"Pamukkale" - Pamukkale, meaning "cotton castle", is a natural site in Denizli in southwestern Turkey. The area is famous for a carbonate mineral left by the flowing water. The ancient Greco-Roman city of Hierapolis (Holy City) was built on top of the white "castle". I wanted to isolate and capture the graphic lines of naturally formed pools and terraces in this historically significant natural wonder from the air.
"Dreaming of Gemiler" - A dreamy landscape of the Gemiler Island from the air on a hazy autumn sunset.
"Reflections of Dalyan" - Sun reflecting off of water as I have seen from the air while flying above Dalyan. The three boats and their wake on the water completed the texture of the image. The greenish color cast gave the photograph a magical quality.
"Fly Away" - Many paragliders gliding away from Babadag in Oludeniz towards the reflection of the setting sun on the Mediterranean.
"Olive Tree" - The majestic olive tree overlooks the magical Kekova region. It's probably not much younger than the ancient Lycian sarcophagus it shares this dreamlike setting with.
"Mystic Waters" - One asks how many ships the Princes' Islands have witnessed throughout history, and how many lives that have been lived on those ships with bitter and sweet breezes? One cannot help but wonder.
"Cappadocia Encounter" - Hot air balloon meets Uchisar in magical Cappadocia. I shot the aerial photograph from my paramotor in the land of the fairy chimneys, cave dwellings, intricate valleys and underground cities.
"Sun is Shining" - I shot this photograph image while flying with my paramotor over beachgoers basking in the sun on and around a platform resting above the blue-green waters of the Black Sea in Istanbul.
"Sinap" - The Sinap Castle is a medieval fortification situated to the northeast of Çamlıyayla in the Taurus Mountains in southern Turkey. The fort dates from the period of the Cilician Kingdom (12-14th century). It functioned as both a fortified estate house and a guardian along the strategic route between the Het‛umid castle at Lampron (Namrun Kalesi) and the Cilician Gates.
"Taurus" - I captured this image in ever changing weather conditions in the majestic Taurus Mountains. The Taurus Mountains are a long mountain complex in southern Turkey, separating the Mediterranean coastal region from the central Anatolian Plateau. The system extends along a curve from Lake Eğirdir in the west to the upper reaches of the Euphrates and Tigris rivers in the east.
"Lagoon" - Oludeniz Lagoon is a piece of heaven and one of the most popular spots in the world for paragliding. To be honest it looks much nicer from the air. Shades of green, blue and sand colors come together in beautiful natural lines and curves. Two gulets anchored in the foreground are wooden liveaboard sailboats which are on a "Blue Voyage". Luckily not many paragliders could fly to this end of the beach this low, so I could take my time shooting.
"Ihlara" - A paramotor in the air is dwarfed by the 15 km long Ihlara valley with its 50 rock-hewn churches and numerous rock-cut buildings in Cappadocia. The bottom of the gorge is covered with trees and rocks alongside a river. There is no place to land in case of an engine failure. Sometimes we take risks to grab striking images.
"Uncomplaining Ships" - There are tens of ships patiently waiting at both entrances to the Bosphorus all the time. Some are waiting their turn to enter the strait, some wait to empty their cargo and many are just abandoned. These ships are on the Marmara Sea. An unforgiving southern wind storm washes a ship or two ashore once in a while. I captured this aerial photo on a calm December day. You can see more about the location in this short video: https://youtu.be/Foqdw-RsHs8
"Pisidian Antioch" - The lonesome aqueduct in the sunbathed terrain stood the test of time at Antioch in Pisidia, a city dating back to the 3rd century BCE in Yalvaç, Turkey. The city was at the crossroads of the Mediterranean, Aegean and Central Anatolian regions, and formerly on the border of Pisidia and Phrygia.
"Lightning Strike over Bosphorus" - I love capturing hard to catch phenomena on camera. On one May evening a storm was producing lightning strikes one after another. I set up my camera overlooking the Bosphorus and waited for the perfect one which came eventually. This type of photography requires all skills including patience.
