Finding Your Voice: Day 5. Element.

Welcome to Day 5 of our fun series: “Finding Your Voice… 10 Days, 10 Concepts To Help You Find Your Photographic Voice”

My Favorite Element is _______.

Let’s talk elements. I don’t ONLY mean the natural elements of wind, earth, fire and water. I mean MANY other elements that might be part of what you’re drawn to – that all contribute to finding your Artist’s Voice.

Moods Like This Continue reading “Finding Your Voice: Day 5. Element.”

The Mists Over Milford

Early Morning Milford

Early morning at Milford Sound is really something. When the tide goes out, you can walk pretty far out there to photograph areas you’d have to swim to otherwise. Or maybe waist-wade. To that I say: “No thanks!” Slipping and sliding over the fantastically slimy rocks was exciting enough for me. hehheh.

I suspect there was a relatively low tide the day we were there; although I didn’t have a Tides app like I do now to verify my suspicion.

In any case, Milford is a pretty surreal place. I don’t think a person could ever get tired of it – especially on misty/mysterious days like this! You should Google Trey Ratcliff and Milford Sound… just to see how un-tiring repeat visits are!

MistyMilford Continue reading “The Mists Over Milford”

Scenes From a Boat

Adventures Revisited

The great thing about not processing photos from a big trip all at once, is that you get to go back later and revisit your adventure.

Take this photo. Whilst in New Zealand last year, we took a cruise around the Milford Sound area. Went all the way to the edge of where the ocean begins. (It started to get a little rough out there – I was WAY happy when we turned around!). These boats take you up to waterfalls, right along the shore in places… and you get to see areas you’d NEVER see otherwise.
Continue reading “Scenes From a Boat”

New Zealand and The Chat

New Image: Milford Sound

Today I’m in the mood to share a couple of things: first, a brand new photo. It’s from my trip to New Zealand earlier this year for Trey Racliff’s New Zealand Adventure in which I co-taught. We visited Milford Sound, of course… got rained out one night, but woke up to a properly mystical morning!


The Chat with Annette Biggers: Sneak Peak!

Then… this coming Monday is an all new episode of The Chat! They just keep getting better and better… and more and more fun. This one was no exception… but add “inspiring as all get-out” to the mix. heh. My guest is photographer Annette Biggers… who is also an artist, humanitarian and Deep Thinker About Life.

In this clip, she talks about her belief that “artists are the creators or life in culture”… and explains what she means by that. You might find yourself agreeing with her! It was certainly true in the Renaissance… and I think its as true now as it ever was then! As artists, I personally think we need to consider carefully what we’re putting out there.

Tune in on Monday for the full episode!!

The Mists of Lady Bowen

Early morning. Milford Sound, New Zealand. Tide’s out. We’re standing way out on the rocks. We have to move fast, because the tide is about to start coming in and it doesn’t mess around. It’s not violent or anything, but if you’re like me, you’d just rather not swim back into shore with your gear.


It’s tricky being in a stunningly gorgeous AND iconic place for the first time. You want to hold your breath in wonder, soak it all in for awhile. But you have to maximize the minutes you have out there, try to snag  photos that’ll give you chills when you get home and not shriek “Do over!!” when you’re 6000 miles away. Continue reading “The Mists of Lady Bowen”

Photography: Got Signature?

I get asked about my photo processing alot. It’s a challenging question. For me, processing a photo starts before I even press the shutter.  I take a picture when it tells a story, moves me in some specific way, sings to me (really!) – all of which ends up as this fluttery feeling in my stomach that tells me “that’s the shot”.  I see it as all part of my personal point of view in life, or “signature”. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked through the viewfinder and thought… that’s a lovely picture, but it’s not talking to me. Meh. And I skip it. Because I know that when I see it later on my computer screen, my soul will heave a big sigh and say “Really? REALLY? That’s the best you could do?” And I’ll feel bad that I disappointed it. I hate disappointing my soul and do my best to avoid that at all times.


So, I could tell you about my adjustment layers, my blending modes, my sliders and which plugins I used, yada yada. But  I still wouldn’t have answered your question. Which REALLY is… Continue reading “Photography: Got Signature?”

Milford Sound Woke Moody That Morning

Rainy, rainy the night before, Milford Sound woke moody and blue in the morning. It happened sometimes, and it frankly wished the tourists would quite imagining that every day was sunshine and fairies. It sent a sand fly to bite one of them standing there with a camera.

Yeah. That kind of moody.


The day the workshop headed to Milford Sound was gorgeous. The closer we got to the sound, though – the more it was a rain situation. We’d planned on shooting sunset, but got pretty much rained out. The next morning, however, woke moody and dramatic. We got out early pearly so that we could be out on the rocks while the tide was out. The rocks aren’t huge, just slippery. I drew on my figure skating background and did my best to glide gracefully over them with my backpack, tripod and camera. I made, though I can’t vouch for the gracefulness. heh. Continue reading “Milford Sound Woke Moody That Morning”

Entrance to the Mountains

On the way into Milford Sound, New Zealand stand these magnificent sentries. They’re impressive… like dare-you-to-pass guardians. I felt like I should have to decode an ancient rune or dodge poison darts whilst leaping from rock to rock over a wide mountain stream to gain entry. But perhaps they were looking the other way – or perhaps it was sufficient homage to their grandeur that we stopped, gasped with jaws dropped in wide-eyed wonder and photographed reverently, but that day but we were allowed to drive peacefully on through.


We just finished “Trey’s New Zealand Photo Adventure“! It has been absolutely fantastic. An intrepid group of passionate photographers joined us for an action packed 5 days. We saw incredible sights, photographed amazing sculpture art at a highly exclusive club called “The Hills”, owned by Sir Michael Hill; visited a Korean Prison (actually an old movie set) on private property where herds of red deer, bison, elk, cattle, alpaca and miniature horses roam; visited the natural wonder of Milford Sound and took the cruise; photographed sunset along the lake in Queenstown and strolled through the gardens there; and stopped more times than you can count along the road to all of these places to photograph the wonders along the way. It’s been joyous and expanding in such wonderful ways. We’re all tired and happy.

I feel so fortunate to have been on the team of Trey RatcliffScott Kublin and Curtis Simmon,  helping to coach, inspire and laugh with this group. We’ve had an absolutely delightful and magical time together.
As life should be. Aaahhhhh.

This was photographed as a 7 exposure HDR, shot with a Canon 5DIII, 24-70ii f2.8. Most reverently.