I want to share my experiences photographing Mount Merapi’s volcanic eruptions in Indonesia but I will say upfront that this won’t be a blog about suffering. There won’t be stories of those who have lost their homes, of painful deaths, of burns, of the death of valuable cattle or the destruction the volcano has caused.
Instead, this will be a blog about the logistics of getting great pictures in a dangerous situation.
Taking snaps of Merapi’s lava-flow at night is a great assignment for a news photographer but first, I needed to find an ideal spot to take pictures.
After scouting around, I come across Sidorejo village about four to five kilometers from Merapi’s angry peak.
After the last house on the outskirts of Sidorejo, there are no lamp lights, electricity poles or telephone cables that may ruin my photos. And the pictures would be protected from the light pollution of houses and vehicles. Plus, the open street lay-out positions the peak of Merapi and its crater at the middle of the frame. It’s perfect.