In my trips to Poland, have have been fortunate to take a number of photographs of the site and people of Poland the the borderlands–specifically Ukraine, so far. Some of them are just OK, yet remind me of the places I’ve been and the things I’ve seen. But a few of them are really very good, in my humble opinion. I have begun collecting, framing, and exhibiting them occasionally as a part of my collection titled “Zdjęcia z Polski i Kresów”–Photos from Poland and the Borderlands.
You can see many of my photos from my two trips in these online albums:
Three of the best will be displayed at the Sanford Welcome Center for the Sanford Art Walk. The show opens on the day of the Sanford Art Walk, Friday September 25th, from 6-9 PM at the Historic Sanford Welcome Center, 230 East First Street, Sanford, FL 32771. I hope you can join me there. But for those who can’t, here’s a bit about what you’re missing.
- Golden Spires: This is a photo of a brand new Orthodox Church that was built recently near Yaremche in the Carpathian mountains in the southwest of Ukraine. It was a gorgeous late afternoon and the golden spires are what drew me to this picture, with the backdrop of the lush green hills and mountains behind it. It was taken on August 22, 2011 about 5:30 PM Ukraine local time with my Nikon D40x, f/6.3, a/500 sec., ISO 100. You can see the original photo here: http://poland.leonkonieczny.com/Poland%202011/Carpathians/slides/DSC_4237.JPG
- Pretty in Pink: We were visiting Chernivtsi, in southwestern Ukraine. We had a wonderful experience there as it was Ukrainian Independence Day and we saw a parade and lots of activity. We went off and did a bit of exploring and came upon this, the Saint Dukhivskyy Orthodox Cathedral in Chernivtsi. I was immediately taken by the bright pink color. It really stood out and in some way spoke to me of a culture very proud of their church and their beliefs. This picture is of the outside, but the inside is equally stunning as well. The sun is a bit hard on this photo due to the time of day. It was taken on August 24, 2011 about 1 PM Ukraine local time with my Nikon D40x, f/5.6, 1/500 sec., ISO 100. You can see the original version of this photo here: http://poland.leonkonieczny.com/Poland%202011/Chernivtsi/slides/DSC_4636.JPG.
- Chain: It’s not apparent, but this is actually one of the chains that holds the drawbridge at Malbork, the largest brick castle in Europe. It is a fascinating place to visit. We were there on a rather dank and rainy day when this photo popped into my head. It was taken about 11:30 AM Poland time on September 2, 2010 with my Nikon D40x, f/3.5, 1/40 sec., ISO100. I have not previously published this photo, but you can see the chain and the drawbridge here: http://poland.leonkonieczny.com/images/2010PolandTour/03%20Malbork/slides/DSC_8227.JPG.
As time goes on, I plan to add to this collection of photos. I’d be glad to hear your thoughts as well! Dziękuję bardzo!
What do my photos try to say?
I’ve been asked about what I do the photos in the collection Zdęcia z Polski i Kresów. Do I take the original image and manipulate it through Photoshop or some other means of post-processing, or do i just print it as it comes out? Well, the answer is that I definitely manipulate it in some way. What I try to capture and present to the viewer is the scene as I saw it, what I saw in my mind at the moment I took the photo. Sometimes the framing of the original photo is a bit off, and I crop it. Often the brightness and contrast are not what I saw, but just what the camera saw–and I fix that. And sometimes the color, hue, and saturation are not what I remember, not what I saw. I fixt them all. I do not do a lot of heavy duty fixing, however. At the current time, I use a lightweight program, Adobe Photoshop Elements 9 to do that. I have experimented a bit with Gimp, and may use that some day. Sometimes after an image is printed, it still is not right, and so I redo it and print it again. Sometimes I print them myself, up to 8×10 size, and other times I send out for printing. But at the end of the day, what you see is what I saw in my mind when I took the photo–it’s an accurate reflection of my memory. And hopefully my images express my deep love and respect for Poland and its borderlands and all the great sights I’ve seen there.