My Photography (27) — Trust, Bodrum, Turkey, 2017

September 29, 2017 · 12:41

While sightseeing around the marina in Bodrum, I saw this cute cat, lying down in front of a Harley-Davidson (or whatever it was). The bike’s owner was just getting ready to ride off, but the cat was in the way. Even after a huge roar from the engine, it didn’t budge.

Arrogant? Definitely. Very trusting though.

Shot with Sony A7R II + FE 28 mm f/2: f/2.2, 1/6000 s, ISO 100.


Austin Mann Takes the iPhone 8 Plus to India →

September 23, 2017 · 07:39

Austin Mann:

I’m writing to you from a small hotel room in India having just experienced a magical adventure in western India orchestrated by friends at Ker & Downey. I’ve shot thousands of images and countless portraits with the iPhone 8 Plus and I’m excited to share what I’ve learned.

While the iPhone 8 Plus looks essentially the same as the phone we’ve had since the 6 Plus, there are some new features in the 8 Plus which really impact creative pros across the board — most notably Portrait Lighting, along with a few other hidden gems.

I know what I can achieve with my iPhone. While I’m sure the 8 and 8 Plus have great cameras, Austin is the one that can use them to create art, instead of just simple snapshots. Amazing work, as usual — make sure to go to his site to see all of his shots.

Photo credit: Austin Mann


iPhone 8 Plus Is The Best Smartphone Camera Ever Tested By DxOMark →

September 22, 2017 · 18:27

David Cardinal, writing for DxOMark:

The Apple iPhone 8 Plus has a main camera system truly worthy of a flagship phone. Similar to the iPhone 7 Plus, it features two cameras — a wide-angle 12MP main camera, and a 12MP telephoto camera with a slower lens for zooming in on subjects and for special effects such as Portrait mode. Comparing the camera datasheets of the older iPhone 7 Plus and the new iPhone 8 Plus make the two look almost identical; however, under-the-hood upgrades have given the 8 Plus an image quality and camera performance boost in almost every one of our tested categories.

I’m still curious as to the exact physical changes in the camera system — Phil Schiller said that the sensors are now larger, but what are their sizes? While the latter certainly helps, it appears that the greatest advances in the near future will be made on the software side.


Seasons Of Norway — A Time-Lapse Adventure In 8K

April 4, 2017 · 09:47

Morten Rustad:

With its imposing mountains, endless plateaus and echoing valleys, Norway is a country where nature takes the lead. Using time-lapse, this film attempts to capture the ebb and flow of the seasons and is a result of one year of planning, a second year of shooting and four months of editing.

20,000 kilometers have been travelled, 200,000 photos taken and 20 terabytes worth of hard drives filled. Months have been spent hiking through the mountains, sleeping in tents and travelling through the entire country hunting for the best locations.

Simply fantastic.

Watch the video →


My Photography (26) — Sheikh Zayed Mosque, UAE, 2017

March 20, 2017 · 16:55

We had a 7-hour layover in Abu Dhabi, on our way back from the Seychelles, so naturally, we had to go see the city, with the Sheikh Zayed Mosque being our first stop. I still remember when I first saw the city over 30 years ago, basically, a village in the desert — the contrast is amazing — but this place of religion is simply stunning to behold.

Shot with Sony A7R II + FE 28 mm f/2: f/6.3, 119 s, ISO 100.


My Photography (25) — Tail End of the Milky Way, Mahé, Seychelles, 2017

March 18, 2017 · 06:50

I waited 18 days and 18 nights to get this shot. I was planning to do a lot of night sky photography before arriving on Mahé and Praslin, but unfortunately, my plans were for nought. Firstly, the full moon was a huge problem — it was bright enough to cast a shadow. Secondly, the night sky was almost always covered with clouds, which usually dispersed in the morning. Lastly, there is a surprising amount of light pollution on the island — I did not expect this at all.

The shot above is unfortunately far from perfect — you can see one of the ends of the Milky Way on it. Had I waited for the centre of the Milky Way to rise above the horizon, the bright moon would have joined it, ruining the shot. Hope you like it nonetheless.

Shot with Sony A7R II + FE 28 mm f/2: f/2.8, 15 s, ISO 3200.


My Photography (23) — The Most Beautiful Beach in the World, Curieuse, Seychelles, 2017

March 15, 2017 · 16:27

Having spent two weeks over here, I have been fortunate enough to see many beaches on the islands of Mahé, Praslin, La Digue, and Curieuse. All of them are beautiful in their own way, but the southern beach on the last of the aforementioned islands is my favourite — calm and peaceful, with crystal clear waters, lazy and colourful fish… It’s as close to perfect as I could imagine.

