Month: November 2016

Honest Kabali of Abu Dhabi Taxi

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It is my routine to take Abu Dhabi taxi once in a while. An occasional trip in the taxi bring back the memories of my olden days of Abu Dhabi. The taxis during the late 80’s driven by pathans and a few malayali’s. If it was a pathan driver, you can expect the usual routine questions like “thanka kithna he? (What’s your salary?), shaadi kiya he? (Are you married?) Etc…

Those taxis are a history now. The hobby and art of photography was not popular those days, and I do not have even one photo of the old Abu Dhabi taxi! Neither I can search and find them from the web!!.

The new taxis and the company that operates it are modern. The drivers too. Of course, like every other thing, with modernization comes the advantageous and disadvantageous.

For me, the idea of using the taxi within the city is manifold. First and foremost, after a long working day, I do not like to drive. Second, if I take a taxi, I can avoid the search around for a parking. Third and most importantly, I like to meet these people from diverse culture and try and generate conversation with them. Of course, as a person who likes to write, will definitely get his characters and substance many a times from these short trips.

There is also one danger that worries me all throughout the drive. That is the usage of mobile phones by these drivers. Especially, these days the use of social media while driving. Each time I take a taxi and find the driver using the phone, I consider it as an opportunity to talk to them and educate them of the dangers of using mobiles while driving.

Yesterday, was a busy day at work and then followed by the Supermoon, which I wanted to capture using my lenses. I had to leave for a programme at 7:45 pm. But, before leaving I wanted to click the moon and when I got to click the moon to some extent of my satisfaction,  I forgot all my work pressures and then off I went taking an Abu Dhabi taxi.

After the programme too, I took a taxi back home. As usual conversation started with the driver and his second name on the taxi meter attracted me. We talked several things within the short distance. It is my usual practice to keep my spectacle on my lap when I am in the car. Similarly I kept it this time too. While getting down quickly, I felt something fell down, but didn’t realise it was my spectacles. As soon as I got down the taxi took off and it was at that time I realized, there goes my costly spectacles, without which I cannot read!.

From the spot itself I called the taxi operating company of Abu Dhabi on their number 600535353 and reported about the missing item. The person who attended to my call, took the down detail and then told me we will get back to you soon. I gave them the description of the driver and also his second name.

This morning, I got a call from the taxi company that they found the car and the driver and also my spectacles was found by him. They also told me that he will come and personally return it to me.

After some time, there he comes – The “Kabali” of Abu Dhabi taxi. Thanking him for his promptness and honest action, I collected from him my spectacles.

Abdullah Kabali, the driver of taxi 5982, was very humble and upon my request posed for me for a photo. “Kabali Da”.  The name has a magic.

I thanked him and wished him the very best.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

15th November 2016

{The above is the longer version of the story. In short, I wish to thank the driver of taxi no. 5982 of Abu Dhabi taxi and their lost and found section to coordinate and retrieve my lost item and return to me within the shortest possible time. Thank you for your well coordinated effort.}

And the Supermoon 2016 is here!

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Monday, 14th November and as promised the Supermoon 2016 is here in Abu Dhabi. I was expecting him by around midnight, but he arrived well in advance. He knows very well, this is the age of electronic media at its prime with everyone having high end cameras and mobile phones. So, he knows people are waiting for him and will keep on clicking him the entire night till he disappears to come back again another time with his full glory.

I did a bit of adventure to get him right as my friend informed me about his arrival through a whatsapp message. The effort was worth and here they are.

I am a bit selfish here as there are some more super SuperMoon photos that I held back from posting on any media. May be one day, someone might get an opportunity to buy them from me direct.

Keep clicking if you are interested in photography. The night is long and waiting for you.

14th November 2016 – your night to chase the Supermoon

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The full supermoon is a rare astronomical occurrence, taking place every one to two years when the full moon coincides with its closest point to Earth during its monthly orbit

Source: 14th November 2016 – your night to chase the Supermoon

#WorkingTogetherWorks

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adipec-thank-you-2I wish to offer a big personal thanks to the DMG Team members for their wholehearted support for the success of ADIPEC 2016. It was indeed commendable effort by each one of them. Indeed, a diverse and versatile team that worked efficiently to #MakeThingsHappen for #ADIPEC2016 successful organisation.

