After Mera Peak trek and climb, I still had a few days in Nepal so had decided to visit Chitwan National Park in Sauraha district. I wanted my trip to be different compared to what regular tourists do when they visit Chitwan National Park. I was wanting to arrange a walking safari within Chitwan. Rajan Khatri from Visit Himalaya Treks was very helpful in organizing this trip. I was set to stay in Chitwan for 3 nights.
After trekking and climbing for a number of years, I wanted to do something more challenging and opted to climb Mera Peak a 6476m peak in the Himalayas. However it is a non technical climb, it does require determination and endurance as one would be climbing in extreme cold temperatures upto -15C and at high altitude. I had organized a solo trek and climb to Mera Peak starting and ending at Phaplu.
Time-lapses are very easy to create. For this you will require to set the camera on a stable tripod, compose the scene and using an intervalometer, use the following settings which are only as a guideline.
There are a number of ways to shoot sunsets. Here I will talk about how to shoot HDR sunsets. A tripod may be required depending on the shutter speed. All that needs to be done is bracket 3 different shots at different exposure levels and merge them in Lightroom or Photoshop. One shot will be underexposed at for example -2EV, one shot overexposed at +2EV and one at standard 0EV.
If one wants to shoot long exposures of over 30 seconds then it will be necessary to shoot in bulb mode. What bulb mode allows us to do is to increase the shutter time from 30 seconds to infinity and for this task, we need a steady tripod, an ND filter and a remote release shutter cable. With an ND filter, we will know how much light we are blocking and then it becomes easier to calculate the new shutter speed. For example when composing the initial frame, if the shutter is 1/4 second and aperture is set to f/11, on using a 10 stop ND filter will increase the shutter to 4 minutes 16 seconds. For this we will need a shutter remote.
Neutral density filters come in various strengths or optical densities from blocking 1 stop of light to blocking out 10 or more stops of light passing through the camera lens. Each ND filter is given a notation of 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 and so on. The purpose of using ND filter is to achieve motion blur when using slow shutter speeds and are primarily used for shooting landscapes.
This image was shot while trekking in Markha Valley at Kang Yatse II base camp. For this I had used a Canon 6D DSLR and a Tamron 28-300mm lens. A steady tripod is a must to take a shot. For this image, I had used my Mefoto Globetrotter. In addition to the above, a remote shutter release also comes in handy in order to avoid any camera shake. This would normally occur when pressing on a shutter during a long exposure of let’s say 30 seconds. This would ruin the composition.
As a photographer, I was looking for ways to get my work out there other than posting on facebook and google groups. I came across an online photography group started by Rinus Bakker called Best Top Photographer. This group was exclusive to both professionals and amateurs and only great quality photographs were accepted. I then decided to join this group back in 2014.
Most photography associations or societies offer distinctions ranging from being a licentiate to associate to fellowship level. However achieving a fellowship may be everyone’s dream, it requires a lot of hard work and commitment and even frustration. I have a long way to go to even get an associate level, I can for now stop dreaming about fellowship. I have however recently gained a licentiate by submitting a panel of 20 images and this was not an easy task as I was trying for atleast a year. Most people consider the licentiate to a beginner qualification but it is not easy to get. It may not have strict guidelines as when submitting images to associate or fellowship level but to even gain one needs good camera skill and composition etc.