Sunday, April 29, 2012

1 Hour on the streets of Hong Kong

On my last visit to Hong Kong, I gave myself the following self-assignment; go out with one lens and shoot the streets of Hong Kong for 60 minutes and see what you can come up with. 
Since this is a personal project, I tried to minimize the editing and only used Lightroom 4. 


I shot about 100 images with a 50mm lens, of which 28 made it into my "Street Photography" gallery. Here are what I personally believe are my 10 most best ones:

1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong


1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong


1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong


1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong


1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong

1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong

1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong


1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong

1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong

1 hour on the streets of Hong Kong


Lets close with a great street photography quote: 
"It is more important to click with people than to click the shutter", Alfred Eisenstaedt


BJORN
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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Pic(k) of the week 17: Camel caravan

When an outsider thinks about the Arabian peninsula, one of the first things that probably comes to mind, are camels. Over my ten years in Dubai, I've photographed quite a few dromedaries, also known as Arabian camels.

One of the things that has been on my to do list for a while, is visiting the relatively new Al Marmoom Camel race track on the outskirts of Dubai. Camel racing is a national sport and a long time tradition in the UAE. Races are held on different days from October to March and vary from 4km for the young camels to 10km for the larger ones.


Until about ten years ago, the jockeys were small boys from Pakistan and Bangladesh, which were secured to the saddles with velcro. For obvious reasons human rights stopped this practice and nowadays remote controlled robots are used instead. 


Even though the racing season came to an end, I finally managed to go to Al Marmoom and was surprised by the overall activity just before sunset. Literary hundreds of camels are held inside large camel pens next to the track and are taken for a walk during the cooler periods of the day. 


2012 Pic(k) of the week 17: Camel caravan


The image above of a 12 camel caravan, gives me a feel of bedouins tracking on their trusty animals somewhere deep in the desert. This is definitively a place I'll revisit in the future.


Image details:
Nikon D700 with Nikkor 70-200 VR2 2.8
ISO 400, 165mm, f8, 1/200s
RAW development in LR4
ColorEfex 4 for contrast adjustment
Nik SilverEfex 2 for Black and White conversion


More images of the afternoons shoot can be found in my "UAE Daily Life" gallery.


Don't just take picture, make pictures,


BJORN



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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Pic(k) of the week 16: Symphony of Lights, Hong Kong

Just got back from a three day trip to Hong Kong. Unfortunately the weather did not  fully cooperate...

A must do for every photographer visiting "The Pearl of the Orient" is the daily sound and light show, "Symphony of Lights". The show in which 44 buildings take part, runs every day at 8pm and can be best seen from the Avenue of the Stars on the Kowloon side.

2012 Pic(k) of the week 16: Symphony of Lights, Hong Kong

Even though there was a short dry spell just before the start of the spectacle, it started raining again and I ended up shooting under an umbrella in +30mph winds. Not an easy task! Overall I'm still quite happy with the images I got.

Image details:
Nikon D700 with 24-70 2.8 Nikkor lens
ISO200, 48mm, f 5.6, 0,8sec
RAW development in LR4
Nik ColorEfex Pro 4 for Contrast and detail enhancement

More of my images of this very vibrant city can be found here.

Remember; wherever you are, there you are
BJORN

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Saturday, April 14, 2012

Pic(k) of the week 15: Plane spotting paradise

Earlier this week I was in Dusseldorf, Germany; probably one of top ten places in Europe   for "plane spotting". Let's first define what this is: Wikepedia says an airplane spotter is: " A person observing and logging aircraft registration numbers". We must however go back in time to find the origin of plane spotting. During WWII the Royal Air Force used a large number of volunteers to observe incoming aircraft. Due to the lack of radar at that time, the information gathered by these volunteers was critical in planning and executing defensive counter measures. 

Today aircraft spotting is however a peaceful hobby which can be practiced in many different ways; some are only interested in military aircraft others in airliners, general aviation aircraft or even disused airplane wrecks. Among all of these, we find  again a few different categories; photographers, people who are only writing down registrations, people listening in on the air band frequencies and a combination of the above.

Even though I do not call myself a "spotter" by any stretch of the imagination, I do admit that I'm a die hard aviation enthusiast and of course a hardcore aviation photographer.

2012 Pic(k) of the week 15: Plane spotting paradise

Dusseldorf airport has a great opportunity for all of the above. They actually have two dedicated spots where one can, for a very reasonable 2 Euros, watch the daily flow of aircraft pass by. Even though the day I was there was fairly grey and rainy, there were still a fair amount of people, all the way from 2 year old kids to +80 grand-dads. 

It's however a real shame that since 9/11, the hobby has lost worldwide so many of its great spotting places. I sincerely believe that these observation places often have started the aviation bug with so many young people. 

Image details:
NIKON D700 with 70-200 VR2 2.8
ISO 200, 90mm, f11. 1/160s
RAW development in Lightroom 4
ColorEfex 4 for detail enhancement

Please also check out my airliner gallery.


Where ever you are, have a great weekend!
BJORN



Thursday, April 5, 2012

Pic(k) of the week 14: Pointing to the skies

Beside the famous 7-star Burj al Arab hotel, the worlds highest skyscraper Burj Khalifa, must be one of the most photographed subjects in Dubai. With its height of 829m (2723ft), framing this architectural wonder, is often a bit of a challenge. While a wide angle lens is a must, distortion becomes an unwanted side effect.

Earlier this month, I had a friend staying at the Palace Hotel - Old Town. This 5 star hotel is a great blend of the Middle Eastern heritage and contemporary Dubai. No surprise the hotel won several awards among others; Best Hotel of Arabia, Best Hotel design of the year.


2012 Pic(k) of the week 14: Pointing to the skies





The image above is made from the driveway to the hotel. I particularly like the reflections in the pool and the fact how the Burj (Tower) seems to be pointing to the skies!

Image details:
Nikon D700 with Nikkor 14-24 2.8 lens
ISO 200, f5, 15mm, HDR shutter-speed bracketing between 1.6sec & 25sec
RAW development in Lightroom 4
Photomatix 4 for HDR 
Photoshop CS5 for perspective correction
Nik ColorEfex 4 for detail/contrast enhancement


More Burj Khalifa images can be found here


For you Social Media fans out there... Yes, I'm now part of the latest and greatest, Pinterest!

Wherever you are, what ever you do, have a great weekend!

BJORN

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