Several (or more) reasons why my photos of the hike aren’t great

Here we go. It’s excuse time. Or, if you prefer, “valid reason time”.

The photos I took on the hike aren’t as good as I would like them to be. There are several reasons for this.

Me: I’m not a great ‘togger.
The new camera: Yes, it’s fancier than the old one, but I’m still getting used to it.
The light: Blindingly bright, start to finish.
The timing: This wasn’t a photography session, it was a hike. People weren’t there for me to take photos, they were there to walk up the mountain. There was (understandably) no time to stop and compose.
The brief: That said, I did have to try and get some usable photos of the pack walking up the mountain.
The brief (pt 2): I also needed to get some point-and-shoot shots to show Mrs 6000 where we were and where we went.

Those will do for the moment, right?

All said and done, there are a few shots I like (and a few more that I might add later), and that’s without including the ones documenting the climb for the Cub pack.

I really enjoyed the hike, but there will be better days to go out and take photos. And one those days, the photos will naturally also be better.

Now on Flickr…

…(finally) some photos from the last week or so.

They’re here.

And when they were lined up, I couldn’t help but noticed the sharp juxtaposition between the photos taken in Cape Agulhas last week, and those taken on Table Mountain just a couple of days later (not least the ‘grass-in-the-bottom-left-hand-corner’ pics, top left and fourth middle):

Check out the washed-out, near-monochrome top four, compared with the bright, heavily contrasted, colourful selection below them. But that wasn’t merely my photographer’s eye: it’s a genuine representation of what was there.

Cape Agulhas was sunny, full of vivid blues, greens and whites, busy skies and reflective seas. Table Mountain was the complete opposite: greyscale, dull, grim and sullen. ‘Togging the Victorian infrastructure of the dams on the mountain top was easy in those conditions: the dour, powerful, solidity fitted perfectly with the elemental, moody, unforgiving weather.

I enjoyed the fresh air and the walking on each of the days we were out and about, but it’s interesting to note that I probably wouldn’t have taken any photographs at all had the weather conditions been reversed for the two locations. It just wouldn’t have made sense.

Good job I was there on the right days, then.

As promised yesterday…

As promised yesterday (to the chagrin of certain readers), we headed out to Brandfontein for a walk along the beach and a wander into the dunes. Previously, we have had the beach to ourselves, but today was a different story, with several (or more) fishermen plying their hobby from the sand.

Still, there was plenty of space to go around, and we enjoyed the near perfect conditions: glorious sunshine, a gentle breeze, exciting skies. Cameras – some of them attached to propellers – were fully utilised and just as soon as we are back in Cape Town (where the wifi is unlimited), you’ll be able to see a selection of our work.

But then, it would be a shame not to give you some idea of just how lovely today’s mini road trip was, so here’s a little taster:

And to those who think I’ve joined the RBOSS (Ramsey Beach Over Saturation Society) with this, please be advised that the slider in question was showing a NEGATIVE number when I was done.
Sometimes, South Africa is really just this colourful.

There are plenty more where this came from (my camera), so hold fast and I’ll get them onto Flickr just as soon as I can.

Flashback footprint

I’m┬árunning a bit behind today, so I think we’re going to settle on a quota photo to bring in the new week. Racing through my extensive back catalogue, I’d chosen this one from a couple of years ago. But looking at it now, I thought that it could do with some editing, so I edited it and came up with this:

It’s still the bottom half of an elephant, and the inside of its back legs are still covered in elephant urine, but with a bit of Lightroom tweaking, you can see so much more detail of that bottom half and that urine.

What’s not to like?

More tomorrow.

da Vinci

The Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing exhibition has arrived in Sheffield. When a similar exhibition came to Cape Town about 5 years ago, it cost a lot money to go and see it, but this one is free.

I don’t need to go though, because I’ve already got my own unique picture of Leo’s work, taken at the Louvre last summer:

(I know someone who will like this picture…)

Aside from the Samsung S, a Huawei wotsit – and golly gosh, is that smart new iPhone? – you can see the Mona Lisa’s mysteriously smirking visage. Yes, just above the all-American college sports student’s perfectly groomed head, but below his outstretched hand.

Aside from my beautiful composition, I’m most impressed with the guy on the right. How the actual hell has he managed to get such a clean shot of the chick with the smile? Or has he just googled “Mona Lisa on a light background” and then held his phone aloft? Clever.

Whichever it is, I’m definitely going to do that next time I’m there – just so that someone else might ask the same question 8 months after their visit.