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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 127: Precious Moments

This week’s challenge is easy for me. Amy is asking for “precious moments”. Everyone has so valuable memories. Memories as precious as gold, silver, or diamonds like i.e. your wedding, the birth of your first child, getting a certain job, getting a promotion, you name it.

But, I’m telling you a different story now. You know, in 2014 I was in Iceland for the first time. And that country captured me. Right after my return, I started collecting hints and started planning my next visit. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find someone willing to accomplish me. Either the plan was too exhausting or the costs too high. You know, Iceland is quite an expensive country. By the end of last year, out of the blue, a mail arrived in my mailbox: a friend was looking for company for his own trip. As he regularly organizes such trips to different countries he knows a lot of people. His initial plan and my plans were mostly congruent and he was willing to add my additional destination to the plan. When the Covid19 pandemic started in China, I didn’t assume it would reach Europe. But, it did! When it came over to Europe End of February, there was still hope to be already over. We were about to start on June 13th. But, the pandemic lasted longer and longer. At some point in May, Iceland was virus-free again. But not the plane and no ferry was operating. Even the airlines didn’t cancel the flights. We were kind of locked. Finally, we the cancellation and were able to book seats on the first flight from Frankfurt to Reykjavik. What a precious moment, when I left the airport after the COVID19 test. Everything went well from that point on.

The other touching moment was near the end of our trip. During my first trip, I was guided to a beautiful waterfall located on private ground, as usual. No path was leading to the waterfall, no parking ground available and I even didn’t get a name. Unfortunately, the sky was dull and I didn’t get a nice image. Fortunately, I was able to find the waterfall during the last years in the maps. Since 2014 I’m following Icelanding news (in English) and had to read, the landowners had closed every possible way to reach the waterfall because of the misbehavior of many tourists: leaving their waste, trample down the sensitive plants, and even shit (yes!) behind the bushes! So, I assumed, I’d never see it again. But, while preparing the tour for this year, I noticed, the landowner created a small parking ground and prepared a path river-up to the waterfall. A one hour hike over quite challenging ground leads up to the waterfall. Unfortunately, we were unable to find the parking ground. Instead, we parked our car near a path leading river-down to the waterfall and started our hike. After 20 minutes or so, we reached the river, about 20 meters broad. We saw the river flew too strong to cross it. The ford seemed to be passable for horses, but for humans. There was too much water running down. We walked a bit up and down the river to see if there’s another option. but, there was no other option for us. At least we didn’t see one. So, we started walking back. Halfway back, a group of Icelanders came to meet us. Surprisingly, they asked us, how far it’d be to the river. We got to know, they were also on a hike to that waterfall and invited us to join. They said, one of them would know, how to cross the river even as a human. So, we joined the group. But, when arriving at the river again, they saw, the river had too much water to allow us, to cross it. But, they had a plan B. A short distance down the river was a bridge. So we were able to cross the river save and finally reach the waterfall.

Standing in the same place again as 6 years ago, I was touched to tears.

In my opinion, this is the most beautiful waterfall of Iceland: mostly because of the color of the water: turquois!

So, finally I can say, the more complicate it is to reach a certain goal or the more efford you have to invest to reach it, the more preciuos the goal becames!

Take care!

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 126: Letter “A”

Hands up for the weekend! Half of the weekend is over. So it’s time for the Lens-Artists photo challenge and Patti challenges us with the Letter “A”.

adolescent

 

astonishing

 

art

 

artist

 

above

 

art

 

alone

 

action

 

awakening

 

Advent

 

aurora

 

arriving

 

apple

 

astro

 

This was a very hard one, at least for me as a non-native speaker. Many things popped up in my mind, but none of them was an English word beginning with the letter “A”.

Take care!

 

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 125: “You pick it”

For this week’s challenge, Tina really challenged at least me. In her text she explained, we should use this challenge to show something of us to share with the community that is describing a part of us not that well-known to the audience. This is harder than expected.

Finally, I’ve chosen this image taken more than 10 years ago at a funfair in one of our neighboring towns.

I still love this image. I love the movement surrounding my main subject. I also love changing conditions while photographing: light, movement, ambient. I guess that’s why I love photographing outdoors, wildlife, or moving water.

I filed this image to a competition and won the 3rd prize: being part of an exhibition and money to spend on a certain big and important funfair in our region.

