Bleached Tree in Milford Sound

More passport Goodness

For just the price of a few cups of coffee a month, you can be a passport member and see a new 360 video today where I’m talking about my goals at Milford Sound. I was able to accomplish a few of them, and I failed at others. I have some fun photos from this trip coming up! ๐Ÿ™‚

Passport Exclusive – My goals at Milford Sound

I often arrive at a location with amorphous goals. I’m sure this happens to you too. I get to a cool place, even one I’ve been to before, and then I have a sudden worry: “What the heck am I going to shoot here that is interesting?” Here’s another video for you, gentle Passport Member (thx again!) – where I talk about some goals… It’s good to have some goals and then vary from your main course… as is the case with today’s photo that was taken during this outing.

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Daily Photo – Bleached Tree in Milford Sound

This was taken early in the morning at low tide. The tide here goes dramatically up and down. At hightide, you can just see a few branches sticking out of the water, but at low tide, you can walk about half a kilometer out into the bay and get shots like this. I shot this at f/1.4 with the Leica 21mm on the Sony A7r Mark II.

Bleached Tree in Milford Sound

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-02-19 02:25:33
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/100
  • Aperture
  • ISO50
  • Focal Length
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

The Golden Fields in the morning

A Special Passport Day!

Today’s photo was a lot of (fun) work, and this time, I happened to capture everything on video. You get to see me running out from my studio from the backyard, taking the photo, AND the final screen casting as I work on the photo. And if you haven’t joined yet, please become a Passport Member to see all the goodies today!

Passport Exclusive – Epic Sunrise With the X1D

Today, not one but TWO videos… the first showing me getting the photo and the second showing the editing. Enjoy!

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Exclusive content for Passport members

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Daily Photo – The Golden Fields in the morning

Of the two videos you saw above, you may recall that I was having A LOT OF TROUBLE trying to choose which one was my favorite. In the end, it was THIS one because I really like the warmth of the flowing grass fields here. Well, I kind of make up my mind then go back to other one, once again filled with self-doubt! ๐Ÿ™‚

The Golden Fields in the morning

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-03-30 19:51:47
  • CameraX1D
  • Camera MakeHasselblad
  • Exposure Time0.5
  • Aperture8
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length30.0 mm
  • Flash
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

Driving up Mountains

Passport Earnslaw Burn Part 3

Here’s the Part 3 of the ongoing commissioned work I am doing for a patron. This shows my final shots… my favorite 10 or so. Which ones did he choose for his 3 homes around the world? We’ll see on the next exciting episode, entitled Part 4!

And what? You’re not a Passport member? Jump on in to see all kinds of goodies, including Part 1 of this series where you see me and my crew get dropped off at the bottom of a glacier for 24 hours when I forgot to bring a tent!

Passport Exclusive – Earnslaw Burn Project Part 3

Here’s Part 3. Will there be a part 4? Yes! Actually working on that now. And here’s a Passport link to Part 1 and Part 2 in case you missed those…

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Daily Photo – Driving up Mountains

Here's Ruby who joined me on my first sojourn to the Earnslaw Burn. At one point, I asked her to help get my tripod ready, and she ripped out one of the legs like it was a robot trying to attack her. There's some little piece that fell out that we never found. Now, I have to treat this one leg very gingerly, because it comes out all the time. This was just one of the casualties of equipment during the 4-5 trips we made out into the bush!

Driving up Mountains

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-10-18 14:26:27
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/30
  • Aperture16
  • ISO50
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-3

Happy Horses

More Max Patte

Go check out Max Patte’s Website to see more of his work. I’ve met him a few times, and he’s a heck of a nice guy! ๐Ÿ™‚

Daily Photo – Happy Horses

Here's another sculpture by Wellington artist Max Patte. I shot this at The Hills in Arrowtown… a sprawling golf course filled with incredible sculptures like these. These horses are huge too, at least 2x the size of a real horse. People always try to climb them, but then realize how awesome-huge they are. This is one of my favorite times to photograph them – in Autumn just when the grass is getting long.

