ARCHIVE KENYA 25 – MT KENYA, LOOKING DOWN ONTO THE CLOUDS (MONO)

 

 


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Looking down upon the cloud tops from just below the summit of Mt Kenya; August 1978.  It was ferociously cold, and the very jagged outline of the ridge shows the effects that frost shattering has on rocks at these altitudes, even here on the equator.

My previous post, shown below, shows the same view, but taken from an aircraft inbound to Nairobi: Mt Kenya is seen is silhouette, sticking up through the clouds.  The photo above was taken from Point Lenana, the small peak immediately right of the mountain’s main peak.
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Click onto each image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique for the upper image: Olympus OM-1 with the long end of a 75-150 Zuiko zoom; Agfa CT18 slide film, rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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ARCHIVE KENYA 24 – MT KENYA (MONO)

 

 


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Mt Kenya standing proud of a blanket of stratus cloud; photographed from an airliner inbound to Nairobi, 25 Sept 1979.  At 17,057 feet in altitude, this mountain is second in Africa only to Mt Kilimanjaro (19,341 feet), which is just over the border in Tanzania.

The barely seen, ghostly grey shapes in the foreground are the Aberdare (aka Nyandarua) Mountains, a line of volcanoes on the eastern shoulder of the rift valley.    

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique: Olympus OM-2 with 50mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 slide film rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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BRISTOL 172 – STREET SCENE 12

 

 


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Gaily coloured houses and many parked cars in the steep, narrow streets of fashionable, middle class Totterdown.

Other images in the Bristol Street Scenes series are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 .  Searching on the “street” tag (below here) will also find these posts.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: TG-5 at 25mm (equiv); 800 ISO; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; Totterdown, south Bristol; 21 Jan 2020.
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ARCHIVE KENYA 22 – THE HUGE SKIES I MISS SO MUCH!

 

 


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Skyscape on the eastern side of the Maasai Mara Game Reserve – the huge skies that I miss so much!; April 1979.

Notice the effect of the polariser, which turns the sky at upper right almost black.  If such a photo can have a subject within it (i.e. as opposed to the subject being the whole skyscape), I think that here its the large cloud at top right, which is well defined against the very dark (polarised) sky, and which is at a compositional strong point –  the intersection of the upper and left hand thirds.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: Olympus OM-1 with 28mm Zuiko lens and polarising filter; Agfa CT18 colour slide film rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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OUTER SUBURBS 232 – A WEATHER FRONT MOVES THROUGH

 

 


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Out early, walking in the lockdown.  I’ve taken fewer photos during these walks recently, for three reasons I think.  First the sun is higher in the sky now, even during the very early hours I keep – I’ll have to wait until the very earliest stirrings of autumn before the light gets lower and more golden again.  Second, I’ve worked out a “safe” walking route where the all important social distancing can easily be achieved, but as this is mainly through suburban housing estates, I’m rather reticent about pointing a camera towards anyone’s front windows!  But thirdly, and inevitably I suppose, all of this virus turmoil is getting to me such that, as I walk, my mind is often preoccupied with things other than photography.  It can take quite an effort to re-focus the mind into real “looking and seeing” mode; having Roe Deer and Foxes around does me good!

But last Thursday the skies became a little more dramatic as a small weather front passed eastwards over Bristol.  It brought a couple of light and in fact quite refreshing showers, and as I looked at the clouds moving over from the west, this scene unfolded.

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: TG-5 at 70mm (equiv); 200 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Portrait profile; south Bristol; 21 May 2020.

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ARCHIVE KENYA 20 – RAINBOW, LAKE NAKURU

 

 


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Rainbow in Lake Nakuru National Park, against a dark, stormy sky; and with Yellow-barked Acacia trees on the right (also known as “Fever Trees”, as formerly thought to be the source of malaria); June 1980.

Note the difference in brightness of the sky on either side of the rainbow, and also how the sequence of colours in the rainbow’s dim reflection is opposite to that in the rainbow itself.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: Olympus OM-1 with 28mm Zuiko; lens Agfa CT18 slide film rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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ARCHIVE 498 – THE VIEW WEST AT SUNRISE

 

 


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Looking west along the North Drain from the Jack’s Drove bridge on Tealham Moor, at sunrise; 22 Nov 2013.

I’d raced to Tealham Moor to catch the sunrise, and just before the scene was blasted by the light of the rapidly rising sun (see this image), there was this beautiful soft light, with clouds that were faintly tinged pink, off to the west. 

A group of three Mute Swans are on the water at lower left, and I’m pleased because this whole scene is just as I remember it. 

Click onto the “early morning” tag (below) to see more images from the early hours of the day.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: D800 with 80-400 Nikkor lens at 300mm; 800 ISO; Color Efex Pro 4.

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ARCHIVE KENYA 15 – LAKE MAGADI

 

 


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View across Lake Magadi, in the rift valley in southern Kenya; October 1978.  The line of hills on the horizon is the Nguruman Escarpment, the western wall of the rift valley.  The vast quantities of volcanic rocks produced during the formation of the rift valley are very rich in sodium, which weathers out of these rocks in solution as sodium bicarbonate.  Lake Magadi is situated at a low altitude in an area of the rift that is one of the hottest and driest parts of Kenya, and it lacks an outflow.