Claire , JP, Nick, Chris, Siham, Sandra, Salman, Muhammad, Faheem, Savitha, Queenly, Sabrina, Kate, Nour Soliman, Hanadi, Amore, Nagesh………… The list is becoming endless. Great going and May take this opportunity to wish you the very best for the success of your future events.

@ADIPECOfficial@dmgeventsMEA  #WorkingTogetherWorks – I enjoyed every interaction with all of you.

14th November 2016 – your night to chase the Supermoon

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supermoon 2013 2.jpgThe moon normally orbits the earth at about 364,000 km. On 23rd June 2013, that distance decreased to 356,991 km. In 2014, supermoon in August, was even closer, at 356,575 km.

The picture above is the one I took in 2013.

The November 2016 full supermoon is taking place on Monday 14 November, and will be the closest full moon of the century. Why not try and click one of your best photos tonight?.

The full supermoon is a rare astronomical occurrence, taking place every one to two years when the full moon coincides with its closest point to Earth during its monthly orbit.

This can result in the supermoon being up to 30% brighter than a regular moon, providing a fascinating subject for astro-photographers around the world.

The November 2016 supermoon is particularly exciting, because it will be the biggest supermoon in 70 years . According to NASA, the full moon won’t come this close to Earth again until 25 November 2034.

There are as many ways to shoot a supermoon as there are vantage points on Earth. It is therefore interesting to know and try how to position yourself (and your camera) for a chance at the best shot.

Find the Best Camera Gear

National Geographic staff photographer, Mark Thiessen, suggests interested photographers to find the biggest lens they can and then add a teleconverter lens. Theissen photographed the moon for the magazine about ten years ago using a 600mm lens and a 2x converter. He traveled to Moab, Utah—where the desert landscape would ensure a clear sky—and used GPS software called The Photographer’s Ephemeris to know exactly where the moon would rise, as well as the arc it would take across the sky.

“Don’t make the mistake of photographing the moon by itself, with no reference to anything,” says Bill Ingalls, a senior photographer for NASA. “Instead, think of how to make the image creative—that means tying it into some land-based object. It can be a local landmark or anything to give your photo a sense of place.”

Shooting in low light usually requires a long exposure. But that’s wrong for a supermoon, says Theissen. When you’re looking at a full moon, it’s technically daylight on the moon, so shoot with the same exposure you would in daylight on Earth. Leaving your shutter open too long will result in an overexposed moon that’s too bright, with no lunar detail.

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Be Creative

Try to include a landmark feature in your image but make sure there’s nothing in the background that can obstruct your view of the moon – tall buildings, for instance, or in more rural settings, a copse of trees or distant hilltops.

Take control of your camera

For consistent results you need to instruct the camera what settings to apply. Try and shoot in Manual mode but Shutter priority can also be used- these can be found respectively in the M and S positions on the Camera Mode dial.

In either case, it’s important that you tell the camera what shutter speed to apply, then adjust brightness using ISO (Manual mode) or the Exposure Compensation dial (Shutter priority).

Traditional advice is to select a shutter speed that’s numerically the same (or higher) than your lens length – so > 1/200 sec for a focal length of 200mm or > 1/400 for 400mm etc. This helps avoid any further movement exaggerated by the longer lens.

Use your Smart Phone

Now, if you don’t have a high end camera and lenses, do not worry and back out. More casual  and passionate photographers can still get a great shot without the bells and whistles of fancy cameras. It is suggested to start by noticing the moon a few days before the supermoon. The path won’t be exactly the same, but it’ll be similar, and you can plan where and when to shoot.

Use your optical lens only, not your digital zoom, advises National Geographic photographer Michael Christopher Brown. That means don’t zoom in on your phone’s sensor before you take the photo, which will decrease quality. Take the image first, then zoom in to crop or enlarge detail.

Put your phone on a tripod somewhere firm. “Ideally the phone is stabilized,” says Brown, which might not seem too urgent, but when shooting something so far away, tiny vibrations of your camera can dramatically reduce image quality. If no tripod is available, even placing your phone on a solid surface like a ledge or windowsill and setting the timer will ensure a stable exposure.

Dear Passionate Photographes, 14th November 2016 is your night to chase the Supermoon. Click without inhibition and share your photos with us. Post your clicks at Passionate Photographers group on Facebook with hashtags #PassionatePhotographers #Supermoon2016 #Clicksandwrites

Text source: Clicksandwrites.com, National Geographic, Mirror