Long exposure of a solitary sign post in Lac Léman

March 11, 2013 Johan Peijnenburg
In Photography
A minimalistic black & white image with a solitary sign post in Lac Léman (by Johan Peijnenburg)
85mm – f/11 – 4 minutes – ISO100 – Nikon D800E with 85mm f/1.4

I am quite busy at the moment with reviewing and processing the snowy mountain landscapes I have been shooting in the past few months. The winter unfortunately hasn’t been brilliant for photography over here, however it does look like I got away with some nice ones 🙂

The coming few months, I will focus on long exposure photography a bit more again. Haven’t been doing a lot of LE work lately and I miss it. This minimalistic black & white image was shot last month, during the only LE outing I have had since December last year. The conditions weren’t brilliant, but it did give me a chance to test 2 new lenses. This image is a 4-minute long exposure and features a simple sign post on a rock in Lac Léman (Lake Geneva). I opted for giving the image lots of negative space. Hope you like it!?

I captured the image with my new 85mm lens on a D800E. I used 3 Lee ND filters (10+3+3) to get to an exposure time of 4 minutes. The image was processed with Adobe’s Lightroom 4.3 and Nik’s Silver Efex Pro 2.

Comments (217)

  1. Debby Vos 7 years ago

    Yes I do like it and yay! I am the first one to comment 😉

  2. Jerry Johnson 7 years ago

    I do love it Johan and your attention to the little details that turn a very good photo into a great one are quite evident in this beauty!

  3. Cesare Cannavò 7 years ago

    Very Nice picture

    • Author

      Thank you Cesare and nice to meet someone new from Switzerland! 

  4. Very nice Johan 

  5. Bill Wood 7 years ago

    It appears to be held up by its shadow. Amazing processing. Negative space is very special. Wonderful work!

  6. sometimes less is just so much more :-)) excellent Johan 

    • Author

      thanks Matthias. Glad you like it. Really tried to hold back on this one to make it as minimal as possible 🙂 

  7. Dominique Dubied 7 years ago

    I remember that spot, Johan 😉
    Great minimal Monday image!!

  8. Martin Rak 7 years ago

    very nice!

  9. Athena Carey 7 years ago

    LE misses you too Johan. And I think I have a few photos of this very same marker. ;)

    • Author

      thanks Athena 🙂 That could very well be the case. Haven’t been there with you though. Might be a different one … 

  10. Author

    @Dominique: thank you Dominique. Eager to go again soon! 😉
    @Martin: many thanks Martin! 

  11. Markus Landsmann 7 years ago

    Johan that works very good, the minimum is here maximum.:)

  12. Shelly Gunderson 7 years ago

    Very minimal!

  13. Like a lot!!! :)

    • Author

      Thank you Heine! I am always a bit uncomfortable with something as minimal as this, but liked the feeling of it 🙂 

  14. Thierry Bouriat 7 years ago

    Very nice Johan, always inspired :-)

  15. Alycia Miller 7 years ago

    Amazing processing, beautiful work my friend (^_−)−☆

  16. Mady Sach 7 years ago

    nice and fine shot,and refection,great work

  17. Betty Manousos 7 years ago

    love minimal photography.
    this is gorgeous!!
    thanks for being an endless source of inspiration to me 🙂

  18. Andreas Levi 7 years ago

    Absolutely fantastic work, Johan!
    In the next time I will start also to try some captures in LE, so I’m thankful for your description :)

  19. Author

    @Betty: thank you Betty 🙂
    @Andreas: glad you like it Andreas! Feel free to ask if you need more info 🙂 

    • Andreas Levi 7 years ago

      Thank you so much, Johan 🙂
      Before I searching the right equipment I gladly ask you again 🙂 But now I must still wait some days 😉 :)

  20. lizett Beltran 7 years ago

    ohhhhhhh WOW ! beautiful image !
    simplicity and sophistication always go hand by hand : ) 

  21. Javier Esvall 7 years ago


  22. Author

    @Lizett: thanks for the very kind words Lizett 🙂
    @Javier: thank you Javier!! 

  23. nice one Johan :)

  24. Torsten Krietsch 7 years ago

    Phantastic long exposure Johan! I have to practice it, too.

