Category Archives: Thailand

A Thai Elephant’s Backside

Elephant, Thailand

Just after washing the elephants in a nearby river, I snapped this one wandering away from us back to the fields. I was very wet at the time and the afternoon heat was slowly drying me off. Our experience at the Elephant Nature Park was full of magical moments like this.

I recently spent some time going through my back catalogue of photos to clear some hard drive space. I took far too many photos of elephants during our day here! I guess you don’t have much choice if you want to capture the moment with unpredictable animals.

That reminds me of a quick Lightroom tip that may be helpful – if you press the ‘x’ key on a photo Lightroom will mark it as Rejected. You can go through a bunch of photos marking the ones you don’t want. Then select “Delete Rejected Photos” from the Photo menu options, and voila! All the bad eggs will be gone. It’s a nice way to make your workflow that little bit more efficient.

The Buddhas Of Wat Chedi Luang

Buddhas, Wat Chedi Luang

There can be no doubt that the Buddhas of Wat Chedi Luang look their best in the dark. When dusk turns to night and the lights come on around the temple, there’s a quiet and relaxing ambiance that can’t be found during the heat of the day in Chiang Mai.

Perhaps it was because there were far fewer people, or because I wasn’t constantly on the look out for shade. Whatever the reason, this place was more magical once the sun had set, and so I spent an hour exploring the angles around the temple.

It took a while to get this shot all lined up. I was using a small mini-tripod which left me about 25cm from the ground setting up the camera. Unfortunately these things are never completely symmetrical, which I always find very disappointing!

A Longtail In Paradise

Paradise In Thailand

For about an hour it was pretty much paradise! When we arrived for lunch on our tour with Phuket Sail Tours this beach was completely deserted. Unfortunately I’m not sure exactly where it is, but I think it’s on Koh Phi Phi Don in Thailand. Maybe someone out there with eagle eyes can help me out?

The perfect isolation lasted until these chugging longtail boats turned up with some fellow tourists. At least they made a great subject for this photo! And we left shortly after to escape to another quiet spot elsewhere.

What drew me to this shot was the negative space in the bottom half of the photo. I think it does a great job of leading the eye to the top half where the main subject is. It’s the first time I’ve consciously noticed this crazy effect surrounding negative space, I’ll definitely be looking out for it more in the future!

Do you recognise this beach?! Maybe you can tell me where it is? Or maybe you like using negative space in your photography? I’d love to hear from you!

A Chiang Mai Market Salesman

Salesman, Chiang Mai

While exploring one of the night markets in Chiang Mai I spotted this chap watching over his stall. Or perhaps he is half asleep! It’s hard to tell. Sometimes you get lucky with photography, and this was one of those unplanned moments that I just had to capture. Even if it was a fleeting, sneaky snap!

There are so many things I love about this scene it’s hard to know where to start. The posture, the wooly hat, the facial expression and the less obvious bare foot paint such a vivid picture of this man’s character. And the light source coming into shot from the right worked wonderfully.

I really enjoyed trying some street photography while visiting Thailand last year. Maybe it’s because everything seemed so foreign to me, but there were just so many interesting subjects in every direction. I don’t have the same feeling at all when exploring Europe, but I wish I could recreate it somehow. Wouldn’t that be great?!

A Bumpy Ride Towards A Phuket Sunrise

Sunrise, Phuket, Thailand

With the wind in my hair I volunteered to sit at the front of the boat, having no idea that it was the most uncomfortable spot on the thing. Especially in choppy conditions! Riding towards the sunrise in Phuket must be one of my most memorable experiences to date.

I may have been fearing for the integrity of my spine as I bounced up and down with the waves. But being at the front meant I had an unobstructed view of the beauty unfolding right in front of us. I didn’t regret a minute of it, although my back may have disagreed at the time.

Placing the boat in the foreground to provide some perspective and a sense of place, I wanted to use the middle of the bow as a subtle leading line to the sunrise. Trying to get a clean shot while being thrown about every few seconds proved very difficult! I definitely didn’t have many keepers at the end of the trip, but fortunately one or two made the cut.

Do you have any tales of woe from a boating experience? Or maybe you’ve tried shooting from a fast moving vehicle before? I’d love to hear from you!

Changing Of The Guard In Bangkok

Changing of the Guard, Bangkok

Exploring the Grand Palace of Bangkok we were lucky enough to witness the changing of the guard. It happens once every 2 hours all around the palace grounds. I couldn’t believe the size of the guns these guys were carrying!

It was fun to watch them go through their choreographed routine, even if it was a little bit scary. I’m not sure why it made me feel uneasy, I guess I’m just not used to seeing guns. It was probably only the second or third time I’ve seen them in real life!

I used the Cross Process 2 Lightroom preset on this shot before making a few other small edits. This preset seems to work quite well on lots of the images I have from Thailand. I think it brings a tropical, exotic feel to the colours which I haven’t been able to recreate myself.

A Wat To Remember

Wat Phra Kaew, Bangkok

The Wat Phra Kaew complex in Bangkok was so full of colour and shiny things that it was often difficult to know where to look. Whilst it was a feast for the eyes, I really struggled to get any good shots around the grounds.

There was so much going on in every direction it was hard to find a composition that didn’t feel confused or messy. So when I looked up and saw all of these nice lines in parallel I was pleasantly surprised.

Travelling around Thailand there are so many temples that it can be easy to dismiss them after a while – a phenomenon I’ve decided to call “temple tired”. However, I can’t say I suffered from this affliction.

Without exception I found each Buddhist temple we visited to be a peaceful, inspiring place. I can certainly see why people find a spiritual connection in them.

Have you visited any Buddhist temples? How did you find the experience? Maybe you got temple tired?! I’d love to hear from you.