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jfischerphotography

Follow the Light - Castle Point Lighthouse, New Zealand



One of my main inspirations for visiting New Zealand, as if you really need one, was a photo from this perspective that I ran across on another photo site some ...
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One of my main inspirations for visiting New Zealand, as if you really need one, was a photo from this perspective that I ran across on another photo site some time back. The leading lines and the amazing view was something I just had to see, and shoot, for myself. For this shot alone the trip was worth it - and I came home with so much more.
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Contest Finalist in Tall Structures Photo Contest
Winner in Lighthouse Photo Challenge
Contest Finalist in Stairways Photo Contest
Peer Choice Award
Winner in Follow The Path Photo Challenge
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Peer Award
Superb Composition
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32 Comments | Report
evergreen1116 PRO
 
evergreen1116 April 02, 2017
Superb composition,, gorgeous image!
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography April 02, 2017
Thank you!
Kiwibeza
 
Kiwibeza April 03, 2017
Love Castle Point great place for diving and fishing, great photo.
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography April 09, 2017
Thank you!
GBloniarz PRO+
 
GBloniarz April 08, 2017
Oh that 24!!
jlappen
 
jlappen May 09, 2017
So magnificent. Colors, lighting, depth just perfect!!! Congrats!
Pjerry PRO+
 
Pjerry May 21, 2017
Love it
alontapitts
 
alontapitts June 18, 2017
I love this so much
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography June 19, 2017
Thank you!
franklinabbott Ultimate
 
franklinabbott June 28, 2017
This is absolutely fantastic.I look at a lot of photos on this site, this is one of my favorites
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography June 28, 2017
Thank you so much!
TobysAdventures
 
TobysAdventures August 18, 2017
Awesome pic
Smert
 
Smert August 30, 2017
The path just leads the eye it's simply wonderful
jamesjohnston_3471 Platinum
 
jamesjohnston_3471 September 02, 2017
Congratulations! This is a truly stunning image and I can see why the view made you take this trip. Thanks for entering my "Follow The Path" Challenge.
AdirahsEyes
 
AdirahsEyes September 02, 2017
Congrats!!!! on your challenge win... well deserved!
MikeBoyle
 
MikeBoyle September 02, 2017
Congratulations on your winning photo. Nice...Very Nice
margaretgodfrey PRO
 
margaretgodfrey September 02, 2017
congrats on winning "follow the path" photo challenge. Beautiful shot.
Laboo62
 
Laboo62 September 18, 2017
Wow where is this?
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography January 28, 2018
Southern tip of New Zealand's north island.
Alwolfe Premium
 
Alwolfe November 06, 2017
Beautiful!
deannefortnam PRO+
 
deannefortnam November 19, 2017
Absolutely superb!
lainy
 
lainy November 20, 2017
It's it all for me, the steps, lighthouse and clouds all pull you in. Excellent Photo.
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography January 28, 2018
Thank you!
alisaadat
 
alisaadat November 28, 2017
terrific shot.
Cuxwold
 
Cuxwold January 21, 2018
I like this a lot a wonderful image
jfischerphotography PRO
jfischerphotography January 28, 2018
Thank you!
HettyHammill PRO
 
HettyHammill March 26, 2018
Congrats. Beautiful image.
AnneliseJoy
 
AnneliseJoy March 26, 2018
Yay for Castle Point! Congratulations on your challenge win.
michaelfmoore Platinum
 
michaelfmoore March 27, 2018
Congrats on your challenge award. Great capture.
VioletStevenson
 
VioletStevenson March 28, 2018
Congratulations. Great capture.
sierra_lynn2005
 
sierra_lynn2005 June 01, 2018
Wow! This is beautiful!
Ibraheem_ALSinjlawi
 
Ibraheem_ALSinjlawi June 09, 2018
Nice one !
maryray
 
maryray July 24, 2018
Love this
shema PRO
 
shema August 08, 2018
gorgeous!
catherinethompson PRO+
 
catherinethompson August 28, 2018
Nice perspective.
JoanLoBo Platinum
 
JoanLoBo September 01, 2018
I love the way you composed this image. The path lead you in to this simple subject surrounded by this perfect sky. Well edited. Great impact
TheraX PRO+
 