  25. Author

    @Michael: well thank you Michael. Hope all is well with you ! 🙂
    @Torsten: danke vielmals Torsten 🙂 You should. It is a very nice type of photography. Totally different as well 🙂 

  26. Absolutely stunning image Johan! 

  27. Loving your LE work Johan, I am still trying to catch up with you all after my b’day, so good to see this now! 

  28. Author

    @Patricia: thanks for the kind words Patricia! Thanks for stopping by 🙂
    @Louisa: thank you! I have problems keeping up as well, so no worries 🙂 

  29. Didier Demaret 7 years ago

    great minimal!

  30. Phenomenal

  31. Author

    @Didier: merci beaucoup Didier!
    @Leyla: I love it when you say that 😀 

  32. Looking forward to your new images Johan I like this one very much. I love minimal images :)) 

  33. Ian Good 7 years ago

    Very minimalist and very peaceful. I like it Johan! :)

  34. Ian Good 7 years ago

    @Anette: thank you Anette! Most of the ones I am working on are not minimal, so this was a nice “distraction” 🙂
    @Ian: glad you do Ian and thanks for stopping by! 

  35. Milena Llieva 7 years ago

    Beautiful minimalism… 

  36. Ingo Meckmann 7 years ago

    love it!

  37. Gemma Costa 7 years ago

    wonderful minimal shot!

  38. Ron Clifford 7 years ago

    Love the image and look forward to both your winter processing and new LE work!

    • Author

      Many thanks Ron! Nice to see you around. How was your “time off”?

  39. Tom Tran 7 years ago

    I’m loving the spacious real estate here Johan. The wisp of cloud is a nice touch in that sky. Very cool that you’re using an-otherwise-portrait lens for this image. I guess I can call it portrait of the One. :)

    • Author

      Thank you Tom. Glad you like it. Forced myself to not add more contrast to the sky 🙂 That otherwise-portrait lens is pretty cool for landscape as well Tom and love it for LE work! 

      • Tom Tran 7 years ago

        It’s currently at the top of my consideration for a prime lens Johan. Of course it will take me years to actually commit. :)

        • Author

          It had been on mine for a while as well Tom. Not the most sensible investment for a landscape photographer, but not regretting it :)

          • Tom Tran 7 years ago

            Any reason for regret is not obvious to me Johan. 🙂 This looks great.

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            Thanks again Tom :D

  40. Daniel Peckham 7 years ago

    Clean and awesome

  41. Domique Hilbert 7 years ago

    There’s little I can ad, to what has already been said about this little wonder. But I can’t stop myself, of course we like it! I have very little experience with LE, maybe when I have more time, somewhere in the future, I can try and experiment with it. But I know who’s work to study when that time comes. Thanks for the extra info! My apologies for the long comment.

    • Author

      thanks for the great comment Dominique! You should study it. It is fun to do 🙂

  42. David Shield 7 years ago

    Very nice space and tranquility Johan 

  43. Baldur McQueen 7 years ago

    Superb minimalism… love the space, the reflection and that hint of clouds!

  44. Michelle Potter 7 years ago

    Magnificent Johan. Simple and elegant!

  45. David Orr 7 years ago

    Stunning Johan ! I am with you there it has been awhile since I have been able to attach my Big Stopper, I amin a rut ! Looking forward to seeing your upcoming LE photos ! have a great week my friend !

    • Author

      Thanks David! In a rut? Get out and you will get out 🙂 Have a great week as well!

  46. E.E. Giorgi 7 years ago

    fantastic minimalism!

  47. Rodolfo Seide 7 years ago

    Great shot!

  48. Sumit Sen 7 years ago


  49. Jim Lundgren 7 years ago

    Not just like it…I love it. Just the essence of reality.

  50. Author

    @Rodolfo: thanks for the comment Rodolfo!
    @Sumit: thank you! 
    @Jim: thanks for the great comment Jim. Have a great week!

  51. Rosa Frei 7 years ago

    Superb minimalistic!

  52. Michel paulin 7 years ago

    Minimaliste et somptueux

  53. Maggy Meyer 7 years ago

    Wowww, outstanding work, Johan!! Love it!!

  54. Markus Rienzer 7 years ago

    awesome minimalism!

  55. Excellent!

  56. Christof Simon 7 years ago

    That’s simplicity I like Johan ! Great picture and I’m curious to see more LE images from you.

