If you are interested in reading more about my recent trip to Croatia and the alps, there is a new article up on The Resonant Landscape today at
One of the main motivations for me to drop everything and run off to Europe in the middle of a busy Fall semester at the college was the opportunity to shoot Plitvice Lakes National Park in October. The vast majority of photos that have been taken from this remarkable park in Croatia have been taken during the Spring and Summer months when water levels are high and the turquoise lakes are surrounded by green on all sides. But in Autumn, the leaves around these incredible lakes turn bright red, orange and yellow making an incredible background for the dozens of waterfalls throughout the park that seemingly flow right out of the trees on their way through this incredible valley.
Even though my itinerary had me shooting in Germany, Austria, Slovenia and Italy, I purposely kept my schedule open hoping to shoot Plitvice on a cloudy, misty morning with little or no wind. Well... it turns out that the week I made my trip was probably one of the driest stretches of October on record. Even though rain had been forecast for Friday earlier in the week, by the time Friday actually rolled around, it was clear, cloudless, hazy, and windy. The irony here was that I had waited all week for conditions to improve and they were actually worse by the time I finally headed down.
Plitvice, by the way, is one of the oldest national parks in Southeast Europe and the largest national park in Croatia. The park is world-famous for its lakes arranged in cascades. Currently, 16 lakes can be seen from the surface. These lakes are a result of the confluence of several small rivers and subterranean karst rivers. The lakes are all interconnected and follow the water flow. They are separated by natural dams of travertine, which is deposited by the action of moss, algae, and bacteria. (wiki)
Helpful hint if you are planning a trip in the future: Croatia hasn't quite made it all the way into the European Union yet, so their currency is still the Kuna rather than the Euro. This probably wouldn't have been an issue if their computers were up and running, but they were not and I lost 30-40 minutes scrambling around trying to exchange my Euros for Kunas as suddenly everything was "cash only." The park didn't exchange Euros so I had to hike back to one of the local hotels.
Even though I had less than ideal conditions at times during my 9 days in Europe, I had an incredible time shooting mostly in the alps through 5 countries while I was there. Plitvice is definitely a spot that you need to save more than one day for, and I'm hoping to make a return visit in the not too distant future. What an amazing park!
Thank you so much for your views and comments! If you have specific questions or need to get in touch with me, please be sure to send me a message via flickr mail, or feel free to contact me via one of the following:
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Tags: Plitvice Lakes National Park Plitvice Croatia Autumn
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There are no bad views in Venice, i think! If you want to see a video I made about Venice, check it out over at www.stuckincustoms.com/2016/03/16/venice-from-above/
Tags: Italy Ratcliff StuckInCustoms.com Trey Trey Ratcliff Venice HDR HDR Tutorial HDR Photography HDR Photo Aurora HDR texture pack europe canal dome reflection Stuck In Customs
Tis the season for photographing Orion! This time of year we get a good view of Orion, and with the dry winter air the skies are crystal clear. This is a photo of the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex, which is a large group of bright nebulae, dark clouds, and young stars visible around the Orion constellation. Some of the most noticeable objects in this image include the Angelfish Nebula, Barnardâs Loop, Orion Nebula, Flame Nebula, Horsehead Nebula, Rosette Nebula, and the bright colorful stars Betelgeuse, Rigel, Bellatrix, and Saiph, to name a few.
This was shot with the Nikon D810A, Sigma 50mm f1.4 Art lens, and some new gear on loan from SLIK. This image is a composite of 20 images shot at 60 seconds each, f/2.8, and ISO 800. I used f/2.8 to sharpen up the stars and reduce distortion that was present at wider f-stops. I also took 20 dark frames, each at the same settings as the âlight framesâ (the regular exposures) but with the lens cap on. I then loaded all the images in Starry Landscape Stacker (Mac only but you can do the same thing in many other programs including Photoshop). The goal of shooting many frames is to align, stack, and average them to produce a shot with pinpoint stars and low noise. The star tracker was able to track the sky so that I could do 60 second (and probably much longer) exposures at 50mm. The dark frames are used by Starry Landscape Stacker (and many other programs such as Deep Sky Stacker) to find and remove sensor pattern noise and hot pixels.
I then used the LRGB processing technique that is commonly used for space images, and the technique is presented in a great tutorial by Lonely Speck. Other than the Orion nebula and the stars, the other nebulae are very dim and bringing them out in processing requires a bit of work and the LRGB technique lets you bring out the details and the colors separately and with a lot of fine tuned control.
Check out Lonely Speck's tutorial here: www.lonelyspeck.com/photographing-and-processing-the-cons...
Visit my website to learn more about my photos and video tutorials: www.adamwoodworth.com
Tags: angelfish nebula astronomy astrophotography barnard's loop bellatrix betelgeuse flame nebula horsehead nebula night nikon d810a orion orion molecular cloud complex orion nebula orion's belt rigel rosette nebula saiph space stars
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Seeing as it's a cold December day, thought I'd go back and find the *warmest* possible picture in my archive. I think the "House on Fire" Puebloan ruin is probably as warm as it gets, both in tone and subject (at least in my portfolio). This was taken earlier this year on a visit to Utah with Kevin Benedict. We started out at Factory Butte and made a short detour through this portion of Cedar Mesa in Bear's Ears National Monument on the way to Moab. There are only so many variations on composition here, it's pretty straightforward and not terribly difficult to shoot as long as one gets the right time of day and conditions, needs to be noon to mid-afternoonish with enough sunlight to get the light reflecting off the warm sandstone on to the overhang to "light the fire". I found this one to most pleasingly capture the fire effect. I have used some light/shadow/contrast adjustments along with slightly adjusting the yellow/orange tones (not that much) to really bring the heat to this image, if you'll pardon my non-stop puns.
Although it's a bit of a drive and the trailhead is not super easy to find, the hike out to this ruin is very pleasant and the ruin itself gave me shivers. This site will forever remain burned in to my memory. Ok, I promise I'm done. Shot with Pentax K-1 using "Pixel Shift" (this was an ideal subject for that feature, and adds to the color vibrancy) and Pentax 15-30mm (a rebranded Tamron 15-30).
Tags: House on Fire Pueblo ruin Utah Bear's Ears National Monument Cedar Mesa sandstone red fire flame bricks sky matthews photography Pentax K-1 Pentax 15-30mm Pixel Shift landscape western USA
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Just having some fun with NIK on this IR capture
Explored 7/30 #37
Tags: infrared false color NIK photoshop slider sunday spring tulip gazebo outdoors brookside gardens maryland gardens nature park flower
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