Cee’s Compose Yourself Challenge – Week 15, Cropping

Cropping is this week’s focus from Cee for CCYC, I agree with Cee, that it is an essential part of editing for most (if not all photos) and can be a powerful tool all in itself.

I may play around with a lot of digital art, but my images pretty much always start out as digital photos, and the crop tool is a vital part of getting things just as you want them.

Sometimes it’s just a subtle crop, to improve the composition, rule of thirds etc. or to remove a shadow or distracting area from a shot.

Sometimes it’s to zoom in on something special

Or to give a different perspective

But more often than not it’s to get rid of something that ruins a perfectly great photo

Til next time, happy snapping………..


Camera Clubs (A Thank You)

Firstly I just wanted to say a big warm thank you to everyone who read my rant yesterday and either supported me, offered advice, or made me laugh………THANK YOU it did make me feel wonderful.

Secondly I just wanted to let you know what happened next.

I jumped back on the page for my TOG group last night, to see this guy still abusing anyone and everyone in my private session………..it was too much; time to go tell the Admins! Also everyone else in my group kept sending me thoughtful messages and telling me to stay and stand strong, and to tell this guys to chill out or piss off.

My Admins were so wonderful and quick and apologetic they didn’t see him sneak back in. His name was ****** Version2………that should have been the give away. Apparently this guy is a serial troll and has been booted off, blocked and banned from so many groups it’s not funny. Apparently he got so bad his original facebook account was removed, or something. Anyway he is now booted out again and all my group have been gathered back into the fold (so to speak) and we are all happy and friends again.

And as for the Dick from the workshop, well he is just a DICK…………….can’t win them all. Supposedly he is a great photographer he is just one of those glass half empty people and totally nervous with his workshop, maybe he has never taught before or something. Still be interesting to see what he gets up to in my workshop! Me? I’ll take the high road…………….unless he becomes a dick again and then I’ll stomp all over him!

Again a big thank you to everyone for your support


52 Week Challenge – Week 4

This week’s theme is Monochrome. Right up my alley, as I have really been concentrating on B&W images this month. So this is my entry. It is a high key version without any of the PS that I did on most of the pics from this shoot. I really like the light and dark and the simplicity of overall image. My first real go at trying to use a speedlite, well suited for high key but possibly not for a conventional portrait shoot.

Julie Powell_High Key-1

ISO200, F/5.0, 82mm, 0.3 seconds, (flash fired for speedlite trigger).

Til next time, happy snapping…….



This is our boy Buddy, cute isn’t he, he is also huge for a Cavvy and has a strange kind of whine/bark…………..but we love him



This is Obi, we met him recently on one of our adventures, same size, same shape, same whine/bark………..doppelgänger or relation? I had to make sure Buddy hadn’t escaped, it was really very strange.



Furbabies and their distant relations (or maybe not so distant?)

Til next time, happy snapping……..


Victorian Shipwrecks – Peterborough

So many ships have been lost along this coast, sometimes several in the same area, there are many that have never been found, and some can only be seen by diving. We visited these areas, well as many as we could find and I will arrange my posts by area covered and not individual wrecks as such. So this week’s post is the Peterborough area.

This plaque and monument can be found in the car park of the main beach at Peterborough, the site for 3 shipwrecks;

young_australia_72Young Australian, 1864 – 1877
 The young Australian was travelling from Queensland to Adelaide with a cargo of sugar and rum when severe storms damaged the ship’s rigging and forced it ashore.  Why then has it supposedly never found?

schombergSchomberg, 1855 – 1855
The Schomberg was one of the most magnificent sailing ships built (for the time) and was Captained by Bully Forbes. It was rumoured among other ideas that he was actually entertaining a young lady below decks when the ship was blown off course and crashed ashore at Curdies Inlet, both ship and the Captain’s careers were completed wrecked (Oops).



 Newfield, 1889 – 1892
Poor weather conditions and faulty navigational equipment is thought to be the cause for the loss of the Baroque Newfield while on a voyage from Scotland to Brisbane. The ship was blown ashore at Peterborough with the loss of nine lives.


Falls of Halladale, 1886 – 1908

Just down the road at the Bay of Matyrs, and a almost 4WD track (unmarked) to find this wreck, the anchor is in Peterborough, as is the plaque, and there is another plaque on a cliff top overlooking where the wreck happened. It was on it’s final leg of it’s voyage from New York to Melbourne when it’s Captain became lost and confused, due to sea mist. Under full sail, it struck one of the many reefs and became a total loss.



Camera Clubs (a rant)

I will apologise here in advance, this is a rant. If you don’t wish to read it I completely understand; it’s just that I am so angry about something that happened last night I need to vent!

After being asked by several people in my Camera Group to show them how I shoot Astro Photography, I thought it might be fun to set up an excursion or workshop at my favourite spot and show people how we shoot. I have advised it is a very basic, no frills set up. It very quickly booked up, and then over booked……..yikes.

