Rodney Campbell's Blog

Farm Life…

by on Jun.14, 2010, under Life, Photography

Continuing our trip around western New South Wales we spent a few more days with relatives on their farm.

The following two images were taken in the cool crisp morning with a clear blue sky. It was time to drag the Manfrotto tripod and my D90 with the Sigma 8-16mm ultra wide angle lens out into the paddock opposite the farmhouse and take some wide shots. I have to say however that my two younger daughters who I also coaxed into this little outing weren’t quite so pleased with having to walk through head high (for them) grass and thistles 🙁

The following photo is a High Dynamic Range (HDR) image I generated from three bracketed shots at 0, -2 and +2 EV. I took this on the tripod rather than handheld which has resulted in a much sharper final merged image. I purposely included the sun in the corner of the frame (which also added those interesting lens flares across the image):

1/250 sec at f/13, ISO 200, 12mm equiv

Also using my tripod I took 8 shots at 45 degree intervals with the camera oriented vertically with my D90 and Sigma 8-16mm ultra wide angle lens set at 8mm. These were then stitched into the panorama below – in this view the left and right edges join (creating a cylinder) to complete a 360 degree view.

As is usual for a panorama I shoot in full manual mode and the exposure for all the shots is locked beforehand (choose appropriate Aperture first, lock the ISO at something sensible and then select your Shutter Speed) so that we don’t end up with radically different exposures across the frame which won’t blend correctly (this is especially important for shots which have the sun or shadows in them). You do however have to choose an “appropriate” exposure which is going to “work” across the range of images which are shot in a full 360 degree circle. This can be very difficult when one or more of the shots are directly into the low sun (as is the case here – these were taken around 9:45AM). Choosing a “correct” exposure for the sun can mean all the others are extremely dark (underexposed) and likewise choosing a correct exposure for the darkest shot can mean the sun ones are just totally blown out – it is a tricky balance – start with an exposure somewhere towards the middle and then perhaps take the shutter speed a stop or so above that.

In this shot my girls look tiny and far away whereas in reality they were only standing just over a metre from the camera (extreme wide angle and a stitched pano pushes everything away). If you’d like to view the panoramaas if you were there” then click on the link or the image below to view it as a fully interactive 360° virtual reality view that you can pan around and up and down as well as zoom in and out of as if you were standing at the centre of the scene.

1/250 sec at f/11, ISO 200, 12mm equiv

Later in the morning the whole family took a trip to a more remote part of the property to have a nice family picnic and barbeque (and to toast marshmellows on the bonfire – which the kids loved 🙂 ).

A lucky grab of pure joy on the face of my nephew as he was climbing on the old fallen tree (taken with my favourite portrait combo D90 + Tamron 90mm f/2.8 lens):

1/250 sec at f/4, ISO 200, 135mm equiv

and a couple of my girls:

1/1000 sec at f/4, ISO 200, 135mm equiv


1/1000 sec at f/4, ISO 200, 135mm equiv

The “barbeque”:

1/2000 sec at f/4, ISO 200, 135mm equiv

and a handheld almost macro of the grasses with the sky and clouds as the blurred background:

1/2000 sec at f/4, ISO 200, 135mm equiv

Finally at the end of the day just after sunset the following was taken during twilight from just outside the back door of the house. It was very VERY cold outside so I didn’t want to walk very far 🙂 and even the horse was very obliging standing in the shot for me 🙂

This is another HDR generated from three bracketed shots at 0, -2 and +2 EV and on a tripod.

1/3 sec at f/13, ISO 200, 42mm equiv

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1 Comment for this entry

  • Alison

    Love your work,

    I have just a acquired a used D 90 and followed your set up. Thanks. I used to always shoot RAW but I see what you mean re the JPEG/RAW issue. I have only photoshop elements 9. I may consider light room.

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