Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Day 175

Iain brought home some gerberas today, and even though it was after dark, I had to have a go at shooting them. So I got the tripod out and tried backlighting the flowers with a desk lamp.

I got one shot I like, but I can't decide which of these versions to go for. Could you help me out by letting me know which one you prefer? Thanks!

Version 1 ('Vanilla' processing)

Version 2 (bleach bypass)

Version 3 (black and white)

Version 4 (selenium tone)

Monday, 30 May 2011

Day 174

I'm still flooded with work, but the floodwaters should have dried up by the weekend, because my deadline's on Friday!

We've almost been literally flooded today, as it's been raining for most of the day. When photo break time came around, it was lashing it down, so I had to set up something indoors. I tried to do some more frozen motion shots, this time with a bowl of sugar, but I came up against the problem I've had before: lack of light and a slow lens/camera. I think I'm going to treat myself to a diffuser next time I go shopping, so I can make the most of the natural light. I'm also saving up for an f/2.8 lens (my current lens is f/5.6).

This is the best shot I got today, but I'm not happy with it, so I turned it on its side. I reckon it's more interesting this way round. It looks like there's a wind blowing the sugar off the spoon!

Well, I'd better get back to work. :-)

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Day 173

I've spent a long, hard day at the computer today, so this post is going to be very short.

Here's today's shot:

Right, I'm off to put my feet up then do a nice long yoga session! :-D

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Day 172

Our neighbours put some more cattle on our land today. Here's one of them saying hello to the welcoming committee from the next paddock.

Dead thistle heads

And here are a couple more shots from my photo walk the other day.

I snapped this leaf just as the wind got underneath it and lifted it up.

Another gull. It's a bit static as the gull's not doing anything, but I like the compositional lines of the post and the boardwalk.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Day 171

About half an hour before the sun went down I realised I hadn't taken any photos yet today, so I went to check the mailbox and took the camera with me.

These are wire tensioners on the fence in the bottom paddock.

Pookie only escorted me halfway today. Here she is, waiting for me on my way back up the hill.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Day 170

I thought it was about time to dust off Scully (or more accurately, scrape the mud off her). Scully is such a drama queen, and she always inspires me to take silly shots.

Here she is playing a 50s starlet, lounging on the veranda of her seaside villa.

And here she is again, playing that cinematic icon, the impaled skeletal warning to criminals. Criminal sheep, presumably. ;-)

And finally, here's another shot from my photo walk yesterday.

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Day 169

I had to go into town today, so I took the opportunity to go for a short photo walk along the riverside.

New Zealand's only remaining paddle steamer, and a sculpture by David McKracken called 'Bearing'. I think the fissure in the ball might be a map of the local river.

How to saw a woman in half:

 Gull about to take flight:

This one makes me laugh!

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Day 168

If you point a camera at a cat for long enough, they're bound to yawn. :-D

Before, during and after:

Monday, 23 May 2011

Day 167

We've not had any cattle on our land for a couple of weeks now, and I've missed them and their antics. So I was delighted today when I discovered that a couple of our neighbour's sheep had found their way through the fence and into our paddock. One of them stood and eyed me squarely, while the other peeked at me from below the brow of the hill.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Day 166

This huge insect (a mosquito?) was having a rest on our window.

Here's the original colour:

and here's a version I've played around with a bit more.

Which version do you prefer?

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Day 165

I'm working seven days a week at the moment to meet a work deadline, so I've not got as much time for photography as I'd like. Definitely no time to take any photo walks, or to spend ages playing around with processing. For the next couple of weeks all my shots are going to be quick snaps taken at home. Isn't it irritating when real life gets in the way of your hobbies?!

Pookie gets in some serious shut-eye.

Friday, 20 May 2011

Day 164

A flock of these birds came very close to the house today. I think they're some sort of finch. I'm sure you can imagine the two of us sitting by the ranch sliders, watching the birds through the glass: me snapping away with the camera and Pookie scrabbling to get out! Needless to say, I didn't let her out until the birds had flown away.

The light wasn't ideal -- far too bright, with the sun almost behind the birds, but you can't always wait for the light to be right when you're shooting animals. You have to take whatever you can get, whenever you can get it. I used a bleach bypass preset to tone down the over-saturated colours and over-dark shadows.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Day 163

I had great fun doing today's photo shoot at my neighbour Wendy's house. I spent two hours there, and took around 400 photos. I got 16 shots that are good enough to put up on Wendy's website, which isn't too bad.

