Autumn Colours – Mount Wilson NSW

Don’t you just love autumn? The colours, the textures and the way the plants change….

This year in Sydney we’ve had a really warm autumn….25 degree days – for the last couple of weeks – even as I speak – today is going to be 25 degrees again!!

I thought I might have been a bit late to head up to Mount Wilson and photograph the colours…but they surprised me….when you are way up high the temperature really does its thing to the trees and landscape…

Here are some pics I took yesterday at two ‘Open Gardens’ at Mount Wilson…. ‘Windy Ridge’ and ‘Breenhold’  – Ray and I really enjoyed soaking up nature and being in the open spaces of these awesome properties.

I shot with two cameras {Canon 5d mk 11 and 5d mk 111} – I had my 24-105mm and my 100mm macro on both canon cameras – {thanks Ray for helping me with them.}

Remember to click on each photo to enjoy a large view…

cheers

chris

 

First Prize in the ‘Urban Landscape’ Section – Sydney Royal Easter Show

What a wonderful week its been for me…

I took out first prize in the ‘Urban Landscape’ section of the Sydney Royal Easter Show photography competition with a shot of our iconic Sydney Opera House…

And boy am I chuffed 🙂

There were so many wonderful photographs, congratulations to all the other winners.

Have a great weekend everyone 🙂

 

 

The FANTASTIC Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports Lens

I’ve just returned from a month in the Arctic {more about that later – and yes, it was sensational.}

I added a couple of new lenses to my kit before going away, one of them being the sensational Sigma 150-600mm F/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports Lens.

I hired the previous model of this lens when I visited the Antarctic a couple of years back and overall wasn’t very happy with the sharpness of the lens. Everything on the latest model – Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports Lens – has improved significantly, especially the image sharpness. I am ecstatic with the results 🙂

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Here’s the rundown:

Overall build and cost

The build of the lens is SUPER SOLID and is very well designed. It retails for around $2245 AUD and at this price, it makes a very welcome addition to your kit.

The 150 to 600mm sports lens is heavier than most of the opposition. Weighing in at 2.860kg, this is not a lens that you want to hand hold for long periods of time. I used a monopod whilst we were on the land. In the zodiacs, I either stood up or sat and used my elbow and the side of the zodiac to take the weight of the lens.

The lens features dust and splash proof construction and a water & oil repellent coating on the front and rear glass elements of the lens.

The lens is packed in a very substantial padded carrying case and features a VERY SOLID LENS HOOD which offers great protection to the front of the lens {especially with rain, splash and general knocks etc.} and can be reversed over the barrel for transportation. The overall length of the lens {with the hood reversed} is 121.9 x 289.6mm. This lens fitted easily into my Lowepro Pro Runner RL x450 AW rolling camera bag.

With the lens zoomed to 600mm and the hood attached, the entire lens grows to 480mm in length {be prepared for lens envy.}

The filter size is 105mm {not many suppliers will stock this size.} I had to really hunt around to source the UV filter for this lens.

This lens is available in a Canon, Nikon and Sigma mount.

The only annoying aspect of this lens was for some reason Sigma didn’t supply a lens cap? I purchased one direct from Sigma for $20AUD.

Focal Length

At 150mm to 600mm, this lens suits wildlife, distant landscapes, street scenes, sports photography and more. I could capture a complete iceberg at 150mm {as they were a fair distance away.} However, I used the lens at 600mm for most of the trip to photograph wildlife and closeups of icebergs and mountains.

Aperture range

F5-6.3 to F22. This lens has a ‘variable max aperture’ which means that wide open aperture exposure settings will change as the lens is zoomed from 150mm to longer focal lengths.

Image sharpness

Using the lens at 600mm required faster shutter speeds to deliver sharp hand held results. At times I used a monopod, but most shots were taken in a moving zodiac, standing up, with the lens at full 600mm zoom.

The lens has ‘image stabilization’ but I did find I had to increase the ISO to obtain a fast shutter speed to freeze the action. The results were fantastic. 9 out of 10 shots were ABSOLUTELY TACK SHARP.

Take a look at these shots for sharpness!!

