I thought it would good to start up a new little series on individual images that I’ve taken so readers can get an idea of what went into a photograph. Why not start with one that is a bit unattainable for an overnight trip? This is unfortunately as true as ever since Cairo in 2012 at the time of this posting is still in transition and trying to move toward a life without their previous leader and with new governments.
"The Great Pyramids at Sunrise" by Joel Addams
THE PYRAMIDS, CAIRO, EGYPT
The Pyramids in Egypt present particular problems to the photographer. The main one that I found was getting to a location where you could get a clear shot of the pyramids without the encroaching city of Cairo in the frame. My buddy and I went back to the pyramids three times, and it wasn’t until we were on another plane that I realized we hadn’t actually gone in. After I apologized to him, we reviewed our photographs and realized that maybe it was worth it to an extent. We were completed shut down the first time we attempted them at sunset, realizing that the city of Cairo was simply too close to the site. We tried desperately to get on top of some roofs, but no one would let us. We came back the next morning at an early 5:00 a.m. thinking we could find the right angle. We were led into road block after road block, not able to traverse the high fence that encompasses the pyramids in their entirety. Finishing we found some “guides” who had horses, albeit quite shortlegged horses, and they guaranteed that we could still catch sunrise if we were on horseback. They forgot to tell us, however, that we would be on horses for 45 minutes and then enter the grounds by a “friend” who camped out in a remote area next to the fence. We then proceeded to trot toward the pyramids about one half of a mile and my friend and I started shooting away. I took a few pictures of him on his horse with the pyramids in the background (used later for publication in the UK), and then took this panoramic image in the full sunrise.
And then the real fun began. Off in the distance we could see two men on camels racing…yes, racing…towards us. Our “guide” turned to us quickly and said, “It’s good? We can leave?” ”Absolutely,” we said. Camels are lot faster than they look, and they quickly caught up to us. They were armed military, and our “guide” had to pay a little fee to let us all go. Fortunately, no harm, no foul. The legitimacy of our guide and likely his lack of any credentials or paperwork got himself a bit of a ticket. The shots were good, though. All of my images were on a Canon 20D on this trip, a Manfrotto tripod, and this image was taken with a 24 mm Tilt Shift (older version). A little crop and “The Great Pyramids, Cairo, Egypt” came to be.
Camera: Canon 5D
Lens: Canon 24 mm TS
Settings: ISO 100, f/13, 1/125th of a second
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