  57. Author

    Merci Philippe !
    @Christof: thanks Christof! They will pop by soon 🙂 

  58. Doug Hagadorn 7 years ago

    Minimal subject, minimal colour, such a cool shot!

  59. Mitchell Prout 7 years ago

    Awesome! I’m glad to hear you’ll be diving back into LE. I myself am looking to focus on LE much more in the coming months also!
    looking forward to seeing your shots!

  60. Kurt Harvey 7 years ago

    Very beautiful minimalim Johan. Wonderfully captured and processed!

    (It calls to mind a mic stand but most likely no one will be walking across the water to it? :)

  61. less is more 🙂 super one Johan 

  62. Kat Landreth 7 years ago

    This is beautiful!

  63. Manuel Millán 7 years ago

    I love the simplicity and minimalism of these scenes, and as no one catches you Johan. Congratulations.

  64. ~❤❤❤~

  65. I love the beautiful subtle quality of this!! I’m really looking forward to those snowy shots!! Beautiful!

    • Author

      thank you for the compliment and the share Margaret!!! Glad to see you back 🙂 

  66. Nicolas Quentin 7 years ago

    Great picture !!! Is long exposure the secret to avoid lots of birds on the surface ? For instance, I have a light “Bird line” on this picture I can’t remove :
    (The subject is quite similar)

    • Author

      Merci Nicolas 🙂 Depends on how long the bird is sitting still Nicolas 🙂 If they move they will not be visible …. 

  67. Ada M 7 years ago

    Excellence at its best!

  68. Daniella Lewis 7 years ago

    I love it, Johan! The stark solitary object made beautiful by long exposure.

  69. Author

    @Ada: thank you Ada 🙂
    @Danielle: hey Danielle! Thanks for the compliment and for stopping by 🙂 

  70. Yasmin Simpson 7 years ago

    Always inspirational professional work, words and great friendship. So thankful for people like you Johan ;-).

  71. One of the most minimalistic photo-art that I have ever seen :))) But I love it Johan. Something intriguing is on here… and I hope you will find more time to posting your photos, not too often it happen recently 😉 Best regards! 

  72. Rosie Nixon 7 years ago

    very minimal but lovely composition Johan 

  73. Author

    @Yasmin: thank you Yasmin! The feeling is mutual 🙂
    @Grzegorz: many thanks Grzegorz! Yes I know … I should post more. I’ll do my best in the coming months ! 

  74. Lisa Co 7 years ago

    Thanks, but not as “simple” or minimal as this fantastic image! :))

  75. Love the minimalism and format here Johan ! Wonderful bright tones to go with the subject! :)

  76. Sometimes you have to say very little to say a lot! Love this.

  77. Its absolutely wonderful and I love the minimalism and the negative space too. Look fwd to see what you are procsessing and also your upcoming LE´s :-)

  78. Shawn McClure 7 years ago

    Crackin’ image, Johan… Pristine minimalism in this…

  79. Vitor Ferreira 7 years ago

    Nice minimal! Johan 

  80. Author

    @Jorunn: thanks for the compliments! I will make sure to hurry up 😉
    @Vitor: thank you Vitor!! 
    @Shawn: thank you! 

  81. Beautiful minimal photo! Very bright with these light tone! I like it!

  82. Barbara BM 7 years ago

    Wow…cudowny minimalizm!!

  83. Meg Rousher 7 years ago

    So simple yet wonderful, I love it :)

  84. Just

  85. Nikola Nikolski 7 years ago

    It looks “toppie” to me Johan great work!

  86. Author

    @Robin: thank you Robin 😀
    @Nikola: dank je wel. Lang geleden dat ik “toppie” heb gehoord 🙂 

  87. Johnny Minor 7 years ago

    Stunning long exposure. I’m loving the simplicity in this one Johan Peijnenburg! 

  88. Enrique Palaez 7 years ago

    Woow this is simply amazing Johan 

  89. Author

    @Johnny: thanks for the compliment Johnny!
    @Enrique: many thanks Enrique! 

  90. Jonathan Goody 7 years ago

    Very nice.

