The Essence of Selfoss

In a couple of weeks, we shall again depart north for our annual photography outing (i.e. no business, no family, no problems - just shooting). Though we initially planned Lofoten, for some reasons we ended up going to Iceland once more, this time in winter. So no wonder I go through my older work when planning the trip. I've posted some texts and images already here and some other, too. And a few more here and even Ota created a video. We simply love the place. I have many more photographs to share but one place was really special. Read on. (Summer 2010)... After having spent few miserable rainy days in the fishermens village near Landmannalaugar, we lost patience and decided to cross the island to try our chances in the north. The journey itself turned into much more adventurous event than what we expected, with rough rocky roads, deep and wild river crossings and endless lava fields to go through.

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Photo of the Week - October 10, 2011

From time to time I had been thinking about trying a large format camera, but I never made any effort into it, and most importantly I have been more than happy with my Contax 645. It is really great camera, which fully suits all my landscape photography needs and its autofocus ability is also quite handy when it comes to family snapshots. However, when Marek showed me his new Linhof Techno and all the fantastic features which large format camera can offer I was very impressed, and I started to think about trying it by myself. It is quite obvious that Marek has quite big influence on mine own photography and unfortunately also on my cash-flow:) Few month latter after Marek’s visit here in Geneva, I was ordering my first large forma camera from Robert White in UK. I was quite happy, because they just got very gently used Ebony RSW 45, which is designed by Robert White and Joe Cornish especially for wide angle landscape photography. Due to its design it can take lenses from 45 to 210 mm, which is the perfect focal range for my type of photography. On the other hand this is entry level camera, which provides limited movements, which at the end I do not mind, since it is much easier to use and it should also minimise  a chance for error. When I took the camera from box I was surprised that it is actually smaller than I expected. The precision with which Ebony cameras are made was obvious on the first look, the dark ebony wood together with titanium metal parts look simply stunning. The whole camera is very solid and all movements are very smooth.

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Photo of the Week - September 26, 2011

The longer I do have photography as a hobby, the more it represents an open dialogue between me and nature, rather than speed and quantity oriented picture taking, how It used to right at the beginning of my photography journey. I am personally trying to develop my own active dialogue with nature, but in the same time I am trying to hear or better to say observe ongoing dialogues between other different nature objects and I put myself in the position of distant listener, who does not want to interrupt ongoing discussions.

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Photo of the Week – August 7, 2011

Today was quite special day for me, since I went to a first photo workshop in my life. The topic was traditional black and white printing, and my tutor was one of the best printers in Geneva region, or maybe in whole Switzerland, Aurélien Garzarolli from Actinic studio here in Geneva. We started at 9 am with some introduction to silver gelatin black and white process and after a while I was learning how to use masking tools for dodging and burning    with some prints on RC paper. In the afternoon, when I got some confidence with using the masking tools, I had a chance to start with printing on baryta papers (Ilford Multigrade FB Warmtone). I do realize that I am still influence by this experience, but watching the photograph to slowly emerge on baryta paper is somehow special and when I saw the final photograph under normal light, with all the deep shadows, rich whites and smooth gradient in mid tones, I was very very impressed, despite the fact that my mentor was not so happy about my first print, but that was kind of expected:)

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Photo of the Week - July 17, 2011

I took this photograph this year in February during my trip to Norway. It was one one the many photo trips I have been together with Marek. However, I now more and more prefer to go out taking pictures on my own, traveling with Marek is always very easy and of course a lot of fun. Even though, we have been visiting the same places for many years we very rarely manage to get similar photographs. I guess that it has also something to do with the fact that we both are using different medium, Marek color slide film Fuji Velvia and I use black and white films or converting the digital files to black and white latter. This trip to Lofoten was little bit different, since unlike for example Iceland, there were not many opportunities to spread around the locations and find different subjects matters.

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Photo of the Week - June 19, 2011

I moved to Geneva in 2007 and since than the surrounding mountains were the primer target for my photography and I have been trying to get up there as often as possible. I have quite a stressful day job, so it has also been giving me the opportunity to relax and handle the daily stress a little bit better. I very often came back home from my mountain hikes physically exhausted, but with fresh mind ready for another day. When some time passed by, and we were getting more and more settled here in Geneva, I have begun to pay attention to other photo locations in my neighbourhood, and guess who was the first obvious candidate. Of course it was the lake, one of the biggest in Western Europe. To give you a brief description, the lake is split 60/40 between Switzerland and France. In Switzerland itself it goes trough three cantons (Geneva, Vaud and Valais) covering the total area of 345 square kilometres. While the entire world knows the lake under the name Lake Geneva, the locals - meaning all the many great cities on the Swiss and neighbour French shores - call it Lac Leman.

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Photo of the Week - May 29, 2011

This is one of the few photographs I took on Iceland, during my second trip in summer 2010, where luck played bigger role than precise preparation. There is very special thing about long exposures, you never know what the result will look like until you really see the final photograph. In this case the exposure time was 140 seconds and the ice formation was facing the incoming tide very bravely without being moved too much, so even on the big print both pieces of ice are still reasonably sharp.

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Shooting Northern Lights

Some of you might have seen this picture already on lightharmony or facebook but I can find no better to kick off the Photo of the Week category than this one. It's the result of the most exciting photographic adventures I have gone through this year and perhaps ever. I've been dreaming to witness the Northern Lights for the last few years but only this March all elements came in alignment and I got lucky. Originally, I just wished to watch and photograph it. Then, let it happily rest in my archive and pursue other little projects. But the magic of aurora can't be described with words and I only know now that the night I saw it was just the beginning of our long-term dating.

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