Dave's Photo & Travelblogue

Photo shoots. World travel advice. Tips on Munich & environs.

Toytown Photo Walk – October

I met up with the Toytown photo club and walked around Munich in the dark for a few hours. Here are a few shots I managed without any tripod.

f2 Cafe

I was going for a different angle on this red-lit mannequin.


Shooting from the hip in the dark at f/2…

From the hip

Eisbach surfers! I played with the strobe effect of my Nikon D90’s built-in flash. Next time I’ll bring a tripod and my SB600, turn down the ISO, and pump up the flash. That should blow out the orange highlights from the d*mn sodium vapor lights. I am too lazy for flash gels and a white card, heh.

Eisbach Surfing - Strobe Effect

That’s all for today!

Posted 11 years, 9 months ago at 12:40 pm.


Surfing with the Paparazzi

My last day in Sydney was June 11th, and I only had half the day before heading to the airport for my flight. I decided to check out the world-famous Bondi Beach, renowned for its surfing.

Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia

The waves weren’t massive, but they were big enough for a few of the better guys to get some serious air!

Surfer at Bondi Beach

While I was snapping away I met a fellow photographer who was taking some pics of the surfers. Turns out he was a paparazzi, and was shooting the surfers as “cover,” because Ewan MacGregor was in town. The guy thought Ewan might come to Bondi Icebergs club for lunch. Hah!

Surfer at Bondi Beach

This hard left turn into the oncoming face of the wave was a big favorite. Maybe a surfer can enlighten me on what that’s called, if there’s a fancy name for the trick?

Surfer trick at Bondi Beach

You can see “WTF!?” quite clearly in the body language of the older guy in the bottom half of the shot. “Don’t run me over, dude!”

Surfer trick at Bondi Beach

Sometimes you eat the wave, and sometimes the wave eats you.

Surfer wipeout at Bondi Beach

One last carve across the top of a breaking wave…

Surfer trick at Bondi Beach

And I’m out! Tomorrow, it’s back to New Zealand, where the first stop is Waitomo Caves to check out the glowworms. Has anyone ever seen one?

Bondi Beach, Australia with CPL

Posted 12 years ago at 3:20 pm.

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What a Manly Day!

Based on a Manly article by a fellow blogger, I put the Manly Scenic Walkway on my must-do list when in Australia. Manly is not only a state of being, but also a district outside of Sydney. The first thing that struck me when I arrived on June 9th was this:

The First White Man at Manly

Aussies are definitely not as “PC-scared” as Americans. I like that! Although it must be said: the 1928 sentiment of this plaque is a bit outdated, when you look at how the Aborigines were treated.

The Manly Scenic Walkway is about 10km, and passes through a great park in the middle. I saw lots of native plants I never even knew existed, along with quite a few local birds, lizards, and other animals. Absolutely a must for nature lovers.

Australian Bird

If the tide is low enough, you can walk along the beach in several areas and look into some cool tidal pools. A CPL (circular polarizing filter) helps reduce reflections when taking photos of them.

Aquatic Life in a Tidal Pool

I’m not sure what this flower is called, but apparently it’s very tasty to the local bees.

A Bee on some Australian Flowers

I was expecting to see more lizards, but then I realized: it’s winter! Most of them must be hiding below-ground when it’s cold and windy out. This guy braved the elements to catch a few rays in a wind-sheltered spot.

An Australian Lizard in Manly

Around Manly there are more sailboats than I’ve ever seen in one place (except perhaps Starnberger See in Germany).

Sailboats near Manly

And at Manly Beach you can see lots of surfers, or try it yourself if you want to catch a few waves. Definitely wetsuit weather in June when I was there snapping photos.

A Surfer catches a wave at Manly Beach

As you can see, Manly has a bit of everything. I even had a great fish & chips: grilled salmon instead of the standard fried whitefish! So, the next time you’re in Sydney, put Manly on your list of places to see. Especially if you’re a nature lover like me.

Posted 12 years ago at 3:32 pm.


Surfing Sunsets and Hula Dancing

I’ve surfed once before, in Portugal. After several hours, I had a total of about 30 seconds standing/kneeling on the board. Surfing is tough!

After a few beers yesterday evening with surfing mates I met in the hostel, I decided to try surfing again in Waikiki today (May 20th).

So… I slathered my body with SPF50, rented a longboard for $20 (6 hours), and headed out with Dan. The first break was very crowded with people, and I was constantly in the way. But I did get a couple of rides and stood up in a mid-crouch for at least one of them.

