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Photo Notes

Rapa Nui National Park

The Rapa Nui National Park on Easter Island in the south east of the Pacific Ocean, includes all the main historical sites where the moai (huge rock statues) can be seen: where they were carved, where they were toppled over and where they have been re-erected. This is a place where the past is shrouded in mystery. The population almost completely disappeared in the 1800s and there are no known records of why and how the moai were carved and erected.
Buffeted by weather from all directions it was a challenge to photograph the statues to their best effect.

Rano Raraku is where the moai were quarried before being positioned at several locations around the island. This image was taken soon after dawn with the G1 and the mid-range zoom lens. To obtain this grouping of the two moai, I needed a very low camera position and the G1’s variable LCD screen enabled me to compose the image with the camera close to the ground, and achieve the feeling of the height of the moai. DMC-G1. Shutter: 1/400 sec. Aperture: f/5.6, ISO: 100.

It is not always easy to notice the details when surrounded by these most majestic statues. Many moai have etched carvings at the rear, and with the long lens I was able to isolate part of the statue to accentuate the carving. I deliberately chose to take the image with the light falling across the carving to give more contrast to the image, and used a 16:9 aspect ratio to eliminate distracting information.
DMC-G1. Shutter: 1/400 sec. Aperture: f/5.0, ISO: 100.

Ahu Tongariki has the largest number of moai but it is difficult to give a sense of the location and their scale. I was able to capture this dramatic light from the sun illuminating passing showers by walking high on the nearby volcano Rano Raraku and using the long LUMIX G VARIO 45-200mm / F4.0-5.6 / MEGA O.I.S lens on a tripod to minimize the camera movement in the wind. I kept the shutter speed as high as I could in the gusty wind.
DMC-G1. Shutter: 1/320 sec. Aperture: f/9.0, ISO: 100.

At the summit of Rano Raraku I found this partially carved moai. The challenge was to make an image that showed the statue as well as its location. I placed the camera on a tripod facing the statue at the edge of a precipitous cliff. Using the rotated LCD screen, I was able to compose and record the image and avoid falling from the cliff edge. I used f.13 to bring the background into focus and include the entire location.
DMC-G1. Shutter: 1/160 sec. Aperture: f/13.0, ISO: 100

Photo Notes:
Jiuzhaigou Valley Scenic and Historic Interest Area - China
Rapa Nui National Park
Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works
Historic Quarter of the Seaport City of Valparaíso
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