Archive for December, 2009

Happy Holidays!




I just wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas and some great Holidays with family, friends and whomever you will spend your time with. If you have some fresh snow, go out and take a walk to enjoy the beauty of it and do not take it for granted.

For years I believed to live in a snow-safe area but since the dry and cold air masses from Russia stopped colliding with the wet ones moving in from the UK, we seem to have a hard time around Christmas each year, snow-wise speaking. We had a good cover already, something to build up on, but right in the middle of Christmas Eve the thermometer revealed 41F/5C which is a major disappointment.

Anyhow, after the break, I’ll be back to Dresden to shoot the city with Mr. Blue Hour himself, Mr. David Bank, flying straight in from London. Really looking forward to that and I am in high hopes the weather will cooperate.

I’ll leave you with an old favorite of mine. A square crop from one of the majestic winter sunsets I have witnessed. Standing atop the highest mountain in the region let’s you reflect on the past but also makes you look forward to the great things to conquer in the days, weeks and months to come, so now I said it, I am looking forward to 2010 but I will cover my excitement with the New Year’s post.

Until then, happy shooting! Never stop exploring! 😉


A Visit To Lower Loop




With Christmas just around the corner and the holiday machinery running full force, it was about time the mountains finally saw some snow and I admit, I too was pretty happy when I saw the forecast for the past weekend. A sudden temperature drop to 10 degrees prevented a thick cover though, that I was hoping for, but a nice white dusting veiled the mountains.

Sunday morning I made my way out to a spot I haven’t been before but knew it was going to be a great experience when I saw the trail head to an 8 mile loop up the valley through a vast forest in Germany’s Ore Mountains. Let’s say this, the first two miles are great, the rest was rather strenuous and required a little dedication.

Here’s the creek running down along the trail for the first mile or so after uniting from several really small water sources. Click on the picture for a larger view!


Canon Rebel XSi with Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 @ 12mm, 0.8sec, f/18.

While the snow was nice to look at in person, having the appearance of powdered sugar, it was difficult to photograph since the trees do not provide any kind of natural filter this time of the year due to the lack of foliage and the low amount of snow made the scenes look cluttered but this didn’t stop me from shooting. It is December and only the second time I had snow under my feet! Nothing was going to stop me!

Another composition with countless broken tree trunks from the past winters lining up with the diagonal layers of rocks and the rushing water.


Canon Rebel XSi with Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 @ 11mm, 0.8sec, f/20.

While I probably will not do the complete hike again, I am pretty confident to return when the creek has seen a good amount of snow and then definitely in the spring when the greens of the beeches and ferns will be glowing.

“The Remnants of the Past” were omnipresent during the whole time. Old or cut-down tree trunks adorn the trail up the mountain and the one depicted made the best foreground against a small meadow where snow and ice covered the spruces in the background, all lit up by early morning light.


Canon Rebel XSi with Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 @ 11mm, 0.8sec, f/20.

It’s that time of the year again where the big hunt for Christmas presents falls into place and to the surprise of many I still have to hunt some good things down. So, see you later folks with part two of the past weekend.

Happy Holiday Season and cheers on a successful hunt!

The Infinite Wait




Thought I’d just throw this one up real quick for tonight to let everyone know I am still alive and breathing. The past weeks have been extremely stressful due to certain projects and other university-related commitments, I haven’t got the chance to get out a lot. To speak the truth, I haven’t been out more than two or three times and these short hikes were not fruitful photographically speaking but they are nice little hideaways from the daily habits.

The shot that accompanies today’s post was taken way back in the middle of October when I experienced the first snowfall of the season and there was hope we could be looking forward to a great winter. A week later, all snow was gone and the warmest November I remember made its way into the history books. Now, in December, I am still waiting for a decent snow cover to veil the landscape. I am really not sure what to think about the weather situation. Could it be the global warming kicking in? Anyhow, I am really hoping for a white Christmas and looking forward to some photographic tours which have yet to be planned in detail but rest assured, you’ll be the first to know.

While snow-shoeing through the freshly fallen snow, the sky seemed to clear a little from the layer of fog that was surrounding the 4000ft. peak of the Fichtelberg in Germany’s Ore Mountains and I set up for a shot into the deep forest covering all flanks of the mountain when a beautiful deer rambled into the scene. This is certainly not the composition I usually would have chosen but it was impossible not to shoot the deer. I got lucky with this one for sure. The deer posed for a few seconds, I snapped a frame and with the sound of the shutter it went off, deeper into the forest.

first snow of the season

Canon Rebel XSi with Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 @ 11mm, 1/20sec, f/14.

There’s still hope for a little snow before the year will come to an end though. How did you fare so far? Happy with the weather – or not? Feel free to leave a comment with your experiences.

Best wishes,