TheraX June 19, 2020
Absolute Masterpiece
JoEldred PRO
 
JoEldred November 09, 2020
Beautiful!
ronjudyluv2travel Platinum
 
ronjudyluv2travel October 16, 2021
Beautiful capture Jon! Congratulations!
See all

Behind The Lens

Location
After seeing photos of this area during my research I took a 3 hour detour from the 'short way' to Wellington to shoot here at Castle Point Lighthouse on New Zealand's south eastern coast. The lighthouse is situated high on a massive rock bluff overlooking a pair of sheltered inlets and then out into the mighty south pacific ocean. At the very top of the bluff is a wooden viewing platform, the wooden stair case in the photo leads up to that highest point just behind my view point.
Time
This was late evening, just before sunset. The sun had already started to fade behind the few clouds in the sky and was providing some wonderful textures and color.
Lighting
All natural light from the moments just as Golden Hour was starting to fade and that second magical hour, the Blue Hour was about to begin. With just enough clouds on the horizon to soften the last minutes of day, as well as providing wonderful natural colors across the sky. Shot was taken as a 3-image bracket, allowing great foreground lighting all the way to the horizon.
Equipment
Shot with one of my two Canon 6D full frame DSLR cameras, with the 24-105L lens at its widest 24mm focal length. I was experimenting with a lot of different focal lengths along this stretch of the coast so the 24-105's wide zoom range allowed me some flexibility without needing to change lenses in the windy and somewhat sandy & salty environment. Tripod used with my Induro carbon fiber tripod with Benro ball head.
Inspiration
I had seen several photos from this area, one being a very similar composition. The winding stair case, the lighthouse, and the fantastic rock structure and sea beyond, the shot had it all. I knew if I managed to get a night with a good bit of clouds in the sky, the sun would be in just about the right spot for a nice bit of color to tie it all together. It was a goal worth striving for.
Editing
This is a 3-shot manual blend done in Lightroom and Photoshop. I start all of my edits in Lightroom with the 'creative' edit done in Photoshop, often with a layer or two created with the amazing Nik Collection plugin suite. On this photo I utilized a bit of Nik Color Effect's wonderful 'Skylight Filter' to enhance the already wonderful sunset tones. In addition to the blending for exposure, several layers were added to do selective dodge and burn work to enhance the eye's direction through the photo.
In my camera bag
My primary Landscape kit consists of the 16-35 F4L, the 24-105 F4L and 70-200 F4L. These lenses strike a great balance of cost, weight, size and exceptional performance for a landscape photographer who is constantly on the go and on the move as I am. I carry a fairly small bag that fits my Canon 6D with those two lenses in the lower compartment (along with the 100mm f/2.8 Macro often gets crammed in as well) along with the telephoto in the upper compartment. Most days out shooting that's all the lenses I have on me, allowing me to stay mobile and on the hunt for the ideal composition and light. I'm also using the amazing Breakthrough X4 series of circular ND filters, the 6 and 3 stop currently, with plans to purchase the 10 stop in the future. My smaller MeFoto Globetrotter tripod gets strapped to the side of the bag on longer hikes, where the larger Induro gets slung over the shoulder when maximum support is necessary.
Feedback
Good clouds are the key to this location, even shooting from a high elevation looking down, the softer light and balance achieved in the sky by having a reasonable amount of clouds in the sky is truly important for a satisfactory image. Setting good f/stop and focal points where you achieve maximum depth of field is also important. Focus stacking would not be out of the question for some lenses where the best sharpness comes at a very low f/stop. You've got elements from only a few feet away all the way to the horizon to contend with. Take plenty of shots, at different bracketing setups, at a few different focal lengths and focal points. Something I struggle with still is getting one really really really good composition you're proud to show off to everyone over shooting a dozen different shots that you'll be less than thrilled with 3 weeks later when you're back home on the other side of the globe.

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