2 000 000 views

I just checked the statistics on my Smugmug portfolio site, and it show that I just passed 2 000 000 photo views for this year. I want to say a big thanks to all of you who visit my blog and portfolio, and I hope you all like the photos :)
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Oloneo Photoengine – review

Continuing with my reviews, for today I have for you a review of a program I mentioned a lot of times recently, mostly due to the contest :) Head over to the review to find out what I like about Oloneo Photoengine, and how it can be useful in your post-processing.

Sparkling lights

The weather recently is not that great in Bratislava, and as there also is no snow, I haven’t been taking many photos. But I wanted some with the Christmas decorations, as they are quite a few around the city. I particularly like the ones by the Eurovea Shopping center, as they are made all from lights. It was a little challenge not to have any people in the shot, but with a little timing, bracketing and cloning out, I got it empty :)

This is a HDR created in Oloneo Photoengine from 5 exposures and then finished in Photoshop. I had to recover the bright lights, as I wanted them to really shine.
Sparkling lights

Kickstarter

Have you ever tried Kickstarter? For those unfamiliar with it, it’s a page for projects to gather crowd-funding, so they can be completed. I have backed already few projects (of course mostly camera gear :)) and until now all delivered. Of course not a single one was on time, with the delay being anywhere from 3 to 9 months. But with the long development times, I think this is mostly still acceptable. Of course only when the project creators keeps on updating the backers.

Btw. I’m trying a new feature on the blog. Pools. I will add them from time to time into posts. And if the work out, I will also use them for voting in my next contest. So how about this one to start with. Have you ever backed a project on Kickstarter?

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Review of the Leash by Peak Design

And one of my recently backed projects on Kickstarter was also the Capture Camera clip v2. And together with it I ordered also all the other products form Peak Design. I will add reviews of all of them to the blog over the next weeks, so lets start with the camera strap called Leash.
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Lakeside reflection in blue

As I stated in my Top 5 Photography spots in Bratislava page, the Kuchajda lake is the best place for reflections in Bratislava. As you can see also in this photo, the lake is mostly so calm that you get almost a perfect reflection. It’s even more fun when the lake freezes over. It gives a nice reflection and you get much more freedom in the compositions. In this photo you can see the Lakeside park tower during a very clear blue hour.

This is a HDR from 5 shots, created in Oloneo Photoengine and finished in Photoshop. I only did very few tweaks here, mostly just to bring out the blue color and tweak the contrast.
Lakeside reflection in blue

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Custom Google maps

Do you know about Google custom maps? Do you use them? Custom maps on Google allow you to add you own points on a map, add description to them and then share the map. I quite often create one before a trip, to note the spots I really do not want to miss. Sometimes I even add links to images, so I better remember what on that particular place.  This were a part of the old Google maps, and now are accessible through settings/my places. I really hope they don’t remove them.

What do you use to note locations? I’m open to some suggestions :)
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Nik Viveza 2 review

And another plugin you may find useful. Find whats Nik Viveza 2 for and how you could use it, in this new review. And don’t forget to take a look at all the other reviews, in my newly reorganized Review page.

Framed city

I was thinking about, how to make this view different than in my other photos. So why not try framing. So I crouched down and tried looking through the bridge railing, and this is what I got. Looks quite different, doesn’t it? In retrospect, I would prefer to have also the railing sharp, with some detail, but I forgot to take a refocused photo. So maybe next time.

This is a HDR created in Oloneo Photoengine, blended with original exposures in Photoshop.
Framed city

Free eBook for all newsletter subscribers

Maybe some of you have already noticed the change in the sidebar, but I have created my first ever eBook. This one is for free to all, who subscribed to my newsletter. So if you still haven’t, now is your chance :) Head over to the newsletter page for more details, or you can subscribe directly in the widget to the right of this post.
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Topaz Star Effects review

There will be still many more reviews on this blog. Today the new one is about the Topaz Star Effects. As I mentioned before, my reviews are short and I try to stick to the point. That is, what the plugin is for, and why you would like to use it. Same this one :).

And btw., between the December 10th and December 31st 2013, you can use the code “decstar” for a 50% discount on this plugin. More information can be found on the Topaz Star Effects site

Sunset at the Michael’s gate

There are not many high spots in the center of Bratislava, so one has to use all one can find. So last week I visited all the towers that are accessible (all two of them :)). I don’t think there are more, but correct me if I’m wrong. I already posted a photo from the Town hall tower earlier, so here is one from the Michael’s gate. It’s not really that all, but in the Old tow, it’s still one of the tallest.

This is a HDR created from 5 shots in Oloneo Photoengine and then merged with original exposures and finished in Photoshop.
Sunset at the Michael's gate

Last day of the giveaway

Tomorrow is the last day you can join my Oloneo Photoengine giveaway, so if you have not yet joined, this is your last chance. You can find it on the contest page. It’s also the last day to vote for you favorites in the editing contest, so head over to the contest album and give a like to your favorites.
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Nik Analog Efex Review

To continue my additions of reviews to this blog, there is a new review of the Nik Analog Efex Pro plugin. This is the latest addition to the Nik plugin collection, and one to give you that popular vintage look.

Castle an the bridge

The Bratislava castle is a very dominant landmark in Bratislava. You can see it from so many spots. But it also is hard to come up with a new view, I haven’t used before. But this time I found one. I went to the Port bridge, and took a photo with my longest lens. I was hoping for a nice reflection of the bridge in the Danube, but as it was a quite windy day, I had no luck with that. But that only means that I will have to revisit the spot :)

This is a HDR created in Oloneo Photoengine, then blended with original exposures.
Castle and the bridge

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