The Tree with Red Flowers

After a fairly packed weekend, I managed to take some time out later this afternoon and take the bike up to Long Bay Regional Park. The weather was nice, and a large number of people were spread throughout the beach and grass sections of the park. I went for a stroll around the nature walk area, which was void of any people!

On the way there I came across this tree, blossoming for the spring weather. Against all the other evergreens, it stood out.

In post processing I selectively desaturated several colour, adjusted the contrast and sharpness and resized.

Lazy Day

Him or Me?

The day before heading off on holiday I posted about almost running into a seal dozing on the rocks. Here it is!

Applying the ‘national geographic’ filter in Gimp has actually highlighted it a little more. Take a few steps back and the seal really blends into the surrounding rock and sandstone.

On the side of lazyness for me, really just lazy on the camera shooting front.  I spent a decent amount of today sorting through parts of my camera collection – choosing what to keep and what to sell. I have amassed quite a bit of old film gear over this last year and a bit (after pledging not to get any digital cameras for 2012). I’m keeping cameras that are either a bit harder to come by, or have some sentimental value to me. I hate things just sitting on the shelf, never being used – better it goes to a new home to be used, like its creator intended!

Anyway, that’s all for today. Its daylight savings for us here in NZ tonight, so an extra hour of sun tomorrow! (well, not really, but that’s what they say…)

Leaving on a Jet Plane

A week on, reflecting on my trip to Fiji, I had a great time. The people were nice, the weather was great, and the food equally fantastic. I’m not sure when, but I’d like to go back again one day. I have a pile more shots, some which I will post at some stage, but for now, I’ll leave the series with today’s ‘Leaving on a Jet Plane’ – my last ‘on foot’ view of the country.

Using Gimp, I cropped, converted to B&W , sharpened and added a vignette. The image worked fairly well in colour also, but I like the changes so went with the monochrome final.

‘Follow the Yellow Brick Road’

So…its not a brick road, or a yellow one at that, but ‘follow the orange flower trail’  didn’t have quite the ring to it that came to mind when I took, or view today’s image.

When out in the bush, in general, we get an amazing mix of forest colours – browns and greens essentially. These orange flowers that had fallen from the trees really stood out when we went through a trail in Fiji. When I captured the image, I was drawn to the trail of orange disappearing into the path ahead.

Originally captured in portrait, I went for a square format in my post processing – keeping all the subject matter in the image and not loosing anything of any relevance. Some people shoot a lot in square format – whether it be the traditional medium format 6×6 film, cropped digital or various smart phone apps. I do quite like the format, so may look at doing some more, probably B&W in it at some stage.

Cropping aside, I also pushed the saturation a bit to make the flowers pop, and slightly sharpened the image also.

Shot on the Ricoh GRD IV.

Fiji Forest

Another 35mm film shot from my Ricoh GR1 in the forest of Fiji I walked through to get to a waterfall. Following the river down, we can see the irritated horse I featured a the day before last (I think its the one anyway), before the river disappears into the forest.

Not a lot more to say about this image as we reach mid-week and I am slowly getting back into the ‘work mode’ – Its funny how just over a week away can both go by so quick, yet seem to last so much longer. I’ve never been to good at getting back into the swing of work after a holiday away!

Photo wise, after scanning the film I used Gimp to play with the levels slightly, apply a sharpen and give the image a very slight sepia like tone.

Whilst I have had a camera on me at all times, I have not really taken many images so far this week. I still have a few more of Fiji I want to share before getting back to my local production, so there is no chance of running out of images anyway!

Choose, Sit, Relax

I stayed at a resort for the base of my holiday to Fiji – ‘Fiji Beach Resort & Spa, Managed by Hilton’ to be more precise. It was a nice place – great service, rooms, food etc. – not something I am very used to really (pitching a tent is more what I am used to).