It was easy to photograph this harbour seal at 600mm. He hardly knew I was there. F6.3 1/320 sec ISO 1250
It was easy to photograph this harbour seal at 600mm. He hardly knew I was there. F6.3 1/320 sec ISO 1250.
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Now for a close up of the whiskers 🙂 Super sharp huh?
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And the eye…again, tack sharp.
Here's an iceberg in Greenland. Taken from a moving zodiac. Focal length 600mm. F11 1/2000 sec ISO 640.
Here’s an iceberg in Greenland. Taken from a moving zodiac. Focal length 600mm. F11 1/2000 sec ISO 640.
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Now, lets zoom in…still sharp!
This shot was taken on a research station near Longyearbyen, Svalbard. Note where the weather station is :) F8 1/250 sec ISO 200.
This shot was taken on a research station near Longyearbyen, Svalbard. Note where the weather station is 🙂 F8 1/250 sec ISO 200.
Here's the weather station taken at 600mm on the Sigma lens. F8 1/1000 sec ISO 400.
Here’s the weather station taken at 600mm on the Sigma lens. F8 1/1000 sec ISO 400.
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This is the zoomed in shot..Super sharp!

Conclusion

If you are looking for a SUPER SHARP, AFFORDABLE telephoto lens – then this is the lens for you. Yes, it’s heavy {always use a tripod or monopod and you’ll be fine} but the IMAGE SHARPNESS is the real WINNER.

I am super impressed! Rush out and buy it now. Right now 🙂

If you have any questions about this lens, please email me at bernasconiphotography@gmail.com 🙂

 

 

VIVID Sydney….through my eyes

Vivid Light transforms our beautiful city into a wonderland of ‘light art’ sculptures and super cool light installations for everyone to enjoy – for free. It is the world’s largest outdoor ‘art-gallery.’

Last week I took off to visit VIVID SYDNEY 2015 with my photography buddy Kris…

We had a great night out and particularly enjoyed the ‘back street’ installations this year..

If you are into photography, or just want to enjoy the colourful lights head to VIVID SYDNEY…This event runs until the 8th June…

Click on the first photo to view the pics as a slide show 🙂

Balloon spectacular in Canberra

Phew, it’s been a very busy couple of weeks..

Lots of tours, photography jobs, competitions and more!!

Whilst I was in Canberra {one of my favourite places}, I met up with 12 other members from the click walk learn VIP group and we photographed the Balloon Spectacular.

It was a super early start, there were more than 20 balloons setting up in front of old Parliament House…It was fantastic!!

We followed them from the launching area down to the Commonwealth Bridge…the sunrise was amazing and the balloons were an awesome spectacle in the sky..

Here are my pics from the morning out…thanks everyone for your input and support of click walk learn…YOU MADE MY DAY!!

Breakfast afterwards was great, lots of conversation about photography and how to get the ‘perfect’ shot!!

Click on the first photo to view the pics as a slide show 🙂

 

 

Fast action photography at Penrith Whitewater Stadium

A couple of weeks back the click walk learn VIP group headed to the Penrith Whitewater Stadium to photograph some super fast action on the water 🙂

This artificial whitewater sporting facility was purpose built for the canoe/kayak slalom events at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney.

Today it is used for recreational rafting {great fun} and local, national and international canoeing/slalom events.

This ‘U’ shaped course is over 320 metres in length, 0.8 to 1.2 metres deep and between eight and 12 metres wide.

River pebbles set into the concrete create a ‘natural’ river feel. Movable obstacles are also added to vary the difficulty of the course and to fine tune the rapids.

A footpath follows the course all the way around which made getting in ‘close’ to photograph the action really easy. This path was built with the media in mind for the 2000 Olympic games. If you are interested in photography – it really is a great place to get some awesome shots..

I love fast action photography – we used super fast speeds to ‘freeze’ the water. Thanks everyone for a great day out – enjoy the pics 🙂

Click on the first photo to view the pics as a slideshow 🙂

The Grateful Project

It’s been a lovely few days – I’ve seen lots of friends and spent time with people that make me smile 🙂

It’s not too late to join ‘The Grateful Project.’

Join me by taking a photo every day for a month of something you are grateful for!

This exercise will help with your photography creativity PLUS it’s great food for the soul.

If you’d like to be involved, Just post a photo everyday of something you’re grateful for onto the Christine Bernasconi Photography Facebook page {click here}.

‘Like’ the page and include the hashtag #berngratefulproject in the description and write a few words underneath telling the story of your photo….

If you are not on facebook, you can email me your daily photo to bernasconiphotography@gmail.com. Don’t forget to tell me what you are grateful for!!

Enjoy the pics 🙂


Day twenty five –  I am grateful for my beautiful friend Leesa. We connect so well – thanks for a lovely afternoon Leesa 🙂

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Day twenty six – I am grateful for the beautiful gerbera’s my friend Leesa bought me….They are my favourite flower – natures perfection.

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Day twenty seven – I am grateful for the gorgeous children Holly & Sam that I spent some time with on Sunday..I forgot how much children make me smile…Thank you for the beautiful bracelet Holly 🙂

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