Sunday, March 31, 2013

Beach View

When we spent a weekend in St. Peter Ording at the North Sea lately, the weather was very odd. There was no wind, whatsoever, but thick, standing fog. It was cold, too.

Well, February is not spring time, but I have not really ever seen the North Sea without wind.

St. Peter-Ording is know for its great and really large beaches and the pole houses on them, safe from the tides, providing the rescue-forces place, restaurants, restrooms and such out there on the beach.


Saturday, March 30, 2013

A guest

This red squirrel has not been coming regularly but more often lately. He or she shows up in the mornings and eats bird food that has fallen down and nuts that we leave out for it. It has also been snacking on some fungus on the fire wood.

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Moon

For a while now I have wanted to take a good photo of the moon.

Now that I have the Sigma 150-500mm I finally felt that I had a chance of getting there.

The lens is not at its sharpest when you fully zoom, so I kept it at 439mm. f/11. My first good result was at 1/30 of a second and while the bottom left came out great, as you can tell, the top right blew out. It really is due to motion. Hard to believe but it moves that fast, really.

Canon 60D, Sigma 150-500mm at 439mm, ISO 100, f/11.0, 1/30 Sec.

Then I tried it again with a lot shorter of an exposure time: 1/125 sec. Now I am pretty happy with it.

The photos I took from the window sill of our hotel room in La Rochen-en-Ardenne, Belgium, this week.

Canon 60D, Sigma 150-500mm at 439mm, ISO 100, f/11.0, 1/125 Sec.

Both images developed in Lightroom and somewhat cropped.

White and Blue

I am driving by this building quite often before or after work. I liked it for years. But like many of those places that you are close to, you just never take a picture at all. Why is that? Maybe because your inner prefectionist has that perfect condition mapped out and that moment just never comes around? Or because you think you could do it any day and there would be countless options so there is no rush? Sometimes because you think, it's just not that special.

Well, this house is the chappel room of a cemetary. Last week I was driving by it and the snow had fallen - again - and the blue in the sky was still lingering.

Ich fahre an diesem Gebäude häufig vor oder nach der Arbeit vorbei. Ich mochte es schon seit Jahren. Aber wie viele andere Orte, an denen man nah dran ist, macht man nie überhaupt ein Bild. Warum ist das so? Vielleicht weil der innere Perfektionist einem sagt, dass die perfekten Bedingungen für das Bild, das man sich vorstellt, nicht eingetreten sind? Oder weil man denkt, dass man es ja jeden Tag machen könnte und man endlos viele Möglichkeiten hätten, sodass man sich nicht wirklich beeilen müsste? Manchmal, weil man denkt, dass es vielleicht doch nicht so besonders ist.

Dieses Gebäude ist die Kapelle eines Friedhofs. Letzte Woche fuhr ich vorbei, Schnee war gefallen - mal wieder - und das Blau im Himmel war noch nicht ganz fort.


Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Raven's Look

Taken from my office window with my Sigma 150-500 at 439mm. I really like the bokeh it creates. The highlights in the back are light and snowy parts in the bushes and trees. Partly sky, partly snow.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


This photo I took for my running contest "Canonfreaks vs. Nikonjunkies" for round 37. I did not win by points but I still like my photo.

Dieses Bild habe ich für meinen Contest "Canonfreaks vs. Nikonjunkies" für Runde 37 gemacht. Ich habe mein Thema nicht gewonnen, aber ich mag mein Bild.

Monday, March 25, 2013

a field bird

Can anyone name this bird? Photographed in Iceland last summer.

Kann mir jemand sagen, was das für ein Vogel ist? Aufgenommen in Island letzten Sommer.


Sunday, March 24, 2013

A pool to lounge in

This is the pool outside the new Snaefell Mountain Lodge (not the one next to the glacier / snow field, but the one most way up the valley)

We lounged in this pool at sunset the night we stayed at the hostel. It was so great and so relaxed with a great view. Very warm and very reccomendable.


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Hey Ladies!

This is a typical view of Icelandic sheep. These ladies looked at me funnily.

Das ist ein typischer Blick auf isländische Schafe. Diese Damen sahen mich seltsam an.


Friday, March 22, 2013

Chickadee Madness

Yesterday morning, I took a few minutes before work to test my new Sigma lens. It is the Sigma 150-500mm lens and I was excited to try it on the birds in the back yard so I rushed on breakfast to gain some time.

