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Exploring Guatemala

Martijn Hermans

Photographer from Netherland

At the end of November 2018,
I left with my backpack full of camera gear to Guatemala.

I arrived in Guatemala City, a city known to be rather dangerous (listing #24 by murder rate in
the world) so I had decided not to stay there. After a 1-hour Uber ride I got to Antigua,
a small city surrounded by volcanoes – which I completely fell in love with. Antigua is renowned
for its many Spanish colonial buildings and cobblestone streets.

zoom
LENSES AF 35mm f2.8 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F2.8
SPEED 1/500 sec
ISO 50
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

The above shot was taken with the Samyang AF 35mm F2.8. I love this lens when I’m just walking around taking in the sights.
It’s very inconspicuous, making it perfect for when you don’t want to draw attention to yourself, which often happens with a big and expensive looking lens.

zoom
LENSES AF 35mm f2.8 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F8.0
SPEED 1/500 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

View from Cerro de La Cruz, a spot with a beautiful view of Antigua and the inactive Volcan de Agua.

A few hours away from Antigua there’s the little village of Chichicastenango in the midst of the Guatemalan Highlands. Chichicastenango is best known for its famous
colorful market twice a week. Timing-wise this would work out great and it was a great opportunity to test my new Samyang XP 85mm F1.2.

zoom
LENSES AF 35mm f2.8 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F8.0
SPEED 1/320 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -
zoom
LENSES AF 35mm f2.8 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F8.0
SPEED 1/500 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

Outside of market day, Chichicastenango is a quiet mountain village. With a very colorful graveyard.

zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F8.0
SPEED 1/4000 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

On market day the whole city center
transformed into a bustling market,
with people from all over the area
coming into the village to either sell
their goods or stock up.

I especially loved the stairs in front of Iglesia de Santo Tomás, a church from the
16th century – in which unfortunately photography wasn’t permitted.
The stairs leading up to the church were transformed into the flower market
on market day.

zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F1.2
SPEED 1/1600 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -
zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F1.2
SPEED 1/1600 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

I was enormously surprised by the quality of the Samyang XP 85mm F1.2; it
feels very solid with a smooth turning focus ring. As I only had my Sony A7iii
with me, and with the 85mm being a Canon EF mount, I used a Sigma MC-11
adaptor to connect it to my camera. The following are a few of my favorite
shots taken with the Samyang XP 85mm F1.2 that afternoon.

The Log Radiative Power graph of Volcán de Fuego’s activity. Source:
http://webcams.volcanodiscovery.com/Fuego

One of my reasons to visit Guatemala was something that had been on my bucket list for many years. I wanted to photograph the active Volcán de Fuego. The volcano has been drawing international attention this year due to a very sad tragedy that occurred in June. There was a major eruption which cost the lives of hundreds of people. After a few very quiet months, Fuego was again going through an extra active period again leading up to the end of November. Just the week before I arrived, the neighboring communities of the volcano were evacuated.

I figured the safest way to photograph the volcano up close was from the neighboring inactive Volcán de Acatenango, which also happened to be the third highest mountain of Central America at 3976m. Unfortunately, there were some bad weather predictions for the area at Acatenango. I had spoken with some other people who recently climbed Acatenango and they were completely enveloped in clouds during their two day journey. As my main purpose of summiting Acatenango was to photograph Fuego, I decided to postpone climbing Acatenango until a later moment when the conditions were perfect.

Bottom left volcano is Fuego, the one above that Acatenango with at the red cross our camp. Top right is Antigua and below Antigua Volcán de Agua. Source: Google Maps.

Besides asking around and checking the local weather forecast, I often use other tools to create the perfect picture. For volcanoes, I browsed the web to learn about their activity, and their seismic and radiative power. Some even have webcams to track how active they are. This combined with Google Maps helps shape an image in my mind’s eye before I am actually on location taking the image itself. After another week of traveling through Guatemala, the weather conditions at Acatenango still weren’t ideal, however the end of the trip was nearing, and Fuego’s activity was also slowly declining, so it was time to ascend Acatenango. After a strenuous and very steep hike, taking the better part of the day, we finally got to our campsite at 3700m. I was happy to finally be able to drop my heavy pack carrying my water, food and gear, and prepare for the cold night ahead.

zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/40 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

It had been getting pretty cloudy throughout the day, but due to our elevation we were above most of the clouds and Fuego was plenty visible and so very close.
It was truly a magnificent sight to behold.

zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F1.2
SPEED 1/250 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

Luckily, we had a nice fire to keep us warm in the freezing temperaturess

zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F5.6
SPEED 1/40 sec
ISO 100
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

Being in and above the clouds at 3700m during sunset.

zoom
LENSES 24mm f1.4
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F2.0
SPEED 20 sec
ISO 320
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

After sunset, a thunderstorm rolled in and gave us a spectacular show of lightning.

In this particular shot, the exposure was long enough to make it look like multiple exposures of smoke coming off Fuego caused by the lightning flashes, but it is a single shot. I stayed up all night at our camp behind my camera, finger ready on the shutter button to catch a few stunning eruptions, and when I say stunning, I mean literally stunning. The following pictures are a series of 5 x 4 second exposures, taken directly after each other, over the span of 20 seconds. The eruptions lasted very short, so every time there was an eruption it was go-time immediately and there would be no time to fiddle around with composition or settings. I had my camera set to a 3-second timer to avoid camera shake, after which it took a series of 5 images. My camera settings were still set for the many smaller eruptions of that night. The contrast between the lava and the rest of the frame was so big that it was impossible not to overexpose an eruption of this size, even for the dynamic range of the best low light full frame camera (according to DXO).

zoom
LENSES XP 85mm f1.2 FE
CAMERA Sony A7iii
DIAPHRAGM F1.8
SPEED 4 sec
ISO 3200
EXPOSURE Multi-Segment
PHOTOMETRY -
BRIGHTNESS -
PHOTOMETRY -

Martijn Hermans

martijnhermansphotography.com

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森养最佳标准画角提案解析

从人与人之间的关系乃至为了营造美丽的空间而布置装饰品时都需要保持适当的距离。那么,为了更好地欣赏美术或摄影作品,我们应该保持多少距离?

答案是相当于“作品框架对角线的长度”的距离。

표준화각 자료 이미지
표준화각 자료 이미지

为了将作品完整地纳入视野并予欣赏,保持相当于作品对角线的距离为宜。如果距离过近,将大于人眼可集中精力的50°视角而无法取的良好的欣赏效果。

为了最佳欣赏效果与最佳视角而保持理想距离也适用于摄影技术。在拍摄静止画像的摄影技术中,将等于摄像面对角线长度的焦距镜头定义为标准镜头。数码相机的全帧传感器尺寸为36x24毫米,其对角线距离约为43.26毫米,标准镜头应为多少毫米以下的最理想答案可以称为“接近43.26毫米的数据”,而难以断定是至今被视作标准镜头代名词的“50毫米”。

以往与胶片对角线长度相仿的45mm画角镜头较为常见,随着SLR相机大获成功,为了保留可容纳反射镜的空间,50mm被视作标准镜头。但是,最近随着无反相机底边大幅放大, 鉴于无反相机法兰距短的特点,需要将标准镜头的画角以45mm再度予以解释,由此开始研发AF 45mm F1.8 FE。 与35mm画角镜头相比,三阳的AF 45mm F1.8 FE将畸变现象降至最低,且比55mm画角拍摄范围宽,为人物、风景、建筑物及宠物等各种主题摄影呈献令人满意的效果。

DSLR / Full Frame
1D X Mark Ⅱ
1D X
1Ds Mark Ⅲ
1Ds
5DsR
5Ds
5D Mark Ⅳ
5D Mark Ⅲ
6D Mark Ⅱ
6D
DSLR / APS-H
1D Mark Ⅲ
1D
Mirrorless / APS-C
M6
M5
M10
M3
M2
DSLR / APS-S
7D Mark Ⅱ
7D
80D
70D
60D
30D
D60
D30
77D (9000D)
760D (8000D / Rebel T6s)
1300D (Kiss X80 / Rebel T6)
1200D (Kiss X70 / Rebel T5)
200D (Kiss X9 / Rebel SL2)
800D (Kiss X9i / Rebel T7i)
700D (Kiss X9i / Rebel T7i)
100D (Kiss X7 / Rebel SL1)
650D (Kiss X6i / Rebel T4i)
600D (Kiss X5 / Rebel T3i)
550D (Kiss X4 / Rebel T2i)
500D (Kiss X3 / Rebel T1i)
1000D (Kiss F / Rebel XS)
450D (Kiss X2 / Rebel X냐)
DSLR / Full Frame
D850
D5
D810A
D4S
D810
D750
Df
D610
D4
D800
D800E
D600
D3s
D3x
D700
D3
DSLR / APS-C
D7500
D3400
D500
D5600
D7200
D5500
D3300
D7100
D5300
D5200
D7000
D300s
D300
DSLR / Full Frame
Z6
Z7
D810A
D4S
D750
D810A
DSLR / APS-C
D7200
D500
D3300
D5500
D5600
D3400
D7500

* Cameras released within 5 years from 2019 are tested.

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