Broken Reflection

This one is for all the bone heads, including the trucks on the M5 who can't seem to understand the concept of merging or keeping left if not overtaking, hey you even have a lane all to ya selves on the way out the tunnel and the only time you use it is to cut up in front of the queued traffic.. boneheads – note on the flipside there are some good ones, but I feel the are getting fewer and fewer.
…. and the boneheads in the pool who don't quite get it when people in the slow lane are swimming faster then them in the medium lane and don't let people past :(

nothing like a good rant and there was not even any politics in there :) FB is great for that gives every man and his dog a soapbox to stand on :) even if its a little one..

Happy Hartzell

Engineering is soo cool – whilst most would find this kinda boring and yeah, its just a bit on a plane, Sarah Joy made a great point that many people do not realise the amount of development work and effort that goes into the hundreds of assemblies and parts that make up a plane. Here is one such bit, one of the simplest constant speed propellers/hub you will see on small 2 or 4 seater aircraft.


I get to see lots of plane bits, but not that often a full propeller hub, in bits :) this one was a unserviceable and had all the bits from the last overhaul. So whaddya do with a Hartzell Propeller which you have in bits, a pair of verniers and a few spare hours? you model it of course and turn it into a animated mechanism. :)
well the spare hours is a bit of a lie, I really don’t have those, but did spend a couple of late nights on it :)

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The home of Rollo (some viking dude) whilst appearing to be hundreds of years old is mostly less than hundred years old, back in the early 1900's there was a fire which destroyed pretty much the entire built area on this island. The island which forms the old town and the touristy area of Alesund is fairly large and back then covered with predominantly wooden structures, much like most of Norway, makes sense when you see how much wood they have :) durign that fire there was also a gale force wind, described as strong enough to blow a man over, thus you can only imagine how fast a fire would propagate through nice dry Norwegian timber and it did.

We stayed at the big white one off to the left, not a bad view from it, especially in the dining area, this one of the few we stayed in during our visit to Norway and whilst expensive, it is comparable to Sydney so not that bad I suppose.

This was shot well after sunset, from memory about 11pm and the glow from the sunset, which seems to last for hours , glowed off the hotel strip and created some very nice reflections off the water.

The word 'moody' is way over used now, it seems everything from something with a cloud to a BW image is classified moody, hence, for the greater good I shall not use the term, but rather Dreamy :) equally cliche

I quite like art and images where they take on those qualities which are often associated with the notion of 'dreamy', like the softness, the out focus and the pastel colours, for me its that view which is blurry, like your looking permanently through your peripheral vision or thru a set of contacts which have been in way too long after a long bender of a night, this coupled with a tiny aspect of the scene vivid and full of clarity which sticks in your mind irrespective of the haze that surrounds it. Getting old is so boring :( I never have these 'dreamy', dreams anymore, hence, heres a image to make up for it :)

This image (of the stormwater overflows) is quite timely given the recent media reports on the great water quality of the sydney beaches at the moment as a result of the crazy flash storm we had the other day. Seems there are plenty of signs stating there is dangerous bacteria about, I reckon thats prolly code for floaties and chokito bars about ;) google chokito bars and it'll all become clear.

Here you go, Manly overflow pipes at 182.1 seconds of exposure.

Image Manipulation

Just a few thoughts one processing and manipulation.. :)

(C) 2016 Gerard Blacklock, all rights reserved

Onto the image, and note , I love a good discussion about images, it’s what gets the brain thinking and expands ones views beyond their own I have learn many a good thing over a strong debate on a image :)

Ironically, alot of the serious manipulation I do and there is quite some in a few imagesĀ award_4892_4892_3135840091-85 , is more about altering the view, for example cloning out things and simplifying the scene than manipulation of the colours. In this image there was actually very little colour manipulation, now the level of manipulation is obviously quite different for each person, some may just apply a preset to the image in camera, others a whole range of tweaks as it comes into and out of Lightroom for example.

This image was stitched in PS and then edited in LR. The biggest manipulation imo, was the lightening of the water on the left, it was quite bright but needed a little push to get it stand out more. I also did some clonage on the right horizon due to some crappy stitching, the horizon was a bit mismatched :) in terms of colour, there was not a great deal done, a tweak on the vibrance, 30 odd in the noise reduction, 20 on the sharpening, a smidge of de-haze, probably about 10 ..and I do recall using a radial filter (i love those) to brighten up the centre a bit more. Finished off with a bit of contrast and extra exposure comp.

