Misty Pond in the Morning

Soggy Feet

I think this last year has been my Soggiest Foot-Year On Record.

I do end up out taking a lot of photos as usual, but there just seems to be a massive amount of soggy ground around this area lately! It has been an extremely rainy summer, which I hear is unusual around here. I’m not enough of a local to know what is normal yet!

I’ve seen some questions too about the weather here in the summer — does it get hot? No! A good summer day is usually somewhere in the 70′s, and it rarely gets above 75. There is a ton of sun, and no one even has air conditioning… whenever it gets above 75 (which is super-rare), everyone just opens their windows!

Daily Photo – Misty Pond in the Morning

Here's another scene from Bendemeer Estates between Queenstown and Arrowtown. There are about half a dozen lakes, and the morning seems to be the best time to shoot them. The air is very very still, and as soon as the sun hits them, a little mist starts to rise then slowly drift across the surface.

Misty Pond in the Morning

Misty Pond in the Morning

Photo Information

  • Date TakenNovember 2, 2013 at 6:13pm
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/13
  • Aperture16
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length18.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias+1

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The Goats Who Stare at Men

Has anyone seen “Her”?

What did you think about it?

Daily Photo – The Goats Who Stare at Men

I came to this wonderful, alien hillside one evening to take sunset photos. The lines and the clouds and everything lined up, and I thought it would be a perfect evening.

So after I took the photos, I laid back on this slope to take a little nap and wait for the stars. I took off my glasses and kind of set them behind me. I closed my eyes for a bit, and when I opened them up, there was a GOAT STARING DOWN AT ME. I just about levitated off the ground a few inches in shock while the goat clicked away. I flailed around and my glasses went skidding down the hill, glass side down. It was darker than that goat's eye sockets and I couldn't find them for five minutes. I finally found them, and there are still, to this day, a thousand tiny little scratches on them. It drives me nuts… anyway, I got my camera and got the heck out of there.

The Goats Who Stare at Men

The Goats Who Stare at Men

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 19, 2013 at 2:31am
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time0.5
  • Aperture9
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length10.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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The Wolf Howling at the Sky

Lighting Decisions

When I process a photo like this, I usually go through a bit of a decision matrix about lighting. Since I’m combining multiple shots, I can choose to have everything equally lit, or go with a full-on silhouette. Such power! Haha… sometimes all the decisions can make you seize up a little bit, which is not a good thing. I try not to get caught up in the decision and just try different things and let it flow. In this case, I went with mostly a silhouette, but I did a bit of lighting in the foreground. I think it adds a nice layer right there in front of you.

Daily Photo – The Wolf Howling at the Sky

The shapes in Monument Valley are right out of all the westerns you watched when you were a kid. So, when I was there for the first time it was a bit surreal. Now, I know many readers here have been there several times and they are experts at this area… but it was all fresh and new to me! As long as there are good clouds, I think it is relatively easy to get a good shot here! Sort of a lay-up, I think! Some photos you have to work really really hard for… and those are fine… but I also like a few of these that make themselves a bit easier.

Monument Valley

The Wolf Howling at the Sky

Photo Information

  • Date TakenAugust 22, 2013 at 12:40pm
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/60
  • Aperture5.6
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length55.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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24 Hours Till the Big Event!

New HDR Tutorial Live Event Soon!

For everyone who has grabbed the new Complete HDR Tutorial, I’m looking forward to seeing you in the live event soon! We’ll pick the winners for the trip to New Zealand, the new Sony A7, and the 10 free copies of Nik Software. In addition, of course I’ll be doing some live demos, critiques, and have lots of other fun stuff lined up for the Q&A session. All the details are there in the link above. I’m really looking forward to it! :)

A little 40 min tutorial

Here’s a good little preview of the full thing! It’s about 40 mins long, but the full course is 10 hours.

Daily Photo – Exploring the Hobbit Holes

Here's one of the new photos that is edited in the full course. I took a ton of photos while on the Hobbiton Movie Set, and this was one of my favorites. If you ever make it there, actually, you'll see that pretty much all of the 40 Hobbit holes are just this picturesque!

Exploring the Hobbit Holes

Photo Information

  • Date TakenOctober 17, 2013 at 6:01pm
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/13
  • Aperture8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length10.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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Having a drink at Northburn Station

HDR for the Skies

If you look at the sky here in this daytime photo, you might notice that there are a few wafting icy clouds way up there in the atmosphere. This is probably one of my favorite things about HDR Photography — is it helps to bring those out a bit! I’m not a huge fan of plain blue skies, so anything I can do to get a few painted-cloud-brush-strokes is okay in my book. For those of you new to the site, I use a program called program you can read more about in the Photomatix Pro Review.

Daily Photo – Having a drink at Northburn Station

This is another great place to have lunch if you're in the wine country area of the south island of New Zealand. It's called Northburn Station, and the view is incredible. There is a little brook that rumbles along by the restaurant and the food is outstanding. This is another place that we came on our little Appellation Wine Tour… a great day all around. Actually, looking at this photo now, I wonder why I haven't been back!

Having a drink at Northburn Station

Having a drink at Northburn Station

Photo Information

  • Date TakenNovember 8, 2013 at 2:34am
  • CameraNEX-7
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/250
  • Aperture7.1
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length16.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

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