Preparation…. Preparation… Preparation – NOT!

15 05 2007

Well last weekend I reminded myself of an important lesson about preparing properly for a photo shoot.

Saturday – Went down to Long Reef to try grab a half-decent sunrise over the reef. Every time I have gone down to Long Reef to try to grab this picture I have been foiled by clear skies or totally overcast skies and I have not captured the image that I know is possible at this stunning location. This was my best effort so far.

Dawn over Long Reef

Now this isn’t a bad image, but the sky is barren and pretty bland…. I just KNOW that I can get a stunning image if the sunrise gods are with me.

Anyway, Saturday morning I turn up and I had two problems
1) The tides were just a wee bit too high and
2) A totally colourless sky.

So I thought I would try again on Sunday morning. However this is where I learned my lesson. I didn’t bother to check the tide tables for Sunday. I just assumed that the tide would be lower on the Sunday (not sure how I reached that conclusion). Anyway as I was hiking down to Long Reef in the pre-dawn darkness I was looking up at the sky and looked like it had great potential…. high whispy clouds and already an hint of colour on the horizon.

Then my heart sunk as I looked at the reef and discovered that it was high tide… That means:
No reef walking
No spectacular water pools or formations
No images!!!

So the lesson learned was – Do your homework… check sunrise times, tides, weather forecast, make sure your gear is all ready to (batteries charged, lenses cleaned etc.)

If I had have checked the tides, I would have changed my location to Narrabeen Lake and probably got some good images instead of returning empty handed.

Lesson Learned!

First trip away with my new camera – Blue Mtns

8 05 2007

Well I just got back from my first trip away with my new Nikon D200. What a lovely camera! I went up to the Blue Mountains for a trip with Ben & Tim’s school and ended up camping out each night and getting up early for some sunrise photography.

I went out on Saturday morning to Wentworth Falls lake for some sunrise shots. However conditions weren’t the best… there was a reasonable wind blowing which created a lot of wind on the lake, and the sunrise was a bit dissapointing.

That evening however I went to shoot a sunset shot of the Old Blast Furnace in Lithgow. Unfortunately I got there a bit late and just missed the golden sunlight (there was a big hill to my West which meant the sun disssapeared 15 min early!) However I scouted the location and decided to drive back in the morning. Boy am I ever glad that I did. I probably had the best morning’s photography I have ever had…. It started out with the pre-dawn shots… the sunrise was glorious. I shot the follwing two shots before the sun peeked over the horizon.

Old Blast Furnace 3

Old Blast Furnace 2

Then once the sun came up it cast a lovely difuse yellow light on the ruins and the sky was absolutely perfect (beautiful clouds that didn’t dominate the scene). I shot the following two shots just after sunrise.

Old Blast Furnace 1

Old Blast Furnace 4

I finished up my weekend going to Leura Cascades and enjoyed a lovely hike in the mountains. When I arrived at the lake the light wasn’t right, however with no kids tailing me, I sat down, had a picnic and waited for the sun to get higher in the sky. I recorded this image.

leura cascades

All in all, it was an absolutely beautiful weekend away with my new camera.