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!

 

landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography, seasons, summer, travel, world

Monochrome Monday 7-35

I wish you a belated Happy New Year with this image taken in December 2009 a few kilometers away from my home. Since then, we didn’t have had that much snow again. Overnight about half a meter of snow felt and made us a white Christmas. But, the untouched snow in this image is in my opinion also a great symbol for a new year. Some of your plans might already throw a shadow and pop out of the plain, but most of what the future will bring is still covered by uncertainness.

So, start with me in a new year and see, what the future will bring.

Take care!

 

animals, culture, insect, photo-of-the-day, photography, wildlife, world

Monochrome Monday 7-31

Sometimes you have to think out of the box. Until recently, I won’t have gotten the idea of showing an insect in monochrome. But, I stumbled upon an image a friend of mine posted on FB: a dragonfly. I liked that image very much and tried it with one of my own images.

So, what do you think? I’m curious about getting your opinion. What do you think?

 

Take care!

 

animals, culture, mammal, photo-of-the-day, photography, world

Monochrome Monday 7-30

full-frame, 12mm, tripod, graduated ND filter

I guess, nearly everyone immediately connects this image to Iceland. It’s the iconic mountain Kirkjufell, located on a small peninsula on the north coast of the Snæfellsnes peninsula, with the Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall in front, where the river Kirkjufellsá reaches sea level after falling down 16 meters.

It was great being there at a time with nearly no other tourists. Exactly opposite to me, a hiking path follows the river and I suspect many people standing there watching this beautiful waterfall. While I was there, only 3 other guys were watching from there. So, it was easy to wait a couple of minutes.

Take care!

 

animals, culture, mammal, photo-of-the-day, photography, world

Monochrome Monday 7-28 – locked again

Too many people were ignoring the recommendations for keeping distance between people. Too many people were ignoring wearing masks, where they are supposed to do. Too many people were constantly complaining about how they feel limited instead of simply following the rules to defeat the virus tantalizing us for up to 11 months now.

Recently, I saw a series of short interviews in a  news show on TV.  Pedestrians were interviewed in pedestrian areas in a couple of cities. Passers-by were asked about their opinion regarding the upcoming second wave of Covid19. I really was shocked by the answers by many of the young adults. Nearly all of them didn’t care. They understood the general rule from the first wave (primarily elderly and people with underlying health conditions were affected and endangered) as ‘younger people are immune’. They said ‘I’m not a member of one of the high-risk groups. So, I can act as usual’. They forgot, those young and healthy people generally not die because of the infection. But, this does not necessarily mean, they were immune. There are already a lot of young and healthy passed away while others still suffer from health problems even months after the infection is gone, even professional sportspeople. Loss of the sense of taste, the sense of smell, weak endurance, and problems coordinating the parts of their bodies because the virus also attacks the brain and the nerves. How long these problems will remain is still unknown. So, no-one is safe!

Up to now, we had quite good results here in Germany in comparison with other countries. But, it seems, these guys need the images again showing piles of coffins in the streets, like they had i.e. in Italy in spring, a perverted version of “seeing is believing” (Tom Hanks in Polar Express). We’re admired for having so few infections and deaths, but they don’t see, why our results are so good.

During the last couple of weeks, the regulation became stricter each week or so while the number of freshly infected people was rising. By today, we’re in lockdown again. During the next 4 weeks no restaurant, cinema, theatre, opera house, fitness center, and so on are not allowed to do business anymore, except for the restaurants selling food to take away. The list of businesses is quite long but different from the first lockdown in spring, this time schools and kindergartens are kept open. Although this was foreseeable, too many people were still ignoring the safety rules or, even worse, fighting against them by demonstrating and preaching the virus won’t exist and everything would be simply a fake by i.e. Bill Gates. Personally, I can’t believe this happens now, in the 21st century. People should be smarter now with all the ways to get information instead of fake news. Everyone should be able to decide, which sources of information are trustworthy and which are not. Now, with the new lockdown, we will definitely see many businesses bankrupting, despite the government tried hard to avoid it. The ghost of 1929 seems to rise again.

Sorry guys. This is a blog on photography and not a platform for political statements. But, I felt, it’d be necessary and this image illustrates, how I’m feeling right now. It’s one of my rare images taken in a zoo a couple of years ago.

I’m still offering a call via Skye or Zoom, in case anyone is in a similar situation, feeling lonely and has no-one to talk to. In case you’re interested, put it in the comments. I won’t publish that comment and only contact you to negotiate a call.

Take care!

art, culture, landscape, photo-of-the-day, photography, travel, world

Monochrome Monday 7-27

Búðakirkja, located on the Snæfellsnes peninsula in West-Iceland, is a natural-born black-and-white image when having typical Iceland weather. When visiting this lonely church, a remnant of a sunken fishermen’s village, on a day when the sky is covered by thick clouds and the air seems to be soaked with fine spray reminding of light fog, you definitely feel like being teleported into an ancient black-and-white movie. It feels so strange standing in front of a well-shaped small church in the middle of nowhere. The church is painted in black and only the door and the windows are framed in white. The whole scene is kind of surreal. In the next days, I’m showing you another image where you can see the surroundings, too.

Take care!

art, culture, landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography, plants, travel, world

Monochrome Monday 7-26

This is the same waterfall like the one I showed you last week. But, this image is from outside the waterfall and from a little distance. The other difference is, this image is shot with a longer exposure time to make the rushing water more visible.

Take care!

art, culture, landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography, plants, travel, world

Monochrome Monday 7-25 – behind the curtain

full-frame, 12mm,  hand-held, 1/100s, ISO 100, f8

 

A hidden gem in Southern-Iceland visited in June 2020. I was told in advance, not many people would find their way here. But this year, I was alone with my two companions. Great, no-one disturbing the image!

Photographing waterfalls is not that easy. A lot of spray in the air can endanger your gear, so you have to save it. Also, the spray settling on the front lens of your camera resulting in ugly circles in your image which are hard to correct. Depending on the size of the drops and their location in the image the correction could even be completely impossible. So, my advice is, take care of your front-lens when working in a quite wet environment or in a place with a high level of humidity. It’s the same during rain, in tropical areas with a high level of humidity, or during winter when going inside with your cooled gear after an outdoor photo session while the temperature was below i.e. 10°C.

Usually, you can read about water photography, that you should use a long exposure time to get a silky look. My advice is, think about your goal. The silky look does not always fit. Here the short exposure time was able to freeze the structure of the water and give it a more powerful look. A longer exposure would have eliminated the structure of the falling water as well as it would have merged the spray above the ground to a structureless bright cloud. So, I have chosen differently!

Take care!