Star Trails

Starry nights over Anterselva

Starry nights A few months ago, I started experimenting with photographing the night sky. I had done a few ill-fated attempts at capturing star trails in the past. Inspired by the David Kingham’s eBook Nightscape, I managed to get some nice results while vacationing on Malta this past summer. Unfortunately, there are not that many opportunities in central Europe to get a clear night sky. Light pollution is all around us. I was therefore extremely excited to discover that our hotel on a recent XC ski trip to Anterselva in Italy was located in one of Europe’s darkest areas. Just a quick …

One easy way to improve your vacation photos

Vacation Photos Vacations are always an exciting time for photographers: lot’s of new and exciting stuff to explore and most importantly time to pursue your passion. However, many people return with disappointing results. I have certainly had my fair share of this. While there might be a bunch of pleasing compositions in the final album, many photos fail to impress. One of the main reasons for that is most likely related to light. The quality of a light plays a major role in the creation of a beautiful photograph. It’s an important element that is easy yet difficult to control. The …

Fun with speedlights

Speedlights What to do on a cold, stormy and rainy early summer evening? Play with your photo equipment! Earlier today I read an interest blog post by Joe McNally. It is called ‘More Flash Play’ and Joe explains how to simulate the light from a computer screen. All you have to do is tape a piece of paper on the screen and then bounce a flash into it. It’s as simple as that. The dreary weather provided the perfect excuse to give this a try. The setup It took about 3 minutes to put my speedlights (2 Godox V850s)  and …

Wedding Photography – Part 2

Wedding Photography – Part 2 Two weeks ago, I blogged about the fun wedding of my friends Hanna and Stefan. This is the second part of the post and it focuses on the official stuff of the wedding: church and formal portraits. As in the prior post, I will share a few ideas and lessons learned. The ceremony My friends’ wedding took place in a beautiful Bavarian church. It’s important to arrive early to catch the moments between the groom, his best man and the families. There are also those amazing details that couples spend a lot of time and …

great portraits

My favorite technique for creating great portraits

Great portraits Great portraits don’t need a complex studio setup or a lot of high-tech equipment. A few months ago, I learned an amazing technique from Roberto Valenzuela’s book Picture Perfect Practice: A Self-Training Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Taking World-Class Photographs (I wrote a short review in a prior blog post). It is a very powerful, yet easy to use technique for creating great portraits. Great light Let’s work backwards. Here is the final result. These are my good friends Hanna and Stefan. We were trying out a few interesting places for their upcoming wedding where I have the …

Custom background

Create your own background

Distracting background Selecting a good background is extremely important in photography. Nothing is worse than a great subject (let’s say your partner or kids) in front of a really busy scene. It’s like trying to listen to a beautiful song when there is a ton of annoying background noise (cars, jackhammers, sirens). Luckily, as photographers, we do have choices, i.e. we can change the background in many cases. The big freeze A few weeks ago, I stepped outside my house in the morning and found an amazingly beautiful winter scene. Dense fog combined with subzero-temperatures had turned our hometown into …

Painting with light

Flash Today was an ideal day to take out the flash. Fog combined with freezing temperatures had turned the area around Munich into an amazing winter wonderland. Trees were covered in a white layer of thick frost. Once the sun had set, I picked up my equipment and headed to a spot I had scouted a few years ago. Using the reflective frost on the trees, I wanted to light it up with my Nikon SB-900 flash. It worked. Unfortunately, I did not move fast enough. This is the best shot out of eight. I might have to try it …

Dubai

Light matters!

Photography is all about light. As a matter of fact, some people say that photography is like painting with light. I was reminded of that the other day when I was out and about in Dubai photographing the city. Around 4:30pm I arrived at the scene and took the following photo: Most photographers that had arrived with me left after a few minutes. But I sat down, took out my Kindle and read for a while. I ended up taking one photo pretty much every 10-15 minutes. Here are some of the results. Lesson learned: Light matters. A gorgeous scene …

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