Soft Zurich at Night

Slowly getting through the Switzerland shots!

This batch is taking me a long time… plus there has been a lot of trouble along with a Drobo problem that gave me the blues… that slowed me down… and made me drop my faith in the Drobos one notch… I’m still using them, but I hold my breath a little more to be honest.

Daily Photo – Soft Zurich at Night

These slow-moving huge rivers make for some very nice reflections.

With HDR there is a problem of “ghosting” which is when the various frames show different things. I usually leave the water alone when it gets ghosted because it has sort of an impressionistic feel to it, I think. In a sense, it gives the “impression” of water, which is somewhere between a photo and our memory.

Soft Zurich at Night These slow-moving huge rivers make for some very nice reflections. With HDR there is a problem of "ghosting" which is when the various frames show different things.  I usually leave the water alone when it gets ghosted because it has sort of an impressionistic feel to it, I think.  In a sense, it gives the "impression" of water, which is somewhere between a photo and our memory.  - Trey Ratcliff More here at the Stuck in Customs blog.

  • Susan

    Oh wow….how lovely with the colored lights and reflections – looks so beautiful there!!

  • Nice shot ,Switzerland is pretty in most places 71 was the first and last time i was there and still remember a great deal of it and that being 40 years ago.Stayed in Luzern for 3 months in Winkelreid Hotel,Wikelreid Strouse near the station.Trey could you let us know what apps you use for taking video on your ipad please,many thanks

  • Next time you are n zurich let me know u can use my tilt and shift lens. I like this HDR ut I also like the non HDR image of the blue Zurich night … in Christmas time you get some awesome lighting in Zurich.

  • Fantastic sky, trey. Love the contrast between the cool sky and the warm city.

  • I’ve had nothing but trouble from a Drobo that I tried. I finally gave up because I couldn’t get it to hold data for 1 day, much less long-term!

  • what happened with the drobo Trey? didn’t you have other types of back ups?

  • petrov

    Hi trey! Can you tell us in what order with programs, plug-in etc you start and finish the photo?

  • Trey, I sure hope you didn’t have the trouble I had with Drobo. I lost over 2TB of photos a few months ago. I turned it on one day, and it said “ZERO” space was being used. All of my files had somehow (still don’t know what happened) disappeared. I took it to a data recovery place in Singapore, and they told me that the drives (I had 3 drives in a Drobo Pro) had all been re-built. I have no idea how they were re-built, and nothing in the logs had shown any reformatting. I have lost ALL my faith in the Drobo, and that damn thing cost me a fortune not to mention all of my priceless photos!! I thought the Drobo was the answer to all of my back-up worries…I guess I learned a lesson there!!

  • Patrick Ahles

    I can see it gave you the blues, you spread it over this photo a lot!

    @petrov: please take a look at Trey’s tutorial here on the site:

  • tom

    I took a picture also using HDR from nearly the same vantage point a short while back.

    This is what mine looks like:

  • Patrick

    What problems did your Drobo have? Did you lose any photos?
    I hope it was not as bad as Scotty Graham’s problems.

  • Cool shot Trey – I like the blue tones and cloud formations… superb!
    Thanks for mentioning the issue with your Drobo… I was all set for ordering one soon – reckon I’ll do some more research re. alternatives! πŸ˜‰

  • Gail in Montana

    Beautiful photo, Trey!! Thanks for sharing. Have a great Tuesday! πŸ™‚

  • Yep, the water looks good… almost like ice. What I really like are those two delicate little flags fluttering from the tower. Excellent!

  • Cool shot! Love the icy look of the water, how did you achieved that?

  • *achieve πŸ™‚

  • Big Matty

    Last time I was there digital photography wasn’t available to consumers yet. You make me really want to go back without a 35mm!
    What a gorgeous place. Thanks Trey for the nostalgia.

  • Nice shot, Trey. I’m looking forward to the upcoming Burning Man images. I’m sure you got some great ones.

    I feel you as far as the Drobos go. I use two at home and three at work and I’ve relegated every one of them to being redundant back ups. They are easy to use when they work but, for my purposes at least, their lack of performance and random issues outweigh any positives.

