Portrait of a BMW

Todays image is one I took a little while ago on my Sony A230 DSLR with a 50mm Minolta lens. I really wanted to see if I could create a car image that may have been used by BMW when releasing the 5 Series . Although this is the smaller web optimized version of that image I’m pretty happy with the end result, and think its a much more appealing image in B&W.

I finally finished off the B&W film in my Ricoh today and sent it off to the developers, si I’m keenly waiting to see what I get back and what I can share here. I’ll load and start shooting a self develop film in my Rollei 35 T over the next few days also – it will be interesting to see how I go stepping back to a full manual setup – including the necessity to guess the focus distance as the 35’s have no focus assistance like most cameras.

Queens Birthday celebrated here in NZ on Monday, so one more day till the long weekend!

One-way Rush Hour

I’m starting to think whenever I take my Sony out, it brings the rain along with it… if it wasn’t for winter I’d be convinced! Todays image, ‘One-way Rush Hour’ taken in high contrast B&W on the Nex 5n shows the traffic leaving town just after knock off time. Often the traffic is heavy both ways, so I must have caught it either just to early, or late.

Taken from the overpass at Pt Erin, I like how the lines of the motorway take to you the cityscape in the background. Just on sundown again, the B&W image had more impact the color ones shot at the same time.

Takapuna Landing

Takapuna beach is just down the road from Lake Pupuke, which featured in my photo on May 24th. A popular beach for runners and dog walkers after work, it also features regular iron man competitions in Summer. In addition to these, a kayak tour leaves here to explore our youngest volcanic island Rangitoto.

Todays photo, taken on the Nex 5n, I think in HDR ‘painting’ mode was snapped about 10min after sunset. Truth be told, I was just experimenting with some of its built in options and liked this cropped image most out of the ‘mode experimenting lot’. I dont use it nearly enough, but I must say the Sony really is quite impressive hand held after dark. Obviously the higher into the ISO range you go, the more noise, but it really does capture an awful lot before you need a tripod.

Kung-Fu Lorikeet

Visiting one of Auckland’s bigger bird stores. The Bird Barn, I ran into this colorful little chap. Squarking loud and following my every move as I walked around the aviary, I snapped him on an old compact digi cam, the Fuji FinePix J15fd.He seemed pretty used to the attention and continued running up and down in front of me until I left – to which he started squarking at me again.

Whilst beautiful to look at, over the years various breeders have let these into the wild in NZ. Native to Australia, they thrive, but at the cost of our native birds, who get chased, bullied and have their nesting areas stolen. Unlike the native birds, whom defend their areas often in pairs, they often move in flocks.

As above, taken on a J15fr compact, cropped and slightly adjusted in Gimp.

Guns of North Head

A rainy old Sunday here in Auckland today. Still, I wanted to get out and about for a walk and brought my Nex 5n along as it frequently gets left at home for the pocket friendly GRD. In addition to this I brought along my Ricoh 35mm camera, for which I have a few B&W frames left on the film to finish still. I went for a stroll around North Head and its old wartime fortress remains. Shortly into the walk it started bucketing down and the sony stayed put in my bag. My cellphone, for which I have less value for proved trustworthy in the rain and I managed to get some pictures. Todays image is of some of the old guns on the hill. Backed up by a massive disappearing cannon, these guns from WW2 were never used in anger, and only used for ceremonial activities. Long since decommissioned, they remain as part of the reminder of New Zealand’s wartime activities.

As above, todays image was taken on my mobile phone, Samsung Galaxy i5800 (3mp), using the vignette app, and post edited in photoshop with a slight bump up of contrast. There was nothing to see but a cloud of rain in the distance, not particularly great light for photos, but I like the result.

City in a Puddle

Another wet Auckland City image taken on my Ricoh. I was having a walk along the outskirts just after dark when I notice the reflection of the city in one of the larger puddles. Unedited from the camera, I love the colors and the lines. Perhaps a ‘rats eye view’?


The Orb

Painting by light

Friday! I was busy taking and editing work team photos this afternoon, so didn’t get a chance to head out and take any shots after work. So – another from my archives. I have always liked long exposure evening shots – both in film and on digital, waiting to see what the lighting looks like when it is dark to the naked eye. Some time last year I came across a guy called Dennis Smith and his ‘painting with light orbs’ – give him a google, some breathtaking images. Following this I built a basic orb maker and went out to take some shots. It was a lot of fun and i’ll have to go do some more some time to try and perfect it. This one was taken on a Sony A230. It wasn’t my best orb, but I likes the color and how it was floating in between the trees.

By the Lake

On my way home today I stopped for a wander on the local lake on Auckland’s North Shore, Lake Pupuke. The ‘Pump house’, featured in the photo, now a place to see small theatre, was in 1894 a functioning pump house supplying the lakes fresh water to residents on the North Shore. Local Maori legend tells of a couple who cursed the god of fire. In retribution for her, the god of earthquakes and volcanoes destroyed their home – the lake being the result. Todays its much more peaceful and used for various recreational activities from fishing to windsurfing.

Taken on my GRD IV and converted in Gimp to B&W with the contrast up a notch. Also resized to a similar aspect to the ‘Golden Ratio’

One more weekday to go!

Lost Sunset

I have mentioned that with Winter approaching the days have been getting shorter and shorter. As a consequence, it’s often dark as I leave and go home from work during the week. Today I left just prior to sunset. It was a particularly amazing red sunset tonight, glowing off a mass of clouds. I battled the traffic to get to a local beach to catch it, but missed most of the sunset but the time I got to my destination… never mind!

Taken with the GRD set to ‘cross processed’ and with the saturation bumped up in post process, I caught the last ray of color before it all vanished.

Happy mid week!

Toetoe in the Sky

Todays image, ‘Toetoe in the Sky’, was shot on the same walkway from ‘Dark Mangroves’. Stretching up to the sky, Toetoe (often spelt/pronounced toitoi) are New Zealands Native version of the Cortaderia family – perhaps know to some overseas as pampas grass.

Shot in color and converted to B&W in Gimp, I like the play between light and shadow on the toetoe, the shadowed under the clouds and the bright under the clear sky.

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