This image is taken with my first DSLR, a very slow working camera, and shot in JPG. I wasn’t happy with that camera and its limitations. I owned it on that day for only about a month. I kept it for less than half a year. It had an APS-C sensor and came with 2 kit lenses: 18-55 and 55-200. The whole kit was lightweight and slow (AF as well as the power-on process). Even the saving process lasted quite long. My old film SLR was using 35mm file. So, you would call it full-frame nowadays. For my film SLR, I owned 3 lenses for that camera: 28-70, 70-210, and a 60mm macro lens. When converting the focal lenses of the DSLR, you would result in 24-82 and 82-300. I’m using an SLR camera since 1984. Some of my first own earned money went into it.

Take care!

 

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 124: “Now and then”

Our host this week for the Lens-Artists Photo-Challenge is Amy As this year is far away from normal, our activities changed a lot.

These images are taken on the platform of one of the major railway stations in Germany. There are a couple of stations, where the long-distance tracks are crossing and therefore many people are changing trains here. Usually, some hundred passengers are changing here from each train and every couple of minutes another long distance train arrives.

Both of the images are taken while waiting for my connection train to come in a couple of minutes. But, the platform is nearly empty. I guess, about 20 -30 people were waiting with me. Only 2 stops away from Frankfort Airport! The major airport in Germany.

 

Addendum from the comments to make sure you don’t miss this part of the story, as I know, not everyone scrolls through all the comments.

The story behind this little yellow guy is so:
When I came down with my bag to travel to Iceland this summer, my grandson (3 3/4 years old at that time) asked, where do you go to? My daughter (she’s the mother of the little boy) answered from the kitchen: He’s traveling to Iceland. And the young guy said: I’m going with you.

Now, all of us were laughing. After explaining that he can’t come with me, I came up with the idea to take one little guy (I guessed, he fits perfectly to the Icelandic weather) from his toy box and take it with me as a substitute for my grandson. I proposed to him, to send each evening a couple of photos via his mother’s mobile. And I did.

When I came back, I found it a shame to hide them on my hard drive or even delete them. So, I created an ebook with all these images instead. I even included a few short videos. You can see it here: https://www.krajnik.de/book/bibi/?book=iceland (turn on the speakers of your computer or mobile when starting the videos).

Take care!

 

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 123: “found in the neighbourhood”

It’s time for The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge again. Our host this week is Ann-Christine and she asks for things we can found in our neighbourhood. On one hand, this is an easy topic. But, on the other hand, I’d like to have known this theme in advance to prepare some images for you. So, I have to pick them from my archive.

You know, we’re in a lockdown light here. Therefore, our photographers roundtable last Saturday also switched to online and I could now simply show the images from that post again.

All these images are taken in a area max 5 km away from my home. Some of them are even taken in our front- or backyard. Despite the lockdown rules, it would ne possible to visit each of these places now.

Take care!

 

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 122: “The Sun will come out Tomorrow”

For Lens-Artists Photo challenge our guest host Ana of Anvica’s Gallery is asking for images showing positivity after the dark. Here we have a saying “the sun will shine again after the rain.” Many people are complaining about rainy days. But, they forget without rain nothing would grow. When nothing is growing, we wouldn’t exist. So, the rain is as necessary as the sun. The cold is as important as warmth and death has the same importance as birth.

Take care!

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 121: “focus on the subject”

This week we have another educational topic as the theme for The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: “Focus on the subject” and Patti is our host.

“Focus on the subject ” – What does this mean. You know, sometimes you’re photographing a scene or a subject and in the end, the image does not represent what you’ve seen or felt. How can you change this? By focusing on the subject. It seems, at this point the cat bites in her own tail. So, let me explain this a bit. Focusing means you need to set the main subject in the most prominent place of the image and arrange all the other parts in a way to support the main subject. Hugh, very theoretical, right. Never mind, I’m explaining it now.

A couple of weeks ago, we had the topic “cropping” for LAPC. Cropping is a way of supporting the main subject. Here I’m not necessarily talking about cropping in post-production. Instead, use your zoom lens or decrease the distance between you and your subject. Especially, this is very important when composing your image. Just like Robert Capa said, “If your pictures aren’t good enough, you weren’t close enough”. And he was photographing soldiers during wars while fighting.

Giving the main subject room to breathe is also a technic of focussing on the subject as well as changing your point of view. Leading lines are also an important technique for supporting your main subject.

