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

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  • Wild Oats XI powering in towards Opossum bay before turning for the run to the finish line.
  • 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

Latest

FOR SALE – Mamiya 645DF body + Leaf Aptus 22 digital back + 35mm

With some reluctance I am offering for sale my Mamiya MFD (medium format digital) outfit. I am selling as I’ve found, due to my arthritic ankle and knee, I just can’t lug the weight around. The full frame Canon’s heavy enough.

DETAILS: Mamiya 645DF body + Leaf Aptus 22 digital back + 35mm f 3.5, 80mm f2.8, 105-210mm f4.5 zoom + manual 80mm f1.9 lens – I believe this is the widest f stop MF lens available. All front and back caps and lens hoods, battery and charger for Leaf back (Mamiya body takes 6 x AA batteries). NOTE this is a digital only body – it does NOT take film.

All in good condition, great set and takes wonderful quality images. Suitable for studio or location/landscape work, NOT good at high ISO settings.

The Leaf body has a touchscreen and stylus which slots into a special groove on the top so you cannot lose it. The battery is a third party battery but has not had a great deal of use. It is a little loose, I have to fasten it on with an elastic band! I had this trouble with a PhaseOne back I Had also, third party batteries for digital backs seem to be not a tight fit. Works perfectly with this odd looking arrangement.

Offering at $AUD6,000 (negotiable)

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Sydney to Hobart fun!

wild oats & boatdsIMG_7815 As Sunday was such a beautiful day, I thought I’d trot down the the shoreline of the Derwent somewhere and get some photos of the winning yachts coming in.  After a fair bit of driving around to find a good spot which was not totally ‘parked out’ I ended up on the beach at Opossum Bay.  I set up with my milk crate, cushion and iPad tuned to the Roles Sydney to Hobart yacht tracker and waited.  It turned out to be a fantastic spot, as the yachts tacked right in towards us, and with the Canon 60D and Sigma 150-500 lens combination, I was able to catch some terrific action. But those so and so spectator boats – I would happily bazooka the buggers. Nearly impossible to get a shot of the hull and the crew. However, I hope you all enjoy these. I was amazed at the sheer size of the boats compared to the ones all round them, they’re not called super maxis for nothing.  First round the point at the southern end of our beach was Wild oats XI, she came in almost 50 mins ahead of the runner up Commanche, with the rest of the fleet about 11 hours behind. WILD OATS XI – Line Honours victor for the 8th time.

Wild Oats XI powering in towards Opossum bay before turning for the run to the finish line.

Wild Oats XI powering in towards Opossum bay before turning for the run to the finish line

wild oats IMG_7826_edited-1 WILD OATS IMG_7876_edited-2 WILD OATS IMG_7880_edited-1 WILD OATS IMG_7887_edited-1 COMMANCHE – Runner up for Line Honours COMMANCHE IMG_8054_edited-1 COMMANCHE IMG_8081_edited-1 COMMANCHE IMG_8070_edited-1 COMMANCHE IMG_8094

Yacht descriptions from the Rolex Race site -

Wild Oats XI is the most successful yacht in the 70-year history of the Rolex Sydney Hobart race. She secured her seventh line honours victory under the guidance of Mark Richards in last year’s race. In 2012 she broke her own race record, which now stands at 1 day, 18 hours, 23 minutes 12 seconds, and won the race overall. It was the second time the supermaxi had achieved this historic treble, and the only boat to do so twice in the race’s history.

Once again, Wild Oats XI has been modified for the Rolex Sydney Hobart. Her bow has been streamlined, she will carry a new hydrofoil wing, and will be fitted with two new high-tech sails – a mainsail and a ‘code zero’ headsail. These modifications are aimed at keeping the nine-year-old yacht competitive against more recent designs. Richards and the crew now affectionately refer to their charge as the ‘Swiss Army Knife’, because of the number of appendages she boasts: a hydrofoil wing, a retractable forward centreboard, two retractable daggerboards, a canting keel, and the conventional rudder at the stern.

Wild Oats XI still holds the record for the most consecutive line honours wins – four – from 2005 to 2008, surpassing Morna’s record of three in a row achieved from 1946 to 1948. She also holds the race record for the CYCA’s Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race (22 hours, 3 minutes, 46 seconds, set in 2012) and the CYCA’s Cabbage Tree Island Race (12 hours, 15 minutes, 55 seconds, set in 2012). Richards and his crew will need to muster all their resources this year as four other supremely competitive supermaxis and their crews – including the new Comanche 100-footer from America – will be vying for a line honours win. Wild Oats XI’s navigator, Juan Vila, was navigator for the victorious Alinghi crew in the 2007 America’s Cup match.

Owner: Robert Oatley.  Wild Oats Xi is 30.48m long, with a beam of 5.1m and a draft of 5.9m

Commanche

This is possibly one of the most talked about entries for this 70th Anniversary Race. This new 100-foot supermaxi is designed by Verdier Yacht Design & Vplp to push the boundaries of technology with the ultimate goal of taking line honours this year. The boat is the culmination of a two-year project. Built at Hodgdon Yachts in Maine, Comanche was sailed for the first time on October 13 and will be spiced with Australian flavour partly because her co-owner is Kristy Hinze-Clark, a former supermodel from Australia married to Jim Clark. Her mainsail also reflects Comanche’s Australian connection, as does Aussie crew; boat captain Casey Smith, Ryan Godrey in the pit and Chris Maxted “floating”.

Other big names are Stan Honey (navigator) and New Zealand’s Kevin Halrap on tactics. Comanche is skippered by renowned US sailor Ken Read with 21 international crew. Jim Clark, an American entrepreneur and computer scientist, founded several prominent Silicon Valley technology companies, such as Silicon Graphics Inc. and Netscape Communications Corporation.

Owners: Jim Clark & Kristy Hinze Clark  Commanche is 30.48m long, with a beam of 6.8m and a draft of 6.8m

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.

cornelain bay mist 0306-P1120055

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.

 

 

 

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