Here's my favourite poodle photo, with Wendy and all her show dogs (from left to right: Dylan, Kyzyl, Sechura, Danyon and Star). It took a while to get the shot, as the dogs wouldn't sit still! I was disappointed to find out that Wendy hasn't got any puppies at the moment. Maybe I can go round another time for a puppy shoot!

Here's my official 365 shot for today, an abandoned dog toy.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Day 162

Today was one of the those days when my inspiration ran out completely. I couldn't find anything worth taking a photo of, so I ended up scraping the barrel!

One of our fridge magnets. The square shape of the magnet combined with the stripy light coming through the Venetian blinds looks a bit like a wonky version of the stars and stripes.

I took a Hipstamatic shot of the Venetian blinds in our kitchen a couple of months ago, so I thought I'd try a shot with the 'real' camera today.

Today I received my first advance copies of two series of children's library books which I spent a big chunk of last year writing. Published by Macmillan Australia, they're Toys and Forces, a series for infants on how pushes and pulls make toys work, and Living Green, a series for upper primary and lower secondary on sustainable living.

Tomorrow I'm doing a photo shoot for a friend whose website my husband is designing. She's a breeder of poodles, so there will be lots puppy wrangling. It's going to be fun!

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Day 161

What a foul day! I wanted to try to capture the mood of the weather, so I took some shots of the rain on the window.

This one is cross-processed with a vignette.

I applied a vintage preset to this one, but then cranked the contrast up. I think this one's a better shot than the first.

Monday, 16 May 2011

Day 160

We've had gales and torrential rain all day today, so I had a go at taking some more shots of the flowers I bought on Saturday. This time I tried spraying them with water, for the 'just after the rain' look. What I had in my mind were macro shots, but not having a macro lens, I had to make do with simple close-ups.

More bad weather is forecast for the rest of the week, so the next few days are going to feature a lot of still life, indoor shots. These are not the sort of shots I normally like taking, so I'm going to have to push myself outside my comfort zone.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Day 159

We're having a really long run of wet weather, so I'm glad I bought some flowers yesterday, as it's given me something interesting to shoot indoors.

I experimented with all sorts of different treatments for this image, but the one that worked best was black and white with a green filter. Because the flowers are white, I wanted to shoot them against a black background, but I don't have anything black that I could use, so instead of trying to get the effect during shooting, I increased the shadows in post to remove the detail in the background. It's worked okay, but using a black cloth would have been easier.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Days 156, 157 and 158

Blogger was down for the second half of the day yesterday, so I wasn't able to post yesterday's photo (Day 157). One result of the outage was that the day before yesterday's post disappeared (Day 156) so I'm reposting that photo. Today is day 158, I've been out all day, and I'm off out again this evening, so today's offering is just a hastily snapped Hipstamatic shot of some flowers I bought myself today. Guess what tomorrow's shot is going to be of?! :-)

Day 156

Day 157

Day 158

Thursday, 12 May 2011

Day 156

It's been tipping it down with rain all day today, so I've had to find something indoors to shoot. I decided to have a go at photographing some text and playing around with depth of focus. You really need a macro lens to do this sort of thing properly, but my 18-55 kit lens didn't do too bad a job.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Day 155

This morning I had another go at taking a panorama from out front. The light is better than in the first panorama I took of this view, but the lens flare is distracting and there are large sections of the sky that are blown out. Maybe it's time to start learning HDR.

I've had an idea in my mind for a while to take a photo of the cabbage tree out the back, with me doing tree pose in front of it. I'll come back to this idea at a later date, as the idea still appeals, but I'm not satisfied with today's results.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Day 154

More dew for today's official 365 shot. I did all the usual processing, then converted the image to black and white with a blue filter, and finally applied Aperture's 'toy camera' preset.

I've been playing around with the Tiny Planets app again, and I've found another photo that looks interesting when it's warped. This one's of St Mark's Basilica in Venice.

Monday, 9 May 2011

Day 153

Thanks to everyone who voted in the poll to choose April's Top Pic(k). The winner was the photo of the shoes. Which just goes to show that you don't have to find an interesting subject and you don't need a swanky camera! I took that shot on Iain's iPhone.

I've recently started uploading my photos to Flickr, and I'm reserving my best shots for my Flickr photostream. This is partly because our bandwidth is so restricted, and partly because I believe quality control is a good idea.

Which of these two photos do you reckon I should upload?

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Day 152

This is going to be a very quick post because we're off out to the cinema. We're going to see 'Source Code'.

Today's official 365:

Some more shots from yesterday's photo walk: