The Polar Extremes

Another reason New Zealand is awesome

My 11-year-old son just got back from a 3-day school camping trip. No waivers, no permission slips, no way for the parents to contact the campsite, no cell phones, no nothing… Just hiked 5 hours off into the wild to camp. Here’s what he did:

– Archery
– Shot guns
– Bungee
– River rafting
– Cooking
– Rope Course Survival (crossing rivers while hanging off ropes)

Anyway, New Zealand is very outdoorsy… and everyone does not seem to be suing everybody for every little thing… no one talks about lawyers and nonsense — it’s so wonderful… Every Thursday, Ethan takes his snowboard to school… anything goes around here… a very active, social, and outdoor-related community!

Daily Photo – The Polar Extremes

I’ve never been all the way to the North Pole or South Pole. I am curious, but I don’t think I’m into the extreme cold. Also, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of good photo ops for all the trouble you have to go through. So, anyway, this is about the closest I have gotten, up at the northernmost tip of the Northwest Fjordland of Iceland. I know you can get even further, but not without a series of boats or flights…

This photo was taken about 4 AM during the summer solstice.

The Polar Extremes

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:02:04
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  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/5.6
  • ISO50
  • Focal Length90mm (90mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Away from Iceland for the Summer

10 Essential Photoshop Skills Everyone Should Know

10 Essential Photoshop Skills Everyone Should Know is now available in the iTunes store! This is one of our best-selling eBooks, and I think you’ll enjoy it. I know many of the readers here are big into the Apple eco-system, so this new addition to iTunes should give you some digital feng-shui!

It is also available over on Flatbooks.com if you’d like to get that version as well.

 

 

 

 

Daily Photo – Away from Iceland for the Summer

This is the first summer in quite some time that I have not been to Iceland. Many of the regular readers here know how I like to go there every summer during the solstice for a serious photography adventure. It’s very nice to spend countless days and nights there by myself… just listening to strange music and finding wonderful little places to take photos.

I didn’t go this summer because of the big move to New Zealand. That ended up taking a massive amount of time to get everything settled down here. But, as for next summer, I’m thinking about Iceland or Norway.. we’ll see! 🙂

Away from Iceland for the Summer

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:02:57
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  • Aperturef/6.7
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length18mm (18mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

The Melt

Ice Hotel

I’m very interested in visiting an Ice Hotel some day. I know there is one in Sweden, but I think others have started popping up in other places too, yes?

Daily Photo – The Melt

The point where ice turns into river is tough to find. Sometimes it requires a lot of hiking, and sometimes you never find it. But when you do find that rip between worlds, you feel the full weight of the discovery.

I’m usually a bit afraid to get to close or stand on the ice. It’s generally not a good idea, and I have enough bad ideas without needed to add more to the repertoire! 🙂

The Melt

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:03:28
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/22
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24mm (24mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Farm in the Vastness

Special Events

During the last live class, I mentioned a few special events. No worries – we are still planning those. They are taking a bit of time for us to get our heads around and properly plan, but we’ll put something together that is amazing! 🙂 More info in the future…

Daily Photo – Farm in the Vastness

When you drive across Iceland, scene after scene is soooo…. epic! You just get this feeling of a vastness that permeates everything. There is a kind of timelessness in the architecture too, like you are unsure if something is new or quite old.

I felt this way when I passed through this valley full of farms with a little farmhouse right in the middle.

Farm in the Vastness

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:03:30
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  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/4
  • ISO1250
  • Focal Length35mm (35mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Ridge Without Time

Parallel Universes

Is anyone else into the idea of parallel universes? I’m just sort of taking an informal poll…

Daily Photo – Ridge without Time

This is an unusual photo, isn’t it?

I started processing it, then stopped. It didn’t really require any processing… it just struck me as interesting and unusual. I can’t quite put my finger on it. I do remember being at this spot in Iceland when I took the shot, thinking it was ethereal and wonderful in a strange way.

Ridge without Time

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:03:34
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/5.6
  • ISO50
  • Focal Length56mm (56mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Soft Sunset over the Gentle Stream

Photomatix and Aurora HDR Pro for the win

Many people are asking if I still use Photomatix, and the answer is an absolute yes! I use it to process all the photos you see on the site here. If you want to try it yourself, you can read more information here on the Photomatix Review.

I now use Aurora HDR Pro for all of my processing. I worked with Macphun for over a year to build the ultimate HDR software!

Daily Photo – Soft Sunset over the Gentle Stream

Every time I visit this little stream in the northern part of Iceland, it seems exactly the same. It makes me wonder if it ever gets high or low or just flows perfectly all the time.

If it does flow perfectly like this all the time, I’d be tempted to build a house right over it! Wouldn’t it be cool to have a perfect stream just flow right through your home?

