abstract, landscape, photo-of-the-day, photography, travel, world

Monochrome Monday 8-43

sculptured by the wind

 

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It’s sometimes hard to find images fitting to a certain challenge. For these tasks, I’m using the help of Excire Foto. I told the software where my image library is located and it starts analyzing the images. It recognizes the main colors in the images as well as the contents (what is in the images) and tags them automatically. Later, I can use the user interface to search for images with certain tags. Currently, you can save a few bucks when ordering Excire Foto, because it’s on sale.

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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!

 

nature, photo-of-the-day, summer, travel, world

Throwback Thursday: workshop results

Two weeks ago I was holding a workshop again. Not a big one. Because of the pandemic regulations, only a very, very small group was with me.

We were reaching our destination before sunrise at about 6 a.m. (oohhh, that’s before breakfast 😳). Amazing how many people were already there or were arriving shortly after us. About 30-40 photographers, mostly equipped with a tripod and a bunch of filters (noooo, no Instagram-filters 😇, glass filters) and about 20 joggers. It wasn’t my first visit here at that early time and in the past, I never met more than two or three people (mostly walkers and not photographers). When I was leaving I met some people walking their dogs or so. So, I was quite surprised how crowded the location was.

But, I won’t complain. As expected, we were gifted by a lot of morning fog, a nice sunrise but unfortunately no clouds.

About 2 hours later, all the beauty was gone. But, our memory cards were filled instead to keep the beauty.

Take care!

 

nature, photo-of-the-day, summer, travel, world

Throwback Thursday: It’s harvest time

Saturday before last, we got a call by a good friend telling us, the grapes in their garden were ripe and have to be harvested before they were eaten completely by the birds. So, on Sunday we headed north-west to visit them with a bunch of buckets in the rear trunk. Just like last year.

In the evening we came back with 4 * 10 liter + 1 * 15-liter buckets full of ripe, blue grapes. That made a total of about 26 kg. During the next 3 days, the juice was extracted from the grapes. A total of about 15 liters of juice came out of the fruits. The raw juice was further processed to some glasses of jam (~20), a few bottles of very tasty juice (8), some liqueur, and a Schiacciata all’uva, an Italian grape bread, were the result.

 

Take care!

 

animals, bird, nature, photo-of-the-day, summer, travel, wildlife, world

Throwback Thursday: arctic terns

You know, in June I was in Iceland and came back with a bunch of photos. So, I’m selecting and editing many images at the moment. Yesterday, I stumbled over the above image of an arctic tern at the parking ground of Dyrhólaey near Vík í Mýrdal in southern Iceland. I have tons of images of these elegant birds. But, they are also very brave and quick-tempered. Their nests are simply on the ground, hidden between grass and they breed in big colonies. To defend their nests and their breed they start-up very easily to chase away the intruder.

At first, they fly to the intruder and stand above him in the sky crying and trying to expel him that way. If this behaviour does not help they start to attack the head of the intruder. While these attacks in the beginning are only mock attacks, they come nearer and nearer with each attack. In the end they will hit the head with their beaks.

I already knew this from my first trip in 2014 and how to behave correctly. But, when arriving in a not closed parking ground and being greeted by angry birds, you can’t evade. But, moving away calm but swiftly, they let you go unharmed because that was their goal. It seems to me from my , the alert distance is about 50 meters from the nest.

While on the roads, every now and then I spotted this traffic sign beside the road: “Attention, angry bird are going to attack you. Be prepared.” And they do! Definitely, they do. They even attack passing cars. In 2014 a couple of bird hit the car roof with the beaks.

 

As I said, the arctic terns are building their nest on the ground. So, it’s not easy to recognize a nesting ground. But, when your distance is too short, they will notify you. I even spotted a group of young adults (I guess, they were Icelanders), getting attacked while passing a breeding ground. But, instead of simply moving away one of them started to fight back. He flew his pullover to drive out the birds, but with no effect. They even got angrier and followed them further attacking the head of the young man with the pullover. The arctic terns are able to descide between people. Although, the group wasn’t far away from me, I was save. No bird came up to me, despite they had to pass me.