Sodium bicarbonate weathers out from the surrounding volcanic rocks and is transported into the lake in solution via streams and groundwater.  The concentration of sodium bicarbonate in the lake increases as more and more water bicarbonate enters the lake – while more and more of the lake’s water evaporates in the ferociously hot climate.   When the lake’s waters become saturated with the bicarbonate,  sodium carbonate is precipitated as a solid mineral.

This carbonate forms a white crust on the lake’s surface, which is tinged pink by red algae which proliferate in the highly alkaline water.  Hot springs around the lake are sufficiently alkaline to feel soapy to the touch, i.e. as they immediately start dissolving your skin!  The soda is extracted here commercially.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: Olympus OM-1 with 28mm Zuiko lens, and probably a polarising filter; Agfa CT18 colour slide film rated at 64 ISO.

SUMMARY:  as you may have guessed by now, I was formerly – from the age of about five in fact – a geologist.  As a boy that’s all I ever wanted to be.  And so to university, and six years of geological research in Scotland, the Western Alps and Oman.  But LOL! >>> the best laid plans of mice and men!!!  In 1967 two school friends introduced me to birding, and the (noble!) rot set in.  And so to birds, and to going to Kenya to lecture in geology and to look at birds in a zoogeographical region of the world completely new to me – the Afrotropics.

See next photo.
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Lake Magadi’s pink and white soda crust; October 1977; see previous picture.  This photo was taken with a 28mm wideangle lens, which captures detail from close at hand out to the horizon.  The jagged soda ridge in the foreground is about six inches high where it casts a very black shadow near the center of the shot.  I purposely made this ridge emanate from the picture’s lower right corner so that it would act as a leading line, drawing the viewer’s eyes ever more deeply into the picture and on out towards the horizon.

On the horizon, very slightly to the left of this “six inch cliff”, is the distinctive outline of the Shompole volcano, which is on the border with Tanzania.  Venturing out onto Lake Magadi’s crust is extremely hazardous, because it can give way at any moment, plunging the unwary into a warm and highly caustic mixture of sodium carbonate and bicarbonate that will cause serious burns.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: Olympus OM-1 with 28mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide film rated at 64 ISO.

THE ARCHIVE KENYA SERIES

I’m re-posting photographs that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

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OUTER SUBURBS 226 – PATH THROUGH MODERN HOUSING 7

 

 


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Walking in the lockdown, and looking at a path through modern housing.  Whenever I walk through this housing estate I glance down this little path and it never fails to visually attract me.  For sure, there are many other such paths in this area, but the others all have extraneous visual clutter, notably other objects eg houses visible in the background.  LOL! in the Lord of the Rings there is The One Ring, and here there is The One Path!

I’ve photographed this path before, and that picture is below – and they are different pictures!  First, the framing is slightly different.  The shot below has a lower aspect, and shows almost none of the sky, which was grey and featureless, whereas cotton wool clouds and blue sky are quite a feature of the upper shot.  Second – and most importantly for photographers – the lighting is different.  The picture below was shot on a grey, overcast day, so there are almost no shadows and the picture is full of clear detail – for example, the colour of the path is better seen, as are the two, closely juxtaposed inspection covers on the path.  On a grey day like this, the only real shadows are beneath vehicles.  But the upper shot has quite strong directional lighting, the sun is not far above the horizon, and there is a lot of form and shadow in the white fence and the pruned hedge – and also the curving shadow of the street light on the hedge.

And I may have processed these two images slightly differently, though I do see that they both use the Camera Vivid profile in Lightroom.

Anyway, in summary, I suppose, the lower shot is perhaps expressionless or even deadpan – this is what the place looks like, in some detail, with no visual frills.  Whereas the upper shot does have frills: its more colourful, with the strong directional lighting producing some modeling – chiaroscuro, the interplay of light and shadow – and a greater range of tones too, from the white clouds to black shadows.

So >>> do you have a preference here?  Which one – if any – do you prefer???  And why?

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Earlier pictures of a paths through modern housing are here: 1 2 3 4 5 6 .  Each will open in a separate window.

Click onto each image to open a larger version in a separate window.

Technique for the upper image: TG-5 at 25mm (equiv); 800 ISO; spot metering; Lightroom, starting at the Camera Vivid profile; south Bristol; 31 Mar 2020.
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ARCHIVE KENYA 2 – RIFT VALLEY LANDSCAPE, KENYA (MONO)

 

 


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View eastwards across the rift valley in Kenya, showing Lake Elmenteita, a soda lake in the rift floor, with the eastern escarpment of the rift dimly seen in the far distance; probably late 1970s.

Each of the small cones on the far side of the lake, and the slightly higher ground immediately left of the lake, is a separate volcano.  The whole of the rift floor is volcanic, with liquid rock (magma) pushing up from deep inside the Earth through the fracture in the Earth’s crust that is the rift valley.  Magma erupting onto the Earth’s surface is known as lava.

I’m re-posting pictures that I took in Kenya over 30 years ago.  You can find more context here .  Click onto the “Archive Kenya” tag (below) to see more of these film images from Kenya.

Click onto the image to open a larger version in a separate window – recommended.

Technique: OM-1 with 28mm Zuiko lens; Agfa CT18 colour slide film rated at 64 ISO; converted to mono in Alien Skin’s Exposure 2.

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