Curving Around Iceland

HDR Video Tutorial

Things are still going great with the HDR Video Tutorial. This photo below is one of the ones I worked on during class. I had a few problems with it for sure, but I have since fixed them up using the stuff I talked about! Nothing is easy, I tell you…

Daily Photo – Curving Around Iceland

Iceland is pretty. Do I have to keep saying it? Maybe I do… you know… you know how a girl likes to be reminded in a gentle way all the time that she is pretty? Yes, I guess I can extend this to Iceland… so… you may tire of me saying it, but I’ll keep saying how pretty Iceland is.

Curving Around IcelandIceland is pretty.  Do I have to keep saying it?  Maybe I do... you know...  you know how a girl likes to be reminded in a gentle way all the time that she is pretty?  Yes, I guess I can extend this to Iceland... so... you may tire of me saying it, but I'll keep saying how pretty Iceland is.- Trey RatcliffFrom the original entry here at the Stuck in Customs blog.

Little Elves, Little Waterfall

The real elf-stat?

I’ve heard all different percentages of how many Icelanders believe in elves. It’s always high. But I wonder what the most correct percentage is? Has there ever really been a scientific study and wide-spread poll? I’d love to know the exact stats… you guys are all so smart – it seems like the perfect task for you to figure out so we can know the answer once and for all!

Daily Photo – Little Elves, Little Waterfall

Going into one of the valleys by Isafjordur takes you to many little homes near waterfalls. I thought this one was quite lovely.

And if you look to the left there, you’ll see the tiny homes they also built for the elves.

I was editing this photo at dinner one evening in Isafjordur. One of the waitresses saw this house, recognized it, and said, “Oh that’s jklasdj(jkasdj^dhsaj”. Of course, I am doing my best to approximate the Icelandic language there…

Little Elves, Little WaterfallGoing into one of the valleys by Isafjordur takes you to many little homes near waterfalls.  I thought this one was quite lovely.And if you look to the left there, you'll see the tiny homes they also built for the elves.I was editing this photo at dinner one evening in Isafjordur.  One of the waitresses saw this house, recognized it, and said, "Oh that's jklasdj(jkasdj^dhsaj".  Of course, I am doing my best to approximate the Icelandic language there...- Trey RatcliffRead the rest here at the Stuck in Customs blog.

New Video! The Viking Waterfront

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Flaxen Horse at Sunrise

Northern California PhotoWalk!

I’m giving a talk at the Google HQ on Aug 11th entitled, “Artists and the Internet: Digitally Extending Your Natural Self.” That part is closed (but will be recorded), but after we will be having a PhotoWalk at Stanford. We’ll have a bunch of people from Google and people from the community here. It will be great fun and I hope you can come!

To sign up (all my PhotoWalks are free), come see the PlanCast event.

Postprocessing…

This is one of the many photos I processed in the HDR Video Tutorial. During the class, it was suggested that maybe there is some kind of a subscription service where people could join and then download videos of me post-processing stuff. Would you be interested in this? I don’t have the time to do anything like this in the immediate future… but if people dig the idea, maybe I could do it some day. There is a lot of bandwidth/distribution/infrastructure stuff to figure out too, but I guess it could be cool. Andrea and some other people here are trying to talk me into it, but I wanted to see what you thought first. As usual, leave me comments, tweets, or Google+ messages to let me know what you think.

I checked our stats, and a month ago we served up over 5,453 GB of video and data… so this stuff gets expensive, sadly. Yes, that’s 5.4 terrabytes! That does not include any of the photos that are shown on the site… that is millions and millions of photos distributed, but, thank god, SmugMug pays for all that. Note that is just part of the standard SmugMug Pro thing and they do the same for all customers, although I am sure I overeat at their all-you-can-eat bandwidth buffet! For more info on that stuff, see my SmugMug Review.

Daily Photo – Flaxen Horse at Sunrise

The problem with horses in Iceland is that you can’t pass a farm with them frolicking about without…wondering…hmmm…I wonder if I could get a good shot. And then, of course, something in you tells you that Yes, of course, you could get a good shot. And then, you have to come up with reasons not to stop at every farm and take photos of every horse, since they all come out interesting.

So, naturally, this is a strange situation, in which you have to willingly force yourself to drive past something that you know would be amazing. But, well, you do it with the low-risk gamble that you will see something else amazing a bit down the road.

Flaxen Horse at Sunrise

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-09-25 10:35:53
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/1.4
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length50mm (50mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

Horse in Landscape

What is your Google+ ID?