  • I have worked in IT for ages, and I have tried a lot of different storage products. I have never owned a Drobo, but have evaluated them and have friends that use them. They seem to be a source or problems and the support is not great. The biggest issue is the proprietary data storage. Drobo doesn’t use standard RAID, so you really don’t know what is going on. If things go south, you can’t manage it with any normal disk tools.

    If I were you, I’d get a Synology product. Not cheap, but not any more than Drobo. They have a ton of features and expandable storage. They also have their own data storage format, but can also use standard RAID. I use a DS1511+ at home, easy to set up and haven’t had a problem.

    Good luck,

  • Michele

    I’ll second Mike’s Synology recommendation.

    We also have one set up at home and connected to our internet modem so we can wirelessly connect to it with all of the household computers. It’s also connected to our entertainment system and TV. I use one of the drives for my image back-up, as part of a back-up plan which includes another back-up drive, plus writing to DVD.

    The Synology interface is very cool and easy to navigate. We’ve been running it for 4 months now, and it’s been hassle-free.

  • Vicki Wilson

    Beautiful colors and reflections, nice shot! Hope you are having fun day in China, should be morning there now.

  • Wonderful image Trey. I like the way the water came out. Do you ever aim to get the water glassy smooth? I have never used filter before, but bought a ND Variable and the things that little piece of glass can do is amazing. Anyways, keep doing what your doing, all amazing stuff!

  • Yonk

    I looked at this pic and it is great.

  • Robert

    Hi Trey. I’m afraid to say it but i think it’s not one of your best images πŸ™ I am truly a fan of your work and of HDR and i have also learned alot from your website and training. But in this case i am missing the quality you are normally delivering. I like the composition but the church is so well lit that it almost looks fake and all the lights are white spots. When i compared it to some of your other images (like the Seattle nightshot) i see that you used an aperture of F2.8 instead of F11 and i guess that’s why it’s missing sharpness as well. And correct me if i’m wrong but i think you didn’t denoise it as well. Please don’t see this as a rant cause i will remain a fan but it seems that the only people commenting on your work are the ones saying “lovely” etc… And yes, you do have alot of amazing work for sure but this is not one of my favorites unfortunatly. Keep up the good work and would love to hear from you that i got it all wrong πŸ™‚

  • Dan

    Trey – Glad to see you had some fun in Switzerland! The initial photo from Zermat you took was great and I look forward to more. Sorry to hear about the Drobo issues – based on the reviews that I read (and still reading) they seem to have problems, so I wasn’t too disappointed when I wasn’t one of the lucky winners during the workshop earlier this year. My custom solution has worked well for me so far, and its about as far from proprietary as you can get – build your own server. I repurposed an old PC (AMD X2 64 w/ 4GB RAM), added 4 1.5TB HDDs (in RAID 5) and a pair of Gigabit NICs, and now I have a great setup that has decent redundancy for my purposes. I would suggest doing something similar – get a low-end (not to be misread as “cheap”, just not gaming rig specs) CPU/motherboard/RAM combo, add a SSD for booting the OS, and add a hardware RAID card with at least 3 HDDs to connect to it (with at least another HDD from the same batch to use as a spare when one dies, because they WILL eventually die). Once setup, map a drive from your workstation to the server and use it as the primary storage location for the photos, and use a secondary backup method (external storage or batch-upload from the server) to backup stuff from the server… Hope that helps!

  • Dan, building a computer for storage has advantages though it’s not for everyone. It is a normal computer and can always be used for more than storage, it’s also often less expensive to build a machine than buy a storage appliance. However, for straight storage needs I think a NAS appliance like the Synology is the way to go. There is no maintenance necessary unlike a computer running Windows (or even FreeNAS for that matter), you don’t need to maintain patches, anti-virus, etc. For peace of mine, ease of setup, and reliability my experience has been that the purpose-built appliances are the way to go.


  • Ben
  • Pingback: Soft Zurich at Night | allplaces()

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