• General,  Macro,  Monochrome

    Fibonacci numbers

    I wanted to study shadows of simple bodies again today. It all started with an egg last week. The shadow of last week’s egg photo was ring-shaped. I noticed that, but it didn’t bother me. Could the ring shape of the shadow be overcome by skillful selection of light and would the backside of the egg lie entirely in the shadow? This assignment was given to me by a school friend, who himself is a professional photographer.

    Shadow cast of an egg © Julian Köpke
    Shadow cast of an egg © Julian Köpke

    The shadow looks better today, with a little help from Photoshop.

    A neighbor had given me simple bodies, which I placed like an egg on the white background. First of all as a play with form and shadow, where I had to think of the X-ra image of a human hand.

    Shadow cast of building blocks on white © Julian Köpke

    The small  wooden blocks were wonderfully colorful. Unfortunately, I didn’t have as many as my imagination would have liked. Arranged in concentric circles, they are delightful to the eyes. At the suggestion of a friend, I arranged, the number of blocks into Fibonacci numbers. The processing of the shadows leads to an exciting image, similar to solarization. Since it is a kind of negative, I named the picture after the impression it makes: „Flow of light“, although in reality it was the shadows of the blocks.

    Shadows around building blocks sorted in circles of Fibonacci numbers © Julian Köpke
    Shadows around building blocks sorted in circles of Fibonacci numbers © Julian Köpke
  • Macro,  Monochrome

    Light and shades of grey

    Shades of grey in interaction with light: this is a theme for monochromatic images. For a long time I wanted to photograph an egg against a white background. The idea was stimulated by photos, mostly of people I know personally. Geometric, white-colored bodies from the mathematical collection would also be fun for me. Unfortunately, access is not as easy for me as with an egg.

    Light and shades of grey © Julian Köpke

    On the left side the egg is brighter than the background, on the right side it is the other way round. The background itself loses a little brightness from the left to the right, but is brighter than the the egg on the right. The contrast changes. There is no clearly defined shadow for this setup. The same is true in the next photograph.

    White egg on a white background © Julian Köpke

    With the help of a simple light source whose color temperature does not matter after conversion into a black and white image, a soft shadow can be achieved if the source is not point-shaped.

    Shadow cast of an egg © Julian Köpke
    Shadow cast of three eggs on white © Julian Köpke
  • Landscape,  Monochrome,  Yosemite National Park

    Yosemite Valley

    It is always overwhelming to be on the road in Yosemite Valley. One is welcomed by silence and forest air. One of the points that provide an easily accessible overview is the former parking area for road construction machinery at the tunnel to the south: Tunnel View.

    2020 Tunnel View and Bridalveil Fall © Julian Köpke

    Everything slows down when you dive in there. The modern distractions are eliminated. The internet connectivity is so slow that you can’t present your pictures to anyone else while you are there. It’s a pity for those being at home.

    Native americans lived in this valley and were given plenty of water. That has changed in the meantime. Precipitation is missing. An endangered jewel of this earth. It was a privilege to have been there with a friend and to be allowed to take pictures

  • Monochrome,  X-Ray

    Loaf of bread

    Our universe has to some extent a structure like a foam. How to image this ? Computer simulations did already some successful representations.

    Doing X-rays on a freshly baked loaf of bread I got some features of a foam. My loaf was bigger than my X-ray sensor, so I had to stitch two tiles. Photoshop did a really good job to merge the X-rays.

    The image looks more like a interstellar object than a loaf of bread.

    Loaf of bread mosaic X-ray photo © Julian Köpke
  • Texture,  X-Ray

    Pile of oranges X-ray photo

    This Monday arrived my new oranges from Valencia, Spain. They are sweet, juicy and just delicious. I shared half of the delivery with my employees who had also been waiting for it for a long time. We eat or drink them. Some were x-rayed for artistic reasons.

    There is already a routine in doing these X-rays with food. But sometimes an X-ray machine has a life of its own. The first images are taken to check the exposure before we venture into a composition. The aperture of the X-ray tube may become narrower and unwanted images like the following may be produced.

    Oranges in a frame X-ray photo © Julian Köpke

    This image was created by playing with textures and colours:

    You can easily imagine a stack of oranges with the fruit lying on top of each other. The perspective of this X-ray image is from above, so that the effect of translucency is created. Because of the triangular arrangement of the oranges, one would think that the apex of the triangle would indicate at the top. In fact, the center of the triangle is at the top.

  • General,  Monochrome

    Thundercloud vortex

    Has the future ever been read from the migration of the clouds ? Their forms and movements have always been exciting and inspiring for me. A vortex of clouds immediately creates a vortex of emotions.

    That is why clouds have long been the subject of my photographic interest and I have created a considerable collection of cloud images. 

    Last night a long heat wave ended with a thunderstorm. Above our house the clouds were swirling, lightning sometimes closer, sometimes further away. Islands of brightness changed rapidly in a threatening sea of black clouds.

    Swirling Thunderclouds © Julian Köpke
    Swirling Thunderclouds. Before the rain starts © Julian Köpke

    In some ways, these clouds remind me of interstellar gas clouds in our galaxy. In the example below the colors of the panorama image of M8 (or „Lagoon Nebula“) are suppressed to better recognize the structure.

    M8 Lagoon Nebula Panorama of 6 tiles © Julian Köpke
  • Background,  flowers,  General

    Do you like Karl Blossfeldt ?

    Karl Blossfeldt was a German photographer who lived from 1865 to 1932. He didn’t think himself a photographer. With his studies of plant forms he made an enormous contribution to plant photography. Here is a nice wikipedia article about him.

    He started to do photograms. Plants or parts of plants were placed directly on film or paper suitable for exposure. Exposure then takes place without any optics. Later he built himself a wooden camera, which reminds me of Andreas Feininger.

    Black and white backlit macro images with a background can be similar to Blossfeldt’s images.

    Silver leaf © Julian Köpke
    Heucheria in bloom © Julian Köpke
    Vetch © Julian Köpke
    Day lily © Julian Köpke
  • Travel

    Lake Constance

    It’s only a short trip from Lake Lucerne to Lake Constance. Very different light conditions compared to Lucerne in Horn. A little haze, turquoise flares, soft winds. Looking down from our new apartment I saw a sailing boat gently cruising. All turbulences of the last time were settled.

    Sailing on Lake Constance © Julian Köpke

    The famous German painter Otto Dix lived his life here after his booting out of the art academy. He was a famous painter in the 1920s in Dresden.

    The new light conditions and the rural life imposed hard days on him as he stated in his letters.

    His house was recently reopened as a museum with a sophisticated measurement and air conditioning system to preserve building and art.

    Gamut of colors in studio of Otto Dix Museum © Julian Köpke

    Isle of Mainau: in the castle gardens nicely arranged flowers, fern, trees, avenues. Memories of rainbow press publications about the owner and his life came up. Pleasant day with pleasant light. Lots of photo opportunities.

    Cycle route near Isle of Mainau, Lake Constance © Julian Köpke
    Euphorbia in Mainau Castle Gardens (Mediterranean terrace) © Julian Köpke
    Fern forest Isle of Mainau © Julian Köpke