Date Archives august 2020

Up the hill!

Those of you that know a bit about Denmark know that this country is a bit flat. But none the less we have a hill (not even the highest) that we call “Sky Mountain”
So Denmark is not the place that you would expect to have a motorsport Hill Climb event.

But we have…oh yes!!

At the only place in Denmark where there are hairpin turns, Munkebjerg, near the town of Vejle i Jutland. Every year on the first sunday of August a lot of classic cars join the Munkebjerg Hill Climb.
It’s a 1800 meters asphalt track with 60 meters increase from the start at the water to the finish at Munkebjerg Hotel.

A bit of history

Hillclimb has a long history behind it. In the childhood of cars, this was the way the factories could show what their vehicles were capable of, and a tradition of international hill racing was already developing around the First World War. During the twenties and thirties, international championships arose, and the big factories built cars specifically for Hillclimb, where the big stars of the time could shine.At that time, the audience went in large crowds to the famous hills, and Hillclimb had status in line with the Grand Prix, then Formula 1. After World War II, Hillclimb has shrunk to a small side discipline in motorsport, so it is quite appropriate that in Denmark it is historical motorsport that has taken up hill climb.

Raceday

My day at the Hill Climb started at 0730 in the secretariat of the paddock where I got my yellow west that allowed me to walk outside the barrieres on the track. Or as one of the officials said : “With the west you are now allowed to be run over by the racecars….but please don’t! It’s one hell of a job with all the paperwork that follows” ­čÖé
Due to Covid-19 the photograpers was not allowed to take pictures in the paddock during the day because the max amount of people in the paddock was limited to 100. So I only got pictures from the track it self.
With the west on I walked down the track to I almost reached the no. 3 spot on the map. Here I would start the days shoot of the cars passing under the railway bridge. the race started 0915 with the warm up round and then there would follow 3 heats.

All photos in this post is shot with my old but fine working Fujifilm X-T2 and 2 lenses. The Fujinon XF 50-140mm f/2,8 for shots of cars drivning to or from me (almost all shot on f/2,8) and the Fujinon XF 16-55mm f/2,8 for the pan shots.
I shot almost 1000 photos so I will only show some of the 120 pictures i ended up with. I have tried different edit from station to station so the photos not all look the same.
Hope that you will take a look at them all….at the end there are some special ones ­čÖé

After the first cars had passed me I walked across the track and found me a high place to shoot the next couple of cars.

The hairpin turn

The 3. stop of the day was at the hairpin turn at point no. 4 on the map. I stood at the inside of the turn up high so I could get some great pan shots of the cars.

Lunch break

It was time for my lunch break…..and something to drink. It was starting to get pretty hot although there was some shadow under the trees.
I went up to a spot between no. 5 and 6. on the map and enjoyed a quick lunch. There I met up with another Fujifilm user Jesper Gregers Bruun. Jesper loves speed…he drives a Ducati motorbike…and Fujifilm.
He didn’t have a photo west….but we could stand at that place together.

Jesper shooting with X-T3 and the 50-140mm

I had noticed that just down the track there was a very dark shadow from the trees and very bright sunshine. So if you exposed after the sunny spot and took the picture when the cars hit the the sun…..the background would turn almost black. I think that gave some interesting pictures.

Last station

The last station that I shot from was just up near no. 6 on the map. Here I again tried some pan shot and what you could call a autumn edit….with some brown colours.
This was not the easiest station to shoot from. For safety reasons I had to stand in the wood and shoot from a distance.

End of the day

This was the end of the day and if you are interested in who won the race…..you can find the results here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/1skju2zvsabf1dy/AABVcjiV7dAPAfPta7ZwqusHa/2020-08-09%20-%20Munkebjerg%20Hillclimb?dl=0&preview=Endelig+resultat+-+Generelt.pdf&subfolder_nav_tracking=1

The most interesting cars…..for me….was not the quickest but those that gave the best photos. And those were the oldest ones.
So I tried to make some B/W edits to see if that would work on old cars. I think it did….but have a look for yourself ­čÖé

Sharp, or…..?

This short post brings me back exactly 4 years…back to 2016 and Smukfest. Smukfest….or Skanderborg Festivalen as its also known is a music festival in Denmark. It’s taking place in a beech forest in the middle of Jutland in the start of august. But not this year because of Covid-19 so we all just have the memories from the past years.

I got the idea for this post due to a memory I got from the 2016 festival on my Instagram account yesterday.

www.instagram.com/kaarebak

I had never attended the festival before….and…I had at that time never photographed a concert. I was approached by the then head of the photo team Per Bille who asked if I could be interested in joining the 2016 photo team.
I still remember my answer: “Naaaaaa, I’m not a concert photographer. I need a controlled environment where I can get everything sharp”.
His reply was: “I seen your photos and they are great…and I could use you on the team”
It ended with me taking the challenge and today I’m glad I did….because it changed the way I looked at my own photographic work.

Before the festival and in particular one concert I had been almost obsessed with sharpness in my photos. If a photo wasn’t 110% sharp I would delete it.
No sharpness…no good!!
But I must say that the festival changed that….and as I mentioned earlier there was this one concert. When I edited the pictures from the concert with the Danish rock band Turboweekend with the lead singer Silas Bjerregaard I was blow away. My pictures was not sharp (almost not) but there was something else…..there was so much energy, feelings and atmosphere.
The pictures that you can see below I regard as some of my best ever and I have 4 of them printed and framed on the wall in my study.

So after that concert….when I look at my photos I’m not only looking for sharpness…..I’m also looking energy, feelings and atmosphere.

