New Zealand - North Island scenery (7 images)

Discussion in 'Scenic, Architecture, and Travel' started by siftu, Aug 10, 2015.

  1. siftu

    siftu Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 26, 2015
    Bay Area, CA
    Real Name:
    I recently returned from a trip to New Zealand's north island among other places. I have posted some images in other threads but thought I would wrap it all up in a single post. I travel with a wife and kids and tend to be a take what I can get photographer, most of these shots are not planned.

    First up was short drive from Auckland to Rotorua and we decided to do some of the free activities. This was taken on a small hike at the end of a day out in Okere Falls.

    [​IMG]Okere Falls by Siftu, on Flickr

    Rotorua also has a Californian Redwood forest planted over 100 years ago. I really liked how the tree ferns grew beneath them. It was also a good time to try out my Rokinon 7.5mm fisheye I got a few days before the trip.

    [​IMG]Redwoods - NZ style by Siftu, on Flickr

    Next we were off to Taupo. The great Tongariro National Park lies at the south end of the lake.

    [​IMG]Tongariro National Park by Siftu, on Flickr

    The only shot I had a chance to actually plan was this landscape astrophotography shot. During the day I saw the view of the mountains I wanted to use so planned to return at night. I took the shot of the foregound with a 1/4 moon still up then waited a couple of hours and drove down the lake about 30 mins to get the shot of the Milky Way.

    [​IMG]New Zealand-Night by Siftu, on Flickr

    In the North East of the island lays Tauranga. We stayed at Mount Tutu Eco Reserve (highly recommended) and were able to witness glow worms on the walls of their very own stream. In the town of Tauranga is Maunganui Beach which allowed me to abuse the fisheye once again.

    [​IMG]Maunganui Beach - Bay of Plenty by Siftu, on Flickr

    On our way back to Auckland was lots of pastoral land. I had to pull over when I saw the following scene for obvious reasons. Ok maybe I didn't do the original justice but you have to try.

    [​IMG]Bliss - NZ by Siftu, on Flickr

    Just outside of Auckland is a Gannet colony. It was raining so I didn't get much of a chance to set up here but what a beautiful scene it was.

    [​IMG]Gannet Colony by Siftu, on Flickr

    Thanks for reading.
    Gear: E-M10 & EPL-6. O75mm F1.8, O12-40mm F2.8 PRO, Rokinon 7.5mm + O25mm F1.8

    Things I would change: I only used my 4 pound tripod twice, IBIS worked very well for me all the way down to 1/3rd of a second. Next time I'll just bring a gorilla pod.
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2015
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  2. siftu

    siftu Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 26, 2015
    Bay Area, CA
    Real Name:
    Thanks for the nomination barry13.

    I was thinking of doing a post on how I processed the astro shot while it's fresh in my mind. If anyone is interested in this let me know.
  3. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I'd definitely be interested.
  4. maritan

    maritan Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 30, 2014
    @siftu@siftu - I'm always interested in learning new techniques.
  5. OlyRobles

    OlyRobles Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 7, 2013
    Paso Robles
    Real Name:
    Beautiful shots! Thanks for the offer on the astro shot technique (live BULB on EM10?)--I too would be interested. BTW did you find yourself using one lens more than the others?
  6. siftu

    siftu Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 26, 2015
    Bay Area, CA
    Real Name:
    Ha, you are the person I got half the technique from.

    This was my first astro shot with m43. I was hesitant with astro because before I bought into the system I read too much about how m43 systems aren't the best for astro. I should have just gone out and tried for myself since every other misconception out there has been wrong for my uses. This shot is 100% cleaner than anything I had on my APS-C, sure it's due to technique/processing which can be applied to any camera. That stacking makes a HUGE difference. I'm half tempted to try iso 3200 and 6400 with stacking.
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  7. siftu

    siftu Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 26, 2015
    Bay Area, CA
    Real Name:
    Thanks OlyRobles. No live bulb, just used the intervalmeter and stacking. 30 shots with dark frames. But the other half is how to stack, then how to blend which took me a little time.

    My goto lens is usually the 12-40mm PRO when travelling, but I don't use it so much when at home. I was surprised on how much I ended up using the 75mm. This was only one leg of my trip. The 25mm pretty much stays glued to the second body and comes out for family type shots at dinners etc.
  8. m43happy

    m43happy Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 18, 2012
    All your shots are awesome, but this composite is amazing. Bravo.
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  9. ddekadt

    ddekadt Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 30, 2013
    Cambridge, MA
    Real Name:
    I really like 4, 5, and 6. Obviously number 4 is just breathtaking... Truly beautiful.
  10. Lcrunyon

    Lcrunyon Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 4, 2014
    Real Name:
    Those are incredible. That's one of the nicest astrophotography shots I've ever seen. I'm glad to see you used m4/3 to pull it off. I'd also be interested in how you did it.
  11. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    Lovely stuff! I only started doing some Astro on my trip down under earlier this year, but only single shot stuff without stacking which is easier (less hassle) but also noisier. We had great visibility when hiking the alpine crossing, but the nights were almost all cloud and rain - thankfully the Kimberley in Oz was more accommodating :)
  12. Dave Reynell

    Dave Reynell Guest

    Beautiful pics. Someone once mentioned that it was easy to be a great photographer in New Zealand .... not offence meant, your photographs are superb.

    I visited New Zealand back in November 1993 and could hardly believe the beauty of the landscapes. I took my Pentax SLR along with me and a 24mm w/a, also had a Minolta with two useful zooms. Bit of a mission to lug it about, but I still take a look at my NZ transparencies.

  13. siftu

    siftu Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 26, 2015
    Bay Area, CA
    Real Name:
    Thanks Dave. I found the north island quite challenging but again I wasn't there for photography and had my hands full with 2 young ones. The south island is the very scenic one.
  14. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 28, 2015
    Real Name:
    Great set - especially love the shot of the redwoods and ferns - great job capturing the "movement". It makes me come back again and again.
  15. bluzcity

    bluzcity Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 17, 2012
    Memphis, TN
    Real Name:
    Awesome attention to perspective, composition, and detail. 2 thumbs up!!
  16. Zee

    Zee Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Lovely work - love the astro shot in particular. I'm more and more drawn to trying something like this out..

  17. P Hopper

    P Hopper New to Mu-43

    May 26, 2015
    Please! Amazing photo.
  18. thisisanton

    thisisanton Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 24, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
    Can someone please explain "stacking" and how it works when it comes to astrophotography?
  19. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Real Name:
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  20. thisisanton

    thisisanton Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 24, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA