Encants I – La Fira de Bellcaire

A short set of images from the Encants market at Plaça de les Glòries Catalanes, Barcelona. Somewhat ironically, the “square of the Catalan glories” was originally redeveloped as a multi-level motorway junction, as can be seen under construction on this wonderful poster for a recent exhibition. Today, the area is being extensively modernised, and the roads being replaced by parkland and new constructions such as the Diseny Hub and the new I  dels Encants. The market is in an amazing building with mirrored ceilings (there must be a joke there, but I […]

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Dandylion Seeds

Fruits of Tarassacum officinalis and the last of the natural cliches. I think that it is obligatory for everyone photoblog to upload one of these every now and then. Taken with the generally under-rated but extremely versatile Olympus 12-50mm kit lens.

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Road Trip I

Road Trip

A short set of cinematic style images taken during the driving. Very often we focus so much on the destinations that we miss much of beauty or interest along the journey. The images are all compressed telephoto shots cropped and processed to try to give a cinematic sense of space and other worldliness. The hope was to try to convey the sense of emptiness and scale that pervades much of the United States, away from the densely packed urban and coastal areas.

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The Many Faces of Death Valley

Death Valley Sand Dunes

Sand dunes, Salt flats and storms – all within a few hours of passing through Death Valley. We passed through on the way back to San Francisco, and were not quite expecting to see so much variety on the lowest (-86m ASL) and hottest place in the United States. Sunburned and rained on in the same hour. Running somewhat slowly with the post updates at the moment, due to work related travel – and the need to rebuild the computer after a dodgy installation script wiped out permissions and ownership […]

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Hiking in Zion National Park

Zion National Park

A set of photographs taken from a day’s hiking in Zion National Park, Utah. The park is centred around another wonderful water eroded red sandstone valley, cut through the same sedimentary depositions that resulted in both the Grand Canyon and Bryce Canyon. Ascending from the bottom to the top of these sites you can see more than 200 million years of fascinating geological history (pdf) – as well as the spectacular views. The photograph below shows the trails we followed. We originally intended only to walk to Hidden Canyon, but the route was much easier than expected and so we […]

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Tourists of Bryce

Bryce Canyon Tourism

Tourism in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah. We only had a short stop here – just enough to undertake the Peek-a-Boo trail from Inspiration Point. Oddly this is classified as a “strenuous” hike, although for Europeans used to hiking in the Alps this is actually quite an easy and quick walk. The paths are well made and  maintained, as an essential part of preventing erosion in the fragile park landscape. There seemed to be a trend for tourist coaches unloading passengers at Inspiration Point, who would then walk briefly down and […]

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Sea of Ice

Snow Ice and Glaciers - Aerial Photography

  A set of shots taken from flight TK79 on its northern route between Istanbul and San Francisco. These photographs were chosen to make a nice contrast with the previous post about the Grand Canyon.   These shots were taken (somewhat obviously) from the plane window while half blinded by the incredible light reflected by this white landscape. These are of northern Canada – just slightly north of the Baffin Bay – on a sunny, and probably warmish day of spring, with the snow and ice pack starting to melt. The glaciers pouring out […]

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Grand Canyon

Grand Canon - Aerial View

A short set of slightly abstract images taken from a flight over the Grand Canyon. The aim was to produce images similar to the reliefs seen in an old geography text book. Photographing through a moving airplane window was quite challenging. With a rather tight travel schedule, we chose a late-afternoon flight to try to get some shadow and contrast in the photographs, shooting with a fast shutter speed to compensate for the rather bumpy flight and using careful post processing in Lightroom to handle the atmospheric haze. Framing was challenging, to […]

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Lights and Shadows

Las Vegas Lights and Reflections,

A short collection of abstract city-scape images, making use of  reflections in glass. These were shot with the E-M5 and a 25mm (50mm equivalent) fast prime lens. Surprisingly, these are straight out-of-camera JPEG images. I try to shoot only in RAW, but after picking up the camera in a hurry it was left mis-configured. This very much limits the ability to correct white-balance and apply sensible levels of noise reduction… For counterbalance, there are also some corresponding darker images: Taken together, these pretty much summarise my feelings about Las Vegas: pretty […]

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2015 Partial Solar Eclipse seen from Barcelona

Partial eclipse of the sun, seen from Barcelona

Partial solar eclipse, seen from Barcelona. Unfortunately it is very overcast today, so not really the best conditions. I had hoped to use an exposure blend to bring out detail on the surface of the sun such as the few sunspots that are currently visible. But all you can see is just the obscuring cloud. The photograph was taken with an E-M5, 100-300mm zoom and a 10-stop ND filter that has a very strong blue colour cast.

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Ouro Preto

Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais, Brazil.

Ouro Preto is a strange place. It was once the wealthy hub of the mining areas around and gained huge wealth from the gold and other minerals. Much of this was spent constructing a town in the image of Portugal, an illusion helped by the steep valley slopes and roads. Although much of the tile-work found in Portugal is absent, the styles area clearly imported from Europe and adapted to the local resources. This architecture has resulted in Ouro Preto being designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, cementing the town’s current renaissance […]

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Red Planet: Minas Gerais

Red Planet - Open Cast Mine in Mias Gerais, Brazil

A short collection of images illustrating the open-cast mining, just north of Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais, Brazil. This is historically the primary source of wealth and power in the region, and even today the mines feel more like city states than industry – characterised by their high security and ever present patrols, all neatly badged with the company name and emblem. These images were taken just a few kilometres north of Ouro Preto. This short excerpt from Google maps’ satellite imagery (CNES/Spot) shows some of the scale of the open-cast […]

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Street Photography: Different Cameras, Different Styles

Three People Looking out From Port Vell, Barcelona

This post describes the cameras that we [or at least one of us – the other is an innocent accomplice – ed] use for Street Photography and the characteristics of each. In street photography, the camera you use is at least as important for the relationship to the subject and your ability to use it fluidly and transparently as it is to image quality. Camera choice is a very personal and subjective topic, and so this is going to be a very subjective post. Currently we use three different cameras: […]

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