My thoughts on my photography and what I'm doing, photographically.

  • lake pano sun snowy_edited-1
  • aurora21102014_FF and meteor_I7U3339
  • Aurora from Trial bay boat ramp, 28/08/2014
  • cornelain bay mist 0306-P1120055
  • The Old Jetty
  • stephg_I7U0073
  • Stephanie Gilmore coming in with a smile for fans, after winning her Quarter Final and progressing to the semi finals.

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A meander in the Tasmanian midlands and Cradle Mountain

I have just completed a 4 day photo trip. Starting on Sunday 26 october, I went to Waddamanna for the Hydro 100 yr anniversary.  The day was very well conducted and the Power Station Museum was very interesting.  You can guarantee getting excited as they have an Exciter.  If it doesn’t so the trick, then I’m sorry, you must be dead :) .  And the Caledonian Pipe band played wonderfully ALL day! exciter DSCF1359 cooker DSCF1372 pipe band DSCF1392 great lake DSCF1397         Then I travelled along Highland Lakes Rd (my first ever ‘A’ class road with long stretches of gravel – its quite a shock), spending my first night at an absolute gem of a caravan park I discovered via the internet – the Quamby Corner Caravan Park at Golden Valley.  Great cooking and ablution facilities, cheap accommodation, and so pretty.  Only $16 for a powered site for one person, $25 for 2 people. DSCF1418 DSCF1420 DSCF1422 DSCF1423 DSCF1426 DSCF1427 DSCF1428 DSCF1429 DSCF1430 DSCF1431               Monday 27 October I travelled on to Cradle Mountain via Deloraine, Sheffield &Moina. Mt Roland is truly impressive and reminded me of the Lord of the Rings country in NZ, it’s all granite fissures and changing clouds. mt roland fuji DSCF1444mt roland #2 DSCF1447 I had 2 nights at Discovery Holiday Parks – Cradle Mountain.  The weather was wild and woolly for the whole time at Cradle, but the kitchen/rec room has 2 lovely big open fires.  On Monday I arrived early afternoon, and drove down to to Dove Lake about 3.30 pm. spending just on 2 hours.  The weather went from rain to patches of sun and then granular snow and back again.  The wind was gusting ferociously the whole time and the lake surface was all little white caps.  I walked around to the boat house and back- with photo taking the ’10 min walk’ took me over an hour.  With my bad ankle and knee (opposite legs, of course!) I have to be super careful not to fall. 1Ds pano 1 DOVE LAKE 2 DSCF1491_edited-1 Day 2 was even more extreme, heavy snow gusts then some brightening patches.  I had a look at the Waldheim site (hopefully staying in the Waldheim cabins next time).  It snowed heavily, with big flakes, while i was there, so heavily I debated going back and not proceeding to Dove lake, but I did go on as the shuttle buses were still doing so. At times you couldn’t see your hand held up in front of your face, and I wore what my partner warwick calls my hobbit cloak (because it is green and has a hood), it may not look very glam but it’s (a) warm, (b) fairly waterproof and (c) I can hold the cameras under it, keeping them warm and dry.  I walked around to the big rock as I wanted to get the boat house from across the lake to give a ‘dwarfed by the mountains’ feel to it.  I shot quite a few macro shots of the flora too, on the walk.  This was prompted by a comment from a fellow walker that it was all so dull.  Dull!  I think she wanted bunting and flags.  Again, the 10 min walk took me about an hour!  I contemplated the climb up the rock but my ankle was singing ‘Oh Susannah!’ by that time so I decided discretion etc was wise. _I7U3399 _I7U3436 _I7U3445 _I7U3493 _I7U3498 _I7U3504 _I7U3507 _I7U3511 _I7U3519 _I7U3524 lake pano sun snowy_edited-1 Home via Mole Creek and along the other side of Mt Roland, just as impressive as the initial impression, then to Deloraine, and across back roads, all tarred and good surfaces (except 8 kmns of dirt on the last leg, but good surface), Osmaston, Bracknell, Cressy and Macquarie Rd to Ross (where diesel was just 153c p/l!).  I must say I was not over impressed with Ross (I probably just committed Tasmanian tourism heresy).  I drove to the town map, as I was hanging out for some food and a coffee.  It showed a lovely riverside spot and seats for picnicking.  Drove there, and thou go round the corner to the river to be greeted by a very unfriendly (and inaccurate) Keep Out – caravan park patrons only.  The caravan park actually didn’t start til the end of the road, but I went anyway, and sat by the river. It was so windy there that I had to eat in the car, when I tried the picnic table my lunch blew off! When I ducked in for a quick look at Oatlands it was far more friendly, and down by Lake Dulverton, near the historic mill, there is even an lovely FREE area for caravans and motorhomes to park for the night. More photos to come as I edit

