The Remarkables Ski Fields Just Before Sunrise

Guess what? Aurora HDR 2017 is announced!

See the new stuff here!

Pre-orders begin on Sep 15th with full release two weeks after that.

What’s New? Over 20 new features… I’ve been playing with all of them and it’s pretty freakin’ awesome! πŸ™‚

– Tone mapping rebuilt from the ground up and starts from a very realistic result and of course can be pushed to more extreme realms
– Batch processing! πŸ™‚
– Polarize filter
– All new presets included
– Radial Masking tool
– And a bunch more stuff our partners over at Macphun won’t let me say yet… secrets secrets! Well, I guess I can tell you the new UI is really incredible too.

Pricing? Current owners of Aurora HDR Pro can upgrade for $49. First timers can get it for $89.

Live video from the top

When the sun started to come up, we launched another live Facebook video from up here. There is a small event in this video that involves falling.

Daily Photo – The Remarkables Ski Fields Just Before Sunrise

One morning we headed up to the top of the Remarkables here in Queenstown for a fun morning of photography. We rode on a ski cat (is that what they are called – you know the grooming machine?) to the top of some runs and then ran around and took photos. We also froze our asses off… good thing we had on lots of layers and good gloves! Oh, btw, I found a great glove company called “The Heat Company” β€” best gloves I've ever found.

The Remarkables Ski Fields Just Before Sunrise

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time13
  • Aperture
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length0.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Crazy Lenticular Clouds over Queenstown

The drive to Glenorchy

It really is one of the most beautiful roads in the world. If you visit, try to plan to drive it twice, in different parts of the day. The light, clouds and weather will all be different… and you can stop and re-shoot the same magical spots over and over with differing results.

Daily Photo – Crazy Lenticular Clouds over Queenstown

One day I went out on a little photo reccy with my friend Mark. We drove down to Glenorchy, but on the way there, we were treated with this extra-terrestrial treat! We get these clouds from time to time in Queenstown, but rarely do we see them swirl into this kind of a vortex. This was a long day for me, as I had just woken up at 5 AM to climb that same mountain you see there for some sunrise shots!

Crazy Lenticular Clouds over Queenstown

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/640
  • Aperture6.3
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length37.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

Exploring the High Mountains

Quadcopter 101

I gave my friend an old quadcopter and taught him how to use it. I decided to record the whole thing on FB Live in case it might be helpful to others as well πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – Exploring the High Mountains

A few weeks ago was World Social Media Day, which is strangely a new thing even though I'm involved with social media! πŸ™‚ Anyway, I got on an Over the Top Helicopter (owned by my friend Choppy) and we flew up here to Mount Alton with Jason Charless Hill, Hello Emelie, and Kyle, the Bare Kiwi! We had a fun time up here taking photos of the scenery and one another.

Exploring the High Mountains

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4000
  • Aperture4
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length29.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

On top of the Remarkables

Happy Birthday to Me

Hey, I made it around the sun another year! This one was a tough one for sure… All kinds of crazy shit goin’ on! I haven’t shared much because it’s in the middle of it all… will share everything at the right time! πŸ™‚ No worries, though… I’m the ultimate trooper πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – On top of the Remarkables

My good friend Curtis took this photo of me. I don't post a lot of photos of myself… just not really that sort of dude. Those sorts of dudes and dudettes are fine, btw. But I also know sometimes people like to see photos of me! Anyway, we were up in the Remarkables Ski Fields and went up to the very tip of the Remarkables. While up there, I took some photos (of course!) and Curtis got this one of me in the middle of it all.

On top of the Remarkables

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/8000
  • Aperture4
  • ISO1250
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-2

Winter is Coming in The Remarkables

Happy July!

We’re halfway through the year team! Let’s make the 2nd half even better than the first half! We have all kinds of fun stuff planned and hope you’ll be with us all the way! πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – Winter is Coming in The Remarkables

I have a secret Queenstown shame! I’ve lived here with my family for four years, and I’ve never been up into The Remarkables ski area! This is probably because I live closer to Coronet and it’s more convenient. But this is a silly reason because I came from Austin, Texas, where you have to drive at least one hour to go almost anywhere. Anyway, an extra few minutes in the car got us up into this snow filled and beautiful panacea. Being a landscape photographer, I’ve always been attracted to rugged and epic scenes, so pretty much everywhere I looked delivered a cinematic scene.

