My friend Scott P. and I spent a couple nights in an apartment in this little village on the island of Hvar (Croatia). English wasn’t spoken by the people we dealt with, though we were able to communicate, in part because the the lady who owned the apartment spoke some German and so did Scott. Like photos I sometimes take, we weren’t actively seeking this place: we turned a corner and there it was.
Generally, I use HDR tools very carefully when I work on photos. I’d like you to see a broad range of darks and lights in my HDR photos rather than an exaggerated HDR effect. I’m pleased that Joe Farace commented on this when he wrote about this blog in the October issue of Shutterbug.
So why am I posting an HDR photo that is clearly less than “real?” I don’t know. I worked on this photo for 30 minutes when, on a whim, I decided to see what Nik HDR Efex 2 would do to this scene. And this is the version that made the “final cut.”
Canon 5D 1/25s f/7.1 ISO250 40mm
I have several photos I took in and around Durbrovnik, Croatia, and when I post them here, I wonder how many tens of thousands of other tourists have photos from the same location.
But anyone who has wondered the same thing knows that there is something special about having your own pictures. It is perhaps some odd way of tourists marking territory.
This is not a true, layered HDR photo. Instead, I made it using Nik Software’s Color Efex Pro 4.0 and Nik Efex HDR. It creates a bit of a surreal effect, I think.
Are you a photography student wanting to know more about the process that leads to photos like this? Here’s a tutorial I created this morning fresh off the video “press.“
If you get to the Plitvice Lakes in Croatia early in the day, you can have a wonderful wooden path all to yourself. But is an hour or two, people are sometimes three wide, which makes the paths a little less wonderful. Crowded paths are complicated by Asian tourists who walk on the left side and westerners like me (except for the British) who walk on the right side.
Regardless of all of this, the Plitvice Lakes are amazing, as photos I’ve posted in the blog might prove.
Just to make it clear, I am not employed by any organization that represents Hvar tourism. Or Croatian tourism. But I am a fan of Hvar, Croatia. So here’s yet another shot of venerable gray stone walls and fragrant lavender.
If you noticed yesterday’s post, I had said that I didn’t know where the city portrayed was on the island. Thanks to someone familiar with the island, I am able to put it more firmly on my mental map. This photo is typical of many locales on the island, though I can say that it was taken fairly close to yesterday’s photo.
This photo was taken in a small Croatian city south of the Plitvice Lakes National Park. Instead of driving through town, Deb and I turned off the main highway and wandered through the residential area, which included these moldering Soviet-era apartment blocks. Scattered in this neighborhood there were several serious woods piles like this, in addition to neatly stacked piles in covered areas on the opposite sides of these buildings.
This wood is to provide real heat in winter. I am struck by the paradox of wood piles outside of buildings that have satellite TV antennae mounted on the walls. Warmth and television both help South Dakotans get through winter, too!