These chickadees rewarded me well for that.

The lens is heavy and therefore quite different from my usual gear. I used it without tripod this morning, anyways. If you want to judge the lens quality, please note that I was shooting through a glass panel door not to scare off the birds that were assembling. It does reduce the quality, I admit. I still like them.

Just too cute but also wildly comical, if you ask me.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Good Bye Winter

We have all seen enough of winter, right? But this photo I wanted to share with you anyways. Taken at the end of February in Oberkrichen.

Wir haben alle genug vom Winter, oder? Aber dieses Photo wollte ich Euch jedenfalls spendieren. Aufgenommen Ende Februar in Oberkirchen.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Raven in the air

I was on that walk that yesterday's photo is from, too, and the minimalist horse of Monday. And I spotted this raven above me. He first looked at me from his perch, than took flight.

Ich war auf dem Spaziergang, von dem auch das Bild von gestern stammt - und das minimalistische Pferd von Montag. Da habe ich diesen Raben über mir entdeckt. Erst hat er mich von seinem Ansitz aus betrachtet, dann flog er weg.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

just ducky

Seen on a weekend walk behind our house. These two mallard ducks were browsing by us and I grabbed the camera, aimed and got lucky just in time for their landing.
This is the best of the 3 shots in motion.

Gesehen neulich auf einem Wochenendspaziergang hinter unserem Haus. Die beiden Enten flogen an uns vorbei, ich griff nach der Kamera, habe gezielt und hatte Glück. Das ist das beste der 3 Bilder in Bewegung, gerade als sie landen.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Panning the Woods

The panning technique works best, when everything in view is directed in roughly the same way.

This photo I took yesterday in the woods near our house.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Robin Again

I just love the stance of this robin!

Ich liebe einfach die Haltung dieses Rotkehlchens!

Friday, March 15, 2013


Salt fields in St. Peter-Ording, Germany.

Salzwiesen in St. Peter-Ording.

Thursday, March 14, 2013


This red robin is one of the frequent visitors to our house. The branch is in the way but the look is just so cute!

Dieses Rotkehlchen ist ein regelmäßiger Besucher bei uns zuhause. Der Zweig ist im Weg, aber der Blick ist so süß.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


Bird found in Northern Germany (Tümmlauer Koog) and photographed from (stopped) car.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

the snacker

We have a feeding station in the cherry tree, with yummy nuts. But what does the squirrel come to snack on? The fungus on the wood chopping block.

Wir haben eine Futterstation im Kirschbaum. Mit leckeren Nüssen. Aber was will das Eichhörnchen snacken? Die Pilze auf unserem Hackklotz.

(How to) Let the sun shine in!

I did show this photo before but today I want to explain how I made it and what makes it, in my eyes. I also think that a lot of you will enjoy this sunshine today.
Ich habe dieses Bild schon einmal gezeigt, aber heute möchte ich erklären, wie ich es gemacht habe und was es in meinen Augen ausmacht. Außerdem glaube ich, dass sich heute viele über Sonnenschein freuen werden.

Templar Castle, Tomar, Portugal
When taking photos in bright sun shine you can either live with the limitations of the high contrast or try to use it to your advantage. They say: Never take photos at noon. And there is something to be said for that. But only for some kind of photos.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with this one, is there?  Limiting the brigth section of the sky and the aura of the sun by squinting it in the corner, helped the photo. Closing the apperature severely (f/22 or something along those lines, I bet), made the sun star shaped.

The large dark section in the middle gave me enough room to let some details prevail with all the differences it offers. I did plainly have to accept, that the actual sun and its rays are burned out and plain white. No way around it. But the little tree, illuminated from the opposite side, made this photo radiate brightness.
Wenn man bei praller Sonne fotografiert, muss man entweder mit den Einschränkungen durch hohen Kontrast leben oder man muss sie zu seinem Vorteil nutzen. Man sagt: Fotografiere nie zur Mittagszeit. Und für manche Fotos ist da auch was dran. Aber eben nur für manche.

Mit diesem hier ist doch absoult nichts verkehrt, oder? Ich habe die helle Sektion des Himmels weitgehend eingeschränkt und die Aura um die Sonne herum nur teilweise mit ins Bild genommen, indem ich sie in diesen Bogen hineingerückt habe. Mit einer sehr weit geschlossenen Blende (f/22, vermute ich), habe ich die Sonne zu sternförmiger Überstrahlung gebracht.

