Sunrise in the Doubtful Sound

Sunrise in the Doubtful Sound

Doubtful Sound, South Island, New Zealand – bigger and much much more desolate than Milford Sound. Less dramatic though, but very very beautiful.

This is first edited in Lightroom, then exported to Photoshop, where I did a Topaz Filter and then some more adjustmens, a little noise reduction, and then back to Lightroom for the final adjustments.

EXIF: 28mm (28-300mm lens), ISO 400, f/3.5, 1/125 sec.
I used ISO 400 to keep the shutter speed fast, because is was on a moving boat and tripods was not possible. Therefore also f/3.5, which is to high normally for landscapes.

Sunrise in Trysil

Norway just is beautiful, both in the summer time and in the winter time. I caught this one last week next to the ski-resort in Trysil. It’s a 7 shot HDR and tone mapped in Photomatix and later post-processed in Photoshop.

I found this peaceful area just behind the Trysil Mountain Resort Park Inn hotel. I could walk on a path made by skis. If I went of the path, I sank to the knee.

About the composition

Finally after 4 days the clouds  cleared from the Sun and I got out take some photographs. In this one, I have got two major point of interest, one is the stone covered in snow and the other is the Sun. I have placed them approximately on one of the lines of the golden ration. Then I have used the shadows from the trees to create lead in lines. This is a neat trick that works well. And at last, I made sure that the left hand side of the snow takes up the same amount of space as the ski. That works well too.

Post-processing

The post processing is done as a tone mapped image in Photomatix, which I then took into Photoshop. I blended the layers, as I explain how to do in my HDR tutorial, and then I used a golden filter from Topaz Adjust. I had lost some of the golden light in the processing and reintroduced it. And the last things I did in Photoshop was to remove flares and a small rainbow looked too much like a flare. In Lightroom I increased the contrast a bit and the clarity to get more dynamic image.

Gold on the beach

South Island on New Zealand has got these wonderful golden beaches up north on Tasman Bay. We took a water taxi, but because of the tide, we were dumped in the water and had to walk the rest of the 500m to the beach. It was mid thigh deep. I was quite worried about my photo equipment.

About the photo. This is a hand held 5 shot HDR photo. It lacks a bit sharpness in the front. A disadvantage of taking the shots hand held is that, you can’t always get all of the details right. However I do like the photo, composition and the clouds. Processing wise, this is a combination of a single and double tonemapped image that I blended in Photoshop. See my HDR tutorial if you want to know how to do that.

Sunset over field

Sunset over field

A couple of weeks before the harvest, the fields looks lovely.

This is an HDR made of three shots (-2, 0 and +2). I took this handheld, because I didn’t have my tripod. To keep the shutter speed fast on all three shots, I raised the ISO to 1000, but kept the f-stop in the higher middle area, at f/13. I kept the f-stop this high to have everything sharp. The shutter speed for the 0 exposure was 1/250 sec. I had to try a couple of times to make sure I got a set, that didn’t have a shaken +2. Processingwise I used Photomatix to get my HDR. I got a nasty gray sky because I had no clouds in the sky, a bad side effect from making HDRs. In my HDR tutorial you can see how to handle a gray sky. When done in Photoshop I took the image back into Lightroom, where I raised the clarity and contrast a bit, did a little adjustments to the saturation of specific colors and finally added vignetting.

Pink Clouds over Lake Tekapo


Lake Tekapo in New Zealand can be very windy, which was the case this evening. The day after the surface of the lake was like glass. On the left lies Mount John covered in trees. On the the top there is an observatory and a cafe. The cafe makes really good coffee and the cakes are worth the strain to get to the top of the mountain, just as the view is very rewarding.

This is a 5 shot HDR. I tone mapped it in Photomatix and then I blended the five original shots into the tone mapped image, by using Photoshop. There is no part I have blended in 100%. The sky is blended in various degrees with the 0 and minus 1 exposure. The same goes with the rocks. The trees on the left is more or less the clean tone mapped version. In the end I used a Topaz adjust filter to add a little warmth and sharpness to the photo. This step I could have done by using adjustment layers, and Unsharp Mask in Photoshop as well.

Finally I took it into Light room and did a few adjustments. The right hand side of the trees was too dark. I added a little light by using the brush tool, and then I added little contrast global contrast.