The next leg of our trip, called Sacred Places of Asia, began in Java with a visit to the legendary Borobudur Temple.
This was a stop I was really relishing, since I’d never been here before. But after a sunny afternoon arrival and a quick visit to a minor temple, a perfect storm of photographic complications gathered today as we visited the main site.
First, it was dark, stormy, and pouring rain. That might have been enough to do me in, but then it happened that today, thousands of Javanese high school students were to overrun visit the site, swarming all over with their bright colored umbrellas and ponchos.
And as the photographic coup de grace, there was crew on top of the temple cleaning the stupas with high pressure hoses.
Oy! What did I do in a previous life to deserve this now? What must my karma must be to catch such a break?
Well, I did my best to avoid the kids (until I embraced their presence), and then hid the guy with the high pressure hose behind a stupa (those round pointy things) and just got the discharge from his hose. Kind of looks like fog, doesn’t it?
Add a little monochrome sepia treatment with the D90’s Retouch Menu and, damn, the picture is almost presentable!
For a look at more of Java, a batik factory, a couple of other temples and a faux HDR, hit the jump.
If you can’t beat them, join them. Below is a favorite frame from a visit to a batik factory. Steam, fog, or high pressure hose runoff, I’ll go for any atmospheric condition to help a picture along.
One thing I would have loved to do at Borobudur is to shoot it in black and white infrared, for my ongoing project shooting the world’s spiritual monuments that way. But even B&W infrared couldn’t help that weather, but it did look good the next day at Prambanan Temple.
Knowing that I’d be moving fast on this itinerary and need to have everything I could possibly need in my camera bag 24/7, I threw in my B&W Infrared modified Coolpix 8400…it’s compact and the image quality isn’t too bad.
I cobbled together two frames below for a handheld pano.
And finally, below, I tried a faux HDR using Topaz Adjust on that same shot I’ve run in Sepia at the head of the blog.
Once I learn this program, I’m sure I’ll be able to get better results, but on this trip, I’m lucky I can post anything but out of the camera jpegs, let alone artistically manipulated images!
Next stop: Angkor Wat!