Finally, based in Kyjov. We got a nice Airbnb apartment near one of the best restaurants in town and I have to say, their home-brewed beer is pretty good to. Time to do some work. As the weather was cloudy in the morning, we decided to skip the sunrise session as it was not worth to wake up after a long 6 hour drive through Austria yesterday. I was actually very surprised to see the first fields already close to Großknut village, where we stopped and took the first shots.
The day focus was in the fields of Šardice valley, a nice scenic road with plenty of photography stops and opportunities. Luckily the sun started to shine and it was very windy as well, quite unpleasant on the field but good for the combination of light and shadows as there were still clouds in the sky. First time in Moravia and I was already impressed by the beauty of the spring landscape in this region of Czech Republic. We parked the car next to the road several times and took some photographs, being passed by the collegues from Poland, parked in the mud and used mostly the heavy telephoto lenses for the images. We were informed that if you want to get decent images without too many distracting objects, you need at least 200mm on crop sensor (300mm on FF), to work with. Fujifilm Slovenia gratefully offered us their XF 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 OIS lens to borrow and we were using XF 55-200mm f/3.5-4.8 for the second camera so the images look pretty decent. Both lenses are monsters in sharpness. Discovering the area, we followed an untrusted muddy road, which was very wet because of the night rain and with the help of the 4WD, we reached a pond in the middle of the fields, where we stopped for a break. Again, the car will be dirty all the way up to the roof...
The afternoon was getting quite warm, and still with the annoying wind it made us tired, but we insisted to cruise around and got some nice shots of the fields as well as some wildlife. There are plenty of deers, rabbits and pheasants on the fields and some of them they come very close to the road and if I will come focus on wildlife photography here, I'm sure I can get some decent images, as everything is so open wide.
We decided the point for the sunset, it was next to the rolling green fields. There are two subjects on this photo location. One is the rolling green fields that are orientated to the west, and another rolling fields on the brown slope, turned towards the south. Those are better to shoot before the golden hour, where there is still enough light on them. Unfortunately, we just got couple of golden hour images, when the big cloud covered the low sun and then we patiently wait to appear again under the clouds. Still, we were able to make some fantastic images in this spot. After, we returned to the flat and got ourself a pizza next door. They also had Holba beer, which was great. Tired of the wind, but happy, as Moravia already took my breath away. Can't wait for the days to come.
Aaaghhh, why so early? I'm really not a morning person. Once, we were talking with a friend, also a landscape photographer. He asked us, why we don't take sunrise images more often, as most of our images at the time were photographed at sunset and I said, because it is difficult for me to get up in the morning. His response was, yeah, you will see when you get kids, you will be up for sunrises every morning. This morning, we drove close to Kyjov in the spots, called "tsunami" and "St. Barbara chapel".
We realized, we had false information about the "tsunami" spot to be taken at sunrise, so we drove to the village of Šardice and took a morning shot of so called "magic valley" and returned back. Snapped some decent morning "tsunami" shots, in the field nearby, again, there were a lot of deers too, and inspect the "st. Barbara chapel" spot for the next morning. We were accompanied by many Czech landscape photographers. I was quite surprised above the number of local photographers there. Then I remember it was a Saturday. After morning session, we returned to our flat, to get some sleep.
Saturday was reserved for an easy cruising in the area, so we hit the road for about 30km north to photograph two windmills that are settled really nice in the moravian landscape. First one is near the village of Kunkovice, the second is next to the village of Chvalkovice. We made a round trip, using some unpaved roads via Bučovice town to return to Kyjov area. The weather was not perfect for some good shots, but we were able to make some close-up shots, not using too much sky to fill the frame. No wind as well for contrast between lights and shadows.
We returned to the rolling fields for the sunset to get some decent golden hour images and moved to another location nearby, which is mostly known by local photographers and offers you an exceptional view on the alley of chestnuts down in the valley. Moravian classic. The light became really soft and the images turned out very well. This is one of the most outstanding locations I've ever been and when you first come to the spots, you don't really see it so far in the distance. Extra zoom lenses recommended. On the way back we took the road, which goes behind the rolling fields but it ends in the bushes. No fish today here. Writing my diary in Kyjov at the moment, I really feel happy to discover such a beautiful place for fantastic photography and can't be more happy, thinking about that in the future, I can show and teach other photographers in these locations.
Last day. We started at the well known point of "St. Barbara Chapel". This time, lighting was far better than the day before. Soft light spilled on the fields behind the chapel and the little patch of forrest in the middle of the green fields. We were joined by our friend photographer Piotr and his team.
After awhile, we drove to the area of "tsunami" around the corner and returned to Kyjov as the layer of clouds started to gather on the sky. After short time, the sky become overcast, but, we still went to scout another locations in the area, bumped again at Piotr and the team and had to skip couple of locations due to cycling race. In the late morning we got back to Kyjov and check out from our apartment. We took some time to visit the city center, drink a coffee on the main square, bought supplies of czech beer and hit the road back.
It was an awesome scouting trip and I cannot wait for the photo workshops, we plan to organize here. The area really offers a lot of new motives and similarities to the well known Tuscany, but photograhers, who already were in Italy can look for new, fresh motives in the similar landscape. Plenty of different motives, everything in the relatively small area. I just love it. Check our Calendar for the dates in Autumn 2018 or get ready for the next year spring Photo Workshop, probably in April of 2019.
Photos: © Nejc Trpin & Leni Ozis