Morro Bay Boats (California)

I love Pacific coastal drive from Los Angeles to San Francisco along California State Route 1. It is beautiful at its entirety but at the same time I have few personal favorite spots along the way, and Morro Bay is one of them. Morro Bay serves as indication or reminder that the most beautiful and most rewarding part of the drive, from travel photography standpoint, is about to begin.

Normally, I plan my trips to California in the middle of winter, when life in Eastern Canada is almost unbearable and I need a break from winter clothes and when I really miss my photography.

In the past, every time I stopped at Morro Bay in January or February, it was extremely windy, sometime it was impossible to setup the tripod and I had to shoot hand-held, looking for shelter behind the rocks.

But the day I took featured photo it was different. It was late morning and it was unusually warm (+25ºC; 77ºF) and quiet with almost no wind.  First time in years I found myself wearing t-shirt in the middle of winter running around with my photo gear like a child.

Travel Photography Blog - USA. California. Morro Bay

USA. California. Morro Bay
Loc: 35.371861, -120.859253

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 5 Bracketed Shots (-2; -1;  0; +1, +2 ) [Read more...]

Red Colors of the Fall (Montreal)

More “fall colors” from Montreal. Normally, the colors of the “fall foliage” are yellow and gold and on rare occasion you find the tree with bright red, “burning” colors. I spotted this tree couple of day prior to the day I took this shot and I waited for good weather with favorable light. When I saw bright sky with the white clouds that served as natural light diffuser, I knew it was my day.

I composited the shot to make red colors of the tree and fallen leaves on the ground the main elements of the composition and then I waited for 15-20min for rowers to pass by.

When I was processing the image in Photoshop I realized that small tree in the foreground was the real destruction and I had to use Stamp Tool to co cover/erase it. At the very end of the processing I decided to flip the image horizontally. I thought that rowers moving from left to right would improve the composition and make it more natural.

Travel Photography Blog - Canada. Quebec. Montreal. Lachine

Canada. Quebec. Montreal. Lachine
Loc: 45.428806, -73.678424

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 3 Bracketed Shots (-2;  0; +2) [Read more...]

Inspirations: NORWAY – 40 Best of Travel and Landscape Photographs

Today’s theme for inspiration is NORWAY. There are 2 countries in the world which fascinate me the most. The first one is Iceland and I featured it already on my blog in INSPIRATIONS category. The second country is NORWAY and it is up to you to decide which one is more beautiful.

 

 

 

 

[Read more...]

Long Exposure Afternoon (Montreal)

That was the day when we had some incredible cloud formations over the Montreal.  The air was crystal clear with bright blue sky and whiter than white clouds. It was pure joy to walk around  in Old Montreal with the camera. The weather  was similar to the day I took “Sailing Back Home” photo which I featured in my older blog post.

That afternoon I was testing my new toy – Hitech 10-Stop Neutral Density Filter which I received the day earlier from B&H. I could not wait to see what was the slowest exposure time I could achieve in broad daylight. By the end of my test I managed to slow down the shutter speed up to 15 sec.

For this particular shot 4 sec was enough to smooth the water and soften the sky.

Travel Photography Blog - Canada. Montreal. Old Port. Long Exposure Afternoon

Canada. Montreal. Old Port
Loc: 45.491408, -73.549613

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 3 Bracketed Shots (-2;  0; +2)

[Read more...]

Bonsecours Basin Park in Fall Colors (Montreal)

Another “fall foliage” photo from Montreal. This time I was walking around in Old Port, enjoying warm afternoon. I did not have my usual dslr photo gear with me, all I had is my point-and-shoot Lumix LX-7 in my pocket. Normally, when I go for photo hunting without any planning,  I am a happy person if by the end of the day I have one or two “keepers”. The day I took this photo was different. I had at least 8-10 quality photos I was not embarrassed to display in my portfolio and all of them were shot with point-and-shoot. You never know.

I took this photo almost from the same spot I as the photo I featured in my older blog post Boardwalk to Clock Tower, different time of year and different processing made the final photos completely unlike.

Travel Photography Blog - Canada. Montreal. Old Port. Fall Colors

Canada. Montreal. Old Port
Loc: 45.507885, -73.546620

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 3 Bracketed Shots (-2;  0; +2) [Read more...]

Path to Golden Forest (Montreal)

ELLO List keeps Growing

As I mentioned before, I was not planning to grow Top Travel and Landscape Photographers to Follow on ELLO list beyond hundred of names but some of you pointed out that I missed number of extremely talented travel and landscape photographers. I had no choice but to add more names to the list today. It is 105 names list now. You can find it here.