Anyway last night I was trying to obtain some final numbers and someone offered to bring along all his toys and tech for DSS and Star Stacking, as well as special software on how to do stacking. And then offered to teach everyone how to use it; at my workshop! I tried to point out that that is not what this excursion or workshop was about and possibly it may complicate things and confuse people. And then the onslaught began. Apparently I am selfish, stupid and ignorant and a horrible person for squashing his creativity and enthusiasm! I again tried to explain that most people coming don’t know HOW to shoot astro and trying to show different methods at the same workshop would confuse me, let alone anyone else.

The onslaught and vitriol ensued and I gave up, but many other people jumped in and it became quite protracted argument. A few of them coming to my defence (which is nice). I mean if he wants to show people another method and use his toys, perhaps he should run a workshop of his own? Don’t run around telling everyone my way is dumb and stupid and I’m a horrible person and a bad photographer………seriously that is uncalled for.

I was so upset by it all, I have never been trolled before. I know it is a fact of life sometimes online, but this was within my own camera club. Maybe I didn’t explain myself as well as I could; but other people understood what I meant and they also tried, in vain to explain to this guy. Who then accused all of us of School Yard bullying tactics and stifling his creativity. How did it go from a fun night out to this ridiculous battle of which method to shoot Astro is better (his apparently). I have shot different ways and frankly the whole star tracking, star stacking things confuses the living hell out of me and in the end I don’t think they are all that much better off a straight DSLR. Sure combine a DSLR with a telescope and they can be amazing, complex, but amazing. But THAT is NOT what this workshop was designed for, it was just a little taste so people were not so scared to try things out for themselves. If they want to then move on to more complex shoots; good for them.

I’m at the stage I am tempted to cancel the whole thing, I am internally hoping for really bad weather so I can cancel…………does that make me a bad person?

This was followed up after another workshop I attended on Flash and Speedlite Photography, which turned out to be very distressing. The guy didn’t seem to be able to explain anything and then took my camera out of my hands and started playing with my settings and called me an idiot because I shoot in Manual Mode. NOT COOL DUDE! Yes I tend to be a little passive aggressive sometimes, but this guys really got my hackles up. Yes you need to have respect for the people trying to run these workshops, so I didn’t scream in this guys face, but I wanted to. Shoe will be on the other foot, apparently he has signed up for my Astro workshop………….yay! Maybe that’s another reason to cancel. Maybe I can call him an idiot for NOT shooting in Manual Mode! Or take the high road and show him how to patiently explain something properly to someone who does not understand.

I have been with this group for quite some time, and have never seen anything remotely like this, most of the people I have met have been fun, supportive and friendly; a great bunch of people to hang out with. Maybe these are isolated experiences. I hope so.

That’s it….rant over. If you read it all, thanks for listening


This n That – Camera Bags

backpackWhen I bought my first DSLR a mere 14 months ago, I never knew the mine field camera bags could be, and the more people I talk to it seems I am not alone. Just having one camera bag is not enough, several different ones are called, each for different reasons and occasions.

Way back when, I bought a basic over the shoulder type bum bag. It was a good bag and I even still occasionally use it, but it became apparent very quickly it was too small. So I bought another bag, this time a backpack. It fits a camera, a spare lens, my lens cleaning kit, my phone, purse and other odds and ends, I can fit my remote and filters in there as well. But that is about it. Overall not a bad all rounder. Not sure what Model it’s kind of like an older model Pro Runner.

Moth has a slightly larger version of my Backpack and we can cram in a little more stuff, an extra lens, some small filters etc. A Lowepro Pro Runner BP 450 AW II. (Actually all our bags are Lowepro……….we just like them I guess and never seem to hesitate to buy the same brand). I must admit for me it is too big and heavy, but it does have a lot more padding across the shoulders and back than my pack.

So we have those three and then we bought our new Format Hitech filter system kits and whoa nelly………..we need something else. So we got a Flipside Sport, but I think it’s the 23l version, this has become our go to bag. We can fit in the filter kits, the remote, tripod heads, a couple of extra lenses (50mm and wide angle), as well as batteries, glasses, wallets, car keys, everything EXCEPT the cameras. But we figure while we are out shooting we don’t need the cameras in the bags anyway.

So when we are going out for the day we pack most of what we want in the Flipside Sport, but if we are not sure what we need and we don’t necessarily have to carry it all we take all three! If we know exactly what we need, we travel light.

So how many camera bags have you got? Is it an obsession, finding the perfect bag? Do you have the perfect bag? If yes………….what is it?

P.S. I forgot about the new speedlight…………MOG WHERE AM I GOING TO PUT THAT? lol

Til next time, happy snapping…..



Australia Day 2016

Well, yes, this is a bit late………more of a re cap really. Apart from a half ass attempt 12 months ago in NZ, this is really my first attempt at shooting fire works. We met up with my Tog Peeps for the Australia Day Fireworks in the City, we met at 6pm and the show started at 9:45pm…………made for a long day. It was also a very long walk, and no amenities! Oh dear lord what we do for a shot! The silly thing is we thought perhaps we were too close to the firework barges and moved a few hundred metres away; not the best plan,. but still got some great shots first time out.