 

In case, I would be asked to organize a photo challenge, I’d already know the subject. It would help training the eye and focus on the point. In the past, I wrote down some rules to have in mind when trying to participate in a photo contest. Most of these rules are also to consider when you’re trying to focus on your subject.

Take care!

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 120: “What a treat”

Many, many people complaining these days about how bad they are treated by the government to obey the simplest rules for finally defeating SARS2-CoV, the source for the COVID19 pandemic. Despite the majority works hard to defeat the virus, many people, unfortunately, do everything they can to ignore the rules just for their own enjoyment.

In this situation, I received the notification from Tina about the topic for this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: What a treat!

Her own post is about a safari in Africa and how valuable a training session with a photographer from the US via Zoom was for her and her local photo club. I can understand that very well. When you’re feeling alone in this situation, give me a note, I guess we can organize an online meeting to talk a bit.

When I saw the notification from Tina and thought about it for some time, my brain changed a few letters and made “treat” to “treasure”. I know, both words are different in their meaning. However, they have a few connections besides the fact of sharing 4 letters. Both can mean something valuable, sweet, and personal among others. Family, health, a job, a house, someone to talk with can also be such a treat.

I’m organizing my photos of each year in a folder that contains subfolders for each event, trip, or photo session. When we were in lockdown, a thought came up to my mind, it could be difficult to assemble a calendar for 2021 with my own photos taken in 2020, as usual. We’re reaching the end of the year (yes, I know, 2 more months ’til 2021), so it was time to assemble the calendar for 2021. Therefore I had to check my 2020 folder and I was kind of surprised about what I found. So, each of the trips I did with my camera was such a treat. And the biggest treasure was the trip to Iceland in June. I’m so thankful, happy, and fortunate that the trip was possible in general, the COVID19 test at immigration was negative, and with great weather (don’t get this one wrong) to see everything we had planned.

Last week, my calendar for 2021 arrived. Here you can see all the images I included in the calendar. Each of them is a gem, a treat, and bears a valuable memory.

As you can see, 8 of the 12 images are from Iceland. I was also considering, to create an Iceland-only calendar for 2021, but when I was checking the 2020 folder on my disk, I got aware of a few other folders also containing treats. So, I made my preselection, which summed up to 50 images from the whole year. My youngest son and his girlfriend helped me reducing it to 12. For such a calendar I prefer landscape images over wildlife. Therefore the top wildlife images were printed out to hang them on my wall.

The next project is creating the yearbook. About 100 pages are waiting to be filled. That’s a job I usually do in December. The yearbook is a photobook containing the best images of the year. The most valuable memories. The treats of the year.

There’s a kid’s tale about a group of mice. All of them were working hard during summer and fall to collect food for the winter. But, one of them was not working that hard as the others did. Instead, he was looking around for the sun, the green grass, the colorful leaves in fall, and listened to the wind and the birds. The other mice were complaining to get the one mouse to help them. I do, the one mouse said. I’m collecting memories. And when the dark and cold winter days came, he was able to cheer the other up by telling them about the warmer days. He told them, how the wind sounded and smelled. Which colors the leaves have had and how the sun rays felt on their backs. That way all of them survived the hard winter.

That’s what I do, I’m collecting memories.

Although not planned that way, this post is kind of a review of 2020. I hope you don’t mind.

Stay safe and healthy!

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

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 119: “My Hideaway”

It’s Saturday evening. So, it’s time for The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge. This week Leya is our host and she asks for presenting our hideaways.

For me, this is a very hard theme, as I don’t have something comparable to the definition of a hideaway. When I was a child, I used to grab a book and went outside of our home to a tree, half a kilometer away. This tree was kind of lonely and also not very tall. It wasn’t standing alone, but it was surrounded by bushes and a gap between two bushes gave enough room to pass through it and reach the tree. Noone was aware when I was sitting on the low-growing branch. Noone was even knowing where I was. But, I was sitting there, only 3 meters or so away from the street, hidden behind the bushes and able to read ’till the evening. At that time I was reading a lot and very fast. A book couldn’t be too thick.

When I grew older and had my first car, I loved cruising around. I even had my own mix-tapes, especially for these cruising tours.

When we moved into our current house, we set up one room as a home office. I hate closed doors. At once I’m feeling captured when I can see the door is shut. But, when I’m closing a door voluntarily behind me, everyone knows, keep me alone. (ok, there are also other reasons: i.e. keep the warmth inside – therefore we have some doors with glass). This office at home is such a kind of hideaway for me. this room is also my workplace now, that I’m working from home because of the Covid19 pandemic.

A long story and no images. Right. Unfortunately, I don’t have any images from that scene of my childhood. I even don’t have a digital image of my first car and I don’t want to bore you with an image showing my desk with my computer on top and my office chair. Instead, I want to broaden the perspective a little bit.

Why do you / one needs a hideaway? I need it sometimes to leave a certain scene I can’t bear anymore or for relaxing purposes. I also use a hide sometimes for wildlife photography. The other things being able to calm me down is coming to the sea for listening to the waves rushing on the beach or standing in nature at sunrise on a slightly foggy morning. Those mornings are so serene and pure. A place to recuperate. Unfortunately, it’s sooooo far away from my home.

Take care!

abstract, art, autumn, culture, fall, flowers, food, photo-of-the-day, photography, technical, world

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 118: “communication”

LAPC is hosted this week by a guest host again: Biasini. She asks for our understanding of “communication”.

The first thing coming to my mind is the famous statement by the was an Austrian-American family therapist, psychologist, communication theorist, and philosopher Paul Watzlawick. He said, “you can not not communicate”. It’s not a typo doubling the word “not”.  It’s simple. Whenever people come together they communicate. They communicate by their clothing, posture, mimic, and gesture – the body language.

Besides direct (oral or body language) communication between humans, we also have signs, i.e. traffic signs, lighthouses, writings, and so on.

Take care!

abstract, art, autumn, culture, fall, flowers, food, photo-of-the-day, photography, technical, world

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 117: “A Photo Walk”

LAPC is hosted this week by Amy and she asks for images of a photowalk.

At least, once a month I go on a photowalk. That our monthly photographer’s roundtable. It’s always fun: walk, talk, take photos, and discuss the results afterward online.

These images are taking during my last photowalk two weeks ago. I had to take care of my grand-son that day and took him to the hills above the town. Our goal was a visit to the deer enclosure, a round trip of about 3 km or so. From the parking ground, our path first led us through the fields where we saw corn, apples, horses, and cows. Next, we entered the forest to reach the enclosure, soon. We also passed an area, where the lumbermen cut many trees and prepared them for transport. Many things for such a young guy to discover. Finally, we reached the enclosure. Unfortunately, only one deer was visible. The enclosure is big enough to offer a lot of hides to the animals. So, we only saw one. Fortunately, the little guy wasn’t disappointed and walked back with me willingly. Btw. yesterday, he turned 4!

Take care!

abstract, art, culture, flowers, food, photo-of-the-day, photography, technical, world

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 116: “symmetry”

This week, Patti is the host for Lens-Artists Photo Challenge and she asks for symmetric images.

You can find symmetry in nature, but more often you can find it in architecture or man-made gardens (i.e. around renaissance chateaus). In nature, the petals of blossoms are very often symmetric and the leaves of many plants. Also, legs, arms, eyes, ears, wings, and many inner organs of animals and humans.

 

inside a Venetian castle
on top of a mine’s winding tower
The public library in Tromsœ, Norway
a great tit with her mirror image
a modern bus stop at night
the Menai suspension bridge connecting Anglesey to the mainland in Wales, UK
Kochelsee, Allgäu, Germany

 

tram station in Oberhausen, Germany
A view inside the outside walls of Harpa in Reykjavik, Iceland
Inside the garden of Claude Monet in Giverny, France

 

The working platform around a chimney in a steel plant
the colonnade of an old castle
The lighthouse in Pilsum, Germany
water lily blossom

Take care!

abstract, art, culture, flowers, food, photo-of-the-day, photography, technical, world

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 115: “Inspiration”

It’s Tina‘s turn, this week. She picked “Inspiration” as the subject for this week’s challenge. Challenge accepted 🙂

I’m always inspired by nature. Mother nature (or the God behind) found so many different ways to solve problems of life. Where i.e. one species of insect-eating bird would be enough we find thousands. Where one kind of plant would be enough to keep the soil in place, we find thousands. Gazillions of different kinds of living creatures inhabit this wonderful planet: mammals, birds, saurians, amphibians, fishes, trees, bushes, plants, and so on. And all these different kinds of landscapes. Our wonderful planet is so rich. Or, like Sam Cook once sang: Its a wonderful world.

Now, I could simply add nearly all of my images here in a gallery. But, I only pick some to demonstrate the beauty of this planet.

Take care!