Being at the summit of Mauna Kea on the Big Island is the most otherworldly experience I’ve had. It didn’t matter which direction I looked, it felt like another planet. This is the creatively named Canada-France-Hawaii telescope, leaving little to the imagination.
Other partners include Brazil, Taiwan and China, who will also have scheduled time with the telescope. There is actually nobody in these things! They are all controlled remotely and we were told you can view delayed imaging online, although I can’t remember where.
I used Topaz DeNoise to reduce the noise in this image, shot handheld at ISO 1600. The rest of the processing was done in Lightroom. I was going for the “Mars” effect, which is really how I felt looking out at this scene. A most incredible place!
Where’s the most otherworldly place you’ve been? Maybe you know more about these telescopes?! I’d love to hear from you.
After three weeks in Hawaii, this was the perfect way to say goodbye. Whilst our time on the south shore of Maui was short, I was hopeful we’d get to see one last sunset over the ocean before it was time to leave.
Unfortunately our last day on the islands was plagued by an unusual amount of rain which kept us inside for most of the day. But the bad weather lifted just before 6:30pm. I rushed out from our hotel to the ocean at Mokapu Beach Park so I could shoot the sunset.
It didn’t take long for me to find some interesting foreground on the shores of Hawaii. There were fantastic lava rock formations almost everywhere we went. It was at this moment I realised how much I was going to miss the ocean once we returned to Switzerland, but also how lucky I was to even be there at all.
During the day you can only see a plume of gas rising from the most active volcano in the world. But as the sun starts to set a faint glow begins to emerge from the Halema’uma’u crater of Mount Kilauea. The lava lake is bubbling away about 50m below the rim.
We arrived at the Jagger Museum viewing point in Volcanoes National Park to find many photographers already lined up ready for the sunset. I had to get pretty creative with my tripod to get this angle!
I overheard one person say how they’d been there all afternoon to get their spot. That’s not how I want to spend my vacation! Hopefully this proves you don’t need to get there so early to take a good photo, we arrived about 30 minutes before sunset.
Aloha! I’ve just returned from three weeks in incredible Hawaii, soaking up the sun and taking a ton of photos along the way. It might be a bit Hawaii heavy here on the blog over the next few weeks, so hopefully you’ll fall in love with the place as much as I have. And if you’ve visited the islands I hope to rekindle some fond memories for you!
Hawaii is famous for its beautiful displays of colour at sunset, with many people (both locals and tourists) taking the time to watch the spectacle pass each day. As soon as we arrived on the Big Island I was already looking forward to our first opportunity to take it all in.
The Fairmont Orchid was the perfect place to start our vacation, and this shot was taken just beside the hotel’s golf course. As we wandered towards the shoreline it was impossible to miss this great gazebo.
Fortunately the sun was setting just at its centre, so I lined everything up and hit the shutter. We then continued on to the shore and I got to work shooting amongst the lava rocks before dusk settled on the island.
Watching day turn to night around Lake Geneva is such a wonderful experience. Soon after the sun has set behind the Jura mountain range the buildings spring to life and the town shows its true colours. I don’t think there’s a much better spot to observe the beautiful transition than this one looking out towards the Jet d’Eau.
I really wanted to capture a sense of the night enveloping the town, so I spent about 2 hours with my tripod just watching the light change. Too early and the reflection would be too weak, too late and the day’s light would have passed. Of the many shots I took this was the most balanced.
Over the course of the evening I experimented with a variety of settings in Manual mode so that I could control both the aperture and shutter speed. Getting an exposure that was both long enough to blur the water and not too long to blow out the highlights of the buildings was an interesting challenge!
This was another great sunset we had here in Geneva recently. We’re experiencing a run of dull weather at the moment, but every now and then the clouds start to break up toward the end of the day and there is some great light scattered about the sky.
After I discovered it a couple of months ago this has become one of my go-to locations around the lake. Unfortunately a new boat has arrived since I took this shot, occupying the water on the left of the image. It doesn’t make for such a nice composition! So I’m going to look for an alternative next time I’m out.
What you can’t see in this published version are the cigarettes in the foreground, which I cloned out in Lightroom. It always baffles me that people think it’s ok to drop cigarette butts on the floor. I’m not sure how it’s different to any other kind of littering, which most people would find completely unacceptable!
We had another great sunset in Geneva this evening, and I finally managed to get my tripod down to the lake. This meant I could take some longer exposures and really capture the reflections in the water. Fortunately the lake was calm so the moored boats were not bobbing around too much. Otherwise I would have had some pretty blurry boats in this shot!
I think I made it just in time for the best of the light, and decided to experiment with some new angles. I wanted to get up higher so I could capture more of the water below. Climbing up onto the rocky ridge beside the path gave me the prefect vantage point, allowing me to include more of the lovely reflections and Lake Geneva’s incredibly clear water in a single shot.
This is definitely my new favourite composition from this spot around the lake. Sooner or later I will have to move on and try to find somewhere better, but for now I just can’t get enough of this location!
Do you have a favourite spot you go back to time and time again? What makes it your favourite?