  91. Harry Kikstra 7 years ago

    Hey Johan , mooie plaat! Looks like an empty stage with a mike awaiting a singer :)

    • Author

      hey Harry. Dank je wel. Dat commentaar had ik ook eerder gehad. Lijkt er inderdaad op 🙂 Hoe is het verder! Long time no speak … 

  92. Rohan Reilly 7 years ago

    fantastic minimalsim Johan, lovely tones too

  93. Gerard Charnley 7 years ago

    Just the sort of shot I love!

  94. Carsten Kopp 7 years ago

    This one so minimalistic ! Absolutely fantastic work !

  95. Author

    @Gerard: many thanks Gerard 🙂
    @Carsten: glad you like it Carsten! 

  96. Great work Johan ! :-)

  97. Paul van de Loo 7 years ago

    Nice isn’t really the word Johan 😉 it’s beautiful!

  98. Author

    @Sophie: hey Sophie 🙂 Dank je wel!
    @Paul: thanks for the compliment Pau! 🙂 

  99. Enrique Palaez 7 years ago

    This is just amazing Johan !

  100. Reinhard König 7 years ago

    Wonderful image and great work Johan !

  101. Paul Turkowski 7 years ago

    well positioned, great minimalism Johan !

  102. Author

    Thank you Reinhard and Paul!! Much appreciated :)

  103. Hm, I can vividly imagine what a tremendous amount of detail the 85mm put in there… Tasty! :-)

    • Author

      😀 Seems that the 85 and new 70-200 are both highly rated for our camera’s Wilfried. You need to go shopping soon! 😉 

  104. Kerry Murphy 7 years ago

    I adore the simplicity here.

  105. Vishal Kumar 7 years ago

    This is beautiful, Lovely Minimalism.
    I think i don’t have to swim in the lake anymore, now i can walk straight to that sign post thanks to your LE skills :)

    • Author

      Thanks for the compliment Vishal! Yep, my LE skills make people walk on water 😀

  106. Fantastic, congrats!

  107. Subra Govinda 7 years ago

    Picture Perfect Johan, beautiful work as usual!

  108. Mikko Tyllinen 7 years ago


    • Author

      thanks Charlotte!

      • Beautiful! Like breathtaking… Btw, the Nikon D800 is very tempting as my next upgrade (thinking my camera maybe is more than half way into its total life length by now since I’ve used it so much)….but that would mean I’d need to swap all Canon lenses… Is there any Nikon equivalent to the Canon 100mm USM macro? Also, it’s quite heavy? Maybe there will be some lightweight alternative with really good photo quality coming….

        • Author

          Thanks! You would love the D800 Charlotte. It’s not that heavy. A D600 would be a great lighter full frame alternative. After that there is a D7100, but that is not full frame.

          Alternative for the lens you mention is the 105 macro lens. I have that as well and it is very good. 

          • Thanks – will check up the D600 too…! (Not allowed to carry anything actually, but am making a camera exception, so trying to keep the weight down.) Love what I read about the D800 so far… But, would need a new computer that can handle such big RAW files. I compared it with the 5d MkIII which has a nice RAW reducing function…

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            That is inconvenient Charlotte! Yes, you need a good computer and adequate storage space. The latter is very cheap nowadays though 🙂 

  109. Ian Gazzard 7 years ago

    Beautiful. I will need to get back to the le. This is inspirational!

    • Author

      many thanks Ian. Nice to see you back around! Been aways myself for a while so catching up with comments a bit now 🙂

  110. Mona Youssef 7 years ago

    The simplicity is here is a beauty!!

  111. Brilliant Johan 

    • Author

      Thanks Angela! Not everyone appreciates a minimal like this, but I thought it looked kinda cool :)

  112. ♥ ~❤❤❤~ ♥ 

  113. Anna Rimovska 6 years ago

    Great shot ….. very nice!

  114. Simple and beautiful………fantastic

  115. Markus Brungs 6 years ago

    Very nice work, soothing and just wonderfully clean & calm!

    • Author

      Thanks for the kind words Markus! Certainly not an image for everyone. Glad you like it!

  116. Mutita EdiblArt 6 years ago

    Very artistic !!

  117. Jack the Flipper 6 years ago

    So simple and yet stunning, clam, peaceful, easing the mind and taking all the pace away……thank you for this well composed work. Very kind regards, Sascha | Jack the Flipper

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