Archive for June, 2013


In Uncategorized by elyktra / June 29, 2013 / 0 Comments

There is a great organization in Amsterdam which provides a full spectrum of information about the city for living , visiting or doing business.  I find useful tidbits there quite regularly which help our every day life here as an expat.  Having lived abroad now for over 10 years and in a number of different countries, I have to say Amsterdam is absolutely one of the best as an expat.  “I Amsterdam” is one of those reasons and their services truly help simplify your life as a foreigner.  You can find out more about them @ or on Facebook.

They recently tweeted, asking if anyone had any good pictures of the famous IAMSTERDAM letters which are located in the city.  There is one set at Schipol Airport and another in front of the Rijks Museum.  I shared this image with them and was pleasantly surprised when they featured it back on their Facebook page.  If you are a Facebook user, here’s where you can find the post.

This was actually an unplanned image which was caught just as a storm was passing.  I was returning home on the tram and decided to jump off and risk the rain to take a few shots.  The result was created by combining multiple exposures to create an HDR image.  It was exaggerated for effect as this process can make the clouds even a bit more ominous which was the desired intent.  Using multiple images also allowed for the removal of the people in area and on the letters to further enhance the atmosphere.  As many can attest, it is rare to find the letters not covered with people.  After finishing the main image it was converted to B&W and finally the color of the letters restored to become the focal point of the image.

Why Post-Processing

In Uncategorized by elyktra / June 16, 2013 / 0 Comments


I receive a lot of questions around the use of post-processing on photo images and believe that it has its place in the art of photography.  The purist view of photography is also understandable and admirable.  I am continually impressed by what some of the pro’s are able to capture straight from the camera.  There are a few of these in my own portfolio and for sure my hopes are that the number will increase as my journey in photography continues.  In any case, I personally also enjoy the possibilities of what I can do behind the keyboard as well as from behind the camera.  My goal is to try to maintain the integrity of the original image as much as possible while enhancing it in such a way as to more vividly reflect what my mind remembers from that point in time.  This effort is to try and pull the viewer into the image to create a similar experience and truly share share the moment with them.

What was changed:

  • In the image above you’ll notice the bend of the castle walls due to the wide angle lens and positioning of the shot. The walls have been straightened that it appears that you are looking straight at the castle.  This has slightly shortened the castle and stretched it horizontally as a result, but it still fits with overall impact of the image.
  • The two tourists in the entrance have been removed as even through the best efforts and patience, there was never a clear shot.
  • Finally the tent to the left was removed as to not be distracting.
  • The remainder of the adjustments where just b&w conversion adjustments with some sharpening and structure.

First Photo Contest

In Photo Contest by elyktra / June 15, 2013 / 0 Comments

I recently started to dabble in the photo contests. More in hopes of getting constructive feedback to evolve my photography than anything else.  The ViewBug community seems to be very welcoming and I’ve found quite a bit of artistry to aspire to.  There are quite a variety of different contests where I believe almost anyone can find a place of comfort or to step outside their comfort zone.  In the “Looking Up”: Photo Contest, my photo “What’s Up in the Church” was ranked in the Top 10 most voted percentile.  There appears to have been over 3000 entries.  I received the Top 10 Photo Trifecta TM Class award.


I actually won the contest!! very excited about this since it was my first submission of any of my work.  Great feedback on the site as well.  It seems there is a great community there and I’m looking forward to more entries and more social connections.

Weekend Dream in Paris

In City & Streets by elyktra / June 11, 2013 / 13 Comments

I had the lovely honor of taking my 84 yr old grandmother to Paris.  It has been one of her dreams which she didn’t think she would have fulfilled.  We were able to see all of the sites that she wanted to visit and I’m still amazed how she was able to keep up for the long trek around the city.  I can only hope to be as active as she is when I reach that age!

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