After lunch (takoyaki) I went back for a second round, with more SPF50 on my back. We paddled to a far-away break where there weren’t so many people. But the break was quite narrow, so in the end it was just as crowded as the morning’s break, as everyone converged on the same spot. I got about three rides, and headed in when my arms felt like they were about to give out from paddling.

In the evening we checked out a free Hula show on the beach. I didn’t know that the primary dancers are the men, not the women (though in this show they were equally featured).

Hula Dancing and Hawaiian Music at Waikiki Beach

My heart is officially melting from the wonderful Aloha…

Hula Dancer on Waikiki Beach

And I caught a few good sunset shots.

Beautiful Sunset at Waikiki Beach

Viele Grüße to the Germans I met in the hostel! I hope we can meet again at Oktoberfest, when I have more time and am less sunburned.

Fellow Travelers from Germany

Dave’s Surfing Tips

I’m no expert, but please, learn from my experiences (and mistakes)!

  • You have to see where the good (big & steep) waves are breaking, and go there. Probably others will be there as well.
  • Check with locals (or the surf shop) to find out the currents, dangerous/rocky areas, etc. before going out.
  • If you’re waiting for a wave, and someone’s already on it when it comes to you, get out of their way and don’t try to catch the wave as well. You’d be stealing their space, and you might get run over.
  • In case someone wipes out on a wave coming toward you (e.g. when you’re trying to paddle back out), duck under the wave and cover your head with your arms just in case the person or their board hits you.
  • Paddle, paddle, paddle with the wave you want to catch. If you’re not fast enough, the wave will pass you. If it’s not close enough to breaking (not steep enough yet), the wave will pass you. If you are lazy and don’t give 100% paddling, the wave will laugh at you as it passes. I swear I heard this a few times toward the end.
  • I don’t recommend paddling out to really far breaks unless you have seriously toned arms. I did make it back, but a lot of people might have a challenging time if they paddle out too far from shore.
  • Last, and most important: Non-tanned white people cannot surf in full sun without a wetsuit for 4 hours. Even with SPF50, reapplied halfway through, the melanin-challenged will be miserable lobsters the next day. It’s easier to list parts of me that are NOT burned: face, belly, palms, and the front of my legs. One of my ankles is so bad it’s even a wee bit swollen.

I’ll leave you with this beautiful silhouette. I’m sure she surfs way better than I do – hah.

Waikiki Surfing Girl Silhouette

Posted 12 years, 1 month ago at 3:24 pm.

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Why do Mannequins need Nipples?

At the risk of offending some, here’s my question: why is every mannequin in Miraflores either smuggling raisins, or (in one case that I was too shy to photograph) having a “wardrobe malfunction?”

Storefront Mannequin Smuggling Raisins in Miraflores

I thought this was funny. I’d be embarrassed if this were my shop, but apparently Peruvian fashion-store owners aren’t worried about showing a little nip.

Besides being shocked by the storefront windows on May 17th, I met some surfers down by the beach and talked with them for a while. Here’s a relaxed photo of Herman surfing with excellent style:

Herman surfing in Miraflores

Okay, on to some delicious foods you should try if in Peru. Ceviche (raw seafood marinated in lemon or lime juice) at Mama Olla’s (restaurant suggested by Tim, thanks man!):

Ceviche at Mama Olla's in Miraflores

Maracuja Pisco Sour at Mama Olla’s. I discovered the ingredient that froths up the Pisco Sour: egg whites!

Maracuja Pisco Sour at Mama Olla's

Suave Crema de Lucuma dessert at Las Brujas de Cachiche. Whatever this orange-colored cream is, the flavor mixes better with dark chocolate than almost anything I’ve ever tasted. Fantastic! Anise liqueur in the background…

Suave Crema de Lucuma dessert at Las Brujas de Cachiche

After all this, I boarded what would be the first of two flights to Hawaii. Strike that, three flights… I volunteered to lose a couple of hours for a $250 voucher when the flight was full. Let’s see what else tomorrow brings!

Posted 12 years, 1 month ago at 3:34 pm.


Surfing in landlocked downtown Munich!

Eisbach Surfing in Munich

For the surfers I met briefly today at the Eisbach in Munich: the gallery of my best photos is below, after the YouTube video. Val from Killians (hope I remembered your name right), I didn’t find any pics of you – but I can certainly meet up sometime and try to take a few! I live right near the Eisbach. Just leave a comment and I’ll email you.

Photos were taken with a Nikon D90 and the 18-200mm VR lens.

YouTube Preview Image

Go to YouTube to watch the video in HD!

Getting to the Eisbach Surfers’ Wave:


Posted 12 years, 2 months ago at 11:21 pm.


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