Happy Horses

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-03-21 04:44:15
  • CameraX1D-50c
  • Camera MakeHasselblad
  • Exposure Time1/1000
  • Aperture3.5
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length30.0 mm
  • FlashNo Flash
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias

A peaceful morning in Glenorchy

From our New Zealand Workshop

Be sure to come check out our Workshops page here on the site if you want to come to New Zealand with me some time! ๐Ÿ™‚

Post-processing the Wetlands in Glenorchy

And here’s how I made the image photo below. When you compare this to the “Final Version” above, you can clearly see how I stretched the mountains tall! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Daily Photo – A peaceful morning in Glenorchy

Here's one of my favorite places near Queenstown we take our workshop friends when they come to New Zealand. On this day, we had super-smooth water… rare and beautiful, eh? I really don't like getting up early in the morning, but that is the time the water is smoothest! ๐Ÿ™‚

A peaceful morning in Glenorchy

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-10-20 02:47:03
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1600
  • Aperture3.5
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1.3

1.5 Mil Downloads and a Giveaway Comment-to-Win Event to Celebrate!

Happy Passport Day!

Thanks again to those of you that are Passport Members – Today you get a special 360-degree behind-the-scenes video at Milford Sound. Well, TWO videos actually! If you don’t know what “Passport” is – well it’s a simple thing… for the price of a couple of cups of coffee per month, you get extra behind-the-scenes stuff, presets, and more. Nothing has changed on the blog… still a new photo and tips every day, but now I’m able to use some cool tech to add more stuff!

1.5 Million Downloads and a Giveaway + Deals to celebrate!

1.5 million downloads for Aurora HDR! Amazing everyoneโ€ฆ and thatโ€™s only on the Mac (wait till we release the Windows version!! yes yesโ€ฆ still working on it, I promise!). Anyway, to celebrate this number, we’re throwing together a fun package deal just for a short timeโ€ฆ itโ€™s a bundle of the software and me newest (and best) HDR Tutorial video I did with Lisa Bettany in Venice.

Giveaway Time! Just Leave a Comment for you and a friend to win!

To celebrate that crazy number of downloads, I’m giving away 5 copies of Season 1 of Becoming an Artist. We filmed the whole thing in Africa, and I think you’re gonna love it… a very personal project chockful of tips & tricks.

To win a copy for yourself and a friend, simply leave a comment below (and, well, say whatever you want!) but also be sure to mention your friend. We’ll pick 5 random winners in the next week! ๐Ÿ™‚ Here’s the promo video:

Favorite Photos of Milford Sound

Since I use Aurora HDR pretty much every day of my life, I thought I’d share some of my favorite HDR photos from Milford Sound! If you watch the exclusive PASSPORT videos below, then you get to see how amazing these fjords are all around you! ๐Ÿ™‚


Amazing Milford Sound with Silky Fog

 Clayton Morris from Fox News Balances The water was slowly, slowly, slowly rising one morning in Milford Sound when we were all there together. We made a desperate retreat just as things were getting a bit too late. The last one to cross was Clayton, so I spun around quickly to get this shot while he was being all Cirque de Soliel with his tripod. And no, he did not fall into the water!- Trey RatcliffClick here to read the rest of this post at the Stuck in Customs blog.

Poems in the Moonlight in Milford Sound

trey-ratcliff-new-zealand-milford-sound (374 of 649)

Passport Exclusive – Tips from Milford Sound

Thanks again Awesome Passport Member! You’re the best… has anyone told you that lately? Well, now they have! ๐Ÿ™‚ Here are two 360 videos I recently made in Milford Sound… enjoy

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A few weeks ago on the way to Milford Sound at Lake Manapouri

Spot Location

There’s a road that’s hard to find that leads out to an old barge they used when building the hydrolics system here. Here’s the spot on Google Maps, in case you want to go yourself!

