Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Thierry Resin's visit to Menorca provided great opportunities to use his Singh-Ray filters

As a Swiss teenager, Thierry Resin loved photography, but his attention was soon drawn to the business of becoming an independent osteopath and starting his family. Then in 2008, he rediscovered his interest in photography and has become increasingly serious about capturing quality images.

"Last fall, I made a nice trip to Menorca, a lovely little island in the Mediterranean Sea. It's owned by Spain, but popular with tourists from around the world. For me, one of the island's big attractions was the possibility to photograph new kinds of landscapes along the water's edge. In my backpack, I had my Canon camera bodies and lenses, a solid tripod, and my equally important set of Singh-Ray filters.

"The first evening at Cala Torret, the weather was perfect and we took a little walk by the seaside. The cove near our apartment was an inviting place and I had no choice but to set up my photo gear. I began shooting with the setting of the sun and didn't stop for a while. For this shot, I removed the polarizer and used only my 3-stop soft-step ND Grad. By getting the image so close to correct in the camera, I had very little to do in post-production.

"For this second image along the coastline at Es Freu, the conditions were quite different, although it was also captured in the late afternoon. The wind was blowing hard and the sky was mostly grey. The rocks were very slippery and the sea was rough. The coastline at this point was uneven with high cliffs falling into the sea, so I had to climb down the cliff with my 20-pound backpack and place my tripod in exactly the right place. The right place in this case meant a spot that would be safe for me and my gear.

"The right place also meant giving me the best point of view with the kind of low light that I wanted. Last, but not least, the right place had to be a safe distance away from the seawater spray to avoid getting water on my lens.

"Once I had found the right place, I mounted the Gold-N-Blue Polarizer on my lens and handheld a 2-stop soft-step ND Grad to darken the higher part of the image. The relative low light, low ISO setting and an f/20 aperture setting allowed me to choose a very long shutter speed. As usual, I worked with the white balance set in auto mode. I prefer to fine tune the white balance later in Lightroom. The only other post processing work was to fine tune the exposure, contrast and saturation.

"For this third image, we were a little further from Mahon, the main city of the island, at the Cape Favaritx. The scene is very rocky and the lighthouse very impressive. As the sun was setting the colors were hotter and I could achieve greater density. It was time for shooting. After finding the right place to show something of interest in the foreground and get that low-angle perspective that makes the lighthouse so impressive, I was ready. I mounted the LB Warming Polarizer on my 24-70 lens (set on the 24mm focal length) and handheld my 2- and 3-stop soft-step ND Grads stacked together to balance the luminosity of the sky and the foreground. Once again, with the ISO set on 200 and a f-18 aperture setting, the tripod was essential to handle the 0.3 second exposure.

"When I had returned home, it was a great pleasure to see the results of that beautiful holiday. The indispensable help of the Singh-Ray filters not only made capturing the images easier but sometimes they made the images possible. I would never venture outdoors for a shoot without my filters."

Look for a report from Thierry's recent trip to Iceland soon. You can learn more about him and see many more images on his website.

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