A big Thank You!

to the lovely person purchased a Large (568mm x 407mm) Framed Print of “Cascade Brewery, Hobart” via RedBubble.  Quite made my day to wake up to that news.  I love to think of my work hanging on a wall somewhere.  I know there’s a framed print of one of my Queenstown (NZ) images in Texas, and I wonder where this one is going?
RedBubble link

cascadeframed

More Aurora action

For those who are keen photographers, a visit to Tassie may see you lucky enough to experience an aurora.  Usually you can only see them in camera, they are not often strong enough to be visible to the naked eye.  But you can get some fabulous shots.  I’ve only caught two so far, so my shots are, as yet, far from perfect, but this is a sample from the night of 21/22 october 2014.

All taken from the Gordon jetty, down the Huon, and with Canon 1DsMkII and Tokina 20-35mm AT-X 235 AF PRO lens.

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Aurora!

I have finally succeeded in catching an aurora, in late August.  Not the greatest shots as I could not get the focus exact on the night but I have it fixed now, I’ve marked the lens barrel and front so I can get the spot on in the dark.

Aurora from the old jetty site at Middleton.  I had not been here before and I thought that golden glow through the trees was a lovely house, it looked like arches.  When I passed it driving out it was the toilet block!  Still looks nice.

Aurora from the old jetty site at Middleton. I had not been here before and I thought that golden glow through the trees was a lovely house, it looked like arches. When I passed it driving out it was the toilet block! Still looks nice.

Aurora from the old jetty site at Middleton, #1

Aurora from the old jetty site at Middleton, #1

Aurora from Trial bay boat ramp, 28/08/2014

Aurora from Trial bay boat ramp, 28/08/2014

Taswegian Now!

Well, I have been in Tassie since September and have barely posted word here.

Mea culpa.

So here are a few from this morning from Cornelian Bay in heavy mist.  I’ll share some of what I’ve been shooting int he weeks to come.

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cornelain bay mist 0306-P1120058

PANO cornelain bay mist 0306-P1120053

Tall Ships Festival, Hobart, 20-25 September 2013.

We arrived in Hobart to live on 15 September, after a 5 day, 2,100 km drive with our 5 cats down the east coast of Australia.  That was fun in parts and truly dreadful in others.  However.

One of my main aims was to arrive in time for the Tall Ships Festival.  By the 20th I was still feeling wring pout but did get down to the river on the first day to catch some of the ships progressing up the river Derwent with their flotillas of accompanying small craft, and then for sunrise at the docks the next morning.

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Oosterschelde

Oosterschelde

Oosterschelde & Tecla

Oosterschelde & Tecla

Europa followed by Lady Franklin and a flotilla of small vessels progressing up the river

Europa followed by Lady Franklin and a flotilla of small vessels sailing up the river

Europa and Lady Franklin off Sandy Bay

Europa and Lady Franklin off Sandy Bay

Oosterschelde

Oosterschelde

Lord Nelson

Lord Nelson

Tecla

Tecla

Lady Franklin & Tecla at sunrise, 21 September

Lady Franklin & Tecla at sunrise, 21 September

Yesterday I went down to the docks and took a few more shots, including some inside the pavilion of the various stands.  The Tasmanian Scrimshaw artists work was astounding, I will add more images later.

Oosterschelde

Oosterschelde

Ooosterschelde doing some refurbishments to gear and rigging

Ooosterschelde doing some refurbishments to gear and rigging

Map from the Europa

Map from the Europa

Whaler's scrimshaw

Whaler’s scrimshaw

Modern scrimshaw on an old whale tooth (sourced from Albany WA & carved in Tasmania)

Modern scrimshaw on an old whale tooth (sourced from Albany WA & carved in Tasmania)

Today I am off to Rosny Park to (hopefully) shoot the Parade of Sail under the Tasman Bridge.  Then IF I can manage it I will dart down the Sandty Bay Rd to catch them on their way out to sea.  See how I go.

It is very windy and raining but I’ll rug up and I have the camera raincoat, so all should be well.

Why Photographic Prints (and Licences) are Expensive

This was inspired by a post by Mel Sinclair on her website on the same topic (Mel has some gorgeous images from Iceland – on my wishlist but I haven’t managed to get there yet).  Pricing’s something I’ve thought about a lot, all photographers do, I think, but never written about before.

I too am a very small player in the photographic scheme of things.  No doubt it’s hard enough to make money in Photography these days, with what seems like “everyone’ doing it, it’s getting even harder and harder to make back the true worth of a photo.

I’ve get lots of very positive feed back along the lines of “Oh!  I Love your image / calendar / canvas print” but those comments do not translate into sales.