Die große dunklere Portion des Bildes liegt so weit in der Mitte, dass ich in ihr noch Details erhalten konnte, weil sie das Bild dominiert und genügend Abwechslung bietet. Ich musste schlicht akzeptieren, dass die Sonne selbst und ihre Strahlen ausgebrannt sind. Hier sind keine Details mehr erhalten geblieben. Aber der kleine Baum in der Mitte, angestrahlt von der anderen Seite, gibt diesem Foto eine sommerliche Ausstrahlung.

Monday, March 11, 2013

21 deer

While out on a photo cruise around our home town, we found some deer in the field. I showed you photos of them last week. Here is a wider view of the field, showing all 21 deer at the same time.

click for larger view!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

A local farm

We all forget how great our own places are, at least most of the time.

There are so many photographers who keep saying that they would take great landscape photos or wildlife shots if they just had the time or money to travel.

We just took three hours in the afternoon, last week's Saturday. We drove around for 2 hours getting out of the car every once in a while. And the output we got on this relatively bright but still hazy day was amazing. Check my posts from last Sunday to today. This is just a selection of our highlights. I did not yet get to show them all off.

This is not a wildlife photo, so stop searching the picture for any animal. But I think a look at our local landscape - and this farm estate - give you an impression of where the photos of last week were taken.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Friday, March 8, 2013

Deer in the woods

These deer were in a different field on the same afternoon out last Saturday. I did already say that this was a successfull way of wildlife.

These were so undisturbable that I could walk a long way across the field, leaving my car behind to get closer to them.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Oh Deer!

While cruising around the eastern outskirts of our home town we spottet a bunch of wildlife. And as mostly, the animals are too far away or there is just no way on earth you can stop for taking photos.

But we got lucky. 

As it is pre-seaons for hunting deer are still out and not all that shy. In this one field we found a group of 21 deer. This is a portion of this group.

These deer are wild and shy and we had the feeling that if we got any closer without cover - that we did not have - we would scare them off. So we did not try that.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Swans in spring

We seem to have a much larger amount of whooper swans travel trough our area than I can remember in the past.

These two here were sharing a field with several others. I liked their parallel behaviour and used them as my favorite models.

This is yet another photo from last Saturdays afternoon out.

After the most grey winter in 70 years as statistics say, I hardly got outdoors for photography. So we went out - just for 3 hours - by car and set ourselves the goal of good photos of at least 5 different birds. Well, we met our goal, went past it and kept going. This was shere success and a great start for the outdoor season.

The weather was not brilliant, as you can tell, but there was no percipitation and there was sun out. Let's just keep calling it a great day.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

An egret in the field

In the same meadow area the last two postings were from and from the same Saturday excursion I have more photos to show.

On our way out we saw yet another heron swooping over us. This time, though, it was not a grey heron, that is more common to the area but a great white heron / egret.

I know the light was not amazing anymore. But the bird was.

Monday, March 4, 2013

A coot in the reeds

This bald coot was sitting in the reeds of a small pond in a local area. This area is a natural river meadows region equipped with hiking paths and fences to keep people off the fields that are reserved to wildlife.

The coot was residing in this pond that we walked over so we got a good angle for photos.

This place is close to our home and is full of interesting birds, rabits and other wildlife. I will show a lot more photos from there in the next days. Yesterdays photo of the cormorant was from there, too.


Sunday, March 3, 2013

The Cormorant at Sunset

The sunset was closing in and the bird watch was getting to its end. Just before heading home we spottet this cormorant high up in a tree above the river.

I stalked along the opposite bank of the river until I got to line up the scene just as I liked it. What I did have no influence on was the direction it turned its head. I would have loved him to look the opposite way a few more times, but he just didn't. That's wildlife!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Colors for Fun

For my running contest, Canonfreaks vs. Nikonjunkies, I took this photo among others. My topic was "everyday household items".

This is not the photo I entered into the contest, but I think I should have.


Friday, March 1, 2013

Swans, everywhere

We did read about the lagoon and bay at Hvalnés. We did find out that the whooper swans would gather there before they went on their winter migration. We read that thousands of them would come together there.

This was on a foggy day. And so early in the season that we didn't expect any gatherin to have begun. 

Then we took deeper looks into the fog and into the counterlight and got rewarded. All together we did get to see a few thousand swans, most likely, in this one lagoon.