Samur forest and Caspian shore

Caspian Sea shoreline
Caspian Sea shoreline. EF 17–40mm f/4L USM,  f/9 ISO 200 1/200″.

We all could not wait the trip to Samur forest. Wildlife photographer Valery Moseykin, “Photo Expedition” leader and the author and guide of the first eco-tour in Dagestan, was talking about this wonderful forest with admiration since the very beginning. So with expectations that high, the long way from Mahachkala to Samur river actually looked not that long at all. In addition, we saw endless water space of azure and calm Caspian Sea to the left, and Caucasian foothills to the right. Finally we found ourselves at the southernmost point of Russia, almost at the border with Azerbaijan.

Ophrys oestrifera, botfly orchis
Ophrys oestrifera, Ophrys oestrifera. EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro USM,  f/11 ISO 200 1/13″.

Looks surprising, there is an asphalt road through the south-eastern side of the Samur forest. Locals take it to get to Primorsky settlement which is in 350 meters from Azerbaijan. And this road led us right to the heart of the forest.
As soon as we got out of the car, we saw adorable orchids, a species from Orchis genus. Two other species were hiding in the forest next to the glade.

Saturnia pyri, giant emperor moth Sturgeons at the fish breeding farm
Saturnia pyri, giant emperor moth. Sturgeons at the fish breeding farm. EF 17–40mm f/4L USM,  f/9 ISO 200 1/200″.
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Iris flowers in Yamskaya Steppe

Iris flower
Dwarf iris flower, Iris pumila. Sigma 150mm f/2.8 Macro EX DG HSM,  f/4 ISO 500 1/200″.

The great thing about places you are already familiar with is that you are always aware of what to photograph once you get there. Nevertheless, these places continue to surprise.
It was like that in Yamskaya Steppe this time. Feather grass hasn′t yet started to flower, while all the primroses were gone, but lots of splendid dwarf iris flowers appeared here and there in the steppe.

Iris in Yamskaya Steppe Iris in Yamskaya Steppe
Iris at sunset in Yamskaya Steppe. Sigma 150mm f/2.8 Macro EX DG HSM,  f/4 ISO 200 1/100″.
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Orchis militaris

Orchis militaris
Orchis militaris, military orchid. St. Petersburg region. Sigma 150mm f/2.8 Macro EX DG HSM,  f/4 ISO 200 1/125″.

It was a rare week of awesome weather in May. Escaped to photograph orchids for one day and a half. Had lots of fun but payed a high price for that time later... Still it was worth that.

These pretty plants definitely deserve that love and attention with which I approached them. Today′s just one of our local orchid species – Orchis militaris. A tiny flower sitting among spring grasses gives an excellent opportunity to try different angles and coposition. I really love this kind of soft pictures. Below are close ups of the same species inflorescence, just a larger specimen.

Close up of Orchis militaris inflorescence Close up of Orchis militaris inflorescence
Close up of Orchis militaris inflorescence. St. Petersburg region. Sigma 150mm f/2.8 Macro EX DG HSM,  f/13 ISO 200 1/8″.


Oro. EF 17–40mm f/4L USM,  f/11 ISO 200 1/50″.

It's morning dawn. Sun starts to climb up. The air is filled with reverberating silence. It is not just the silence, it's like when you hear somebody, from somewhere. In addition, it smells something strange. You do not get used to it overnight sleeping in the tent. Some unusual mix of salt and organics. The landscape, absolutely flat, is seen through for tens of kilometers, if only you are not in any relief depression. These lonely trees which give a subtle shadow – seem to be the only thing that adds a diversity to the landscape. The others are at least in a few kilometers from here. Isn't it an emptyness? True! It's desert. Still, you feel the presence of somebody. Indeed, an amazing feeling.

Image Geotagger

Ladoga lake, Karelia, Russia. Open in new window.

I have been using GPSPhotoLinker for years. I become bored recently with its dependance on old Perl libraries which were no longer shipped with OS X. Some workaround suggested on manufacturer's forum helped to deal with problem for the next two OS X releases. Nevertheless, GPSPhotoLinker started to crash with Fujifilm X100T RAF files and with large Canon CR2s as well.

Internally GPSPhotoLinker uses Exiftool to complete geotagging tasks. So I decided to develop my own solution which would essentially run Exiftool console utility with carefully adjusted parameters.

Geotagger context menu

The solution is made as OS X workflow and appears in Finder context menu. So it's very easy to georeference your fresh or old images. You have not even to remember the app name :)
Basically, it is straightforward and self-explanatory, however, I'd comment on the workflow logic.
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