Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Thompsons Beach, Natal

My wife and I stayed in Ballito on the Natal north coast for a weekend at the beginning of February this year.

We managed to get a one bedroom apartment a block away from the main beach in Ballito. Ballito is a very popular holiday destination especially for matriculants after writing their final exams...and apparently there is one huge party in Ballito at the beginning of December.





Of course in February Ballito is very quiet as it is out of season then and that's when I enjoy going on holiday most. The beaches on the north coast of Natal are very steep and its not really ideal for swimming as the waves break on the shore.

Just north of Ballito we discovered a beautiful beach with a huge tidal pool a short walk from the main road. Most beaches on the North coast have life savers and shark nets which makes them very safe for swimming.

Thompson's Bay is quite rocky with imposing sandstone cliffs and with a hole-in-the-wall that gives access to a  few more smaller and secluded beaches.

Now I am not one that can lie in the sun for hours so Thompson's Bay was perfect to while a way a few hours just wandering from one beach to the next and climbing over and under the rocks and photographing everything and anything that tickled my fancy.

click on images to enlarge....









I only took one camera with me for the weekend, a Leica X1 with the fixed 35mm equivalent lens. It is very compact and because we flew to Durban I didn't want to take a whole bunch of camera with me... after all this was supposed to be a bit of a holiday as well...

All the landscapes here were converted to b&W with Nik Silver Efex software. Nik Silver Efex is my favourite b&w conversion software that provides a lot of control over micro contrast, grain, toning etc. If one uses a yellow filter then it lightens everything that is yellow and darkens blues etc. Because the sandstone is yellow, by using the yellow or orange filters in Nik Silver Efex, I could make the tonal values of the sandstone rocks lighter and at the same time darken the blue sky a bit. These are all controls one can use to fine tune landscapes and make them more or less dramatic....


regards, Ivan...


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