Air New Zealand, Behind the Scenes

Want to see the Behind-the-Scenes video?

I did a fun photoshoot with Air New Zealand, and some of the photos are just now starting to come out. We also made a cool behind-the-scenes video there, which we will release for free to newsletter subscribers (which is also free!)


HDR Photo

Here’s one of the unofficial, behind-the-scenes photos I took in between scenes… That’s Rosanna there – I love the elf ears!

rosanna1

Daily Photo – The Seats on Air New Zealand

I set this shot up in New Zealand… it was pretty challenging to shoot, but you'll see more in the behind-the-scenes video! But I'm very happy with the way it turned out…

The Seats on Air New Zealand

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/400
  • Aperture8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length12.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

An amazing meal in Hobbiton

An Older Interview You Might Have Missed

Here is a very fun episode I did with Leo Laporte!

Daily Photo – An amazing meal in Hobbiton

If you go on the tour of the Hobbiton Movie Set, be sure you go on the last one of the day and stay for this dinner. It is absolutely NOT to be missed… man it was good. I ate so so so much — it was really redonkulous. And, as you can see, the view cannot be beaten!

An amazing meal in Hobbiton

An amazing meal in Hobbiton

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1.6
  • Aperture8
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length15.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

The Beautiful Land of the Hobbits

Other Great Movie Sets?

This spot below is the Hobbiton Movie Set. But it’s not just a set. It’s a real place with gardeners and staff, and, well everything but real Hobbits. I mean, some Kiwis are quite Hobbit-like, so I guess that is something!

Anyway, are there any other movie sets around the world that are actual real-working places that maintain their fantasy-glow all around the year?

Daily Photo – The Beautiful Land of the Hobbits

What's better than an afternoon strolling around the place where the Hobbits live? I can't think of much more than this? Oh sure, maybe take a boat ride in Venice or walk on the moon… but, other than those, I think maybe this comes in a solid third place! And the best thing about it is that anyone can do this! There are many tours that go through here… they are not rushed… lots of time for photos… and if you do the last tour of the day, you can even do the amazing medieval feast at night! :)

The Beautiful Land of the Hobbits

The Beautiful Land of the Hobbits

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/250
  • Aperture7.1
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-0.3

Yoga in Hobbiton

A lot of Yoga!

Some of you may recognize Bel from today’s photo below… here she is doing some more in this How-To HDR video we made. This is from the “Complete HDR Tutorial” which I highly recommend! :)

Daily Photo – Yoga in Hobbiton

This is my friend Bel (from above) doing a bit of impromptu yoga on the Hobbiton Movie Set on the old stone bridge before the watermill.

We were there with Curtis and Pete while working on some new videos. She's our awesome videographer, but we could not shoot for about 30 minutes because some weedwackers were going crazy and the audio was a mess. She said, “How about if I do some yoga on that bridge?” It seemed like a random and good idea so I got in position for this shot and we went for it! This was early in the morning before Hobbiton officially opened, so some of the staff was watching quite nervously, hoping she didn't fall in!

Yoga in Hobbiton

Yoga in Hobbiton

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/250
  • Aperture7.1
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-0.3

And this is Pickles

Pickles in Action

You can see Pickles “in action” in this little video we made below for the tutorial called “Organize Your Photos!

Daily Photo – And this is Pickles

Pickles is the cat that lives in Hobbiton.

Pickles is always there and will never pay you any mind unless pickles chooses to mind. And if you want to take a photo of pickles, well he doesn't mind.

And this is Pickles

And this is Pickles

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/60
  • Aperture
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

The Clouds of Hobbiton

Want to see me edit this in Lightroom?

Be sure to sign up for our newsletter — we’ll announce when this new tutorial is available. I’ve been working hard on it, and now all the Stuck In Customs elves are working on getting it all packaged up and ready for you! :)

Daily Photo – The Clouds of Hobbiton

There seem to be epic clouds over Hobbiton almost all the time! So amazing and wonderful, isn't it, the way the accumulate and float around. I've been here to Hobbiton probably 9 times now, and I always get interesting clouds at various puffy-levels. This one is maximum puff!