I’ve been enjoying it quite a bit (my Google Profile). Please put your Google Profile in the comments so that people can circle you. Perhaps a “Stuck In Customs” circle for people in this community? Pretty good idea, if I do say so myself!

Daily Photo – Horse in Landscape

Remember what I said a few days ago about reasons for no stopping for almost every horse photo in Iceland? Forget I said that. I don’t know what I was talking about. Go ahead and stop… I mean, how on earth can you pass this buy?

These horses remind me a bit of the sirens in Odysseus, distracting me from my destination… But, really, that analogy falls apart because I had no destination in mind, so I allow myself plenty of wonderful distractions.

Horse in Landscape

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-09-25 04:28:18
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/5.6
  • ISO1000
  • Focal Length230mm (230mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

The Lost Rock Temple

 

This Week in Tech

Here is the video I did with Leo Laporte on This Week in Tech on Sunday. I was a special guest for the first 20 mins or so, and then I left… I talk a little about the behind-the-scenes at NASA. Thanks to Eileen Rivera for the last-minute invitation! 🙂

Daily Photo – The Lost Rock Temple

I spent countless hours trying to find this place on a previous trip to Iceland. This time, thanks to SECRET PROJECT EOSX, I was able to find it effortlessly. It was just as amazing as I hoped it would be.

The hardest part was the road at 2 AM. It was one of those perfectly straight country roads that goes straight into the sun. And I mean straight. It was exactly in the middle of my steering wheel, and there was no escaping it. The visor, my hand, nothing, nada, could block that sun, so I had to drive about 5 miles per hour and look out the window. It was all very unsettling… if you have driven in this situation, then you know what I mean!

The Lost Rock Temple I spent countless hours trying to find this place on a previous trip to Iceland. This time, thanks to SECRET PROJECT EOSX, I was able to find it effortlessly. It was just as amazing as I hoped it would be.The hardest part was the road at 2 AM. It was one of those perfectly straight country roads that goes straight into the sun. And I mean straight. It was exactly in the middle of my steering wheel, and there was no escaping it. The visor, my hand, nothing, nada, could block that sun, so I had to drive about 5 miles per hour and look out the window. It was all very unsettling… if you have driven in this situation, then you know what I mean!- Trey RatcliffClick here to read the rest of this post at the Stuck in Customs blog.

I’m 40!

 

It’s like 30, but with more Internet

Well, today is my 40th birthday.

I plan on having a midlife crisis between 2 AM and 3 AM and that involves a considerable amount of chocolate and then get over it.

Just as I was leaving Iceland, they had this giant poster in the airport. BTW, every Icelandic advertising poster looks the exact same, and they all copy 66’North, which I think originated the campaign. Everyone looks hard and windswept while the rugged Icelandic background is in the distance behind them… ANYWAY, there was this poster of a dude ice-climbing, and it said, “Life Begins at 40.” I think the ad was for some bank. But, it didn’t make me want to ice climb or do any banking with them, so I really don’t know what effect that ad or any of this has had on me.

Daily Photo – Bridge of the Dark Fairy

Now this place was hard to find. In fact, I tried to geo-locate it after the fact, and I could not even come close. It’s like one of those lost spots on earth, like the island with King Kong, or the deep paths to Silfen worlds…

After leaving the road, I scrambled down a few hillocks and walked along the stream a bit. Finding this quite mirror-world of sorts, I stopped for a photo.

Bridge of the Dark FairyNow this place was hard to find.  In fact, I tried to geo-locate it after the fact, and I could not even come close.  It's like one of those lost spots on earth, like the island with King Kong, or the deep paths to Silfen worlds...  After leaving the road, I scrambled down a few hillocks and walked along the stream a bit.  Finding this quite mirror-world of sorts, I stopped for a photo. - Trey RatcliffRead all about this and my 1-hour midlife crisis here at the Stuck in Customs blog.

Oceanscream

 

Updated Google+ Invite System

See the new steps below… this has gotten a lot of people in, so it should work for now. I had 3 great video hangout sessions last night will all sorts of people… very interesting to meet and talk with people from all over the world. The video hangout may be the coolest thing!

1) Come to StuckInCustoms Facebook Page and see if you can find a thread that has remaining invitations. Put your email in that thread (not on the wall).

2) Accept your invite when it arrives, then return to the StuckInCustoms Facebook Page and pay it forward by saying, “I have 10-15 (whatever) invites for Google+ so leave your email below and I’ll get you in!”

