Heading to Africa

Cape Town, South Africa PhotoWalk on Oct 7th at 5:30 PM!

Pencil in that evening! Here is the Event Info on Google. We’ll get you more specifics soon — really looking forward to it!

On the Way to Africa!

I’m about to come to Africa for a month! I’ll be in Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa. I’m super-excited about this trip! This Africa trip is Sold Out, but you can check that page to sign up for the newsletter to find out about future adventures!

Since I’m on a bunch of small planes while there, I had to pack everything and it ALL had to be under 20KG. Here’s a quick video I made about what I am bringing!

Daily Photo – Paddling Over

I swear — everyone in Bora Bora must know each other. No matter where we went, everyone knew our boat captain. Everyone would just randomly paddle over and they'd start talking and telling all kinds of stories. It was really amazing and cool! One of the coolest things was actually when our captain would steer the boat with his feet while singing to us on a ukelele ! Everyone loved it… he was really good too. I have a photo of that somewhere. I need to find it! :)

Paddling Over

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 27, 2014 at 11:40am
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/2000
  • Aperture4
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

A private Island

The Video

You’ll notice this island from above in at least two scenes in the video below. I made this with my quadcopter — see my DJI Phantom Review for more!

Daily Photo – A private Island

This was our favorite little island on the trip. You might remember a kayak photo from last month where I made my daughter paddle the kayak to get to this little island. It was hard work, but the whole time I told her it was character building!

A private Island

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 29, 2014 at 4:38pm
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/100
  • Aperture18
  • ISO125
  • Focal Length26.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

Dinner on the Beach

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Daily Photo – Dinner on the Beach

One evening when we were there at the Four Seasons, we walked along the beach and saw this little scene unfold. It seemed like quite a civilized little spot for to have a spot of dinner. I thought about sitting down there just to see if anyone would bring me any food, magically, but I decided that would probably be in bad form.

Dinner on the Beach

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 24, 2014 at 4:42pm
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/5
  • Aperture16
  • ISO125
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

A romantic dinner on a deserted island inside the lagoon in Bora Bora

Whale Watching

I had someone here at the resort tell me that Bora Bora is extra special because there is a very steep dropoff on the edge of the island. This means that all the whales can come breach right along the edge of the island. That means you can walk over, knee deep, and reach over and touch the whales as they breach. I didn’t get to experience this myself, but maybe next time!

Daily Photo – A romantic dinner on a deserted island inside the lagoon in Bora Bora

There’s a nice little story in this photo! You see this man paddling away from the island? If you look closer, he left a woman behind to stand in waiting. The man then paddles over to pick up a romantic couple from their bungalow and then delivers them back to the island for their private dinner. They do this kind of stuff all the time here at the Four Seasons… so over the top awesome!

It turns out the woman on the island is a Bora Bora native named Vaihea. I found this out the next evening by accident because I was working on this photo in the sunset bar and she came over and said, “Hey that’s me!”

A romantic dinner on a deserted island inside the lagoon in Bora Bora

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 25, 2014 at 4:37pm
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/160
  • Aperture4.5
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length31.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias+2

Across the Sunset Bar

China Drone video interview on New Zealand TV

I was interviewed on NZ Television recently. It’s now up on their website with the funny title “Kiwi photographer baffles Chinese authorities.”

Internet Kerfuffle

Hey thanks to Matt Granger who sent me and the team a nice email explaining the situation. Apparently he did not mean to use my photo of London to commercially advertise his London Workshop. It was his web designer who put up the image quite a while ago and it was assumed to be legit. Anyway, all is good and nothing more of it to come. And since we’ve been talking quite a bit behind the scenes about the whole thing, and we’ll probably end up doing something together soon – would even be happy to have him join The Arcanum. We’ll both keep you updated on that, but, in the end, everything is cool.

Daily Photo – Across the Sunset Bar

Here's a photo of the Sunset Bar at sunset! This was taken in Bora Bora on my recent trip there. What an amazing place… I think every night there was a great sunset! I don't know what it is about those island conditions, but it was really wonderful. This Sunset Bar there at the Four Seasons was actually also a sushi restaurant! We went there a few nights for a little bit of that action! :)

Across the Sunset Bar

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 27, 2014 at 4:57pm
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/6
  • Aperture5.6
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length15.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias+1

Kayaking to the Deserted Island

Repeats of the Videos

Here’s two of the videos I made on Bora Bora – the main video then the Behind-the-Scenes! I have these on these also on the DJI Phantom Review page!

Flying the Quadcopter – behind the scenes

Sorry it starts out with some stuff about my Sony A7r, so you can just skip that bit if you wish! :)

Daily Photo – Kayaking to the Deserted Island

Here's a photo I took from the back of the kayak where my daughter was rowing in the front. She's only 8, but I was making her do all the work while I took this photo haha! We rowed over to that little island with the palm tree. After we got there, you can see some of the footage I got with the drone while there!

Kayaking to the Deserted Island

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 29, 2014 at 11:45am
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/500
  • Aperture8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Yoga in Bora Bora

New Interview with Andrew Kavanagh

Here’s a new interview with me that just came out on Andrewkavanagh.com!

Yours Truly on a Paddleboard

Doing yoga on a paddleboard is really kinda scary! But here I am doing a headstand — note that I did not hold this position very long! It was really strange doing it on an unstable surface!

