dubai skyline

Dubai in a day

Dubai Last weekend I had the pleasure of spending some time in Dubai. Having traveled there a bunch of times before, I felt a bit lazy and did not spend any time sight-seeing. However, that did not mean I would leave my camera back at home. Even a short walk to the next coffee shop usually offers some amazing sights in Dubai. The Twisted Tower One of the fun sights to explore is the 306m Cayan Tower (aka Twisted Tower) in the Dubai Marina. It’s not your usual skyscrape. It’s wicked, because it’s twisted! The window cleaners were out and …

Analog Efex Pro

Google adds Analog Efex Pro to the NIK suite

Analog Efex Pro Enhancing your photographs in post-production does not require a complicated software package such as Photoshop. The small software company NIK has been known to produce one of the finest toolsets for getting the absolut best out of your photos. It’s a collection of different plug-ins that work with either Adobe Lightroom or Apple Aperture. What makes NIK so powerful is that it is extremely easy to use while employing the probably best algorithms for enhancing your images. You can easily learn how to improve your photos in just a few minutes. Contrast that to learning Photoshop. In …

Snow

A day in the Austrian Alps

The Austrian Alps Fall has arrived with full force in Europe. We just witnessed its volatile nature on a short trip to Saalbach-Hinterglemm in Austria. It is a famous ski town nestled high up in the Alps. The town itself was pretty much shut down. All bars & restaurants are closed during off-season. But the weather totally made up for the lack of other entertainment. Here are a few photographs from the past two days. Weather Upon arrival in Hinterglemm we were surprised to find ourselves in a complete white-out. The snow flakes were twice the size of a Euro …

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 …

Trip report – the Fuji X-E1 in San Francisco

Fuji X-E1 A few weeks ago, I wrote about some initial impressions of the awesome Fujifilm X-E1 camera. It truly is a beautiful piece of equipment. It just begs you to go out and take some photos. The best thing is that the Fuji X-E1 is pretty small and really light. That’s why I brought it with me on a short business trip to San Francisco last week. Here are some of the results along with additional impressions of the camera. Low light experience Upon my arrival in San Francisco around 8pm, I needed to do something to keep me …

Fun with wedding photography – part 1

Wedding Photography Wedding photography is one of those genres that can be extremely fulfilling yet demanding at the same time. As a photographer it’s fun to feel the excitement and energy of these events. But then there is the anxiety to deliver bad photographs or even worse to miss those important shots. Last but not least, wedding photography can be exhausting. However, I love this combination and once in a while I accept to shoot the wedding of friends. Just a short while ago, I had the honor of participating in the wedding of our good friends Hanna and Stefan. …

Fun in the Munich Olympic Park

Munich Olympic Park Munich is one of those amazingly beautiful cities. It is a very photogenic place. There is a lot to see and to explore. Think about the famous beer gardens. Think about the Marienplatz with its Glockenspiel. Or think about the Oktoberfest. So much to do. Nevertheless, there is one place that I keep going back to. It’s the Munich Olympic Park. This is the place where Munich hosted the 1972 Olympic summer games. The architecture of the entire park is unique. People immediately recognize the iconic tent structures. It’s fun to roam around the different paths and …

paris metro

Discovering the Fuji X-E1 in Paris

The Fuji X-E1 A short while ago, I decided to give the Fuji X-E1 a try. Traveling with a full-frame camera and some lenses is a bit difficult sometimes. The Fuji X-E1 quickly appeared as the ideal camera: Fantastic reviews – I have never seen so many positive reviews about a camera before. People are really passionate about their Fuji X-E1 or X-Pro 1. APS-C sensor  – I did not want to move towards the tiny micro 4:3. The larger APS-C sensor is definitely very attractive. Image quality – the resulting images are extremely impressive. ‘Invisible’ – people don’t really notice …

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 …

Best Photography Books – Summer Reading – Fundamental Guides

Best Photography Books Summer time, vacation time. One of the things that I enjoy most is that you have more time to pursue photography. Evenings are long and you it’s easy to try different things rather than worrying about freezing. But summer is also a great time to pick up a few books and develop some new skills. Here are some of my favourites. Fundamental Guides Within the Frame by David duChemin: One of my all-time favorites! This is not your usual photography book. There is hardly any technical talk. Instead, David du Chemin teaches you fundamental tools that can …

Samyang Fisheye

Fun with the Fisheye

The Fish-Eye A few months ago, I reviewed the Walimex/ Samyang fish-eye lens. It’s a great tool and it provides amazing value. The other day, I had some time to really put this lens to use. Below are some of the results. I am still in awe about how well this thing performs on my Nikon D800. It has really become one of my favorite travel lenses.  

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 …

The Walimex Fisheye – Review of an excellent lens

Walimex Fisheye Fisheyes are a lot of fun but they belong to the category of lenses that you won’t take out of your camera bag on a daily basis. If overused, the distinct look of the fisheye can easily get on your nerves. It was that paradox that created a bit of an investment problem for me: should I purchase one of the pretty expensive Nikon lenses or is there a cheaper alternative? Research quickly surfaced a solid alternative: the Walimex 8mm F3.5 Fisheye. It had received very decent reviews. It is also sold under the Samyang and Rokinon brands. …

‘Lonesome’ on the 500px.com Popular page

500px 500px is amongst my favorite photography websites. The collection of available photos and the sharing capabilities make it an extremely inspiring and useful tool. It’ fun and educational to review the portfolios of different photographers around the world. The overall quality seems a lot higher than what you find on Flickr. And that’s the other thing: sharing your own photos is very enjoyable. Your portfolio looks awesome. Lonesome I was really happy the other day to discover that one of my recent creations made it into the ‘Popular’ category of 500px. This page features the best photos of any …

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

New Publication – Dubai Posterbook

Posterbook On Thursday afternoon I received exciting news: my new Dubai posterbook was published on Amazon.de. It features thirteen of my favorite photographs from Dubai and the United Arab Emirates. You might be scratching your head – a book with just thirteen photos. Well, this is a so-called posterbook from the German publishing house Calvendo. It is kind of like a calendar without the calendar feature. All you have is large and beautiful posters. The cool thing about the posterbook format is that you don’t have to frame each photo. Just hang up it like a calendar and then change …

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