Keoladeo National Park Experience

Early morning at Keoladeo

I had visited Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur last December of 2017. It is not very far from Noida, a 4 hours drive. However it took me over 6 hours to reach the guesthouse where I had arranged to stay due to some traffic congestion. I arrived just after 10pm where the owner was nice enough to provide dinner after settling in my room. I had stayed at Kiran Guest House for the next 4 nights.

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Photo Walking Safari at Chitwan National Park

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.

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Climbing Mera Peak and Double Mountaineering Boots

Mera Peak summit

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.

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How to shoot sunsets?

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.

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How to Shoot in Bulb Mode?

ISO-100 f/8 172.3 sec

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.

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Neutral Density Filters

Comparison of two photos, top one shot without an ND filter and bottom one shot with an ND filter.

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.

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How to shoot at long exposures under low light?

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.

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“Best Top Photographer” Coffee Table Book

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.

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