Cars…

My girls were dancing in the parade and on stage in the Willoughby Spring Fair over the weekend so I took my camera (of course).

Note: These images (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger – so click any of the images below to see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer.

The parade went well and the girls and the crowd had a great time…

NIKON D7000 + 85.0 mm f/1.8 @ 85 mm, 1/1250 sec at f/2.2, ISO 100

I’d taken my new 85/1.8 for a spin (because it was small, light and fast); however whilst I was hovering there was also a small display of some classic cars near the performance stage where my girls were dancing so…

The 85 has a fairly long minimum focus distance (80cm) so it’s not macro by any stretch of the imagination but I figured I’d try some more detailed shots rather than do something boring like a shot of the whole car. Here are a couple that I liked…

Royal

NIKON D7000 + 85.0 mm f/1.8 @ 85 mm, 1/320 sec at f/2.2, ISO 125

V

NIKON D7000 + 85.0 mm f/1.8 @ 85 mm, 1/1250 sec at f/2.8, ISO 100

Eeny Meeany

NIKON D7000 + 85.0 mm f/1.8 @ 85 mm, 1/800 sec at f/2.2, ISO 100

Red and Wild

NIKON D7000 + 85.0 mm f/1.8 @ 85 mm, 1/1250 sec at f/2.2, ISO 100

A Timeless Moment…

I fully “borrowed” the following idea from a friend (Marcus) who’d shot something very similar just minutes before (admittedly he did his handheld at ISO 8000) – however it was too good a shot to pass up so here is a timeless moment and the best shot of the evening…

Light the Way

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 12 mm, 9.5 sec at f/5.6, ISO 200

A Night on the Rocks…

I caught up with Cameron and Marcus down under the bridge for a little evenings shooting

A little two minute long exposure right under the bridge towards the end of twilight (which I’m not feeling but my daughter likes)

What Lies Beneath the Girders

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 12 mm, 120 sec at f/11, ISO 100

One as Cameron and I were wanding the back alleys of The Rocks area

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 13 mm, 46 sec at f/8, ISO 100

Observatory Hill Silhouette…

I joined a couple friends in the city for a late afternoon/evening impromptu shoot in The Rocks area.

Note: These images (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger – so click any of the images below to see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer.

As I was running a little late I parked at Observatory Hill first for sunset (I only arrived 15 minutes before sunset so there wasn’t a lot of time to plan things out). By the time I arrived long shadows were already raking across the grass, the horizon was thick with smog haze which made for some nice colourful bands across the sky and the old fig trees were in full silhouette so I went with it and used the tree’s shadow to allow a longer shutter to catch some detail and colour…

Tree of Life

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 13 mm, 1/4 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Ten minutes later as the sun was just dipping over the horizon a young woman sat on a bench under the tree to watch the glow of the setting sun. So I set up to place the sun at the end of the dipping tree branch and framed it thus… not sure yet if this works (or whether I should have run to the car for the 70-300 – yeah probably not :)) but…

Contemplation

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 13 mm, 1/2 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Almost ten minutes later again (post sunset), a pano following the bridge heading to North Sydney. You can see the dirty haze banding the horizon which in the absence of any clouds (yet again!, sigh…) produced some interesting colour in the sky

Heading North

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 13 mm, 3 sec at f/11, ISO 100

I then headed down towards Dawes Point under the bridge to join my friends

Cosmic Dawn at Long Reef…

I joined the FOCUS (NSW – Seascape & Landscape Photography) crew for a dawn and sunrise shoot at Long Reef at Collaroy on Sydney’s northern beaches.

Sunrise was at 6:04AM so it was an early 5AM meet at the Long Reef Golf Club (which meant getting up at 3:50AM :(). It was then a 15 minute walk around and down onto the reef in the pre dawn darkness. Even at this time and from on top of the headland above the reef you could tell there were basically no clouds in the sky so a spectacular colour filled clouded sunrise was not going to be on the cards.

I decided to go with a bit of light painting on the reef which thankfully was near low tide leaving the whole shelf relatively exposed with just a shallow layer of water on the surface providing a mirror for the sky.

All I needed to do was find some suitable foreground interest with a good angle on the reef and sky – I found myself a relatively large undisturbed lake of water with just a single large rock in it and set to work.

Note: These images (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger – so click any of the images below to see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer.

This was at 5:29AM, so just over 30 minutes before sunrise, which allowed me a long enough exposure (150 seconds) to do some light painting. Shot with a circular polariser and a 3 stop hard ND grad over the sky. I lit this rock using a focused beam from a small (but powerful) LED torch I’d recently purchased for this type of work (it’s powered by a single AA battery but puts out a lot of light (a couple hundred lumens) and is focusable). I lit the rock from the left side leaving the right in more shadow and then I used some blue and green EL (electroluminescent) wire to add some cosmic fire predominantly on the right and lapping up and over onto the top.

A little post processing love in Lightroom and here we have Cosmic Dawn

Cosmic Dawn

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 14 mm, 150 sec at f/11, ISO 100

I tried a handful of other compositions, locations and rocks until about 10 minutes before sunrise but by then it was getting far to light to do this anymore so I headed towards the edge of the reef to catch sunrise and the moving water over the rocks to see if any compositions might work – there were none…

Headed back into the centre of the reef and this area of very shallow still water, the reflections and the barely exposed rock caught my eye. I tried about half a dozen different angles on this from both sides but in post processing I came back to this which was my first shot :). It looked pretty rubbish in colour but in monochrome you can see just the shapes and tones which originally caught my eye.

NIKON D7000 + 12.0-24.0 mm f/4.0 @ 12 mm, 1/2 sec at f/13, ISO 100