Making Mistakes at Mount Cook

Night Photography

A while ago, I suggested that maybe I could create a night photography tutorial. I must confess that I have never actually done this. It would be a really awesome thing, but I’ve just been too busy I’m afraid! I know that sounds lame, but they actually take quite a long time to make. But, it’s still on my list for sure… never fear! Well, fear a little.

Daily Photo – Making Mistakes at Mount Cook

I made a variety of mistakes this evening. The only success was this photo!

I went here to Mount Cook with my friend Stu (who I happen to be with now in Antarctica). We decided to sleep in the back of the pickup, but it was so horribly uncomfortable that we decided to move to inside the truck halfway through the night. While transferring from the outside to the inside, I took a quick photo of the village here on the edge of this amazing mountain range at Mount Cook.

Making Mistakes at Mount Cook

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time30
  • Aperture
  • ISO320
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

My Camel Team

Category

If you click on the “Sahara Desert” link above, you’ll see a bunch more shots of my camel adventures in the Sahara! :)

Daily Photo – My Camel Team

What do I know about riding a camel? Nothing! Well, now I actually know a fair bit, but when I took this photo, I knew nothing. But these seemed like the kind of guys to help tell me what to do. Getting on the dang camel is not easy. Riding it is not easy. Getting down is not easy. Here's the best advice I can give you, and, pretty much the only advice they gave me: “Hold on.” There is a lot of herky-jerky activity, none of which is expected or enjoyed. But these two guys were nice and full of all kinds of awkward camel jokes.

My Camel Team

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/250
  • Aperture9
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length15.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias+0.3

The Summer Palace, late in the day

Drought in California

I keep hearing about how bad the drought in California — is it as bad as people say? I saw these amazing pictures, taken three years apart.

Daily Photo – The Summer Palace, late in the day

Even though I've been to Beijing many times now, I'm often confused as the relative distance of one thing to the next. Here, at the Summer Palace, it turns out is very close to almost all the key stuff along the Central Axis (which is kind of a spiritual line that goes north-south through Beijing. But the first time I came here, it took over a 2 hours, and not just because of lousy Beijing traffic! So, I had this thing in my mind that this place was really super far. I was low on time but decided to try risking coming back again. This time it literally took 5 minutes. I'm still confused by the whole experience!

The Summer Palace, late in the day

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1500
  • Aperture
  • ISO160
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Japanese Girl in Traditional Dress

Leica Lens Buying Guide

Don’t forget to check out the Leica Lens Buying Guide here on the site!

Daily Photo – Japanese Girl in Traditional Dress

We were at the Google event in Tokyo and we ended up in an area where many Japanese people were walking about in traditional clothing. It was so cool! It reminded me of playing the Sims or something… everything was so quaint and perfect (except for when things go pear-shaped in The Sims). Anyway, I guess I'm used to seeing this kind of traditional garb on older women in Japan, so it was fun to see these pretty young girls wearing them.

Japanese Girl in Traditional Dress

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1500
  • Aperture
  • ISO1000
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Crossing the Hippo Infested Ponds

Hippo Encounter

On one of our boat rides into camp, we got a little too close to a hippo. Well, he took umbrage to this and decided to chase us at full speed! He reared up out of the water at least 4 times as he did everything he could to catch up. It scared the hell out of all of us so much we were laughing! And the guide said he had never seen anything like it before, which made us all just-a-bit nervous!

Daily Photo – Crossing the Hippo Infested Ponds

This is what almost every bridge in Botswana looks like! They all look like they are on the edge of collapse. And I just can't get used to that gap in the middle. I feel like, well, let's just throw a few more logs down in that middle part just in case. These Land Rovers they use there are so immense and heavy… I can only imagine what would happen if just one tire slipped off… forget it! You're down swimmin' with the hippos, and they are hungry hungry.

Crossing the Hippo Infested Ponds

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4000
  • Aperture4
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-2.7

Strange Bushes in China

4K Video on the Inspire

I’ve been shooting more and more video with my DJI Inspire at 4K. It’s really cool and amazing to watch on the big screen… so smooth and amazing, really! At first I thought 4K video was a bit overkill, but I gotta admit, I’m getting kind of used to it!