It does seem that art has lost its value.  If I had a sale for every “I could take that myself” comment I’d be the most successful photographer out there!  And I wonder just how many ever Do go out and take it themselves.  Darned few, I’d bet.

What it Takes to capture a great image:

Travel time and cost.

If I’m driving – anything from 15 minutes to 5 days – yes, I’ve driven a 2,000 km round trip for an image.  And we all know the cost of fuel – currently my diesel van costs $95 to fill the tank and with perfect driving conditions at 90 kph I get just on 700kms a tank.  So for that 5 day round trip it was 4 tankfuls.  Plus the cost of accommodation, food and other trip essentials.

Equipment.

DSLR bodies x 2, lenses x 4, Medium Format Digital bodies x 2, lenses x 4, tripods x 2, monopod x 1, media cards x 10, flash units x 3 and a whole lot of peripherals like cases to carry it, reflectors and other gear.  And lets not forget the mobile phone.

And on local trips – anything up to 90 minutes to catch that storm, sunrise or sunset – I need a nap when I get home , so I can get through the rest of the day, and it takes time to load, backup and edit those images too.

Processing those Images

A computer (IMac) to process them; 3 x HDDs (3 x 2Tb) for storage and backup; Time to download, backup and edit (and editing time is a substantial factor); Internet access costs;  hosting costs for my page; plus marketing time uploading and sharing to various sites

And the Intangibles – the ones the “Take it Myself” brigade don’t stop to consider

My time, effort and the skill used in taking the the images has taken many years of study, training, workshops and practice to develop – and it is a never ending process.  What value do you put on it – and how do you calculate it?

Does every image have a value?  Yes, but you need to include all those general costs it took to produce the image, as outlined above, plus the individual factors which went into any particular image – see the examples below.

If I’m selling you licence for a file you will get the full resolution file, untagged, so I will never be able to use that image again for prints or any other purpose (except possibly marketing).  It will no longer have a place in my library of saleable Fine Art.  Consider this when objecting to the price of an exclusive licence.

Two example images.

Blue Dawn The Old Jetty

Blue Dawn and The Old Jetty (my most popular image online) are available to purchase on my website .  Go on, you know you’d like one! Hint, hint, they make gorgeous canvas prints.

Factor in the cost of flights to and from New Zealand, car hire, accommodation, associated trip costs – $7,200 – and a month away from home – and the cost of internet access and backups on the run.

And a lot more intangible costs in time, researching locations so I knew where to go to catch extraordinary scenes, over a year  planning and arranging the trip and itinerary.

When you factor in all hose things is around $365 for a 1m x .5m canvas so expensive?

So please, next time you pass up an amazing image from any Photographer, please consider all I’ve said here, and if you like the image enough to hang it on your wall, then buy it. You’ll make someone happier – and you’ll have a beautiful work of art to put in your home and enjoy forever.

Footnote:  Mel Sinclair had this rider in her piece – I’m not popular enough for this yet, but it’s worth remembering when considering ANY artist’s work:

“The hours I spend, fighting every single stolen image from those that think it’s OK to rip me off online. DMCA notices don’t write themselves, and I often lose hours trying to chase up stolen images. Why? Because I want my photos to hold their value, I want my collectors and buyers to know that they can only get it through me or my authorized outlets. It’s about being exclusive.”

Quiksliver Pro 2013 Finals Photos

Well, surf wise it is all happening on the Tweed (NSW) and Gold (Qld) Coasts in February / March.  We have just seent he finish of the Roxy & Quiksilver Pros from 2-15March, with Tyler Wright and Kelly Slater the respective winners.  Next week the Australian Surfing Longboard Open is held at Kingscliff beach from 20-24 March.

The finals of the Quiksilver Pro were held at Kirra on 13 March under brilliant conditions.  A big and enthuiastic crowd watched Kelly Slater edge out local stars Mick Fanning, in the semi-finals, and current World champ Joel Parkinson in a thrill packed Final.

To the Victor the Spoils.  A triumphant Kelly Slater is carried up the beach after his win.

To the Victor the Spoils. A triumphant Kelly Slater is carried up the beach after his win.

Joel Parkinson in the tube suring the Final.  His two top scoring waves of 8.67 and 7.83 were just not enough to beat Kelly Slater’s two top scores of 9.83 and 8.73.

Joel Parkinson in the barrel during his first high scoring wave of 8.67

Joel Parkinson in the barrel during his first high scoring wave of 8.67

popping out of the tube on jis second high scoring wave of 7.83.

Joel parkinson popping out of the tube on his second high scoring wave of 7.83.

