I’m back

And I’m back after the week spend in Astana in Kazakhstan. I made new friends, met with old ones, visited many spots and got rained on a lot :) I got also a lot of photos, but can’t share them with you yet. But will do so at a later date.

Evening in the Dubai Marina

For today, here is a photo of the Dubai Marina as seen from Palm Jumeirah. This view is just so cool. I have many photos of it, but I don’t mind having more. You can see some blurred ships in there, as they were creating a new island there, and working on it the whole night.

This is from one of my recommended spots in Dubai, and you can see the whole list here.

This is a blend of two exposures, created in Photoshop. I usually push the Dubai Marina photos more into blue/colder colors, but this time I though of just making it warmer. And I think it looks quite alright.

Evening in the Dubai Marina, Dubai, UAE

Reading list

Looks like I forgot that it was Friday yesterday, so I did not do a reading list update. So instead, will do it today. So this week I read two books. From the fiction side, I quite enjoyed the The Singularity Trap by Dennis E. Taylor. It’s a great sci-fi story from a great author. If you have not yet read the Bobiverse series by this author you really should :)

From non fiction, I read 10% Happier by Dan Harris. I’m interested in meditation as a way to focus more on single things, so the title sounded intriguing. But it was just a disappointment. For an author that claims to get rid of his big ego, he just talks about himself and only himself. Not worth the time I spend on it.

Right now i’m back to fiction, and I started the Soul Survivor by Dean Koontz. I read few books from this author before, so will see where this one goes.

Framed view from the Business bay

I don’t remember why this frame was in the middle of the Business bay. There was some description, but it was already few months ago, so I’m not sure what it was. But it looked nice as something to make a framed view, even though the blue lights around it were quite strong.

So here I used the 12mm Laowa lens, so I can get really close to the frame and get as much of the business bay as I can into the shot (the frame is not small, it was around 2m tall). There was still a little bit of distortion, as even with a zero distortion lens, you just can’t be so close and not getting any. But it was very easy to fix in Lightroom.

This is a three shot blend, edited in Lightroom, blended in Photoshop.

Framed view from the Business bay, Dubai, UAE

Expanding your photo

Quite often I have to add a bit of the sky when taking photos of big structures. It just does not look so great if the structure is right at the edge of a photos. And it’s not even so hard to add a bit of the sky. I did a guide on this, so feel free to check it out here.

Even more dandelions under the Burj Khalifa

Somehow most photos I did during my last trip to Dubai were of the Burj Khalifa. So here is another one :) I posted one with the dandelions before, but these ones are on a second location, a bit further away from the tower.

This is a single exposure, edited in Lightroom and Photoshop.

Even more dandelions under the Burj Khalifa, Dubai

Color banding

I had so much problems with color banding in today’s photo. The lights of the city create a very strong light glow, that is just not easy to deal with. But I got rid of it, hopefully, and you can too in your photos.

Head here to see how to remove color banding in your photos and how to avoid it.

Business bay in Dubai

This is taken from one of my recommended spots in Dubai. I have been here few years before, and wow, it’s crazy how it changed. When I was here fist time, it was mostly a construction site, few skyscrapers around, nothing much. And in just few years, there are skyscrapers all around, the whole area is build up and it just looks great. And since it’s a lake, it also gives for a great view with many reflection.

So of course I had to do a panorama here, to catch all of it. I used three photos here, taken actually without a panoramic head. I found out over time, that if you don’t go very wide (wider than 24mm) and your subject is not that close, you can create panoramas easily without needing any special gear. Just rotate the camera and shoot.

This panorama was combined in Lightroom, finished in Photoshop.

Business bay in Dubai, UAE

And here are few details:

Business bay in Dubai, UAE

So many new games

I spend yesterday evening watching the Xbox E3 press conference (and maybe some of you also did :)), and wow, so many games to be played in the next few months. From Forza Horizon 4, Shadow of Tomb Raider, Crackdown 3, Fallout 76 and even Gears 5 look great. Each year there are more and more cool looking games. Can’t wait. And there are still few presentations to go. This will be fun :)

You know, I found one thing a long time ago. If you want to enjoy games (and movies and books and so on), completely ignore any journalists and reviewers around them. I don’t visit any sites that deal with games at all. I like to make my own decision. Usually from gameplay videos I can quickly tell if you will enjoy something or not, and if I don’t buy things the first day, I won’t be disappointed. Especially around games, I feel like all the reviewers became complainers recently, reviewing games based on what they wanted, not what they got. And I really don’t make my opinion base on that.

Star trails over Burj Khalifa

Before you ask how I got the stars over the Burj Khalifa like this, I have to say, this is a composite. The star trail part was not taken above Dubai, but It’s a part of a different photo, taken earlier this year.

When I edited this shot, I liked it, but the sky just looked boring. There was just nothing there. So I thought what I could put there. Clouds were just not enough, I wanted something else. First I tried to make some spiral star trails from scratch. While it did not look bad, it looked too fake for me. So instead I took a photo I captured in Austria in January, and removed some of the stars, to not be so dense. Like this it nicely blended into this photo of Burj Khalifa.

The base here is from one exposure edited in Lightroom and Photoshop. The star trails are from around 200 exsposures. If you want to know how to create star tails, check out this post here.

Star trails over Burj Khalifa, Dubai, UAE
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