Daily Photo – A few weeks ago on the way to Milford Sound at Lake Manapouri

This was my first time at this lake… what a great spot! There are so many lakes on the South Island of New Zealand… I have a side-goal to visit all of them. Well this is another one marked off the list. My friends Mark Richter and Curtis Simmons came out this way with me… it was a great find – thanks again Mark!

A few weeks ago on the way to Milford Sound at Lake Manapouri

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2017-02-18 12:40:29
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/400
  • Aperture7.1
  • ISO125
  • Focal Length24.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-1

That Tree in Warm Light

That Tree in Wanaka

I believe this famous tree actually has itโ€™s own hashtag. Try clicking on #ThatTreeInWanaka in Instagram to see many different versions of it!

Daily Photo – That Tree in Warm Light

Here's one of my latest iterations of the tree. I used one of our Lightroom Presets for this one in particular. Thanks again to everyone out there that has been enjoying these presets… been working on a few more, but none quite ready for release yet!

That Tree in Warm Light

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2015-04-02 14:57:57
  • CameraILCE-7R
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time6
  • Aperture8
  • ISO250
  • Focal Length10.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias-0.3

The Lupins in Spring

A special day in Tekapo (more for Passport members)

Want to see how today’s photo was processed? I do the whole thing from beginning to end… it was kind of a challenging photo, I’ll be honest. Anyway, you’ll see the bonus material at the bottom of this blog post if you’re a Passport Member and THANKS again for all your support! ๐Ÿ™‚

A very in-depth post-processing of the Tekapo Lupins

So, this is kind of a long video, but it’s one of the most in-depth post-processing videos I’ve ever made for you, awesome Passport member. I hope you enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Daily Photo – The Lupins in Spring

This is a new favorite photo of Tekapo! I had a lot of trouble figuring out what composition to use and how to process it (you'll see in the how-to video below), but I'm very happy with the result. Can you believe a lot of locals in New Zealand find this lupin flower to be a pest and a nuisance? I've been trying to collect more and more and plant them at our home! I think they are very pretty! ๐Ÿ™‚

The Lupins in Spring

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2012-12-05 11:17:16
  • CameraNIKON D800
  • Camera MakeNikon
  • Exposure Time1/30
  • Aperture16
  • ISO200
  • Focal Length28.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramAperture-priority AE
  • Exposure Bias

Over the docks in Glenorchy

On the Way To Earnslaw Burn – And New Passport Video!

Lucky you if you’re a Passport Member as you get two videos two days in a row. This one is another amazing one – I have a patron who has paid a Rather Significant amount of money for me to take some photos (today’s Daily Photo is NOT one of them… just a quick shot I took on the way there). Anyway, this is Part 2 of 3 of more behind the scenes stuff. If you saw Part 1, you got to see me and the crew out on an overnight camping trip where I was trying to get the shots… been working on this project for about a year! Now it’s all finally coming together.

Earnslaw Burn Continued…

And in our on-going saga to get some good photos from Earnslaw Burn, here is Part 2, where you can see the resulting photos. Which ones are your favorite? I’ve now flown out to visit the patron in Austin to see his!

I’ll put Part 1 below Part 2 in case you missed that… It’s a great video too – check it out!

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Daily Photo – Over the docks in Glenorchy

On the way from Queenstown to Earnslaw Burn, you pass over this nice dock that shoots out into that turquoise water in Lake Wakatipu. I've taken heaps (that's a word they use a lot here in New Zealand) of photos from ground level, so it was great to get up in the air to get a different perspective.

Over the docks in Glenorchy

Photo Information

  • Date Taken2016-11-23 14:51:21
  • CameraFC6310
  • Camera MakeDJI
  • Exposure Time1/500
  • Aperture4
  • ISO100
  • Focal Length3.6 mm
  • FlashNo flash function
  • Exposure ProgramProgram AE
  • Exposure Bias

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