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Posts tagged ‘Nikon D800’

Weekend Wanderings: Early Morning in the City

A couple of weeks ago I joined some other lovely ladies and we spent the morning taking photos along the Yarra River in Melbourne. The river was calm and clear.  It wasn’t mirror like, but still very nice and we managed to get some lovely reflections in the water along with some great colours.  It was a very peaceful morning.

It was meant to be a Social Snappers Event, but many didn’t show up, so here is what they missed.

It is a busy weekend for me, so I am just going to leave you with the photos today.  My weekend includes lots of photography, and I hope you are going to have a similar weekend.

UfD: 10 Things I Can’t Live Without in My Kit

If your photography kit is anything like mine, you have a bit, but there will be pieces that you can’t live without.  So today I thought I would share with you my top 10 things that I couldn’t live without.

1/ My Camera

What would a photographer be without their camera.  I don’t think I am alone in my feelings towards it.  I have a Nikon D800 and it has been the most spectacular camera I’ve ever had. I couldn’t be happier with it.  It is something we all have to do is to get a camera that we love using and one that will do what you want it to do.

2/ My 24-70mm LensLeanneCole-banyuleflats-20140525-9353

I first got the Nikon 24-70mm lens because I thought it would be a good portrait lens and that sort of thing for doing cycling.  I did have plans for doing some portrait work, but didn’t do much. When I got it I was using my Nikon D300s and I was a bit disappointed with it.  I found it wasn’t as wide as I had hoped, so I thought I had made a massive mistake.

Then I got the D800 and it was perfect for that camera.  Now I use it all the time and I am so glad that I got it. It is my go to lens.

3/ My Macro Lens

This is a new lens foflower-garden-show-macro-edit-1042r me.  I got the Nikon 105mm Micro lens at the end of last year.  I was lucky with having an opportunity to try out some other macro lenses during the year, most notably the Tamron 90mm macro.  So when it came time for me to get my own macro I had a very good idea about what I wanted.  I did get the grant for the book, so I was able to get the Nikon macro. I have used it a lot and I am enjoying where my macro images are going.

4/ My Tripod

I got my first tripod over 20 years ago and it served me well.  It was a Manfrotto and while it wasn’t fancy, it did well. The aireysinlet-milkyway-lighthouse-stars-astrophotographyonly reason I decided to replace it was because the screws that I had to use to tighten the legs weren’t working too well and the legs would sink.  So it became time to get a new one.  Who doesn’t want a Gitzo tripod, but it was too expensive for me, so I decided I would stick with Manfrotto. I got a carbon fibre one with a ball head.  I have used it so much and it has fabulous. I couldn’t live without it.

5/ My Remote Shutter Release

It is an underrated item, but I am glad I got it.  It has been so useful in so many situations.  I was also delighted to find out last year that it was also an intervalometer.  That has been fantastic for doing long exposures and astrophotography.

6/ My Computer

emu-flat-church-colourA couple of months ago I upgraded my PC and have been so happy with it.  I think any photographer these days understands how important having a computer that can keep up with you and what you are doing is an absolute must.

7/ Adobe Photoshop

There are so many different types of software for working on photos out there.  I don’t know them all and some I will never use, but I do love Photoshop.  I love what I can do with it and what it can do to my images.  There isn’t anything I don’t like.  It is great to experiment and find out new tools and see what else I can do.  The learning never stops.

8/ The Lee Big Stopper Filterpinnacles-phillip-island-victoria-578

I have a few filters, and a few more on order, so I don’t know if this will remain my favourite filter, but right now it is.  I enjoy doing long exposures and I know I haven’t experimented enough with them, so will be working on that in the next few months.  If the weather of late is anything to go by there will be lots of opportunities to practice.

9/ The Lowepro Flipside 15L Bag

I have three bags, but the Lowepro is by far my favourite and the one I use the most.  It doesn’t stop me from changing lenses and it isn’t too big to carry around.  My tripod fits on it nicely and well, I think it is so comfortable, so I am never tJonesy-camp-night-sky-milkyway-105ired of wearing it, well almost.

10/ My 80-200mm Lens

I have lots of stuff, and this last one was hard to work out.  It was a toss up between this lens and my really wide, the 14-28mm, but in the end I thought, what would I want if I could only have one of them, and in the end I decided I wanted the 80-200mm.  It is a good option and I can also use it for long exposures as my adaptor ring for the Lee Filter holder will also fit it.

