” and “Carnival” for this first roundtrip from the back of your seat to have

A few years ago, I was in Bavaria with some friends for having a hot-air balloon flight in front of the Alpes.

You know, flying balloons depends very much on the weather. While for most time of the year a balloon can fly safely only during the morning or evening hours, during winter they can also have good conditions during the day. So, we met at about 8:30 with the pilot and tried to find a good spot to start. The sky was covered with thick clouds, but the weather report (not the forecast) said, it would be possible to fly. And we did! After a couple of 10 meters, we touched the clouds and when we came out of the clouds, a sunny blue sky was above us. We went up to 1,000 meters and enjoyed the view to the Alpes.

Where’s the “C” you might ask. This happens during the core time of the carnival season while we were escaping the carnival festivities. In German, carnival translates to Karneval. The origin of this word is Latin “carne vale” and means “meat, farewell”. This festivity is the last before the start of the lenten season, which ends on Holy Saturday.

Btw. I’d encourage you, to join. I guess, it’s a lot of fun 😊

German:

Eine Co-bloggerin von mir hat eine Challenge gestartet Post zu schreiben, in denen man reisen kann, ohne das Zimmer zu verlassen und nennt das “Zimmerreisen”. Ich fand die Idee so gut, dass ich mich auch daran beteiligen möchte. Da mein Blog aber in Englisch ist und Ihre Idee in Deutsch, habe ich mich entschieden diese Post Zweisprachig zu schreiben, denn die Mehrheit meiner Leser verstehen kein Deutsch.

Sie hat ein paar Regel aufgestellt:

  1. jeden zweiten Freitag startet eine neue Runde
  2. Pingback zu ihrem Post setzten
  3. 1,500 Wörter sollten genug sein
  4. Nicht nur Bilder, sondern eine Geschichte erzählen
  5. Den Tag #Zimmerreisen benutzen (und #roomtravel für englisch-sprachige Leser)
  6. die gegebenen Buchstaben als Inspiration für den eigenen Blog-Post nutzen. Die Orte oder Gegenstände sollten mit diesem Buchstaben anfangen
  7. Wir beginnen mit “A”, “B” und “C”, und mindestens einer der Buchstaben muss verwendet werden

Ich habe mich für “Alpen”, “Ballon” und “Carnival” für diese erste Runde entschieden.

Vor ein paar Jahren war ich mit ein paar Freunden in Bayern um eine Fahrt in einem Heißluft-Ballon vor der Alpenkulisse zu unternehmen.

Wie jeder weiß, Ballon-Fahrten sind sehr Wetterabhängig. Die meiste Zeit des Jahres können sie nur in den Morgen- oder Abenstunden starten. Im Winter hingegen besteht in den Alpen auch die Möglichkeit tagsüber zu fahren. So haben wir uns morgens gegen 8:30h mit dem Ballon-Piloten getroffen und einen Start-Platz gesucht. Der Himmel war mit dicken grauen Wolken überzogen, aber der Flugwetterbericht sah für einen Start gut aus. Nach einigen Duzend Metern haben wir die Wolken erreicht und nach einigen weiteren Duzend Metern erfolgreich durchstoßen, wo wir von der Sonne und strahlend blauem Himmel erwartet wurden. Bis zu 1.000m sind wir aufgestiegen und konnten die Aussicht auf das fantastische Alpen-Panorama genießen.

Was ist mit dem “C”? Die ganze Aktion fand in der Karnevalszeit statt. Zwischen Weiberfasnacht und Tulpensonntag, während unserer järhrlichen Karnevals-Flucht (darüber habe ich schon ein paar Mal geschrieben). Karneval, oder in Englisch carnival geht zurück auf das mittel-lateinische “carne vale”, das “Fleisch, Lebewohl” bedeutet. Aschermittwoch, mit dem Karneval abschließt, ist der Beginn der Fastenzeit, die mit Karsamstag ihr Ende findet.

Btw. Eventuell möchtest Du auch teilnehmen. Tu es!

Take care!!

 

 

architecture, art, cityscape, culture, landscape, leisure, night, people, photo-of-the-day, star, street, urbex, work, world

Throwback Thursday: connecting lights

This image is taken during our photographer’s roundtable in January 2010. It’s 11 years old. But I guess, it’s a symbol for this year: a vaccine is available, distribution of the vaccine hast started and the bright area in the sky is proposing a “back to normal” to come soon. Until then, keep safe!

Take care!