I’m back, finally, after several long delays. For those who are just joining us: we’ve had a fire in our building, which resulted in damages on some pipes, which in turn meant that we couldn’t move back in. However, everything is more or less back to normal now and this weekend we could finally sleep in our own bed again. The flat still has a faint smell of smoke though.
One good thing that came about from all this was that I took a week off from work so we could go and stay at my mom’s new place. Let me tell you, if I could live in a place like that, I don’t think you would ever hear me complain about not being able to find good backgrounds for my portraits again. If you can’t find good locations in that place you’re either blind or you haven’t left the house. No portraits today though; first I would like to show you some of my first attempts at landscape photography.
The main reason I’ve never really cared about landscape photography before is simply because it requires landscapes, which usually requires travel. However, when you find yourself in a place like this, it would just be plain stupid not to take advantage of it.
Landscape photography isn’t only about finding a good looking landscape, it’s just as much about finding the right light. So, I set out early, around 5 am, while the sun was still thinking about calling in sick for the day. And then I went home again. No really, that’s pretty much what happened on my first attempt at the local lake. There was no sun, no fog, no interest. Sure, I snapped a few shots but nothing worth sharing. I can definitely see why the good landscape photographers keep coming back to the same place over and over. Being in the right place isn’t enough, you need to be there at the right time as well.
The second attempt went a lot better and that’s where I got all the shots in this post. The one with the boats up there was one of the first shots of that morning, in fact I think it was the second click of the shutter I did. I set up my tripod (first time using it, got it just before the fire) by the edge of the water and did a long exposure. In fact, almost all of these shots are long exposures (long being several seconds), and that was deliberate in order to smooth out the water. Not that the water needed much smoothing, there wasn’t much wind. The boats weren’t my final location though, so after getting my shot there I hiked around the lake to a place where I would get a better view of the sunrise.
No sunrise actually happened though, not as such. The light you see in these shots lasted about 10 minutes, from the first pink in the sky until it was completely gone. I shot as much as possible during those minutes but I would have missed it completely if I hadn’t already been set up and waiting. The rest of the morning I was just shooting a foggy lake but, as you can see from the shot above, that isn’t half bad either.
I will definitely be returning to this lake next time we’re visiting, maybe at the same place, looking for different light, or shooting from a different angle of view altogether. It’s a shame that mornings have to happen so bloody early but it’s worth it when you get results like this. Though it can of course be a disappointment if you come back after several hours with nothing to show for it.
I have enough from our week at this place to fill up a few more posts, so stay tuned and, hopefully, look forward to that. There are both more landscapes and some portraits. All in all I got more from one week than I usually get in a couple of months, good months at that. I’m also going to post a new landscape gallery under the portfolio page shortly, so keep an eye on that as well.
Oh, one more thing. The photo at the top of this post got explored on flickr and quickly became my most viewed photo ever, by far. At the time of writing it has just over 8300 views, which is completely insane for someone who considers 200 views for a photo to be, on the whole, quite a lot. The second black and white photo also made it all the way to page 54 in popular photos on 500px. I just wish my portraits could get that kind of attention as well.
It feels good to be back.