Took this out my bedroom window in Wellington – 17 exposures blended with Photomatix pro. I love how lights reflect on everything on wet nights – it gives your shots so much atmosphere.
So it was the perigee moon last night so I headed out, like many others, to catch a glimpse and get some photos.
It’s not exactly a rarity but it certainly was quite spectacular. I find getting good moon shots to be dependent on these things:
1. Use a tripod and the self timer to get a dead-steady shot.
2. Use a very long telephoto (zoom) lens – this shot was taken at 250mm (crop sensor, so more like 400mm).
3. Underexpose the shot – the moon is much brighter than you think, especially when it’s beaming into your lens.
4. Try to catch it as it first rises or sets, and make sure you get something in the foreground to give it scale – the long zoom amplifies the size illusion.
Sometimes you get a photo which, for one reason or another, has overexposed. A lot of people might be tempted to throw away these shots, but I find these can be used as a retro, film-look shot, Just convert the image to greyscale, play with the levels to increase the contrast and you’re set.
Don’t be afraid to explore beyond the standard exposure shots – over or under.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words – so are photos like this are worth two thousand?
The photo shows two moments in time. Or maybe one – I’m not sure which. I love the motion and the extra colours you get from slow-sync photos, even if the colour balance in the flash image is a little bit blue.
I used my Canon 7D with a Speedlite 580 EX II on aperture priority mode at f/2.8. I was using a Canon 15mm fisheye I borrowed from work, which I liked a lot, even on my crop-sensor camera.
I work with great photographers at The Dominion Post and it amazes me how professional they stay when the things they are shooting are, well, gory or uncomfortable.
This is a snap of Chris Skelton, photographer extraordinaire and all-around top bloke, photographing a woman having a cataract cut from her eye at Wellington Hospital.
Yes – he got shots of the most disturbing nature – we are talking scalpel to eye-ball stuff. Not a job for the squeamish.
I also shot this video and reporter Kate Newton voiced it. I was still learning the ropes with DSLR video, so I apologise if it’s a bit shaky in parts.
This is a shot I took for the Canon Photo5 competition. It took me a while to set the whole thing up and the bubbles were a lot more challenging than I expected them to be.
I found that the trick was to find somewhere with nice natural light – but not too much. It was a sunny day so I set up the tripod to point at a window and diffused the sunlight with a plastic bag.
Here are a few photos I took on my iPhone to show the setup – and one of me obviously quite pleased with myself.
A while back I did a batch of high dynamic range photos of the Wellington waterfront at night – some involving up to 18 exposures blended into one shot.
As you may have already guessed, this is the set which I made my nifty new blog header from.
Click here to see the more of the whole set: (or ignore if you are already in the post)
I got a friend to take a photo of me with a couple of other friends on Friday night at the newly-opened Bangalore Polo Club in Wellington.
You know how some photos just look better in black and white? This is one of them. The lighting in the place was heavily coloured, patchy and difficult to balance, so it seemed like a good option.
It’s a bit grainy because the ISO crept up, but I think it adds to the film look. I also put a slight vignette over top to add to the vintage feel.
It was a dark shot, so I used my trusty Sigma 30mm f/1.4 – it’s so fast and awesome for night-time social shots without the intrusive – and irritating – flash.
I also managed to snap this gem, much to Hamish’s disdain:
This is a high dynamic range panorama which I put together after a recent expedition – click the image to go to the full-size, scrollable version.
Hauling the tripod up there was definitely worth the effort. I also got a chance to practice some panning shots on planes coming into the airport.
Here are some photos from the recent house fire on Allenby Terrace in central Wellington.
Crowds gathered on the street to watch – it was one hell of a fire. Rival news agencies edged closer and closer, with some of our own guys perhaps getting a little too close, as they suffered what looked like mild sunburn.
These photos were shot from the fifth floor of the Dominion Post Building on Boulcott St.
Also, after seeing a TV crew filming from a nearby roof, I couldn’t help but put this together: