I was out at sunset to shoot reflection and autumn colours at a lake in the forest nearby of the city I live in. When I was shooting landscapes the ducks came really close to the shore and I used the chance to take some photos of them real close with wide angle lens as well as taking a little movie of them.
I got some nice landscape shots that day as well, so all in all it was a good experience.
Yesterday I was in Hvaler in South Norway. Hvaler is a group of islands that are placed in the Oslo-fjord towards the open sea to Denmark. So it offers surroundings that are quite unique, at least to where I usually am. Whenever I am at places like that I wish I could quit my day-job and move into a cabin and spend the days creating art in the vastness of the nature.
Although it is only 2 hours with the car each direction I am here way to seldom, something I most definitive have to change. It is also a fantastic place to fish, but that is a different story.
I brought my main camera the 1D Mark IV, the EF 16-35mm F4L IS. I ended up using the Lee Filter Little Stopper and a 0.6 Grad ND Filter. I of course used my Benro tripod to get good stability on exposures that last several seconds, and I used the remote. One reason to use the Little Stopper over the Big Stopper is that on my camera the light measurer still works with the Little Stopper. I have also gotten myself the “Lee Stopper” app for my phone that helps me exposure the light. However I have experienced that many of the photos come out to dark when I use that app.
I shot a few locations and I shot some of the photos in a HDR style. Or i used different exposures of the same subject and then used Lightroom’s HDR function to knit them together in a good exposure photo.
Gazing out of the vast horizon line the viewer is drawn into the simplicity yet complex nature of how the rocks beneath the waters edge are captivated as Still-life.
This questions the viewer to consider what is more important to take into perspective, the expansiveness of the ocean or the details of the rocks below. Thus introspecting upon the state of nature we are constantly faced with as human beings we can only take so much in within an instance with the human eye. Reaffirming that photography can do for humanity what nature cannot. Meaning that photos can be revisited and details once missed through living the memory can be experienced.
One big advantage with doing something regularly is that you in time get better because you know the techniques, because you are better prepared and because you know the surrounding landscape better. I have heard this expressed as that “skilled people have more luck” once.
This evening I was again out, it was a good day, a mix of rain and sun, which means clouds, possible good lights, possible more. This evening it turned out to be a light rain close to where the sun went down.
I wanted to capture cloud movements, colours, reflections, shadows, calmness. The quiet most never experience. I read an article written by a landscape photographer out of NYC, where he said that the beaches usually where empty of people in the early morning and evenings. It hits me where I live that it is like that, most people miss the most spectacular time by the sea.
I mounted my camera on the tripod, added the Lee Filter Little Stopper, and a 0.6 gradient ND filter (as the sky is more light then the ground/sea. Since I knew it was raining I brought an umbrella. Not for me, but to hold over the camera to avoid getting good shots ruined of the raindrops on the lens. I have also found out the Little Stopper is very nice because it enables me still to focus trough it, something which is impossible with Big Stopper.
I usually try to place the tripod out into the water to be able to have the photo start of right away with interesting foreground. Well the shot to the right tells I do not always do that.
Most days are exactly what you make them. There is nothing really remarkable happening. It is only you who have the opportunity to make them differentiate from other days. It is only you who can see the beauty in the day when most just see same old.
It was a grey day. It was flat light, it was no particular waves, it was no particular wind, the clouds where high.
My thought was to use the motion on the waves hitting the beach. It didn’t become spectacular, it became better than okay.
Last evening I was down at the beach at a place I like to go to. A peninsula called Bygdøy. On the south end you have some distanse to the horizon and can often view the sun going down. This day was rather dark. However as it is with clouded days there are always, or close to, cracks in the cloud layer where sun gets trough and with long exposure this spots or cracks get more visible.
All photos here are shot with Canon EOS-1D Mark IV and Canon EF 16-35mm F4L IS USM, and Lee Filters Little Stopper (6 Stop ND filter) and Lee Filters 0.9 ND grad filter. The Grad filter is adjusted different from photo to photo. The 6 Stop ND filter is used to give me long exposures where I am then able to blur water and clouds and let nature paint patterns and structure based on the movements present.
Often when I shoot the landscapes at sunset or right after as I like to do I think they get a bit to dark blue, so I often add a layer that is a bit coloured to adjust the effect to how I do enjoy it more.
First I was shooting exposures and made some nice ones.
I decided as the sky was interesting and there wasn’t to much movement in it that it could be interesting to attempt a panorama. So I shut 4 frames at 34/35s exposure where I moved the camera sidewise with the tripod head so that all other settings where the same. As 35s requires bulb mode it requires some awareness. Then I used the create panorama feature in Adobe Lightroom and the four exposures where aligned next to each other. I then cut the photo so that all edges are straight.
Well I have inspired myself. I liked the video of simplicity I made last time. So I have made more, and they are much like the earlier once rather simple. This is on of the tide rising, and trough the film it rises just about an inch.
This weekend I was out in the forest by a lake called Nelaugsvannet. Here we had the experience of being totally alone in the forest. At breakfast a moose passed by the window. It was good to spend the weekend in the cabin.
My idea was to get some different landscapes, as I of lately mostly have been shooting around the fjord in the blue hour for my artistic project, as mentioned in an earlier post.
Equipment I brought with me:
Canon EOS 1D Mark IV
Canon EF 24-70mm F2.8L USM
Canon EF 70-200mm F4L USM
Lee Filters; Big Stopper, Small Stopper, Gradient ND filters and Sunlight filters
If you are a frequent reader you see I still bring the 70-200mm with me. I do however still find it to be unpractical focal length, and I have after this weekend decided to put it out for sale, and then use the money to partly pay for something like 16-35mm F2.8L or 16-35mm F4L IS. I do not really know if I do need the 2.8 aperture as most of my photos are taken with an aperture of 11-16. But that is a thought for later. The 70-200mm is no bad lens, but the focal length is not something I use much. For landscape it is often a bit to long and for nature, birds, animals it is to short. There I have the 300mm F2.8L IS with both 1,4x and 2x teleconverters.
Well as we came to the cabin on Saturday it was almost dark. It gets dark really early now. Shot a photo on the walk towards the cabin.
I did some attempts on the moon during the night. It was really beautiful sight. With a golden circle around on the clouds. It must however have been rather windy up in the height, as the clouds moved “really fast”.
The next day it was sun, clear sky and the night temperature had been around 6 to 8 minus degrees, which had frozen the shore areas of the lake with a thin layer. At the current it didn’t hold a person, but in a few days it may.
From the early morning I got this shot as the sun came over the hills in the horizon and really took the landscape out of the frost.
I did also go for creating different looks, catching the mood of the moment, the totally stillness, that most humans never or at least very seldom experience.
And some more creative edit, or not really, but more B&W tones.
I also ended up with one landscape shot with the 70-200mm lens, this however I could have achieved with the 24-70mm as well.
It was a nice weekend out in the forest. Something to be done more often. A fantastic feeling to be out there totally alone, with nature all around.