Soft Sunset over the Gentle Stream

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:03:57
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/6.7
  • ISO400
  • Focal Length35mm (35mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Road to the Inn

Proving a negative commenter wrong

So I get thousands and thousands of negative comments. I do read them all, and joyfully ignore most of them, but once in a blue moon I decide to make an example out of someone. In this case, I got a rather sour comment for the photo I posted here (note that the comment was on Facebook):

“Trey, I generally like your work, but this is one of the worst Photoshop hacks I’ve seen. Mirror the image with a badly piculated reflection? If I was going to fake the photo, I would at least apply a soft blur to the reflection and use a wave pattern to simulate the water.”

So, anyway, I decided to grab a photo from my Lightroom. BTW, you can also see another icy image there I took about an hour before at Pyramid Lake.

Daily Photo – Road to the Inn

I have strange feelings sometimes when approaching new hotels. I stay in a lot of them, but there are certain times of the day and night when you are going some place quite foreign and you’re just not sure what it will be like.

A good example is this place here in Iceland, where everything can be doubly strange. I’ve had many strange experiences from sleeping in school classrooms (they are converted to hotels in the summer) to having to wake up someone at 2 AM to let me into a room.

Even though Iceland is so mountainous, sometimes there are wide open plains where you can see the destination from miles and miles away as you get closer. And all the strange thoughts (especially very late at night) go racing through your head. It’s all kind of Twilight Zone-ish.

Road to the Inn

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:03:59
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/6.7
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length65mm (65mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Tableau Vivant of Wild Horses

Updated SmugMug Portfolio Theme


I know many of you have signed up for SmugMug (if not, use “STUCKINCUSTOMS” to save money), and you might like to know there is a new set of themes coming! I’ve had this one custom-built, and I really like the clean look of it all. I think it’s a lot more fun and usable to click around and navigate. Plus, I like that there is a big, friendly “Buy Prints” option up there at the top!If you want to know more, see my full SmugMug Review here on the site.

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Photo – Tableau Vivant of Wild Horses

It was about 2 A.M. and the sun was just dipping into the horizon for a short stint. These horses were frolicking about in a huge flat field a bit inland from the end of the fjord. They were all so lively and alert, jumping and posing here and there. And then they set up in a very interesting configuration, and I barely had time to put on the right lens before it all drifted apart.

Tableau Vivant of Wild Horses

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-02-02 00:39:15
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/6.7
  • ISO125
  • Focal Length28mm (28mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Waterfall of Certain Doom

New eBook: WordPress for Photographers

We recently released WordPress for Photographers, a new eBook by Peter Adams. This is a step-by-step guide that will teach you everything about setting up WordPress, choosing a theme/design for your website, and adding content. Also included are advanced techniques for working with image galleries, importing image meta-data, optimizing image search, and a whole lot more!

There are many other new books over at Flatbooks as well, and I hope you’ll like them all!

 

Daily Photo – Waterfall of Certain Doom

This has become one of my favorite remote waterfalls in the world! Whenever I am taking photos of these places, I spend a lot of time there. I often imagine what it would be like to tumble over the edge… wondering various ways I could survive… if I’d get caught in a whirlpool underwater… or if I would just pop up like in the movies.

If you are ever near Akureyri, I suggest you visit this spot… if you are feeling bold, clamber down the side of the waterfall like I did here to get this shot…

Waterfall of Certain Doom

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-08-12 06:04:15
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/22
  • ISO50
  • Focal Length14mm (14mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Lonely River in Iceland

The Histogram eBook

HistoWe have a new eBook over at Flatbooks.com about Histograms! Go grab it — it’s filled with great information and I think you’ll really enjoy it!

Favorite Fish?

While posting this photo, I was thinking of my favorite fish restaurant in the world about 20 km from this spot below.  They didn’t have my favorite kind of fish, which is black cod, but they did have a delicious selection.  What’s your favorite?

Daily Photo – Lonely River in Iceland

I wonder sometimes if I project my own emotions onto the landscape around me.  I’m really not all that dramatic, but sometimes this does seem to be the case, especially in Iceland.  Since I spend so much time there alone, I end up thinking that parts of the environs seem kind of lonely too.  And I think there is probably a lot of truth in it because I hardly ever see any other humans, so everything is very lonely!

Lonely River in Iceland I wonder sometimes if I project my own emotions onto the landscape around me.  I’m really not all that dramatic, but sometimes this does seem to be the case, especially in Iceland.  Since I spend so much time there alone, I end up thinking that parts of the environs seem kind of lonely too.  And I think there is probably a lot of truth in it because I hardly ever see any other humans, so everything is very lonely!- Trey RatcliffClick here to read the rest of this post at the Stuck in Customs blog.

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