The Clouds of Hobbiton

The Clouds of Hobbiton

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/400
  • Aperture7.1
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length25.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-0.3

A Hobbit Hole in the Night

The North American Circus Competition

Find out more about this Photo Contest and Competition here! I’m going to be a judge at this amazing event, and I’m really excited about it! I’ll be staying at the Four Seasons in Toronto, and maybe we can do a photowalk from there or something while I am there…

See More at http://www.circuscompetition.com/

Daily Photo – A Hobbit Hole in the Night

Here's one of the first shots of Hobbit holes at night. Everything has been freshly and delicately lit, and the entire place feels alive and mysterious! Some of the lights on the 44 holes you can't fully appreciate until you closer. From afar, they are just these mysterious little glittering jewels on the bottom of the sea.

A Hobbit Hole in the Night

A Hobbit Hole in the Night

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time20
  • Aperture4
  • ISO320
  • Focal Length15.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Hobbiton and the Green Dragon Pub in the evening

From the new HDR Tutorial!

I know a lot of you have all the RAW files and the how-to video for this shot below from the new HDR Tutorial. You should share your finished images inside the Clubhouse — I’d love to see how yours turned out! :)

Night Dinner Tours in Hobbiton

They just opened this up! If you want to sign up, go to this tour page on their site.

Daily Photo – Hobbiton and the Green Dragon Pub in the evening

There must be a few things more magical than being where the Hobbits live as night comes on, but I can't think of any right now. I took this one night after the big event with Air New Zealand and it was so amazing. I remember this pub from all the movies, and, somehow, it is even better in real life. Inside, the taps actually work as grog flows out into huge mugs. Maybe I should share a picture of that soon too!

Hobbiton and the Green Dragon Pub in the evening

Hobbiton and the Green Dragon Pub in the evening

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/40
  • Aperture4
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length11.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-2

Back in Hobbiton to make some more videos

New Stuff in the Works!

We just finished spending time on the Hobbiton movie set where we made a lot more videos a few days ago! They’ll take a while to edit of course, but at least the sausage is in the factory! Would you all be interested in a) A Lightroom Tutorial and a b) Night Photography tutorial? Let me know! :)

24-70mm Lens

I’ve been enjoying my new Sony FE 24-70mm lens on my Sony A7r (see my Sony A7r review if you missed it). I find it gives me that middle range I have been missing. In the meantime, I’m working (SLOWLY) on the Leica lens buying guide… trying to find some good affordable options that can unlock this really cool power of the new Sony bodies… I’m trying my best to understand it all myself, and then make it understandable to you! :)

Daily Photo – The Water Mill in Repose

This might just be a perfect water mill! I actually asked them to turn off the wheel (it works and everything), because it was messing up the reflection a bit. I mean, there was still some reflection, but not nearly as clean and lovely as this. It was a bit of a hard decision to focus on just this mill, since there was this really amazing stone arched bridge right beside it. Well, in honestly, I did not decide, because I got both photos! I just happened to process this one first :)

The Water Mill in Repose

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/30
  • Aperture7.1
  • ISO160
  • Focal Length39.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-0.3

No Horses Around

The free 40 minute teaser video!

Just in case you missed it when this was released a few months ago, here is a 40-minute video that shows how I make these kind of images. Enjoy! :)

Daily Photo – No Horses Around

Here's another photo from one of my trips to the Hobbiton Movie Set — what a treasure trove of photos. Those of you that got the new HDR Tutorial saw how much fun I had creating this photo in particular. Actually, we had to re-shoot this scene twice because as soon as we got out here, we realized Bel didn't ran out of batteries! She had to go all the way back to the Green Dragon to get some more… and Hobbiton is a bit spread-out — not like your typical movie set. But there are many things about this place that are not like a real movie set… it's too good to be true, but it is! :)

No Horses Around

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/200
  • Aperture10
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length10.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

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