"Paths" - Natural water canals in the Dalyan wetland are paths for boaters to navigate between the inland town and the beach.
"Balanced Rock" - Balanced Rock at the Arches National Park, in Utah, USA is a majestic wonder of nature. On the left side of the photograph are clouds which form a virga, rain that evaporates before hitting the ground.
"North and South Windows" - North and South Windows at the Arches National Park in Utah, USA. Those rocks glow, I mean really glow at sunrise. When one is serious about photography one learns early on the importance of sunrises and sunsets. You get up while it is still dark, find your spot, set up your camera and wait. Breakfast comes later.
"Oludeniz Blues" - Oludeniz, a paragaliding paradise, from the air after a storm in the autumn sun. I shot the long beach, many shades of the blue Mediterranean water, the lagoon and the Gemiler Island as I glided down from the top of the mountain.
"Golden Horn" - I don't always fly over the Bosphorus strait with my paramotor since there are practically no emergency landing spots in case of an engine out. In one of the rare occasions that I did, I captured this sunset image of the Golden Horn in all it's glory. Boeing ended up licensing the image for promoting it's latest jetliner.
"Birds of the Bosphorus" - It’s always a pleasure to watch the seagulls on a feeding frenzy while chasing the ferries on the Bosphorus.
"Butterfly Valley" - Butterfly Valley near Oludeniz, as never seen before, under my feet at sunset. A natural wonder definitely in need of continuous preservation.
"Panorama Reef" - All tones of blue are present in this photograph that I shot at the Panorama Reef in the Red Sea. Above the water is just as impressive as the underwater. The fisherman on wooden boat complement the horizontal lines and give scale to the image.
"Light and Shadow" - Clear summer skies are replaced by cloudy days in autumn. During a November flight with my paramotor over Bodrum I loved the play of light and dark on the Mediterranean, two angular pieces of land sticking in from the left side giving context, and the dark stormy weather in the background.
"Oludeniz Boats" - It was my second year of flying a paramotor. I was still considered a novice. I traveled to Oludeniz, on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, a heaven and one of the most popular spots in the world for paragliding. I found a narrow strip on the sidewalk next to the beach and took off. Being careful not to collide with hundreds of paragliders going for their landing on the beach I flew along the coastline and grabbed this shot.
"Delicate Nature" - Iztuzu coast, a nesting place for sea turtles, and Dalyan with its maze of reeds are protected areas. I captured the brightly lit delicate reed lines contrasting with the dark water and the coastline at the magical sunset hour from my paramotor.
"Iztuzu" - Iztuzu beach is famous as a nesting place for loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta). It is a nature protection area. The couple walking on the sand gives a hint on the size of the coastline.
"Patara" - It was my first trip to Patara for the intention of flying there. Patara Beach is 18 kilometres long, the longest in its region. The beach is near the ancient Lycian city of Patara which is the birthplace of St. Nicholas (Santa Claus). I was not allowed to take off from the part of the beach open to visitors because it is a nesting place of loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta), an endangered species that has existed for about 45 million years. The next day I found an empty wheat field behind the sand dunes and took off. The lonely beachgoer couple gives an idea about the vastness of the beach.
"Bhaktapur" - The strong warm colors of yarn hung to be dried and the green color of the water make a nice contrast in this photograph which I took in Bhaktapur, Nepal.
"At the Pergamon" - The placement of the windows, the contrasting colors, the texture and the lines in this photograph which I took near the ancient ruins of Pergamon represent, for me, the importance of photographic composition.
"Vista" - I have shot this windmill, fence and layered rocks composition at an unusual angle in New Mexico, USA. It works!
"Maze" - Dalyan with its maze of reeds on the Mediterranean Sea is another magical place for me. The little islets resemble pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. Fresh water from the Koycegiz lake to the north mix with the salt water of the sea. At the foot of the hills are the ruins of the ancient Carian trading city of Kaunos. Whenever I fly there I always wonder if the islets would support me if I need to land on them in case of an engine failure.
"Curves of Dalyan" - The small town of Dalyan is a settlement next to the winding river carrying the fresh water of the Koycegiz Lake to the Mediterranean Sea. The ruins of the ancient Carian trading city of Kaunos are behind the steep hill up ahead.