So there are my Top 10 pieces of photography kit that I really couldn’t live without.  So what are you favourite items and what couldn’t you live without?

The photos today reflect the images that I was able to get because of my top 10 favourite pieces of kit.

Quiet Thursdays: Grey Outside and Not Much Else

The weather here is very unpredictable at the moment and the forecast for the next week is shower or two every day.  So we are going to be getting wet a lot. It is frustrating, but it has also been windy, so I should get some great opportunities to get out with my ND filters to do some long exposures.  I don’t have the Formatt Hitech ones yet, but I can still take my Lee Big Stopper out and see what I can do with it.  I have some plans.

I’ve been out a few times to take photos, which is always good and I’ve been putting some photos up on Social Media sites like my Facebook Page and Google+.  Some are from Instragram and others I took with my Nikon D800.  I have one of the full moon that I took the other night with the Tamron SP 150-600mm lens, I think I am getting better at doing them.


There are three images of the same bridge, the Seafarers Bridge in the city. One taken with my phone and the other two with my Nikon D800.  Two taken at sunset, and one taken very early in the morning.

There is a photo of a cattle egret that I got at Banyule Flats. It was just sitting on top of one of the dead trees just looking around. I did have to crop it quite a bit. Again taken with the Tamron SP 150-600mm lens that I have on loan from Maxwell International Australia.


There are a couple of other sunrise shots, taken with my phone, one morning earlier this week.  I knew there was a very good chance for a sunrise, but well, I slept in and these photos I got around my house.

I spent the whole day regretting I didn’t make more of an effort to get to Banyule Flats. It would have been amazing.  We haven’t had another beautiful sunrise since.  The skies have been too overcast or not the right conditions.

I’m off on another trip today, I think.  It is going to rain, so I don’t know how we will go, but hopefully it will be good enough for it.  Going to a park or sanctuary up in the Dandenongs, but you will have to wait and see.  I am going with my friend, so it should be lots of fun.  I will put all the above photos into a big gallery for you now.  I hope you have a good relaxing day.

Looking at the ANZ Building on a Quiet Thursday

Today I thought looking at the ANZ Building on a Quiet Thursday seemed like a good idea.  This building is one that anyone who loves Melbourne will know and love.  For a relatively modern building the architecture is really outstanding and I wish more buildings could be built here that considered where they are and how they influence their environment.



This is an image I took from the top of the Myer building through a glass window.  It is a fairly typical view of the Melbourne skyline, well one from here.  The ANZ building is the second tallest in this image.  The gothic looking one and it is brown.  I love the shapes and lines in it.  It is a very distinctive building and one I’ve been chasing and trying to get an image of for a while now.

Recently when I was in the city for a Social Snappers Photography Excursion we were near this building, so I took a little detour.  It wasn’t where I thought it would be, and I can’t believe I have walked past it a couple of times and not realised. I didn’t miss it this time, and I took some photos of it and the other day decided to play with it. I was really glad that I had taken my 14-24mm lens with me, it was perfect for this shot with the Nikon D800.  I was going to do it for the post on the city in Weekend Wanderings, but I knew I wanted to do more with this one.


So the other day I started playing.  I haven’t down a brilliant job with it, but I am happy with how it is has come out.  Of course I replaced the sky and played with the lighting in the image.  I did have the whole building, from the road all the way up to the top, but in the end cropped it a bit, got rid of the road at the bottom with the parked cars, and other buildings at the side and behind.  I think it seems to be standing tall now and is quite dominant.  I am quite happy with it.

I hope you having an easy day.  The weather here has been more rain, but the sun is starting to peek out, so hopefully off to the coast to try out the filters more this afternoon.  Have a peaceful day.


Quiet Thursday’s – Laurent Building

Every time I walk past this building I think of Harry Potter.  I can’t explain it, whether it is the curve on the corner, or the fact that it is at the entrance of a lane. I took this photo during a Social Snappers excursion, and we stayed here for a while as we took lots of photos from different places.


I know a lot of you have already seen this image.  I’ve had it on Facebook, Google+ and Flickr, so I thought it might be time to show it here.

I like how the image has come out, and it was one of the first that I did in this sort of style.  I quite like it, but wished I’d used a tripod, which I didn’t have with me.  I feel like I’m always saying I will have to go back and do it again, and I am sure that for many of them I will, at some point.  I don’t know about this one, if it would be worth it or not. Listen to me, I’m rambling, sorry.

