Rodney Campbell's Blog

Archive for June, 2014

Magic Island Sunrise…

by on Jun.20, 2014, under Life, Photography

Before arriving in Hawaii I’d reached out on Google Plus both to get some location suggestions in Oahu to shoot and also to see if there were any locals who would like to join me

I got some fabulous responses from some very helpful locals including Beach Bum Brian and Janet Clark

An so it was I found myself being invited to an early morning session at nearby Magic Island with “dA Crazies” (a collective of sunrise chasing photographers in Oahu – perfect :)) – a huge Thankyou to those extremely friendly and helpful islanders who looked after me this morning and on a later morning to come

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.

Looking back from Magic Island over Waikiki Bay with Diamond Head in the distance on the right. 5:40AM and still 25 minutes till sunrise

This was my first quick shot of the morning and I hadn’t fully setup yet – but I wanted to catch that light :). So I’m shooting at a depth of field sapping f/5 for the 30 seconds before adding my remote trigger and switching to bulb mode. Turns out I prefer this shot to the 103 seconds @ f/11 version I shot next – go figure…

Magic Dawn

Magic Dawn

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 19 mm, 30 sec at f/5, ISO 100

I was really liking that driftwood log standing out brightly in the foreground – lit by the strong street lighting behind me

Less than five (5) minutes to sunrise and the sky was lighting up nicely with some fabulous colour. I was still pushing for long exposures for a nice steely look to the water so I had the ISO dropped down to 50 to gain me some extra time. My foreground driftwood log was still a standout against the deep black volcanic rocks

Magic Island

Magic Island

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 20 mm, 41.00 sec at f/11, ISO 50

This fellow was camped out nicely with a long lens shooting the surfers heading out to sea on our right

Shooting for Dawn

Shooting for Dawn

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 19 mm, 41.00 sec at f/11, ISO 50

and here is a shot from the balcony of our hotel looking across to Magic Island where I’d spent the morning – that further ring of sea-wall rock in the middle of the frame surrounding the Magic Island Lagoon is where I’d shot from

Magic View

Magic View

NIKON D600 + 70.0-300.0 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 95 mm, 1/80 sec at f/8, ISO 100

Comments Off on Magic Island Sunrise… more...

Trump Sunset…

by on Jun.18, 2014, under Life, Photography

I wanted to go take some shots around sunset from the nearby beach looking back along the beach towards Diamond Head in the far distance with our hotel (the Trump International Hotel – Waikiki) in the midground

I’d spied this location at the Hilton dock earlier in the day with some nice foreground rocks on the edge of the sand right below the dock itself

The tide was a little higher than I’d hoped but as I was here…

It was still ten minutes till sunset so it was out with the Lee BigStopper for a pre twilight long exposure with the trademark BigStopper blue

Trump in Blue

Trump in Blue

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 20 mm, 432 sec at f/8, ISO 400

The sunset happening right behind me was fairly spectacular with some fantastic colour in the sky. Unfortunately the longest lens I had with me at the time was the 24-70 (in hindsight the 70-300 would have been fantastic) so this was the closest I could get (what I really wanted was a tight crop on the setting sun with just the palm trees here in the distance)

Palm Skies

Palm Skies

NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 70 mm, 1/2 sec at f/9, ISO 100

Then it was back to my composition down the coast – first with some anti crespucular action and then twilight about twenty minutes after sunset

Trump Rays

Trump Rays

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 22 mm, 30 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Night at the Trump

Night at the Trump

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 22 mm, 108 sec at f/11, ISO 100

once the light had fallen the small ocean sunset cruises were coming back in and they opened the gates to the Hilton dock just a metre or so behind me. The view was great and we still had some great twilight colour in the sky so I asked nicely if they’d leave the gate open for me for a few minutes after all the people disembarked and left so I could take this long exposure looking straight down the dock

Hilton Dock

Hilton Dock

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 20 mm, 62.00 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Comments Off on Trump Sunset… more...

(Not) Turimetta Beach…

by on Jun.16, 2014, under Life, Photography

Turimetta Beach at Warriewood on the Sydney Northern Beaches is one of Sydney’s most favourite seascape photographic locations – every weekend sunrise will see it’s rocky shores crowded with photographers looking for something, anything, different. Don’t get me wrong – it’s a fabulous location – it’s just been shot to death and with so many people there every day it’s much trickier to setup shots without other people in them

Alas our friend Suren had never shot Turimetta before so Gerry, Suren and I found ourselves here one Sunday morning

It was a lovely morning to be out – not too early at this time of the year – we parked above the beach around 5:45AM; and the weather was kind – not raining although a little cool. What was however disappointing was the clear sky above and a very heavy band of cloud right on the horizon which would effectively kill off any chance of a good (photographically speaking) sunrise

Note: These photographs (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.

