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Golden Rock_Kyaiktiyo Pagoda_Myanmar

 

Hasselblad 503CW camera and Hasselblad 150mm f4 Sonnar lens with Kodak Portra 160VC film

Hasselblad 503CW camera and Hasselblad 150mm f4 Sonnar lens with Kodak Portra 160VC film

At just 5 1/2 meters high the tiny Kyaiktiyo Pagoda may not sound that significant. But, given its position atop a large gold-leaf covered boulder (known as the golden rock) and perched, delicately, on the edge of a cliff on the top of the mountain, you may begin to appreciate this truly splendid Buddhist icon.

The 10 km hike up the mountain ascends over 1,000 meters and is quite arduous, particularly when you’re loaded down with camera gear. I managed to get some of the way up in the back of an incredibly crowed pickup truck. It was exciting and I would gladly have taken the ride all the way if allowed. Maybe the experience that followed was meant to be earned, as in all pilgrimages.

Arriving just before sunset on my second last day in Myanmar and, despite the rush and associated fatigue of the trip, the site of the golden rock and the atmosphere that surrounded it made that day a highlight of my time in Myanmar (Burma). It is a most serene location and, despite the fairly large crowds, the beauty of the location and the devotion of the pilgrims was an experience I will long savour.

I was fortunate to be able to photograph the golden rock at sunset and, again the next morning, at sunrise before driving back to Yangon and my flight to Bangkok. After a short rest I travelled onto Laos and more adventures.

The above image is actually made well after sunset and illumination was provided by a series of artificial lights, such as those on the bottom left of the frame. The warm color cast by these lights further emphasized the golden color of the rock and pagoda. The exposure was quite long, in excess of 30 seconds. Naturally a tripod and a cable release was required to reduce camera movement during the long exposure.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

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Sunrise from U-Beins Bridge_Myanmar

 

Hasselblad 503CW camera and Hasselblad 150mm f4 Sonnar lens with Kodak Professional Portra 160VC film

Hasselblad 503CW camera and Hasselblad 150mm f4 Sonnar lens with Kodak Professional Portra 160VC film

This is one of my favourite images, the making of which was a joyous experience. Taken toward the sunrise from U-Beins Bridge, Myanmar (Burma) the image is broken up into three areas: the water, either side of a large fish trap, and the sky above. The composition draws our eyes through the frame by the warm/cool color contrasts and by the line of the fish trap as it gently snakes its way through the foreground.

The bridge is constructed from teak, which is famous for it’s water resistant properties. Salvaged from the palace at Ava, a former capital, after it was deserted the one km long footbridge has provided passage for monks and lay folk alike for over 200 years. 

I was immensely fortunate to have had the opportunity to make numerous images from that morning with which I’m happy. Though at the time I didn’t understand the significance of that day, I now realise it was one of the highlights of my life, to date. I work hard to ensure similar days come my way in the future. To live in the light, albeit only for moments at a time, is a dream well worth a life time’s effort.

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

Pic of the Week – Sunset_Oberon Bay_Wilsons Promontory National Park

 

Canon 5D camera and Canon 24mm f1.4 L series USM lens

Canon 1D camera and Canon 17-35mm f2.8 L series USM lens

Oberon Bay is a lovely pocket within the magnificent Wilsons Promontory National Park in Victoria, Australia. This image was made at sunset with the warm sunlight illuminating the clouds and reflecting back into the water. The fact that the sky and water were relatively bright, in relation to the sand, required careful exposure to ensure detail was maintained in the clouds and foreground water. I was happy to accept the darkening of the sand as it helped emphasize the shape of the tidal inlet.

From a compositional point of view the foreground tidal inlet provides a strong color contrast with the cool cyan/blue sky as well as a link to the warm colored clouds. This was an inspiring scene to behold and a sheer joy to photograph.

The image was made with a Canon 5D camera and Canon 24mm f1.4 L series Aspherical lens. The image was processed in Adobe Camera RAW and Adobe Photoshop CS3.

The shoot at Oberon Bay followed soon after a significant fire that had adversely affected large areas of the national park. Sadly, another major fire has swept through the Prom over recent weeks. I hope this image stands as a testament of the beauty within our national parks and emphasizes the need to protect them.    

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Glenn Guy, Blue Sky Photography

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