3) To invite people in, create a new circle and fill it with email addresses that need access.

4) Share a post or photo with that circle, and it will ask you if you want to email people not in Google+. Say yes, and they will get an email invite!

And, if you are looking for me in Google+, here is My Google Profile.

“See More Photos…”

You may notice a slight change to the bottom of every post.  I took away the emphasis on “categories,” and say in more plain English:  See more photos from IcelandIsafjordurNikon D3XTravel.  This should help you explore more from this area if you find them interesting!

Daily Photo – Oceanscream

Early one morning while weaving through the fjords, a cell of dark clouds roiled across the sky. The low sun kept them in impossible colors and the air vibrated with a coming storm.

This is up on the edge of the arctic circle where one fjord may be covered in clouds while the next is wide open and clear. There are hundreds of little microclimates that change from one hour to the next, so if things don’t look good in one fjord, just spend 30 minutes driving over to the next one, and maybe something different will present itself. Surely by now, you see why I like Iceland so much in the summer…

http://stuckincustoms.smugmug.com/Portfolio-The-Best/your-favorites/10668747_AuyBk#1355895620_kt6c5

Delicate Ice in Spring

 

Google Plus

Here is my Google Profile, so feel free to add me if you are using Google+. It’s pretty cool, and I find it’s super easy and fun to make groups with circles.

Also, I added the +1 thingy to the page here… it will be up at the top of every post along with the FB stuff. When you click it, you tell Google that you trust the page and there is good content here…. thanks for your support on that… I don’t ask for too much, do I? Hehe… Thx again.  

Be Careful!

So, today’s shot reminds me of good man David duChemin, who recently took a serious tumble while getting a photo. He was laid up in the hospital for a long time and things looked pretty grim. He’s on the mend… and a nice way to show support is to pop over and check out some of David’s new eBooks! He has an amazing selection over there, and it’ll be something that benefits you too.

Anyway, today’s photo looks pretty scary yes? Do you think I would actually walk out on that ice to get this shot? Heck no… there are lots of ways to get interesting looking shots without pushing the limits… so, just because a shot LOOKS like it was dangerous does not mean it was… don’t let my shots or other shots make you feel inclined to take “risky” shots yourself.

Daily Photo – Delicate Ice in Spring

After dinner one evening in Ísafjörður, I drove through a nearby town and up into the mountains. Along the road, I noticed an iced-over river that was beginning to thaw in a few areas. I pulled over, and scrambled down the hill to set up for a shot.

I tried this both with and without an ND filter. The ND filter didn’t add anything to the shot except for a lot of pain! The light was low enough were a small aperture could get the feeling of the river through the hole in the ice…

http://stuckincustoms.smugmug.com/Portfolio-The-Best/your-favorites/10668747_AuyBk#1355897661_d3mLV3w-A-LB

Sleeping In

 

Daily Photo – Sleeping In

I usually am too swamped in the middle of photo-adventures to process and post immediately, but this one is an exception I made just a few hours ago.

I have a favorite fish restaurant here in Isafjordur called Tjöruhúsið. They bring out a huge skillet of three pieces of fresh fish cooked in a mushroom cream butter sauce. Also in the pan are potatoes, tomatoes, and even a salad tucked into the corner. I took my time eating my Viking meal while processing this photo.

I took it just yesterday while driving from Reykjavik to Isafjordur, which is just about one of the longest possible drives you can make in Iceland in a day if you have a reasonable level of sanity. There comes a point when you feel like you’re getting close, when you start weaving in and out of fjords. They are huge and each one seems to take over half an hour to drive around. (here is part of my driving path)

In the midst of one of these, I espied an old house up the side of one of the valleys. It was partially obscured by a hand-built stone wall. I stopped the car and started hiking up the side of the valley to investigate. Once I got up there, I began to think that maybe this place was actually occupied! There were new lace curtains hanging in the windows and everything seemed to be in pretty good repair.

So then, I felt like I was intruding, and not just exploring an old ruin. But, it was 3 AM in the morning, and I figured if anyone was indeed inside, they must be fast asleep. So I set up for a shot and then made a hasty elf-like egress.

I just found out this place is called Litli-Bær and it was originally built in 1894.

Sleeping In

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-09-25 08:56:35
  • Camera
  • Camera Make
  • Exposure Time
  • Aperturef/6.7
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24mm (24mm in 35mm)
  • Flashflash did not fire
  • Exposure Programaperture priority
  • Exposure Bias

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