Life Near the Rax is pretty great

We’re doing Workaway in the Austrian Alps at the moment, and the place that we’re staying is really great. I’ll post some photos that I’ve taken in addition to these, but I wanted to post the ones from our amazing Dolomites self tour as well.

I’ve been really lazy about Lightroom in the meantime, so here are a couple of the shots from a (very) long day of sunrise, sunset, and astro photography. All of these images as panoramas, shot with my tripod and stitched together to make the final image.

IMG_7282-PanoIMG_7318-Pano-EditIMG_7574-Pano-2-EditIMG_7396-Pano-Edit-4IMG_7574-Pano-EditIMG_7666-Pano-Edit-Edit

And here are the promised shots of our current life here in the Raxalpes.

If anyone is interested, I’d love to write about Workaway and how it works as a travel amplifier.

The many painted colours of the Tre Cime di Lavaredo

We attempted to pull a real travel photographer’s day on Tuesday. Alarm at 3:30AM. To the first site at 5:00AM. Photos for a few hours. Then hotel to nap. Up at 3:00PM. To Lunch. Then to the Tre Cime di Lavaredo for the evening.

The following are shots that I took from about 18:00 to 00:00, with minimal editing. They are more or less from the same angle, and as the night went on things got really beautiful.

IMG_7408IMG_7423IMG_7431IMG_7456IMG_7458IMG_7475IMG_7484IMG_7559IMG_7573IMG_7582IMG_7598IMG_7604IMG_7613IMG_7627IMG_7635

IMG_7641

The Galactic Core starts rising 

IMG_7662

It was an incredible experience. I will post more photos soon, when I haven’t got a bus hangover from flying across the Alps in a Flixbus overnight.

All Panoramas, All The Time

IMG_4864-Pano

“But you can just use your phone to make those, right?”

Technically right. But it wouldn’t be possible to take the one above, which is a long exposure, panoramic selfie. Who would hold the camera?

But the panoramas I’m making these days are a tad more involved than ones from the phone. These are all panoramas made with a DSLR camera and a neutral density filter, using the degrees settings on my brand-new tripod. I love panoramas and I only just learned how to do this in February (in beautiful Rocky Mountain National Park).

The main differences between a phone panorama and one done on a DSLR are the precision with which I can focus, and the level of resolution that is possible. In each of these photos, there is more than one frame blended into each other to form a single image. This is the best way that I can capture what the high Alps here in Italy really look like, given that they are so impressive and GIANT in person.

IMG_4934-PanoIMG_4851-Pano-EditIMG_4855-PanoIMG_4963-PanoIMG_4987-Pano

I don’t have Photoshop at the minute, so it’s difficult to pull off the kinds of Focus Stacking that many landscape photographers use these days. The idea is to have focus all the way through the image, which is something that can only be done with several images blended together. By blending several frames with different focus points together into a panoramic shot, I can achieve a similar look without the use of Photoshop. This is the best example of the technique.

IMG_4840-Pano

I love learning new things, and this summer will most likely be full of photographic opportunities. There’s a gallery to view them in more detail below. Keep coming back to see more!

Shots Around Hanoi: Fifth (Tet Special)

We’re in Colorado for actual Tet, but there were plenty of festive things to see out in the flower fields near Tay Ho last weekend. I finally got around to editing the photos, so here you are!

IMG_1074

IMG_1123IMG_1125IMG_1132IMG_1141IMG_1089IMG_1075IMG_1037IMG_1034

All of those are my favourites, so that you can see them in more detail. The flowers are mostly peach blossoms, which bloom this time of year. People in Hanoi buy branches or whole trees with the blossoms to put in their houses. They hang ornaments on them just like a Christmas tree. I had no idea that was a thing until this month. It’s a great festival out there in the fields, and the farmers who live in the shacks on the land get a big bonus in income just before the Lunar New Year.

I also tried out a little Lightroom black and white on these ones.

IMG_1054IMG_1071

Happy Tet, Everyone!

Shots Around Hanoi: Old Quarter in December

Despite being one of my favourite neighbourhoods in Hanoi, the Old Quarter is a hard place to take photographs. It has infinite interesting things to see and constant, buzzing traffic of both daily Hanoian life and tourism bursting at the seams even in winter (People who thought Hanoi is tropical in the winter, do you even Internet?).

But I’m an introvert, and the main thing that the Old Quarter has is tons and tons of people. This is a difficult thing.

Lacking a telephoto lens, I set my camera to ‘Sports’ mode and shot from the hip. That way, I wouldn’t have to be awkward and take photos of people with the viewfinder. I held down the button and hoped.

This is what came out.

Pretty good, if you ask me!

This is part of a Shots Around Hanoi series. I also photographed Shanghai in 2015-2016 in a series called Shots Around Shanghai. You can see all my photography in the menu above, or right here.