At one point, we took the snowmobiles as high as we could go then proceeded to hike up to Lookout Point. It was a hard hike through the thick snow. My fitbit said I climbed 70 floors, but I think I only really did 50 floors because I fell down about 20 of them. Anyway, once I finally got myself and all my equipment up the mountain, I got this panorama. The full rez version is quite huge β€” 3.5 meters across.

Winter is Coming in The Remarkables

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/320
  • Aperture8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Reflections at Aro-Ha

Reflections Tip

Here’s a video I made about this shot! πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – Reflections at Aro-Ha

If you ever go to this amazing yoga and wellness retreat, you may espy two little ponds down the hills towards the big lake. I decided to jump over a few fences (some electric!) to go check them out one day. It was a longer hike than I expected, probably because the ponds were not as small as I expected. I have great trouble on the scale of everything here in New Zealand in these mountains because everything is so epic!

Reflections at Aro-Ha

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/90
  • Aperture13
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length18.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Camping in the Yard at Night

Life from Above

This is one of my favorite video creations from this year… you will see a bit more of Burano in it! πŸ™‚

Daily Photo – Camping in the Yard at Night

I built this for my kids to have a little camp out party. How awesome is that? I liked it so much that I wanted to go out there with them, but I wasn't quite welcome in their clubhouse. The nerve!

Camping in the Yard at Night

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time30
  • Aperture
  • ISO1250
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Pig Island and Pigeon Island

Another Show Suggestion

Rick & Morty! Even though it’s a cartoon, it’s definitely not for kids. It has some of the funniest writing and craziest plots I’ve ever seen!

Daily Photo – Pig Island and Pigeon Island

Amazing eh? I got this out of a helicopter while flying out to Earnslaw Burn on a reconnaissance mission. Maybe once a week or so the lake gets this smooth. I've never seen it this smooth from the air, though, so I had the chopper pilot make a 360 so I could get this shot. I got a little dizzy, but it was worth it!

Pig Island and Pigeon Island

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraH5D
  • Camera MakeHasselblad
  • Exposure Time1/90
  • Aperture22
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length35.0 mm
  • Flash
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Devil’s Staircase

Silicon Valley

I highly recommend watching this show. At first, I wasn’t sure… but it really grows on you! I think it’s just in Season 3 now, so it’s a good time to get started!

Daily Photo – Devil's Staircase

Isn't this a cool road? This is one of the first photos I took with the Hasselblad. That's quite a camera eh? Amazing optics and sharpness. I can't quite figure it out because it's not like my Sony system is blurry. The feel is very…immediate, no?

This is actually quite a dangerous part of the road between Kingston and Queenstown, especially when it's raining… so if you are ever coming down here, be sure to drive carefully! Sometimes it's not your fault as there are a lot of Chinese tourists who are not that familiar with driving at all.

Devil's Staircase

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraH5D
  • Camera MakeHasselblad
  • Exposure Time1/320
  • Aperture13
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length80.0 mm
  • Flash
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Wild Earth Winery at Night

Lunch suggestion

There are a ton of great places to eat all around Queenstown, but this one is a must-visit I think. Not a lot of people go because it’s about a 40-minute drive towards Cromwell… but the food is really amazing. They actually have converted old wine barrels into grills. Very cool!

Daily Photo – Wild Earth Winery at Night

This was a hard photo to take! I took it during one of our workshop events after we had just had an amazing dinner. It wasn't hard to take because I had too much wine β€” it was hard to take because it was on a swinging bridge. So I got to the very very edge of the bridge right by where it connected to the ground to minimize the swing. It was still a very long exposure and I was holding my breath. I really like the way it turned out!

Wild Earth Winery at Night

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time30
  • Aperture
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

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