I can’t believe the NSF would not let me bring my quadcopters down to Antarctica… it has made me a bit bummed out… I was really looking forward to getting some unique angles. Oh well…

Daily Photo – Strange Bushes in China

Here's a few Minions from Despicable Me that were on the side of the road in China. So strange, I think! Somehow I doubt they paid royalty rights for these…

Strange Bushes in China

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/3000
  • Aperture
  • ISO320
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramShutter speed priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Natives in the Hot Afternoon Namibian Sun

What I think About Bird Photos

I recently gave this fairly useless critique to Cat Burton inside the Arcanum. Below this quote, I put one of my own photos, which I do not really think of as a bird-photo, but as a weird-photo.

It’s a good photo.

Here’s my somewhat useless analysis, being a non-bird-photographer. I’ve taken a few bird-photos, but I don’t consider myself a bird photographer. I only know a little bit about bird-photographers, but they are mystical, like “The Others” on Lost.

My take is that: bird photos are only interesting to other bird photographers.

Other photographers are, at most, only vaguely interested and will generally comment on the sharpness, but otherwise find the subject matter inscrutable.

Bird photographers also seem to be purists. They’ll sit in one uncomfy spot forever to get a photo of some triple-adjectived rare bird that is only seen on a blood moon in a province of Linkershire when the tide is low. They take great pride in their fortitude and find any artifice to be reprehensible.

And, in your bird-cloning tactic, you have probably given offense to the purists among the bird photographers. I think it is cool, but, as I said repeatedly, I am not a bird photographer. They may find this photo to be incomprehensible and as impure as your original sin soul, but, again, I am not a bird photographer.

I hope this useless critique was of interest, or, something.

Attack On Gaijin

Daily Photo – Natives in the Hot Afternoon Namibian Sun

I won't put much text here, because I think it sort of takes away from the moment. But while in Namibia, we visited a village, and I saw these to gentlemen, high upon a rock.

Natives in the Hot Afternoon Namibian Sun

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7S
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/4000
  • Aperture
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

The Endless layers of the Southern Alps

Shooting in New Zealand

Here’s a little Google Glass video I made on one of the final days of a recent workshop we had!

Daily Photo – The Endless layers of the Southern Alps

I've been fortunate enough to take a variety of helicopter flights all over New Zealand. The Southern Alps, which can clearly be seen from planes on arrival into Queenstown, are staggering in their complexity and depth. It's really the layer after layer after layer of incredible peaks that always gets to me. And you think, well surely there can't be more mountains beyond those, but then you fly over them, and sure enough, there are! It's like a never ending fractal… and all very beautiful, especially when you get a bit of snow up there.

The Endless layers of the Southern Alps

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/2000
  • Aperture4
  • ISO400
  • Focal Length41.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias-1

The Dreaded Cape Buffalo

I realized I really don’t Know My Animals

When we were driving around Botswana, we saw all sorts of amazing animals. It was just then I realized I don’t know the names of hardly anything. I mean, I got the easy ones like giraffes and elephants, but they have all these other crazy animals with wonky names. I was constantly getting the guide to repeat what the heck they were… I felt super-dumb! haha. Anyway, to this day, I’m not totally sure I can tell the difference between a springbok and a red lechwe!

Daily Photo – The Dreaded Cape Buffalo

According to a variety of guides I had in Africa, this is the most feared animal there. What a surprise this was… and good to know… Growing up in Texas, I thought they might just be a *little* bit mean like bulls. I wasn't gonna go wrastle the thing to the ground or anything, but especially not after I heard some horror stories.

One of the stories involved a hunter going after one. They got a good shot, and the cape buffalo retreated and limped back into the long grass. The hunter pursued. But the crafty buffalo circled back around and rammed him from the side, killing him.

The Dreaded Cape Buffalo

Photo Information

  • Date Taken
  • CameraILCE-6000
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1600
  • Aperture4
  • ISO400
  • Focal Length200.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

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