Now that I have moved my editing back to Lightroom, I’ve rediscovered quite a few images that I had flagged in my quick collection as ones I wanted to edit, from my trip to South Africa in 2019. The first four images are from that trip, and the last three from my recent trip to Zimbabwe in 2022.
While a lot of time has passed since 2019, I didn’t spend much of it on photography during the Covid years, as I was otherwise occupied in graduate school (during my free time from work) and when I did have time for photos, I was exploring using Capture One during that time period.
Coming back to Lightroom feels both familiar and very different at the same time, and I definitely need to spend some time relearning the familiar tools, and learning about all that has been added in the intervening time. I felt a sense of accomplishment working through these images and only completing the edits within Lightroom, not moving on to familiar plugins available in Photoshop.
All of these images were shot as long exposures around midday or early afternoon, using an infrared filter and then converted to black and white. It is something I want to work on more as I really enjoy the look of the shockingly bright foliage and inky skies.
I was drawn to elephants today, and wanted to put together a bit of a variety of images, so I have a few in colour and a couple in monochrome to share today. While I have a decent catalogue of elephant images, these are all from my most recent trip to Africa in 2022.
I want to get back into the routine and habit of working on my photos and posting at least once a week, so I started with the first image that caught my eye when looking through my unedited files. I believe this is an umbrella acacia tree, and it stood out amongst the grasses and shorter brush while out on a game drive. It would have been amazing under a clear blue sky, or silhouetted against a sunset. Even under a cloudy sky, it is a magnificent tree, but it was a rather flat image in the colour version.
I haven’t played around with much black and white editing recently, save for a few infrared images I have worked on. I feel a bit rusty with all aspects of editing at the moment, but like anything else, it comes back as you start to use it again. I am much happier with this image in monochrome, though with more time, I probably could have gotten it to a bit closer to what I had in my minds eye when I started out.
These infrared landscape images I took in Zimbabwe caught my eye as I completed the process of moving back to Lightroom and reorganizing the images that I have left to edit. They look rather strange scrolling past unedited, as they are almost a neon red/orange tone, but once converted to black and white, offer a different look than a typical monochrome landscape.
These were both shot near mid day, and the infrared filter requires a long exposure, providing some nice movement in the foliage, like this palm tree.
This second image was shot by the waterhole at the camp we stayed at in Hwange. The pair of marabou storks were almost motionless with their wings outstretched, making them look almost fake in the long exposure image. The sky looks extra dramatic in black and white, and later in the day, we had a spectacular thunderstorm with torrential rains.
It’s a grey and dreary day today, and a black and white image felt like the right thing to work on. This mare and foal were part of a small group of zebras, and just outside the frame was the stallion, working to keep the group together and moving it in a cohesive direction. This was one of several very young zebra foals that I had the pleasure of seeing during my last trip.
It’s been gloomy today with heavy fog, and I needed a bit of sunshine in my life, so I turned to my recent trip photos. While a monochrome landscape may seem a strange choice, looking at the image I can feel the warmth of the sun and remember the fun I had while I played around taking images at midday with my infrared filter on at one of the lovely dining decks at Jaci’s Lodge where I stayed in Madikwe. I specifically shot this intending to give it a monochrome treatment, and I am happy with how it turned out. I’d hoped that an elephant might pop to the water hole while I was shooting, as that would have been interesting with a long exposure, but it was not to be this time.
I missed posting yesterday, but since I thankfully had the opportunity to spend Mother’s Day with my Mom, that was far more important then spending my free time editing some images.
I’m still hoping to get out and capture some of the birds that are now is residence (or passing through). I’ve seen a few different species of warblers recently, but they are pretty crafty, flitting away the moment I get close enough to capture an image.
For now, this lion seemed just right for Monochrome Monday. It was part of a rather large pride that spent the better part of two days doing nothing (maybe next spring I’ll get a chance to know what that feels like!)
I started working on this photo a couple days ago and got sidetracked, and quite handily, had some time to finish it today for my monochrome post. This was shot as a long exposure with an infrared filter, from the deck of Lion Sands Tinga Lodge (oh, how I wish I was there right now!)
I’m really hoping I can find some opportunities between work and school work to get out and play around with the infrared filter this summer, as it is definitely a technique I enjoy th look of, and would like to get some more skills in.
I’ve only had a couple of sightings of grey hornbills, and they have all been when the birds have been high in the treetops, usually at some distance, making capturing a decent image a bit of a challenge. The last trip I took probably had the best opportunity yet, though I still hope I will get to see this bird closer up, and in more detail, in the future. So we can add the grey hornbill to the always expanding list of things I want to see when I return to southern Africa sometime in the (hopefully) not too distant future.