It was low tide so we headed around the southern end of the beach and actually walked past where everyone shoots at Turimetta and instead made our way all the way down to North Narrabeen Tidal Pool

I’d only shot at this location once before but this time I was keen to shoot from up on the cliffs overlooking the pool and the ocean, to do the only shot that’s really available up there – a wide stitched panorama. My good friend Gerry reckons this would be a better sunset pano location and he’s probably right – still I had to give it a try and was hoping for some nice pre dawn twilight action

Meanwhile Gerry had headed right out to the edge of the reef past the pool where the fishermen were to try his luck out there, and Suren worked his way back along the coast to the left to Turimetta to shoot there

First up a stitched panorama composed from nine (9) frames taken around 6:30AM (about 25 minutes before sunrise). This one covers a little over a 200º field of view. I had to adjust the exposure on the way around – the area towards where sunrise would be on the left was still a lot brighter than over to the right (looking away from the sun) so the exposure times varied from 10 seconds to over 30 seconds per frame

‘Been Dreaming of Sunrise

'Been Dreaming of Sunrise

NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm, 31.00 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Even now you could tell sunrise was going to be ordinary – we had moments of nice blushes of pastel colour in the sky like this, but that heavy cloud sitting right on the horizon and no cloud in the upper sky above was going to mean no actual colourful sunrise was going to happen – it would just get progressively lighter

I then moved down to the corner of the cliff right above the pool – this allowed me to shot almost 240º looking north along the cliff on the left right around to the west looking inland on the right

It was getting very light with less than ten minutes to sunrise, nice pastel skies were all we’d get with this ten (10) frame stitched panorama

Narrabeen Views

Narrabeen Views

NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm, 4 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Sunrise was gonna be a bust so I headed back down off the cliff and around down to the rock shelf below to head back along the coast towards Turimetta. I found Gerry doing the same thing and I met him just as we got back to where Suren was, pretty much around the time sunrise was supposed to be happening… and… well.. nothing…

The other early morning photographers were already packing up and leaving, but as we’d technically just arrived (at this spot) we figured we see if we could extract something from nothing… I was hoping for a second chance sunrise when the sun breached the heavy clouds on the horizon



NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm, 1 sec at f/11, ISO 100

About 15 minutes after sunrise we started to get a little colour in the tops of the distant cloud cover along with some reverse god rays as the sun was trying to break through. I’d setup this composition looking down this rock shelf with the cracks and the channels of water sort of leading to the rising sun. Then it was just down to timing of the waves and the swirling water flows below and a nice shutter speed to show the motion without blurring it too much. Shot with the Heliopan CPL and a 3 stop Hitech Reverse Grad

Something from Nothing

Something from Nothing

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 18 mm, 1 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Once the sun started breaching the top of the cloud it was getting very bright so I stacked an addition 2 stop Grad ND with the 3 stop reverse and CPL to finish off the morning session before heading back to the cars and off to a local eatery for a well earned breakfast

Turimetta Rays

Turimetta Rays

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 19 mm, 1/1 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Comments Off on (Not) Turimetta Beach… more...

Waikiki Sunrise…

by on Jun.14, 2014, under Life, Photography

Day 3 in Waikiki and it was time for a very handy sunrise session on our balcony. It’s often tough getting up very early in the cold and dark for a sunrise shoot but having to walk twenty feet sure does tend to dull the pain a bit…

Note: These photographs (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 view from our balcony over Waikiki about ten minutes after sunrise for what looks to be another beautiful day in paradise. A stitched panorama taking in about a 250º composed of nine (9) frames at 24mm on the trusty Nikon 24-70

Oahu by Dawn

Oahu/Waikiki by Dawn

NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm, 1/10 sec at f/11, ISO 100

After sunrise it was time for a little BigStopper (10 stop ND) action before breakfast looking out to the west with the clouds streaming overhead from the east (as they always did during our stay – trade winds coming across the island)

Hilton Streaks

Hilton Streaks

NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 24 mm, 187.00 sec at f/11, ISO 100

Almost nine (9) minutes of exposure at ISO 50 with the telltale BigStopper blue and sunrise splashing onto the Hale Koa Hotel and the Hilton Hawaiian Village Resort

Blue Rising

Blue Rising

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 20 mm, 493 sec at f/11, ISO 50

Comments Off on Waikiki Sunrise… more...

MCA Live…

by on Jun.12, 2014, under Life, Photography

When we moved to the other side of Circular Quay to shoot across the water towards the lit up MCA I had this idea in my mind of long shutter speed shots with smoothed water and the reflections of the bright coloured lights on the water. Whilst it didn’t pan out exactly as I’d envisaged we got a few OK images. I think the main problems here were; the large ferry which moved in and stuck out on the left, the massively bright lobby on the right of the MCA, the shutter probably wasn’t anywhere near long enough to smooth the water and I probably should have used a light grad just to hold down the building lights a little more and let the darker reflections burn in a little more

This years MCA display at Vivid Sydney over the water from the other side of Circular Quay for your edification

MCA Live

NIKON D600 + 24.0-70.0 mm f/2.8 @ 70 mm, 20 sec at f/5.6, ISO 50

Comments Off on MCA Live… more...

Looking for something?

Use the form below to search the site:

Still not finding what you're looking for? Drop a comment on a post or contact us so we can take care of it!

Copyright © 2015 Rodney Campbell

Images contained on this web site may not be used or reproduced in any way without prior permission.