 

Take care!

 

animals, mammal, nature, photo-of-the-day, summer, wildlife

Throwback Thursday: river Rhein

In August 2018 I was in Switzerland for a couple of days. It was the first heat-year. Temperature raised up to 39,8°C. for months there was no rain. You know, the source of the European stream, river Rhein, is located in Switzerland. Here, we have a view of the young steam. It’s nearly completely dried-up. Only a runlet remained.

Take care!

 

astro, landscape, nature, night, photo-of-the-day, photography, star, summer, travel, world

Throwback Thursday: a rare visitor

Currently, we have a rare visitor from outer space next to us: comet Neowise

Here, where I live the conditions are quite bad for astrophotography. In the past, I already told you a couple of times, light pollution is a serious problem all over Europe and especially here in my region because of the big cities Cologne, Leverkusen, Wuppertal, Dortmund, Bochum, Essen and the rest of the Metropolregion Ruhr Area emits so much light even to the sky that you can see hardly any stars at night. When looking up to the stars, you could count them on 3 or four hands.

The second problem is the time of the year. In July sunset is very late and sunrise very early. and in the time between the sky is still a bit enlighted from the sun, even it is already below the horizon: the twilight zone. The above image is taken at 23:45! The sunset was at 21:42  and the sunrise at 5:30.

The third problem is the direction: the comet is located in the north-western direction. The western part of the sky is the part, where the sun sets and where the bright parts remain the longest. (in addition to the huge lights from the cities in that direction, as long as they are less than 70km away)

An we have a fourth problem: during summer the moisture in the air is much higher than in winter. So, thin cloud layers in the upper sky filter some lights. Winter nights are much better for astrophotography.

During the first two weeks when Neowise was already visible from the earth we were left out because of bad weather. But, last Sunday the weather was great at daytime and that was quite proposing for a try and I did, even the could forecast for the night wasn’t good. Nevertheless, I tried. Although I read, the comet should be visible with the bare eye, I was unable to see him. The first photo instead made him visible! Hooray! A second try during the next night, unfortunately, didn’t bring better results despite the cloud forecast was better. Reality proofed the forecast wrong. So, I’m still hoping for a third chance. But the weather forecast proposes lots of rain and clouds for the next weeks. I guess I won’t see him again.

Take care!

 

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

Throwback Thursday: an alignment among giants

Earlier this week the two biggest planets of our solar system were next to each other: Saturn (the left bright spot in the sky) and Jupiter (the brightest spot in the sky).

They were in opposition to the sun (Jupiter on July 13th and Saturn on July 20th), meaning, they were well illuminated by the sun and positioned in the darkest part of the sky (look in eastern direction).

Both of them are quite close to earth at the moment because of the track they follow around the sun.

Take care!

 

animals, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography, travel, world

Throwback Thursday: summer moved on

 

According to the calendar, it’s still summer. Summer means hot days, warm nights, sitting late in the garden and so on. But, this summer is different. It’s similar to the last years (expect 2018). Since early July (when the summer holidays for the schools started here in my state) the temperatures only reach 20 somethings in maximum, the days are mostly overcast and have gray skies. So, no open-air bathing, barbeque or bike rides. In the mornings we start at around 10°C. That’s way too cold for the season. This July and August felt more like an October. On the other hand, it did not rain. Ok, some drizzling every now and then. But, that wasn’t enough to refill the reservoirs and the groundwater.

Farmers have big problems due to the renewed dryness. First, the reservoirs were not filled up during the winter from the huge loss last summer. And second, the heat-period in May and June this year sucked a lot of additional water. Forests are about to die because the native trees are not used to such conditions (heat and lack of water). Other tree species must be used to fill the gaps, species i.e. native from Italy, south of France or Spain.

By the end of last week, we finally got some rain. It was very welcomed, but summed up it wasn’t enough.

Take care!