And the second eave was finished off with a brief floater

And the second wave was finished off with a brief floater

Kelly Slater as the barrel forms over him on his first wave, which earned him a 8.73 score

Kelly Slater as the barrel forms over him on his first wave, which earned him a 8.73 score

And Kelly's triumphant turn out of the wave

And Kelly’s triumphant turn out of the wave

Slater pops out of the tube on his second scoring ride of 9.83.  This wave featured a 17 second ride int he tube!

Slater pops out of the tube on his second scoring ride of 9.83. This wave featured a 17 second ride int he tube!

See a video here of this ride – last video on the page

A section of the big crown watching the Finals

A section of the big crown watching the Finals

My vantage point was just where these girls are setting up on the grass.  By comp time (90 minutes later) it was wall to wall bodies on walkway, grass and rocks.

My vantage point was just where these girls are setting up on the grass. By comp time (90 minutes later) it was wall to wall bodies on walkway, grass and rocks.

 

 

 

Roxy Pro Quarter Finals

I got up nice and early today and toddled down to see what was going on in the Land Rover sponsored Quiksikver and Roxy Pros.  I haven’t been able to get down before as I had something on earlier in the week.

I went to Snapper Rocks first, had a look around the ‘surf village’ and got a feel for the day.  Snapped this shot of possible future champs, who knows?  They were watching all the hoo haa that accompanies the Pro staff trying to corral and organise those big floaty things that mark out the ‘course’.

Future champions?

Future champions?

Then I drove over to Kirra, and was lucky enough to get a nice close parking spot (right by the loos, very convenient LOL), and I walked down to the rock wall at the southern end of the beach.  Most of my shots are from there, it was a good vantage point early but as the morning progressed the action went north.  Tomorrow I may set up a bit further north myself.

I managed to shoot all the competitiors bar Carissa Moore in QF4, the waves had moved along and she was surfing a L O N G way up the beach.  First, the results.

ROXY-QF-RESULTS

So, my images for QF1.  The first is Tyler Wright and the second Courtney Conlogue.

ROXY-QF1-WRIGHT-_I7U9692

roxy-QF1-conlogue-_I7U9699

Quarter Final 2 was bewteen Stepahnie Gilmore, who scored the highest wave of the QFs at 9.8, and Alana Blanchard.

Stephanie Gilmore in the tube during her 9.8 ride

Stephanie Gilmore in the tube during her 9.8 ride

Alana Blanchard cutting up a wave during QF2

Alana Blanchard cutting up a wave during QF2

Stephanie Gilmore – always showing genuine pleasure when fans approach – here coming back after her round with a lovely smile fot eh folk hoping to snap a photo.

Stephanie Gilmore coming in with a smile for fans, after winning her Quarter Final and progressing to the semi finals.

Stephanie Gilmore coming in with a smile for fans, after winning her Quarter Final and progressing to the semi finals.

Quarter Final 3 was between Bianca Buitendag of South Africa, who just could not seem to get a decent wave, and Sally Fitzgibbon of Australia who, perhaps knowing the beach better, caught several well scoring waves to progress to the Semi Finals

Binaca Buitendag in a tube which unfortunately closed in on her.

Binaca Buitendag in a tube which unfortunately closed in on her.

Sally Fitzgibbons caught this nice tube and rode through it and pulled off some good turna on the end of this wave.

Sally Fitzgibbons caught this nice tube and rode through it and pulled off some good turna on the end of this wave.

QF4 was between Carissa Moore of Hawaii and Pauline Ado of France.  Again, Moore, who has surfed in Australia several times, seemed to catch better waves more often and progressed through to the Semis.  Unfortunately, I don’t have a good enough image of her to put up here.

Pauline Ado of France catching a tube during QF4 - unfortunately for her it closed in, leaving her nowhere to go.

Pauline Ado of France catching a tube during QF4 – unfortunately for her it closed in, leaving her nowhere to go.

And we were also treated to our local ‘Didge man’ (that’s what I always think of him as) who is a regular sight round the traps on the Gold and Tweed coasts.

Russel Corowa and his didgeridoo are a fixture at Snapper Rocks, where the Aboriginal man proudly celebrates his indigenous heritage by blessing the surf while overlooking the waves.

Russel Corowa - didgeridoo man

Russel Corowa – didgeridoo man

Valentine’s Day Surf at Duranbah

‘Twas a beautiful morning yesterday and I had a very early errand at Murillumbah, so I decided I might as well take the cameras (I always do anyway) and head down to the beach afterwards. I went by Snapper first but it is already closed off for the upcoming Quiksilver & Roxy events (they don’t start until 2 March!).

So I mosied on down to D’bah where the durf was small but nicely shaped waves and a beautiful clear vlue green colour.

Here’s a few from the day.  Click on the photo to link to my website image, and check out the whole gallery of 2013 Gold Coast/northen NSW surfing shots.  I am adding more all the time.

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