TGA Photography

Image Magic

White Light


Sometimes you need a nudge, or a kick maybe! Someone gave me a challenge on Facebook. That forced me to go through my archives for suitable images. The challenge was 1 nature image per day for 7 days, and you had to nominate someone each day to do the same.

So, searching my archives I realised I had a lot more images than I thought that were actually ‘post’ worthy. This was one of them. Never before viewed by anyone except myself.

This in turn reminded me that, horrors, my blog is sadly neglected. And I thought, well there is no reason why some of these images cannot be posted on my own blog page. I also will add some to the image galleries, but in the meantime, enjoy!

This image was taken in the Botanic Gardens last year. There was a carpet of these pretty little white flowers, so I got down to ground level and aimed through the flowers at one that appealed and I considered had nice light. I love backlit subjects! The sunlight dappled through trees and bushes enhanced the lighting, and using a telephoto lens and large aperture I was able to isolate just this flower.

Forgotten Melody


The photo galleries are functioning again. I still have to tweak them, but everything is basically up and running again, and at least my images can be viewed.

There is a new gallery. Fine Art Images. These images are artistically created. Some only slightly, maybe a split tone colour scheme added, or a bird inserted in the scene. At various times I create an image using textures.

This is something different to what I do generally and certainly is a work in progress. I have ideas that I will be developing on, so watch this space!

The image above was taken in an abandoned house. The organ is literally falling to pieces. There is dust everywhere and ivy vines are finding their way in from the walls outside. There isn’t a lot that I’ve done to the original image, just enhanced the feel of the light by accentuating the colour tones a little. The sunlight was shining through a curtain of leaves giving the highlighted areas a warm to green colour, while the areas in the shade retain the colour usually found in the shadier spots – blue. The effect in the dust laden air is quite dramatic.

The Local Creek


The local creek is just an ordinary drainage ditch type creek. Emptying into the Waimakariri river in Kairaki near the mouth means it is tidal with brackish water. Walking along the stop bank however, is a pleasure. Sometimes a white heron can be seen standing motionless at the edge of the water. Sometimes the kingfishers perch on the remains of small boat jetties. In whitebait season there are fisherman not far from the floodgate.

My favourite time to walk here is when it’s foggy, usually early in the morning but sometimes late in the evening. I’m slowly building a bit of a portfolio of foggy creek scenes. This one shows a ‘Waimak Flattie’ chained to its mooring. These old-fashioned flat bottomed river fishing boats are beginning to disappear. I never see this one go out now. And it’s beginning to show signs of dis-repair. I hope the owner will preserve it.

Red on White


It’s the time of year when flowers bloom, veges are growing, the weeds are rampant, the lawn needs mowing twice a day, and the aphids are overwhelming the roses!

Well, I do try to keep on top of it all, but I don’t spray my garden with insect killer. The aphids are mostly washed off with a strong jet of water, which also takes care of the spent blooms. Of course, I never get them all, but then I don’t want to. They attract the predators such as the ladybug. Also, the mantis are out there and growing. These insects are far more interesting and great to photograph. Of course that’s not the only reason I don’t use the killer spray. I just don’t like the stuff and much prefer a more balanced ecosystem in the garden.

This season, I’ve managed to photograph a number of insects. Not always easy as they prefer not to pose for me, but I try my best. I do not subscribe to killing my subjects in order to photograph them, and so I was horrified recently to read in a book about how to make a ‘killing jar’ to quickly and efficiently kill any insect for the purpose of setting them up as photographic subjects. I don’t even like to kill spiders for this purpose although I am arachnophobic.

I will be updating the gallery in due course. 🙂

Wreck of the MV Tuhoe at dawn.


Sadly the MV Tuhoe went aground on the 27th September 2015, at the Waimakariri river mouth while she was on her way home to her berth in Kaiapoi. A rescue attempt was made to get her off the sand bar, but to no avail. Her age and the conditions were against her and the decision was made to demolish her. It took two days to take her apart, and this photo was taken between those two days. The stern half of her is shown here in the hour before sunrise.

The waves were pounding her rather fiercely here at high tide, although the long camera exposure has smoothed the waters to create this calm and colourful image.

Leaving Home


I’ve been experimenting with macro and close up work quite a bit this year, and this seed pod was interesting enough to try with some reflections. The pod was tending to ‘explode’ and as the seeds dried the fluffy bits expanded, and seemed to tumble out.

I seem to have been a bit remiss lately in updating my blog. Life is a bit hectic, but it’s no excuse really. Time to set myself a new schedule I think. 🙂

The Green Pond


The latest photography expedition saw me in awe of some unspoiled forest in the Able Tasman National Park. A drive along hilltops on a windy road, then a slow drive on a muddy, slippery and narrow track for quite a few kilometres before finally heaving heavy backpacks on and making our way along a rocky track into the forest.
The lush rich greens of the mosses and lichens was incredible and I suspect that Winter is the best time for them. This pond was a bonus and I fell in love with this site the moment I got there. The rain didn’t bother me, but my feet sure did at the end of the day! But, oh, so well worth the effort.

Green Siblings


Fungi come in a huge range of colours. These tiny green ones are difficult to spot amongst the mosses and debris of the rainforest floor because they blend in so well. The caps are aroun 10-15mm in diameter.

Other fungi are brightly coloured and I’ve recently photographed some which are so incredibly white (much whiter than our common culinary mushroom) they seem to glow against the leaf litter and can be seen from a great distance away.

One gets a little damp lying on the wet ground to view and photograph some fungi. But worth it…

Twilight Magic


Long exposures when it gets dark can pick up amazing colours. We see a bit with the naked eye but as it gets darker our vision fails us. The camera however, will pick up much more using a slow shutter speed to harvest as much light as possible.

My photographer niece Bex, and I spent last weekend at Lake Mahinapua. We managed to beat the snowstorm by leaving Thursday evening instead of Friday morning, but nevertheless we had a deluge and the lake rose dramatically. The jetty completely disappeared and the shrubs along the shore on the bank became islands.

Still, we found plenty to photograph, and I came home with a few treasurers such as this image. Magic!

Blue day


Our swan plants have been host to many Monarch caterpillars, and I’ve been keeping an eye on emerging butterflies. This one was was almost ready to fly away and proved a very willing model. I love the colour contrast in this image.

Every now and then I get the macro ‘bug’. Making images of things small is fascinating. It’s not particularly easy though, and the concentration is very tiring. If the subjects are small critters, it is especially difficult as they rarely sit still. Once they do sit still, you find the light is bad, they have their back to you and as soon as you move to their front they decide to turn around again, or you can’t frame the shot nicely because you can’t move your tripod closer. And then there’s the background… That’s a whole other issue! But, when everything comes together, macro can be very satisfying.