I will just leave it there today, take care and I hope you have a quiet day too.

Quiet Thursdays – Moon Gazing

There was another full moon last weekend, and I kept seeing everywhere that it was a super moon.  I have no idea, I’m afraid, I know when the full moons are, but not when they are super or not.  I have heard when the next Blood Moon is, but that is about it.  I need to find out how others find out this information.

August Full Moon

I took this photo of the moon out my front door.  It isn’t anything special, just a photo of the moon. I really want to be able to get good photos of the moon before the blood moon so when it happens, I will know what I am doing.  That is important.  I know the moon is the moon, and nearly all the images look the same, but still.

I did this, as I said, out my front door.  I used the D800 with a Sigma 150-500mm lens, though I also had the camera set on DX mode, or crop mode.  I did still have to crop the image more in post production, but not a lot.   I used ISO 320, f/10 with a shutter speed of 1/200, though I was using AP and the camera set the shutter speed.

I am using the new editor that WordPress have and I have to say I don’t really like it.  It is so tiny, I can’t read what I am writing.  It is one thing I really dislike about WordPress, and that is the changes they make with no consultation.  Apparently you can still use the old editor, but it is a round about way to get to it, but guess that is what we will all have to do.  I miss the word count, so I hope I haven’t talked too much.

I hope you have a peaceful day today.

Murders with Some Drama

Well, not real murders of course.  I have been back to Heidelberg Theatre Company to photograph rehearsals for a new play they are doing.  The director is Paul King, and for those that have been following me for a long time will remember that I have worked with Paul before and I photographed his play Summer of the Seventeenth Dolls around 2 years ago.  He has asked me to come back and do the same thing for his latest production, Little Murders.

I stole this from the website, I’m sure Paul won’t mind.  This is what the play is about.  Little Murders is a pitch-black comedy about an everyday dysfunctional American family trying to survive in the urban jungle of late 1960s New York. This is a city where random shootings, garbage strikes, air pollution, power failures and obscene phone calls are the norm. When daughter Patsy brings her new boyfriend home to this embattled atmosphere to introduce him to the family, his passivity in the face of danger leads to more conflict – and comedy. The play was written by Jules Feiffer.

LeanneCole-htclittlemurders-20140526-9569It was nice being back and seeing a cast make it’s way through the dialogue and trying to work out where they were going to go or move.  The director trying to keep his head as a million ideas are thrown at him.  This was taken at the beginning, I think it was the first time they were doing this scene, so Paul was talking to them about what he wanted.

LeanneCole-htclittlemurders-20140526-9612Sometimes the director just has to get up there and talk to them as well.  Help explain what he wants them to do.  You will notice with most of these images the actors have their noses in their scripts for most of it.

LeanneCole-htclittlemurders-20140526-9563One of the things that I also enjoy is watching the set come together.  Slowly over the next few weeks this will evolve into a lounge room with a dining room up the back.  Walls will appear, some will have windows in them.  The furniture will change. By the time the play starts it will look like a real room,

LeanneCole-htclittlemurders-20140526-9614One of the things I was really excited about when it came to taking photos was getting to see how the Nikon D800 would handle the crap lighting in a theatre.  When I’ve photographed plays before I had my D300s, and while it was a good camera, it was terrible at low light and the noise in the images was shocking.  I have to say the D800 handled it like a trouper.  It was so good.  I hardly had to do anything to them to get rid of any noise.  I started at ISO4000, but ended up at ISO2000.  Now that I have seen the images, I will probably do things a little different next time.  The above image stood out so much when I started going through.  It was so crisp and sharp, I had a look and saw that I had taken it with the 50mm.  I think I love how that lens takes photos.  It is fast becoming my new favourite lens, well for some things.  Maybe I need to consider getting the 35mm.

LeanneCole-htclittlemurders-20140526-9656I forgot how much fun rehearsals can be.  There is a lot to laugh about, especially as some things are done over and over.  You do sit there and just laugh.  Sometimes I get so caught up in what is happening on the set that I forget to take photos.

Paul wants me to continue going back to get photos of the play.  At this stage I’m not sure whether I will do posts on it every week or every second.  I will try and include information about photographing the play and how I do it, where I can.  Here is a gallery with some of the images I got.


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