The Terracotta Warriors of China

We visit China every year in September.  There are several reasons why we visit at this time each year but probably the most important are heat and crowd control – I know, crowd control in China – right.

A highlight of the trip every year is our visit to the Xi’an, China area and our stop at the pits which house the world-famous Terracotta Warriors.  Our guests tell us each year how impressed they are with the scale of the pits and the massive numbers of warriors housed in the ongoing excavation.  By visiting in September each year we avoid crowds and beat the heat in the covered pits which the warriors call home.

Canon 5D Mark II, EF16-35mm f/2.8L II, @16mm, ISO 500, f/4.5, 1/80, BlackRapid RS-7, Clik Elite Pro Express, Lexar Digital Media

Just a few tips about shooting in the pits – especially Pit #1:

  • tripods are not allowed and are confiscated NEVER to be returned
  • telephoto zooms are best – the faster the better – f/2.8 & f/4
  • our favorite lenses here are the Canon 24-105 f/4L and 70-200 (you’ll see many 70-200 shots in a few weeks when we update our shots while on tour – stay tuned)
  • walk the entire circumference of Pit #1 AND then walk around again
  • look for details and small items and you’ll see things like an array of authentic weapons like spears, swords, scimitars, battle-axes, crossbows, arrowheads and shields alongside the warriors.  Many of these weapons are in their original condition, with some of the swords remaining very sharp.  This is attributed to the layer of chromium oxide which coats the weapons.

As we approach our September 01 departure date we want to add to the anticipation for this year’s guests by sharing some of the shots we’ve captured in the past.  We hope you enjoy.

Canon 5D Mark II, EF24-105mm f/4L IS @105mm, ISO 640, f/5.0, 1/60, BlackRapid RS-7, Clik Elite Pro Express, Lexar Digital Media

Canon 5D Mark II, EF100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS @250mm, ISO 1000, f/5.0, 1/100, BlackRapid RS-7, Clik Elite Pro Express, Lexar Digital Media

Every warrior has to have a trusty steed on which to ride upon into glory.  The Chinese did not forget this detail for their warriors.

Canon 5D Mark II, EF100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS @200mm, ISO 2000, f/5.0, 1/100, BlackRapid RS-7, Clik Elite Pro Express, Lexar Digital Media

Canon 5D Mark II, EF24-105mm f/4L IS @105mm, ISO 500, f/4.0, 1/100, BlackRapid RS-7, Clik Elite Pro Express, Lexar Digital Media

Canon 5D Mark II, EF100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS @400mm, ISO 1000, f/5.6, 1/100, BlackRapid RS-7, Clik Elite Pro Express, Lexar Digital Media

There are many great sights/sites and awesome photographic opportunities all across China.  There are many shots you can create in your own area.  The best way to improve your photography is get out and shoot – shoot a lot and shoot often.  Review your shots and take those elements that you like and dedicate them to memory and utilize them on your next shoot.  Of course, an awesome way to improve your photography is to join like-minded people on an M&M Photo Tour where you’ll have up to 2 weeks of world-class instruction and get to share ideas and techniques with several other photographers on location.

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2 Responses to “The Terracotta Warriors of China”

  1. This looks just wonderful! I had the opportunity to see this exhibit when it was at National Geographic–it would be incredible to see it ‘live’. Very cool!

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