3658 – Blue Lights

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO  Comments Off on 3658 – Blue Lights
Oct 242016

This is not a church, it’s the town hall or Hôtel de ville as the French say. I don’t know how old it is, but in any case the lights are pretty new. Of course their color cycles through the whole spectrum, a fancy and tasteful effect never seen before 🙂

My camera and I preferred blue.

3627 – Open the Door

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 25mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 3627 – Open the Door
Sep 232016

My new PEN-F has a 20 megapixel sensor, and while I can’t complain about its quality, it is only a very incremental change up from the E-M1.

On the other hand it is incredible how much of a game changer DxO is. This image has been taken with the PEN E-P5 (same sensor as the E-M1) at ISO 6400, f4 and 1/6s. I’ve shot it at night in a very, very dark part of the street. It looks like, well, maybe ISO 800. And it’s not only the lack of noise, it’s also the purity of colors. Buying DxO has given me the equivalent of maybe eight years of sensor development. That’s incredible.

OK, that’s just to put the improvements of the PEN-F into relation 🙂

3504 – RS at Night

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 3504 – RS at Night
May 232016

F3.2, 1/13s, ISO 6400. Dark again, but not only is the blue in the image much cleaner than it was from Lightroom, this time you have to look at the red fringe in the background. It’s clean and vivid, while in Lightroom it was completely washed out.

Can you improve a correctly lit daylight image using DxO PRIME? No, you can’t. To the contrary, it will cost you detail. Not much, but it will.

Above ISO 800? Seems like a safe bet on Micro Four Thirds. At ISO 1600 pretty much every camera will profit, and at any higher ISO it will work pure magic. You see me impressed.

3503 – The Circus is in Town!

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 3503 – The Circus is in Town!
May 222016

F1.8, 1/13s and ISO 6400? I suppose you agree: it must have been dark there 🙂

By the time you read this, the image should already be on Flickr in full size. Look at it at pixel level.

Not impressed? Ok, now look at the small red inscription on the green glass in the upper left corner. Look at the small yellow reflexes on the chrome against the dark sky. That’s what I mean when I praise DxO PRIME’s color purity. I’ve never seen anything like that before.

3481 – A Bike at Night

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 25mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 3481 – A Bike at Night
Apr 302016

I remembered to have taken this image around midnight, but no, it was just early evening. It didn’t make a difference though. In mid-January it’s all the same 🙂

The image posed a challenge though. It was taken at an Underground station with light coming mostly from orange sodium-vapor street lights, along with some much cooler light spill from the station. Believe me, there’s no proper white balance for the whole picture. I’ve used different gradients with different white balance settings and different exposure / contrast /saturation / vibrance settings, I’ve generally taken out a lot of blue, and at least the bike itself seems pretty accurate to me now.

Was it worth it? Well, as an exercise in any case, and I like at least the composition 😀

3421 – Rain has Fallen

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 45 mm f/1.8  Comments Off on 3421 – Rain has Fallen
Mar 012016

March again! It’s spooky how time flies by, right? Well, this image at least is from a rainy night in October.

We (yes, dear reader, you an I) have spent long, long four days in Lisbon. In the meantime you’ve seen all of September and now we’re already in mid-October. It was a stressful time and the few images taken since will fly by as well 🙂

3286 – A Few Days In Lisbon

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO  Comments Off on 3286 – A Few Days In Lisbon
Oct 172015

Some time ago I’ve spent a few days in Lisbon. I arrived at night, spent three full and a half days and have seen what you can see in such a short time, mostly the usual sights. I have not been in museums, I have not been in the suburbs, but other than that, I guess I’ve got a good impression.

I returned with 1244 exposures, 226 of them did I find worthy to process. They could fill this blog until next summer, but I’ll churn through them a little bit faster, frequently using more than one image per post. I’ll also mix in a few of the images taken since. At least that’s the plan 🙂

Today’s image was taken after midnight, on a short walk through the Bairro Alto, a part of the city full of bars and night life. My hotel was in Rua Garret, directly at the western entrance to the underground station Baixa-Chiado, two minutes from Largo de Camões, a place where I saw this figurine of Angela Merkel in the window of a shop. It made me smile 🙂

Sep 262015

I’ve read two articles recently, both about the IS, both on the website of a newspaper allowing for comments, and both made me wonder.

The first article was about a man getting sentenced to four years for recruiting IS fighters among Chechnyan refugees in Austria and transporting them to Syria. Everybody agreed that this man’s actions were obviously going too far. So do I. Less did I agree with all the hate and blind rage in the forums.

The second article was about the case of two girls, 16 and 17 or something like that, both from Chechnyan origin. I believe they came to Austria at an age of about four. Both are devout believers and both have had something like an online wedding via Skype with some guys fighting in Syria for the Islamic state.

The girls had intended to travel to Syria and either didn’t make it out of Austria or were caught in Turkey and returned. They were sentenced to 12 and 14 months each and put on probation for three years. The crime in question was “Support of a terrorist organization”.

The general tone of the comments to this second article disturbed me, I joined the conversation and soon found it even more disturbing. Here’s why:

Most of the comments found the sentences much too mild. Many called for at least five years without probation, best followed by life-long psychiatric treatment.

Someone stated that everybody even sympathizing with the IS should be incarcerated for at least one year.

Someone else asked “Would you really let (potential) IS barbarians in Austria get away unchallenged“?

Would you really let (potential) killers in Austria get away unchallenged?
Would you really let (potential) rapists in Austria get away unchallenged?
Would you really let (potential) bankrobbers in Austria get away unchallenged?
Would you really let (potential) shoplifters in Austria get away unchallenged?
Would you really let (potential) music pirates in Austria get away unchallenged?
Would you really let (potential) agitators in Austria get away unchallenged?
Would you really let (potential) dissidents in Austria get away unchallenged?

I am perfectly capable of doing all that. At every moment civilized society is only one step away from my violence getting unleashed. Would you let me get away with that? Or yourself, if you think about it?