Maly Dunaj, wet plate landscape project

June 10, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

Maly Dunaj, or Little Danube in English, split from Danube river near Bratislava and is winding on the flat planes of South Slovakia for more than one hundred kilometers.  Maly Dunaj is just ten, twenty meters wide and in some places it splits into even narrower branches. Banks of Maly Dunaj are fenced with thick chain of riverine forest and river is accessible just in the places opened by human activity.  Its lazy, slow flow offers a unique mix of cultivated land and rough nature and Maly Dunaj is loved by fishermen and boat ridersAs anywhere, money can be stupid and cruel. Even this nature gem is in a danger. There are plans to build some electric power station near Nový Život village, which will inevitably destroy a unique character of a big part of the river. 

They are saying that the camera you are using determine what kind of photographs are you making. The Maly Dunaj project is, not just in this technical aspect, a kind of a new experience, when my previous landscapes were focused on mountains. It is great to discover tranquil and intimate beauty of river meanders.

Usually I'm trying to find for photography some isolated places where the natural character of the river is dominant, but this scenery full of exotic magic caught me in the middle of a small village. It looks that people are much more tolerable when you are working near their homes with a big wooden camera. I'm not a big talker and it is even worse when I'm focusing on wet plates, but my experiences with people around the river are very positive. 

It was clear that it will be a day of one scene. This is the first plate of the day, made just after 7 a.m. Sun was covered behind clouds at that time. River was very quiet. You had to focus to see how it flows, very, very slowly. With F64 I made 3 minutes exposure, hope to catch in the picture some of debris movement. And I wanted to maximized brightness of tree branches. It worked pretty well. The clouds had disappeared shortly after this image was made and the rest of that day I was struggling with sunlight. 

Some plates from Maly Dunaj project are for sale on Etsy






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