In the Magic Forest

I continue to post “fall colors” photographs on my blog. The fall is probably the best time of the year for any landscape or travel photographer. This is when colors just explode and you do not necessarily need “good” light to get interesting, vibrant photos.

Here in Montreal the fun is almost over. Most of the leaves are gone and everything looks washout and bleak.  But this is not the case in the parks and forests around the city. It took me only 25 km to drive away from the Island of Montreal and the picture was completely different. The trees in the forests were still on fire. The combination of fall foliage and sun blasting through the leaves, created soft and warm glow. It looked like magic forest.

Travel Photography Blog - Canada. Quebec. Montreal. Mont Saint Bruno National Park

Canada. Quebec. Montreal. Mont Saint Bruno National Park
Loc: 45.542355, -73.327213

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 3 Bracketed Shots (-1;  0; +1) [Read more...]

Seabourn Quest in Old Port of Montreal

We had long Canadian Thanksgiving weekend and I had some free time to spend on my photography. Friday afternoon, when I saw some amazing cloud formations over the city, I thought it would be interesting to photograph old port and downtown from  Jacques Cartier Bridge, which is the tallest bridge in Montreal.

It’s been a while since I had opportunity to photograph  from Jacques Cartier Bridge and I completely forgot how challenging it is due to its very strong vibrations caused by heavy traffic. My original plan was to take bracketed shots for HDR with longer exposures during the golden hour but I realized very soon that it was not possible. All my long exposure shots were blurry because of the vibration.

I had to change my strategy fast because Seabourn Quest cruise ship was approaching very fast. I changed aperture from F11 to F5 and boosted ISO to 320 which allowed me to shoot at shutter speed 1/320. Also I ditched my tripod and started shooting hand-held. But even at 1/320 half of my shots were very soft.

In the end, instead of HDR processing I used single RAW workflow in Lightroom and Photoshop. The main processing was done in Lightroom.

HDR Photography - Canada. Montreal. Lachine

Canada. Montreal. View from Jacques Cartier Bridge
Loc: 45.521733, -73.539904

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Post Processing: Single RAW Processing in Lightroom and Photoshop
[Read more...]

HDR with Compact Camera. Fall Sunset at the River (Montreal)

Not long time ago I posted tutorial on my blog “HDR Photography with Point and Shoot Camera”. In the tutorial I addressed concern of some of my readers that HDR photography can be prohibitive due to the need for the expensive photo equipment. I demonstrated how you can shoot for HDR with $300 point-and-shoot camera. 

Today’s photo is the direct result of my method I described in the tutorial which I use very often. Normally, when I go for run I try to do it around sunset hours so I have a chance to snap a few shots with my phone (Nexus 5). I love improved camera in my new Nexus, it allows me to take decent photos but at the same time I understand the limitation of its tiny sensor and luck of some DSLR functionalities.

When I anticipate good sunset colors during my run, I also bring my point-and-shoot Lumix LX7 with me to make sure I have an option to take multiple exposures in RAW format, when light becomes too dynamic, and process them for HDR later.

To take this photo I stopped for a second and snapped 3 bracketed shots (-2, 0, +2), hand-held and then kept running. When I got home it took me probably 10 min to process them in Lightroom, Photomatix and Photoshop.

Here is the result.

HDR Photography - Canada. Montreal. Lachine

Canada. Montreal. Lachine
Loc: 45.430421, -73.668736

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Post Processing: HDR Processed in Photomatix
[Read more...]

Mont-Saint-Bruno Fall Reflections (Canada)

Ello Is Still Going Strong

Ello (ello.co) is still alive and kicking. More and more photographers are joing it every day. Today I updated list of  Top Travel and Landscape Photographers to Follow on ELLO with 10 new names. I have list of 80 photographers now.

Fall Reflections In The Lake

I still can not figure out what kind of colors we are having this fall. Last few years it was nothing to be excited about; washout and dull colors. I am hoping for better palette this year.

This is my first photo of “fall colors” this year. While processing this image I decided to do something different, more artsy or even abstract. When I analyzed 3 bracketed photos, I took in Mont Saint Bruno park, I could see that the main attractions were reflections in the water of the lake and the top part of the composition, where sky is, was a bit weak and boring.

What I did was, I  flipped the entire image and cropped it the way to keep reflections only . Now, every single element of the image is the reflection in the water. It reminds me now impressionist painting.

Today, I am planning to go hunting for new fall images.

Travel Photography Blog - Canada. Quebec. Montreal. Mont Saint Bruno National Park

Canada. Quebec. Montreal. Mont Saint Bruno National Park
Loc: 45.542355, -73.327213

 

Deconstructing Featured Photo

Travel Photography Blog: 3 Bracketed Shots (-1;  0; +1) [Read more...]