Getting up one morning early (it appears only the staff aside from me did this) I made my way to the breakfast restaurant and caught this image. I was drawn to the orderly nature of the chairs & it got me thinking how organised the whole relaxation ‘thing’ is. Here we have rows of deckchairs overlooking a beautiful beach with a couple of great clean salt free pools. People travel thousands of miles to get in early with their towel to book a chair they can then lay in the sun on for the rest of the day.  Most people read books, but with the advent of mobile technology I cant help but think that many were still keeping tabs with work and not really relaxing (one reason I chose to go technology free aside from my camera).

Personally I get more relaxation going for a walk, which I did a lot of, checking out and discovering new sights and sites. But throughout the week, when returning for a swim I got to recognise the same individuals in their favourite chairs getting browner and browner – or redder and redder. I’m certainly not knocking it, its just a bit foreign to me!

Back to the image, I did a little post processing in Gimp. I first gave the image a light lomo effect filter with some vignette, followed by a cross-processing filter with a blue tint.. I then cropped the aspect a little, removing some dead space in behind the first chair in the image. Struggling to find the title I wanted, I finally settled on ‘Choose, Sit, Relax’

A Horse in a Forest

I got the opportunity to develop one of my films from Fiji today. It was by accident that I had loaded a roll of Ilford Pan400 into the camera, planning to shoot colour for the whole holiday, but it made its way into my case somehow, and since Ricoh GR1’s pre-load the film before shooting, it was easier to just go with it than swap it out for colour (my colour films have been sent off for developing).

Anyway, today’s image was shot in a rainforest area several hours south from Nadi in Fiji. We were taking a trip to an inland waterfall after visiting one of the local villages seeking permission to enter. Some tourists ride up rather than walk, and I came across such a group on my return to the village. Unfortunately this horse was not in the best of moods today and had caused some issues on the trip up (I would too if I had to carry people through a muddy forest in the hot midday heat). Using my GR1 I got as close as I felt secure (it looks further away with a 28mm lens) and captured the horse and his guide calming him.

In post production using Gimp, I adjusted the levels a little, but otherwise left it as scanned. Considering the brightness, even undercover of the canopy, I was happy with the result the 400asa film gave me.

Searching for Shade

Fresh back from Fiji, I’ve had just enough time to look over my digital images. For those reading who may have missed my final decision, I ended up making it a ’28mm Holiday’, taking along my GR1 and GRD IV Ricoh cameras. I shot off two colour and one black and white films on the GR1, and a fair number of digital images also. Weather being fantastic, the light was also pretty harsh come mid-morning.

Today’s image, ‘Searching for Shade’ is one of my favourites from my initial inspection of images. Taking a stroll around the Denarau Port area, Nadi Fiji, where we were based, the temperature was around 30 degrees Celsius with no cloud cover. I managed to find a larger tree with good foliage and sat down to try and cool down a little. Transitioning from Auckland’s ~12degrees the week before, it took me a few days to adapt to the heat!

Just down, back in the sun from where I sat, I captured this image on my GRD IV. Using the bleach bi-pass mode. I particularly like how the bleach bi-pass in the Ricoh worked with the harsh bright light I had during the day. Sitting back at home its 11 degrees again…don’t think I’m quite over the holiday yet – I’d welcome that tree in the shade right about now!

Forgotten Flower

My last pre-scheduled post as I should be back in the country and in front of technology tomorrow! Another archive image of a left behind flower my partner had forgotten to take with her.

I edited it at the time in CS4 so cannot recall now what I actually did. I do remember setting it up on a wet glass table, and shooting it with my Sony A230.

Much like the flower, the rest of the details were forgotten!
Back tomorrow!


An old archive holiday image from many years ago. I think it was taken on a digital camera, but cant recall which one – the data does not suggest it was a branded camera – not that it matters anyway.

Camping on the northern area of the Coromandel, North Island New Zealand – transported in my 1991 Lada 2105 (a bit of a rare car – not suggesting it was of any value). Sitting in the tent as sun went down, with the crashing of the waves – pure New Zealand camping magic.

No editing in today’s post.

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