So, I have attached one of the frames from this scene, noting that the final image is a 3 frame pano, this frame segment image was shot raw, I applied the vivid preset in the raw converter (CNX2 via raw2nef) and then resized and sharpened down to 2000 px wide, this, for me, is the closest I get to straight out of the camera. I always shoot raw and with the neutral setting because I want complete control over how my image is processed.

In this frame you can see the fishermen, of which there are two, they look different to the final image that is because only one fisherman in the final frame stood still enough to remain relatively sharp, i cloned out the other dude, who was pretty cool since he had a head torch :) but too blurry


So I am gonna call this one definitely not fakery (if there is even such a thing) and whilst it means very little to most, the colours looked like this to me on that morning, and this is one mantra I have for the majority of my images, I want to make it look like what I saw, now my eyes may see more vibrance and have selective objects vision ;) but hey…

Don’t be limited by the perceptions and judgements of other people, its your image, capture and process it without any boundaries other than the imagination of your mind . There are no rules on how you should process, or by how much, art is not bounded by imaginery lines put on it by history.

In the flow

A lovely morning at one of my favourite and well visited spots, Little Bay

D750 coupled with Nikkor16-35 f4 @ 16mm
Aperture: f13 and Shutter Speed: 13s
ISO: 100
Out front: Lee Graduated Filter 0.9x and Hoya Circular Polariser

AloneThis one is a bit of nifty panorama if I do say so myself :) , its well pre dawn as you can see by the lone light up on the headland and felt pretty well pitch black except for the glow on the horizon


This one is a bit of nifty panorama if I do say so myself :) , its well pre dawn as you can see by the lone light up on the headland and felt pretty well pitch black except for the glow on the horizon. Onto the nifty-ness, its a 3 shot pano, however the light was changing fairly fast , hence in each exposure i decreased the shutter time to account for the brightening sky.
The first image was 156s, the second 87.5s and the final one 66s, the fisherman, surprisingly, in one of the 3 exposures stayed quite still which meant he remained somewhat quite sharp in the image.

3 shot Panorama – D750 coupled with Nikkor16-35 f4 @ 16mm
Aperture: f16 and Shutter Speed: as above
ISO: 100
Out front: Lee Graduated Filter 0.9x and Hoya Circular Polariser

Seagull toes

Little Bay

I have visited this spot probably half a dozen times over the last few years, this particular shelf is really only accessible and covered in cool green stuff and timed with sunrise a several times a year, multiple this by the availability factor ( :) ) and it becomes pretty hard to be there at the right time :). It really has to be lowish tide and low swell, pretty well anything else there and is a good chance you will change the local sign with the body count from 4 to 5.

Now if you thinking, I would have to be pretty keen to be standing here as the wave washed over, bear in mind, that off frame, just to the left there were a bunch of seagulls, they did not even bother to move as the water washed over the shelf and tickled their little toes :) couple this with the fact that the waves which did wash over are only the large set which happens roughly every 7 minutes or so.

D750 coupled with Nikkor16-35 f4 @ 16mm
Aperture: f18 and Shutter Speed: 2ss
ISO: 100
Out front: Lee Graduated Filter 0.9x and Hoya Circular Polariser

Special Day

SO, we had this great idea as we climbed up on the Sydney Harbour bridge to use our 8 seconds of free, yes you read that correctly you do get something for free on the bridge climb (besides the hat).. free video time to tell the world, well those listening anyways, so we had something special to tell :). However there was a minor issue at hand, besides the fact that its hard to think of something witty to say in 8 seconds, especially if your me ;) that minor issue was the fact that I really should have pursued a career in radio cause my deep voice (you have to say that with the appropriate level of deepness too) kinda got lost in the video, and you know what, it was the most witty-est and clever thing I have ever said :) shame ya'all will never see it :)

So, this is the next best thing I suppose and I really had to get it soon, 'cause our first child, chaos is not really very good at keeping secrets and has been stealing all my thunder in recent days.

So onto that news… I got a new career in radio ;)

nah, its better than that, first there was Chaos, then Tickles (aka mayhem) and now there will be roo's (aka pandemonium) and I am gonna need a bigger car :)

So, thankyou to our lovely photographer and bridge climb guide for taking our picture and thankyou to our two wonderful children for being so great to mum :) and congrats to Sarah (and me I suppose, someone has to do all the heavy lifting :) )

In Album 02/02/2017

Drunk Octopus

There are two key important points in this post, they both relate to the main subjects in the photo :)

The first is shoes, i suspect like many kids, trying to keep shoes on this child is like trying to keep 8 shoes on a drunk octopus :) it seems like I spend half my day picking up shoes or asking someone to put their shoes on :) That said I was grateful Chaos did at least pose for me at the base of this fig tree. That leads me to the second point.

There alots of high profile trees being turned into chipwood for various infrastructure projects around Sydney and plenty of people out having a protest about it. Whether you agree with it or not, just spare a thought for these people who do care enough about just a bunch of trees to get out there and voice their opinions and try and stand up for they think is right, put aside you 'greenie' or leftie' or rightie' slogan and have a think about why they do it – its often a darn sight more than what the average punter would, most who are the best armchair critics out there. When you see fig trees like this in sydney, which are well in excess of 100 years old simply planting 1000 more to replace it really a slap in the face, the point that is often missed is that 'time' is worth sooo much more, kinda hard to enjoy a 1000 seedlings the same way one enjoys a 100+ year old tree. I don't reckon chaos gets the some out of a 3 metre trees as one that towers over her like this.

Down at my local park, where I often take the girls for a BBQ at the back corner, the road is being widened as part of the westconnex and the sydney water de-sal line and the electricity cables, it had become the site of one these protests, futile? yes in some ways since they chipped all the trees there anyway and then laid blame to the protesters. What I do know for sure that I will not be enjoying that part of the park for much longer, irrespective of how many seedlings are planted – what is actually more concerning is the proposed development of a large apartment block along this widened road, it seems so very convenient that these things happen together ;) I am all for new housing, however there is only so much space for people and whilst Sydney park is pretty big, it has certainly become much much busier over recent years – i remember when it was a dive of place and no one would go there after dark ;)

That said, geez the artist impression of the westconnex interchange next to sydney park looks freakin' awesome, wonder how long it'll take for the trees to grow to the size shown ;)

That also segway's nicely to another point, if we were in norway they would just put all that shit in a tunnel ;)

In Album 02/02/2017

Politics Filter

I need a politics filter on my SM feed, here is a great idea, we need a social media plugin that can game the system to filter out certain stuff, like for example if your sick of cat videos with cucumbers you can filter out 'cucumbers' and 'cats' or if like me you sick to death of post with dumb politics in it you could filter 'dickhead', 'politics', trump' etc. Any app designers out wanna have a go? maybe a alternate FB app, one which you control the shit you see ;) I'll go ya halvies :)

I reckon you would be in a great place if you were sitting over there on that little jetty, getting ready to take your boat out on the lake for a spot of fishing, a bit photography or picnic or whatever takes you fancy.

Here is a interesting photography tip, this shot is 4 landscape images shot in the landscape orientation, handheld at 31mm in aperture priority mode, as a result of the aperture priority mode there was a fairly large difference in the exposure between the very left frame (quite bright) and the far right frame (quite dark). With pano stitching, often when the exposures are quite different you can get some not so nice line joins in the pano, usually the software (PS) is pretty good and blending them together, however in this case I tried to stitch it with both Photoshop and PTgui, however both had this rather nasty line where it could not nicely blend the images, I did not really want to spend 30 minutes trying to manually blend them together – time is precious when your kids seem to wanna stay up until 9pm :) – so I had pretty much left this one to the dustbin, however I thought I'll just give the Lightroom software a go and low and behold it came out perfectly. So my tip, you don't always have to got to the hardcore software, sometimes that one click automated stuff works just fine :) It is also, bar a few clones on the bottom right all edited in Lightroom, whilst it still does not quite have all the finer controls tweaks that I am used to from other software, it can do a marvellous job very quickly, and that counts for alot :)

Now remember, you can zoom in and check out all the detail, see if you can find any dodgy stitching errors ;)