The roadtrip

I sometimes like to take one or more days out of the calendar and go on a road trip around Denmark. Get my brain cleaned out and have full focus on photography. Such a day I took some time ago when my girlfriend was out of the house.
I had set the alarm clock to 0430 ÔÇŽ. just half an hour before sunrise. I wanted a trip up the west coast of Jutland. There was no need to get up earlier as there were no obvious sunrise spots on the route.
The route was laid out a bit overall with a few fixed stops along the way and end station at Vigs├Ş Battery (an old bunker complex from World War II.)


Along the way my photo partner Anders Keis (see his great photo blog here) would join and follow along the last part of the day. He shot mostly with analog cameras during the day.


In my photo bag I had my old Fujifilm X-T2 and some lenses but I also had a GFX100 and some G-lenses including the GF 30mm f3,5 witch hadn’t been released at that time (read my review of the 30mm here).

First stop was planned to be Lyngvig Lighthouse but I ended up with quite a few stops before the Lighthouse. When I was driving on the highway i noticed a very interesting light from the sun rising. It was not bright yellow as one could expect….it was more purple. I took the first exit and stopped the car and took a look around. I had some windmills on one side and some trees on the other….but both tings was a bit away from the road. So I took the GFX 100 and the GF 100-200mm f5,6 and stood just outside the car facing west on the first shot and east on the second.

Ringk├Şbing Fjord

Next stop was just south of the town of Hvide Sande. I saw a sign leading down to a small harbour and decided to have a look. It was a very small harbour with some leisure boats and small fishing vessels.

The photos show some of the small boats at Ringk├Şbing Fjord and are all done with the GF 30mm f3,5 lens.

Haurvig Church

Hvide Sande

Hvide Sande was not a planned stop but as I passed through the town I noticed some large nets on the “inside”….in Ringk├Şbing Fjord. Perfect for some long exposure shots. The town are placed on the long stretch of land that separate the Fjord form the North Sea so You can see water on both sides.

First 3 photos taken with GFX100 and the 30mm f3,5 and the last with my X-T2 and the 16-55 f2,8.

On the other side the fishing boats were going out into the North Sea.

Lyngvig Lighthouse

Now I got to Lyngvig and the Lighthouse. A nice area with low rolling sand hills with lyme grass. The Lighthouse was closed due to the corona virus so I only got shots from the outside. But the clouds was not good for long exposure so only snapshots ­čÖé

Lyngvig Lighthouse is the last in a series of built lighthouses along Jutland’s west coast and in 1906 it throws its characteristic, sweeping light cone over the dune landscape for the first time. The lighthouse rises well in the flat dune landscape, and with its flame height of 53 meters can be seen far away.

Bovbjerg Lighthouse

The next stop was again one of those stop that wasn’t planned. A road sign lead the way to Bovbjerg Lighthouse.

Bovbjerg Lighthouse was built in 1877 as one of the first lighthouses on the west coast. The lighthouse was to guide shipping at a time when there were an awful lot of shipwrecks. It is painted red to avoid confusion with the church towers in the nearby villages. The lighthouse stands on a cliff 41 meters above sea level. The tower itself is 26 meters high. The flame height is 62 m, and the light from the current 300 W halogen lamp through the original Fresnel lens can be seen in clear weather 16 nautical miles from the shore.
There are also some bunkers from WW2.

Oddesund

Now I got to the destination where Anders would join me. He had a small problem with his GPS so I took a 15 minute rest in the car before he came to the right spot. This place have a quit funny name. If you translate it directly from Danish to English it’s name is: Pigs Toe Cape ­čÖé
A piece of land formed as a pigs toe.

Here you can photograph the small lighthouse and the old iron bridge. I have been here a few times before and done some good long exposure shots here. Unfortunately the clouds wasn’t very good so I only got silky water ­čÖé

Architecture

On our way out to the west coast again we stopped at the small town of Hurup to get something to drink and eat…..and to do som architecture photos. In Hurup you find the biggest window factory in Denmark with around 100.000 m2 under roof.

Lodbjerg Lighthouse

The last stop before Vigs├Ş Battery was yet another Lighthouse. This one is called Lodbjerg Lighthouse. It is located alone in the middle of a large heath and plantation area. The lighthouse was built in 1883 and lit for the first time on November 28, 1884. The lighthouse is 35 meters high and the light has a height of 48 meters above sea level.

Vigs├Ş Battery

The last planned stop for the day was Vigs├Ş Battery. It was time to do som long exposure shot of the concrete bunkers in the water and end it all of with a sunset.

When you do landscape photography things do not always goes as planned. And this day was no different.
The sunset never happened…or yes it did but the clouds played us and the sun disappeared down behind some massive clouds so we never got the many colours we where hoping for.

….But the long exposure turned out great!!
I use LEE filters when I do long exposure and I mostly use the 15 stop ND filter (called SuperStopper) so that I can got the 2-4 minutes exposure that i prefere.

This one has a bit of colour from the sun going down.

The last one of the day from Vigs├Ş turned into something from a sci-fi movie or from Mars. I just love how the edit of this photo blends the sand and the water into something surreal.

It was getting late, The sunset was not going to happen so we decided to call it the day and head home. Anders had a 1 hour drive back to his place and a I had 3 hours if i drove directly with no stops.
But when I got to Vilsund Bridge I had to stop to take the last picture of the day.
I ended up home a 0115 o’clock almost 23 hours after I started the trip. A great day with at great photo buddy….and some ok photos ­čÖé