For this landscape, I walked right up to the edge of the water. This gives a closer view of the sun setting behind these jagged rocks. I find with landscape photography, I often shoot very wide views to try and capture everything I’m seeing. Like the previous photograph of Lion Rock at sunset from much further back up the beach. It’s often worth getting closer and focusing on specific details in a landscape. I much prefer this composition. Not just for the great colours in the sunset but also the textures and lines of the rocks and water.
Piha beach was one of the first coastal areas I visited in New Zealand. It is a winding but specular drive from Auckland and well worth the visit. The focal point of the beach is Lion Rock. It is about 100 metres but unsafe to climb right to the top. You can get about half way up, which I’ve done before but not on this visit. We were camping at the Piha Domain Camp Ground which was fantastic. This photograph was taken on an evening stroll along the beach at sunset. This is a black sand beach due to it being a volcanic area. In fact Lion Rock is the eroded neck of a volcano which erupted 16 million years ago.
Spending a night in the Amora Hotel I captured this view of the Skytower from the balcony. I didn’t have my tripod with me so this was taken hand held. From this height you can only just make out the harbour between two of the buildings. I’d need a drone or at least a room on the top floor see more of the beautiful harbour behind the skyscrapers.
Over Christmas I had a chance to get out with my camera and finally capture the Viaduct Basin at night. I had this location on my list for the last couple of years. Being Christmas, the Skytower on the right is lit up like a Christmas Tree in green and red which contrasts nicely against the dark blue of the sky. The super yacht on the left is Janice of Wyoming, a locally built yacht at 40 metres long. Just off frame to my left where I took this is the Wynyard Crossing, a footbridge which provided a great spot for my tripod.
Kaitarakihi beach is one of my favourite spots in the Waitakere Ranges Regional Parkland, just a short drive outside of central Auckland. It’s more sheltered than the more popular west coast beaches of Piha or Bethells but in my opinion is just as special. This photograph was taken between Christmas and New Year, the height of summer here. The Pohutukawa is also known as New Zealand’s Native Christmas Tree, as it flowers between November and January with these very bright red flowers.