Daily Photo – Yoga in Bora Bora

There's my Yoga teacher Sara Garcia out there on the paddleboard doing something even more risky! A few times per week, we'd take a few paddleboards into this little lagoon for a daily practice. It was really fun and different… the only time I went in the water is when I dropped my glasses and they sank! It's really hard to find glasses at the bottom of a lagoon when you can't see. I can tell you that for sure!

Yoga in Bora Bora

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 25, 2014 at 8:36am
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4000
  • Aperture11
  • ISO400
  • Focal Length43.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-2

The Many Poses of Scarlett

The Master’s Calling

Here’s a video where we talk a bit about Masters at The Arcanum and Karen Hutton in particular. If you want to see more, hit Karen’s blog at blog.karenhutton.com or see more about The Arcanum at www.TheArcanum.com!

Daily Photo – The Many Poses of Scarlett

There was one point where my youngest daughter did not like to be photographed. Those days are long gone. Here she is sitting on this really cool chair while we were on vacation. Now, when I squat down into photo-mode, she starts giving me a wide range of never ending poses… these are 4 out of about 30 different ones she threw at me!

The Many Poses of Scarlett

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 22, 2014 at 11:02am
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/500
  • Aperture
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias-0.7

Floating Over Bora Bora

DJI Phantom Quadcopter Review

I’m putting together the beginnings of a DJI Phantom Review here on the site. I’m adding the specifics of my setup as well as a little behind-the-scenes video if you want an early look! Or, if you just quickly want to know my setup, here it is: DJI Phantom 2 with Zenmuse H3-3d 3-axis Gimbal and Gopro Hero 3+ Black Edition.

Video: Floating Over Bora Bora

Here’s my latest video that I thought you might enjoy! Thanks again to the team over there at the Four Seasons Bora Bora for making such a fabulous resort that was so amazing to shoot from the skies above… wow what a week!

(be sure to click the little gear to make it hi-rez!)

The music in there is “Jetstream” by the incredible Luscne. Click that link to see their Soundcloud channel!

Some favorite Aerial Photos

As you’ll read in the review above, I set mine up in such a way so it records HD video and also takes a photo every five seconds. Every one of these photos below is taken using that process!

HDR Photo

I love aiming the camera straight down… I think this is also why I like looking out of a plane window so much… I want to do it all day long!

 

DCIM101GOPRO

Oh my gosh – how beautiful is this place? Even though it is beautiful from the ground level, it’s really remarkable how surprising the view is from just a bit above. I showed this photo to several people that have worked there at the Four Seasons for many years, and they were absolutely shocked at the angle. I think taking photos from new perspectives like this is so exciting!

 

DCIM101GOPRO

If you watch the behind-the-scenes video for this on the review page, you can see more how this shot was made… mostly just lucky!

 

DCIM101GOPRO

Just what I always wanted, my own small deserted island! How cool! I find that when I do these straight-down shots that I prefer to have the GoPro set on the wide-angle mode because it makes it look like the quadcopter is much higher than it really is.

 

DCIM101GOPRO

Now, I don’t love this shot, but I’m putting it up anyway. The light was starting to get low here, and this is when the GoPro doesn’t do so hot. There are many artifacts and other problems with this photo. But, I still kinda like it, despite the flaws.

 

DCIM101GOPRO

I love that the top-down view is often kind of confusing. This was taken wide-angle, but I used the Profile Correction in Lightroom to make all the lines nice and straight again.

 

DCIM101GOPRO

The amazing blues that the GoPro can capture!! This is a view of the Pacific ocean in the other direction off the island.

 

DCIM101GOPRO

Here’s my Yoga teacher Sara doing some light paddleboard yoga in the morning! And here’s a shot of me!! hehe

 

DCIM101GOPRO

Another view looking towards the north and the little deserted island you may remember from before.

 

http://stuckincustoms.smugmug.com/Portfolio/i-jB79565/A

Another crazy view from above that shows the lovely colors of blue. I also profile-corrected this one so the horizon was straight across. Sometimes I leave it curved though, because I like the effect.

 

DCIM101GOPRO

This is one of my favorite shots and I didn’t even take off yet! This kind of shows how awesome the GoPro camera is!

 

DCIM101GOPRO

Which one do you want to live in? I shot this from room 101, right below. I was laying on my back by that little plunge pool. Actually, one of my favorite ways to fly this thing is laying on my back!

 

Bora Bora Four Seasons

Getting to Bora Bora

This island sits right in between Hawaii and New Zealand. Or so. That means it’s equally easy to get here from either location, but it could not be more different than Hawaii. I mean, Hawaii’s great and everything, but this is my first time to French Polynesia, and I absolutely love it. I’ll post a lot more photos soon, so be sure to click on the “Bora Bora” category above for more!

Daily Photo – An amazing night in Bora Bora

I just arrived at the Four Seasons in Bora Bora and am having an amazing time. This is the view from the Sunset Bar, and you can see the bungalows glowing under the ancient volcano…

Bora Bora Four Seasons

An amazing night in Bora Bora

Photo Information

  • Date TakenJune 23, 2014 at 8:52pm
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time25
  • Aperture
  • ISO400
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

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