Saturday, October 30, 2021

Jaein Falls and Pocheon Art Valley

Pocheon Art Valley is listed on most of the "places of interest" maps found online and various other places around town. Was it a good spot for photography? Yes. Was it impressive? Not really.
We had originally intended to shoot photos at a military air show, but the location of the air show was about two and a half hours away, so we changed plans and made an impromptu detour to Pocheon Art Valley and later, to Jaein Falls.

Pocheon Art Valley is built around a man-made pond located in an old rock quarry. As the name implies, it is populated with a nice variety of art work, mostly in the form of sculptures. There's an "astronomical observatory" but when we visited, there wasn't much more than a few displays and it wasn't all that impressive. I didn't see anything resembling an observatory. 

I wasn't impressed with the live show either. The weather was cool but apparently the performers feared frostbite, so they sported jackets and hoodies which from where I sat, took away from what was supposed to be traditional Korean costumes. No matter, the show left a lot to be desired anyway. Although they carried instruments, they only pretended to play them and the singing was 100% lip-synched. One of their numbers featured about a dozen drummers, who were not playing the drums in front of them, they only sort of mocked the movements a drummer might make when playing the drums. I'm not sure if anyone else in the audience noticed but it was hard not to.

Koreans love taking selfies, I think this is the primary attraction at the Pocheon Art Valley.
It's almost as if the owners of the former rock quarry were trying to think of ways to generate revenue after there was no more use for the land as a quarry. "Let's add some artistic sculptures and change people money to come see the water in our pond."

As salty and cynical as I might sound, the Pocheon Art Valley still bore some photographic fruit. Then again, photos can be found anywhere because after all "Everything is a Picture"

The disappointment of Pocheon Art Valley was offset by the splendor of Jaein Falls and surrounding area. I had visited there last time I was in Korea, but the area has since been turned into a vast tourist attraction. The sun was going down and we spent most of our time trying to shoot the waterfall, so we'll have to go back to get some photos of the large hydroelectric dam and other sights. 

I was able to capture a decent low-light image of the creepy-looking dead overgrowth along the riverside, but other than that there weren't any good vantage points. We had already made our way through thick and prickly shrubs and would now have to make our way back in the dark.

But before all that, we found a decent spot from which to shoot the waterfall. Shooting the waterfalls from the suspension bridge wasn't an option because it was anything but stable, thus eliminating any possibility for a long exposure photo. So we opted for a nice view, some 300 yards away and mounted our 70-200mm telephoto zoom lenses.

Lovely rows of flowers in autumn colors line the walking path leading to the waterfalls.


Monday, October 18, 2021

Nami Island A Not So Hidden Treasure


Nami Island is inhabited by numerous furry and cute creatures like rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, peacocks and even ostriches!

Our battalion Chaplain recently organized a spiritual retreat to Nami Island, South Korea. Located near Gapyeong, along the Han River, Nami Island is known for its botanical beauty, furry critters and delicious restaurants. It is essentially a garden island / tourist destination that is nice location to spend a day relaxing, shooting selfies or photos and generally just, getting away from it all.

The lush gardens, art work and other curiosities found across the island, make it a wonderful photography location. So, enjoy my photos from a great day at Nami!

The Magic of Yeosu


View looking East towards Odongdo

It was a stunning sunrise!

Yeosu is not quite an island, but it sure feels like one. This port city on the South coast of Korea has become a popular tourist destination, and for good reason. The scenery is beautiful, the food, delicious and there are plenty of fun activities to enjoy.

My main focus was shooting images for Good Times ROK and the tour group that I visited Yoesu with, but I could not pass up the opportunity to shoot at least one sunrise for my own purposes and I could not have picked a more perfect morning for a sunrise photo!

Check out for more information about tours and activities in South Korea.

Enjoy the video too!

View of Yeosu from the top of the Ramada Hotel

View of Yeosu from the top of the cable car.