Shot with Sony A7R II + FE 28 mm f/2: f/8, 1/640 s, ISO 100.


My Photography (22) — Giant 80-Year-Old Tortoise, Curieuse, Seychelles, 2017

March 13, 2017 · 16:19

Giant tortoises can be found on two islands (that I know of) in the Seychelles — on La Digue in a closed off park and running wild (not the perfect phrasing, but you know what I mean) on the small island of Curieuse. They can be fed with various leaves and other shrubs that grow on the island and are quiet friendly. Just don’t put your fingers in their mouths — they will bite it (off?).

Shot with Sony A7R II + FE 28 mm f/2: f/2.8, 1/800 s, ISO 100.


My Photography (20) — Sunrise in Paradise, Praslin, Seychelles, 2017

March 10, 2017 · 19:06

I am currently traveling and away from all forms of communication, which I have come to consider ubiquitous. I was a bit surprised that connecting to the internet is no simple task over here, despite me being in the middle of the Indian Ocean. I did however want to share this amazing sunrise — one of many — to which we awoke a few days ago. The beauty of this place is that the sun and sky give a unique and equally grand performance every single day.

Shot with Sony A7R II + FE 28 mm f/2: f/10, 30 s, ISO 100.


My Photography (16) — Spiral Staircase, Vatican Museums, 2014

February 16, 2017 · 13:00

The Spiral Staircase in the Vatican Museums was designed by Giuseppe Momo in 1932 — we spent only half a day inside, which was definitely not long enough. I suggest putting aside at least a full day, if you’re planning on going there. Two preferably.

Oh, and buy a ticket online, on the Vatican Museums’ webpage (beware of intermediaries!), to skip the line completely!

Shot with Nikon D700 + Nikkor 14-24 mm f/2.8G: f/8, 1/50, ISO 1400, 14 mm.


My Photography (15) — Bergen by Night, Norway, 2015

February 16, 2017 · 07:00

We spent three days in Bergen with our friends. Our wives and their boy were out taking in the sights of the city, looking for a restaurant, while we jumped on the Fløibanen to get some shots from the hills above the city — Fløyen to be precise. Hectic, but completely worth it.

Shot with Fuji X100T: f/5.6, 30 s, ISO 200.


How Travel Photography Inspires Lisa Bettany to Battle Injury and Heartbreak →

January 25, 2017 · 14:14

Lisa Bettany:

Like many young Canadians growing up on the prairies, I learned how to skate on an outdoor rink. I was a feisty 3-year-old with a zest for dramatic expression and an insatiable hunger to compete. Figure skating became my passion and purpose until I was 21. One slight miscalculation lead to a horrible fall which broke my back and plunged my life into a spiral of pain and hopelessness.

I spent the next 8 years in darkness. Immobilized in my bed, I would stare up at the ceiling and feel so powerless. I cut out photographs of beautiful places from travel magazines and stuck them on my walls. At the time, I felt like I would never get to see those places in real life. I could hardly walk and couldn’t sit for longer than 5 minutes. Traveling to the next room was trouble enough, let alone traveling the world.

I started following Lisa Bettany’s work shortly after she embarked upon her journey with photography. I knew that she had some sort of injury, which led her to hanging up her ice skates, but I never knew it was so serious.

She has always been an inspiration, and I don’t foresee that changing anytime soon. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, and on her site.

Photo credit: Lisa Bettany


iPhone 7 Plus Depth Effect Is Legit →

October 6, 2016 · 10:37

Stu Maschwitz:

When I first started testing Portrait Mode, I was alone in my backyard, with only inanimate props. I took some shots where the Depth Effect shined, and some where it flopped…

This stands to reason. The depth map is very likely computed at a reduced resolution, and I bet it’s noisy. Any smoothing is going to also eliminate certain edge details, and Apple’s engineers have, I’m surmising, estimated that eating into the edges a bit overall is better than seeing a halo of crisp background between the foreground subject and the blurred background.

The next night, my family came over for a cookout. As we ate and drank into the evening, reveling in global warming, I remembered that I had a new toy to play with. I pulled out my phone, toggled over to Portrait Mode, and snapped a few shots of my brother-in-law and his adorable son.

This is the photo that convinced me that Portrait Mode is a real thing. Here it captured a fast-moving, uncooperative subject, at ISO 500 lighting, and produced results that are not just good, but actually a photo I cherish.

I already have a few shots of my wife which I will love for years to come — I didn’t have my ‘big’ camera with me at the time. They would not have worked without Portrait Mode, which isolated her from the background.