11-22mm Lens, Canon 50D, Photo Challenges, Photo Editing, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Serene

A recent trip to Rome gave me the opportunity to visit Montecassino Abbey.

ISO 250 22mm f/9.0 1/800

That’s it up on the hill. The Abbey was founded by St. Benedict and is beautiful with stunning views.  This image was taken at the nearby Polish War Cemetery. The calm, serene image that I have above makes the destruction of WWII and the fighting that took place here almost unimaginable. It was so quiet while I was here, peaceful.

I used a wide angle 11-22mm lens to capture this scene. I like that lens for landscape shots like this one, it helps bring a sense of expansiveness to the image. It was very bright that day, so I took a few exposures.  In Photoshop, I merged two of them into a single HDR image.  I find that HDR is sometimes a good way to create an image that has a good final exposure, meaning that I haven’t lost to much detail in either the dark or light spots in the image.  Other than that, I let the image stand on it’s own.  It was a bit hazy that day, and I haven’t attempted to take that out of the photo.

For me, this was a peaceful, quiet moment. You will have to tell me if that is the kind of feeling it evokes for you? Feel free to comment below.

While we are on the topic of serenity, I’ll tell you my life at the moment is anything but.  It’s a good thing though, just somewhat full to overflowing.  I have the opportunity to do several unique and exciting things over the next few weeks, so I have decided to take a break from blogging. I will be back mid to late January, so I’d like to take this moment to wish all of you a serene and peaceful holiday season and all my best to you for the coming year. Thank you for reading.

Cheers!

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70-200mm IS lens, Canon 50D, Nature, Photo Challenges, Photography

Weekly Photo Challenge: Serenity

As I was thinking about how to respond to this week’s photo challenge, serenity, it occurred to me that I would say serenity is an idea that shows up a lot in my photography.  For this week, I chose this image:

ISO 100 185mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 100 185mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

The image itself was taken this past fall.  I stopped, looked up, and saw this lovely pattern of light that I thought would turn out well in a photograph.  This final edited version is actually a fusion of two identical images shot using different exposures and then edited in Photomatix Pro.   Here are the two originals:

ISO 100 185mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 100 185mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 100 185mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

ISO 100 185mm 0ev f/5.6 1/100

I felt that creating an HDR image would bring out the jewel tones in the leaves and the bokeh effect in the background of the image.  When I took the original photos, it was a bright day so I had lowered my ISO to 100.  It was also a bit breezy, and in this case I wanted the leaves to be still, so that is the reason for the fast shutter speed.  I settled on an f-stop of 5.6 after a couple of other tries, because I felt like that was the right balance of bokeh in the background and clarity in the leaves.

As for serenity, it’s been a bit elusive in my life lately.  I’ve missed the last few photo challenges.  It’s nice to be back, and I’m looking forward to getting caught up on my comments and visits to other blogs.  As for serenity in a photo, this particular image works for me but what do you think? your comments are welcome below.

Cheers!

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