Monday, May 28, 2007
So I went out to La Perouse and started shooting some shots of the pier out to Bare Island.
When I came to shoot this shot
I set my tripod up down near the water, and I was standing about 6 inches above water height and framing up my picture. I wasn't too concerned as I was in Botany Bay and not out on an ocean facing headland. The next thing I feel is water washing over my feet at about ankle level. I grabbed my camera and bolted for higher ground.
I couldn't believe it!!! Two outings in a row! I got some strange looks at Sydney airport as I squelched my way up the Jetway to get onto the plane. Luckily my socks pretty much dried out before I got the client meeting in Brisbane @ 11AM.
Note to self: Buy gum boots and keep in car for these occasions.
Friday, May 25, 2007
I have started building my own map which is a guide to photographic locations that I have been to, or a list of photographic locations that I want to go to. Hopefully this map will be useful to visiting photographers coming to Sydney. I can just shoot them off the link and they can browse the photos by geography.
Click Here to go visit the map now.
Sunday, May 20, 2007
I decided to go to Narrabeen Lakes and shoot this morning. Despite the lack of cloud cover, I got three images that were worth while.
Tomorrow morning I am going to go out and shoot some sunrise shots before my client meeting out at Homebush... I might take a crack at the old shipwrecks in Homebush Bay. Not sure if I can get a good shot at them from the banks though. Tonight it was a pretty good sky for sunset... great clouds... great colour.... now I just need that one morning and I'm sure I'll get some great pictures.
Saturday, May 19, 2007
The Good News was that I didn't screw up the tides this time and there was plenty of the reef exposed.
The Bad News was that the sunrise was pretty boring. Not a cloud in the sky! One of these days I have to get a half decent sky when I am down at Long Reef.... However it continues to elude me thus far.
I took a few photos that still came out OK. This photo was taken with my D200 and Tokina 12-24mm lens @ 12mm and f11. I created an HDR composite from 7 frames that ranged from 1/2sec up to 1/125sec.
Regarding my workflow, for this print I did the following.
- Create HDR Composite and Tone Map in Photomatix
- Save as 16bit TIFF
- Open TIFF image in Photoshop CS2
- Apply RAW Presharpening @ 50% (using Nik Sharpener 2.0)
- Apply Velvia settings through Alien Skin Exposure (@ about 70% opacity)
- Apply local contrast Enhancement through Unsharp Mask (50%, 1pixel, 0 threshold)
- Brighten cliff shadows a bit with some selective curves
- Apply vignette using levels and masks
- Duplicate to new image and flatten
- Re-size to about 1200pixels wide for Flickr
- Prepare for web (convert to sRGB profile, 8 bit image)
- Apply output sharpening via Nik Sharpener (Display sharpening @ 27%)
- Save as JPEG
Got a couple of other similar looking images. Here's one more.
Lets hope that tomorrow the sky is a bit more interesting. I think I might venture down to Narrabeen Lake tomorrow and try my luck with some lake shots.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Saturday - Went down to Long Reef to try grab a half-decent sunrise over the reef. Every time I have gone down to Long Reef to try to grab this picture I have been foiled by clear skies or totally overcast skies and I have not captured the image that I know is possible at this stunning location. This was my best effort so far.
Now this isn't a bad image, but the sky is barren and pretty bland.... I just KNOW that I can get a stunning image if the sunrise gods are with me.
Anyway, Saturday morning I turn up and I had two problems
1) The tides were just a wee bit too high and
2) A totally colourless sky.
So I thought I would try again on Sunday morning. However this is where I learned my lesson. I didn't bother to check the tide tables for Sunday. I just assumed that the tide would be lower on the Sunday (not sure how I reached that conclusion). Anyway as I was hiking down to Long Reef in the pre-dawn darkness I was looking up at the sky and looked like it had great potential.... high whispy clouds and already an hint of colour on the horizon.
Then my heart sunk as I looked at the reef and discovered that it was high tide... That means:
No reef walking
No spectacular water pools or formations
So the lesson learned was - Do your homework... check sunrise times, tides, weather forecast, make sure your gear is all ready to (batteries charged, lenses cleaned etc.)
If I had have checked the tides, I would have changed my location to Narrabeen Lake and probably got some good images instead of returning empty handed.
Tuesday, May 8, 2007
I went out on Saturday morning to Wentworth Falls lake for some sunrise shots. However conditions weren't the best... there was a reasonable wind blowing which created a lot of wind on the lake, and the sunrise was a bit dissapointing.
That evening however I went to shoot a sunset shot of the Old Blast Furnace in Lithgow. Unfortunately I got there a bit late and just missed the golden sunlight (there was a big hill to my West which meant the sun disssapeared 15 min early!) However I scouted the location and decided to drive back in the morning. Boy am I ever glad that I did. I probably had the best morning's photography I have ever had.... It started out with the pre-dawn shots... the sunrise was glorious. I shot the follwing two shots before the sun peeked over the horizon.
Then once the sun came up it cast a lovely difuse yellow light on the ruins and the sky was absolutely perfect (beautiful clouds that didn't dominate the scene). I shot the following two shots just after sunrise.
I finished up my weekend going to Leura Cascades and enjoyed a lovely hike in the mountains. When I arrived at the lake the light wasn't right, however with no kids tailing me, I sat down, had a picnic and waited for the sun to get higher in the sky. I recorded this image.