The peace in Mürren is almost intrusive. It is not disturbed by traffic noise. Only the occasional buzzing of the cable cars is reminiscent of normal life. The starry sky is great because at night very few lamps illuminate the village.
Autumn is already more advanced in Central Switzerland thanin Ticino. Temperatures in the shade are well below 10 degrees Celsius. The sun has a lot of power at 1600m, you can easily sweat when walking.
While searching for a location for my tripod slowly upwards, I meet individual hikers or groups of two. The large groups take the cable car to the summit and do not appear on the hiking trails. Surprisingly many fly into the valley by paragliding.
The cross-country trip to Lucerne with a 20-year-old navigation system took me along many country roads, which used to be the only connection to this city. It’s hard to imagine how the traffic might have moved then. That’s why the system guided me down from the motorway through beautiful Swiss landscapes.
A little tired I arrived in Lucerne and went to sleep. Just in time for sunset I made a tour through the old town to Lake Lucerne, on which wonderful sailboats were on the way.
Two more days on the island. I had secretly speculated before the start of the trip to be able to make interesting longtime exposures of the sea. We went to the sea once very early and often late at night. On Friday, the 13th, the weather was particularly stormy. I felt that half a second exposure time was the optimal value to capture the dynamics of the sea’s motion and at the same time to get structure.
Many of the photographs I took with the quadrupeds, which were laid out as a coastal protection near Hörnum. Depending on the time of day and the weather, they are a fantastic backdrop. This image was taken early in the morning short after sunrise.
At the time of the highest water level during the flood, these concrete blocks almost disappear underneath the water surface. The next image is a combination of different exposure values to express the power of the incoming tide.
Without wind, the sea is so calm at low tide that you don’t want to imply anything violent to it anymore. To capture the calm of the low tide water I needed 30s of exposure time. However, the Moon would become blurred at that value. So I combined two shots into one picture.
Weather change is associated with stronger wind and light changes. This situation is often felt on the island in a rather pleasant way.
The changeable weather is a great blessing for the photographer, who is constantly surprised with new lights. In fact, there are wet days with lots of gray and humidity from all directions. Atmospheric images are best created in the transition phases to sunshine.
The appearance of a parhelion on the beach of Reynisfjara indicates finely distributed ice in the upper layers of the air. The high humidity after a rainy day makes the light warm and soft in low sun. The photographic image approaches a painting.
Through fog one even reaches a conclusion of the composition in the distance.
Most of the rainy Wednesday we spent indoors. Around 3 pm we got up the courage to drive to Dyrhólaey again, before it was closed again at 7pm because of the birds that were brooding on the ground. A finely distributed wetness at pleasant, but cool temperatures set us down without getting into us. With winds from the south, the sky suddenly turned bright and blue again.
Our mood brightened up and we were hardly willing to go indoors again. In Vík í Mýrdal, the church stood on a gentle hill sheltered from the forces of the sea in the sun.
In the evening in Keitum we went after dinner in a pub a little walk. The light of the sunset was special and it changed continuously with the cloud train. After all, there was quite a bit of wind to be felt. Within less than 1 hour I took many pictures, leaning on fence posts to be less shaky.
Initially, there were phases with almost homogeneous cloud backgrounds.
The simple geometry of the lateral image of St. Severin calmed the increasingly wild sky.For a moment it looked like thunderstorms. A crack went through the clouds that reminded me of an old church song.
However, the threat of an approaching thunderstorm dissolved without a single drop of rain and the setting sun colored the clouds before we got back into the car for the drive home.
Expressive pictures on Sylt seem to be easier to achieve with clouds. The last days, first in black and white, now increasingly in color. The cloud structure of the sky reminds me again and again of Emil Nolde’s oil paintings.
First I edit the RAW images with Capture One. This allows me to determine the light and dark parts as well as the contrasts and colors. Then I erase the unavoidable stains, either from the sensor or from the optics. At the end a few filtering in Photoshop with Topaz or Nik Collection. All filters masked out and painted in at some homeopathic dosage.
This image was shot when looking back on our way to the sunny southern beach. The area is located in the north of Sylt and is called “Ellbogen”. Shortly before, we had protected ourselves from a heavy rain shower by waiting in the car.
The path to northern beach was illuminated like by a spotlight, the dune next to it dark, the thunderstorm clouds even more dark. The raw image didn’t reflect what I saw during that short moment. The raw image was flat and without extremes. By processing I tried to restore my original impression.
I like to let my thoughts be taken by cloud formations on a journey into the indefinite. In order to emphasize the weight of the clouds in the following photo, I tried to present the relatively close parts in a clearer and more contrasted way. The RAW image had a lot of width, but without a center of gravity. The colours are rather pale and not very saturated, thus emphasizing the nordic look.
On the westcoast of Kampen, the Red Cliff, which contains oxidized iron ore and has therefore assumed a red color, offers a strong contrast. The erosion leads to washes that may be reminiscent of skin wrinkles. The picture is interesting if rendered in color or monochrome.
After a short climb we reached the upper edge of the cliff.
The Braderuper Heath is a northeastern part of the island of Sylt, with a white cliff of kaolin. While walking we came across an eviscerated duck that was suddenly lying in front of our feet. The head was dark or black, the throat was flabby, the internal organs were probably used for food. Maybe some dog owners had become angry already about their naughty four-legged friends.
That’s not enough. A short distance later we came across a shipwreck whose hull with the upward-facing edges offered the same aspect as the duck’s disemboweled body with its ribs. Since the tide was low, we were able to approach the mortal remains of the ship without water running into our shoes. We just sank a little into the tidal mudflats.
We could have made bets on the age of the ship and the cause of the accident. The three-masted grain schooner was moored as an unauthorized party ship off the coast of Braderup and sunk due to a fire in 1981. The cause of the fire was never determined.
There are many places with a white cliff. This one is part of the same geological structure as the cliff in Morsum.
Heidelberg Castle is a landmark. In winter its red color becomes softer. For one winter Frederick V. became king with his home in this castle. After that, Germany sank into the 30 Years War. The castle had been ruined already by fire a couple of years before.
The delicacy and dreaminess of a photo is not always the result of intensive digital processing. The ranuncula of the following image hardly needed editing. You can feel it. With a tripod and a 85mm Lensbaby velvet at f/16 I shot this image with really delicate color.
The lavish feast is over. Paradise is no more. The king went into exile. We’re staying.