I was pretty relaxed upon arrival to Cinque Terre. I was sat on the couch on my balcony enjoying a complimentary bottle of champagne. Then, I was sent scrambling for my camera when I noticed the sun shining out from behind this cloud.
It’s not easy to take photos from the top of the Shard as it is all enclosed in glass. As a result, I had to try to find a way to position my camera to avoid all the reflections of the people moving around behind me. We had arrived at just the right time though, as golden light bathed London below us.
With no music to cut the silence, and my travel buddy passed out next to me, I navigated our little white jeep up and down meandering switchback after meandering switchback. Having only made it half way from our hostel to Latrabjarg, we tucked tail and made our way home for fear of running out of gas. Our first night in Iceland taught us a lesson. If the GPS says it will take 4 hours, it will take ten. The roads are rough, but the real reason is that the beautiful scenery begs you to stop after every bend.
I’d struggled to find a groove on this drive, as I so often do when I dust off the photography skills in a new destination. Then, the sun began to reverse its brief dip just below the horizon and something magical happened. A soft light bathed the landscape, bursting through gaps in the cloud to the north. The birds began to awaken and fill the air with song. Approaching a bend, ascending out of another fjord I suddenly found inspiration. The serenity of the moment seemed to be summed up in the single view captured below. Huge cliffs sat peacefully in the distance as a road twisted and turned its way along the edge of the fjords. There wasn’t another car or person in sight. I’d just driven that stretch, and there was a long way to go until I’d reach a bed, but I had to stop, step out in the cold, and mount my camera atop my tripod and try to do the view before me justice.
My plan to get all of my posts ready before taking off for Iceland didn’t pan out. So, I’m sat writing this from the Western Fjords. My first day in Iceland has been quite eventful. If you’ve seen my Facebook page you know what my logo looks like. The bird is an arctic tern. About an hour into our drive today I hopped out of the car to photograph a waterfall. I heard a screech, looked up, and realised I was under attack from my logo. They’re not big birds, but they’re bloody terrifying.
Today’s Photo: Queen’s View Panorama
This is shot from Lighthouse hill, just below Gibb’s Hill Lighthouse. I decided to try to capture the whole of the view that caused the Queen to pause and take it in. To do that I had to shoot 4 different frames, each with three exposures, and stitch them together.
I’m off now to spend the night driving through the Western Fjords. The light is already looking amazing on the mountains.
FriFotos on Twitter’s theme this week is “Fit for a Queen”, in honor of the Queen’s diamond jubilee. As a result, I decided to go out and find something I could contribute. It’s certainly undeniable that this view is fit for a Queen. The plaque in the foreground reads the following: “On this spot her majesty Queen Elizabeth II paused for a while to admire the view, Wednesday the 24th of November, 1953.”
It’s located just below Gibbs Hill Lighthouse, the subject of one of my earlier posts: Guiding Light
This is the photo that I had planned on uploading for my first entry. I decided this would be a good start as I consider it my first successful HDR photo.
I had woken up late and had to rush out of the house as I’d seen a purple glow developing. Had planned on getting to one of the Tucker’s Town beaches when i came across this scene.
I used 7 exposures from -3 to +3. The boats had swung on their moorings while taking the photos so when combining in Photomatix I used the selective de-ghosting tool. This took a few attempts but I eventually settled on one big circle encompassing most of the water. Still some motion blur on some of the boats but not sure I could have avoided this. After HDR processing I worked with layers to bring up details in the foreground and particularly focused on getting some green into the trees in the background. Finally, run through Topaz Adjust to bump up the level of detail before using Noiseware to smooth it out.