"Cloud Base" - Once in a while I climb in my paramotor really high, to reach the clouds and fly next to or above them. On one occasion, while flying by the Black Sea, I saw a potential image with the clouds and climbed to the cloud base at about 3,300 feet. I shot directly towards the sun to capture the clouds at eye level and the suns's reflection on the very dark Black Sea.
"Kas" - I decided to begin the new year in the beautiful Mediterranean town of Kaş, Turkey. I go to Kaş every summer for flying, diving and fun but it's my first time there in winter. It's much calmer and the weather is less predictable. When I saw the potential of a dramatic shot late afternoon I quickly headed for the ancient Hellenistic theater crosstown and got this image. The island in the image is Kastellorizo. I found the best view by lying on the time worn stones of the theater. I am very happy with the way the composition, the colors and the elements all came together.
"Backwash" - I captured this image of a ferry boat and a small day boat as they pass by, while flying along the Marmara Sea. The setting sun's backlight bring out the wake in the water and give the image a teal and orange look.
"Shipwreck" - Virgin Black Sea coastline in soft late afternoon light make a fine backdrop for the blue and rust colored shipwreck. I flew over the ship many times over the years before it was finally broken apart and salvaged. It was one of my favorite spots along the coastline to the west of Istanbul.
"Cesme" - I was in Cesme on the Aegean Sea, a very popular summer town, heading the jury for the national underwater photo contest that year. I drove there with my two paramotors in the back of the car for maybe getting a chance to fly since I had never flown there. I knew there are crazy winds there due to Cesme being on a peninsula with bays, inlets and hills. Being October, air was a little cooler and less turbulent. I found myself a piece of clearance inland to take off. I flew over this couple standing knee deep in crystal clear water on white sandy bottom. My shadow being in the image makes it also a self portrait.
"Himalayas" - Majestic mountain range of the Himalayas with its valleys, peaks and glowing Mount Everest at dawn.
"Black Sea" - I fly with friends mostly on the Black Sea coast in the North because prevailing winds in the area are northeasterly. Best flying conditions are when the wind blows from a body water. Because the water is flat and temperature is consistent the air we fly in is very smooth. That gives us a chance to fly in all hours of the day in all seasons. On one November flight the Black Sea looked especially dramatic, reflecting the late afternoon light, with a single ship hardly visible in the distance under the dark clouds.
"Aspens" - Vibrant yellow and green fall colors of aspen trees are complemented by the clear blue sky in New Mexico, USA.
"Olympos" - Olympos Beach. Olympos was an ancient city in Lycia. It was situated in a river valley near the coast. Its ruins are located south of the modern town Çıralı in the Kumluca district of Antalya Province, Turkey.
"Bald Ibis" - Northern bald ibis (hermit ibis, waldrapp) is an endangered bird. It has a fossil record dating back at least 1.8 million years. This ibis was revered as a holy bird and a symbol of brilliance and splendour in Ancient Egypt and had important cultural significance in many nations. Its numbers were down to only five couples in southeast Turkey in the eighties due to pesticide poisoning. Under a heavily managed reintroduction program their numbers are now in the hundreds. They have yet to start their seasonal migration again. I went to their breeding colony and captured this important bird in flight with my camera.
"Twin Falls" - Freezing cold water finds its path inside the mountain and gushes out in full force at two openings on the side. Life thrives around.
"Lightning in Serengeti" - This is the photograph that has helped me launch my professional photography career. I had been training and photographing all my life but the aura of the nature and peace that I have experienced in that trip has made me dive head-on to being a full time photographer. I did not have my tripod during that trip. I was alone in my room in the lodge overlooking the plains when I saw the storm forming and the lightning strikes in the distance. I set up my camera on the wooden railing of the balcony pressing down hard on it so that it wouldn't move during the long exposure needed to capture lightnings. I was thrilled to see the lightning perfectly positioned in the frame when the film was developed after returning home. The negative film that I have used helped record more details than the eye could see.