Latest magazine article

As mentioned earlier I write in addition to creating images and have had a few good cover stories and images published recently. In the latest issue of Deals on Wheels magazine I have the cover image and my six page article Cool KW Cool.

I enjoy the challenge of telling the story through images and words at the same time. You never know how the editor will run the images so its quite a bit of work to give them a variety of quality images that cover the story. This means shooting potential cover shots in portrait orientation and also thinking about space for the article text in the normal or landscape orientation images. There’s always the opener to think of also, which often runs as a two page (known as double-truck in the publishing industry) spread with a column of text down one side.

For these photojournalism style shoots I prefer to work around the operator and just let them do their job the way they normally would. This ensures an accurate portrayal for the history books in years to come of what life on the job was like. It doesn’t hurt to get a few obviously posed shots though beforehand as a back up or cover image when the subject is busy or only available for a short time.

It was an early 3.30am start to work with this truck for the story but well worth it. The big 615 horsepower Kenworth making short work of the trip to Kuripapango in the Kaweka Ranges for a load of logs. If you missed the magazine you can check out the video and on-board interview with the driver at Truck article

A quick update

Welcome to any new visitors to this page. You’ll probably notice I’ve not updated recently as Facebook seems to offer better viewer engagement for me at the moment.

There is a link to some  Mountainbike pictures at the link below for those visiting via the bike clubs link or you can scroll the whole page and keep an eye out for the direct Facebook link.

Feel free to comment on images and use the Facebook share function.


Spring Showers


Weather photography is a favourite area for me even though in the Hawke’s Bay area we don’t get much of the dramatic stuff that makes for good images. This latest image was a right time right place moment and the weather forecast was actually for fine weather.
But when your this high up in the mountains the weather has its’ own program of events. A series of small shower clouds was passing over a nearby range and didn’t look like much but a slight change in the wind and a quick downpour made for a scene with a little drama to it.
The image was created while positioned on the Kaikomata Range which sits between the Kaweka and Ruahine Ranges. The closest hills in the right of the image are the SparrowHawk Range and the high peak to the left is Otupae.

High Baller novel synopsis

When I’m not creating images I also write, anything from articles to novels. At the moment my main novel project is provisionally titled High Baller. Set in the New Zealand linehaul trucking scene it’s a dramatic tale of personal choices that will either lead to or avert a tragic outcome.

High Baller is actually a railroad term that originated from the early days when track engineers would string a steel balloon above the tracks on a wire to signal that the route ahead was clear. Locomotive engineers would know it would be safe to let her rip for full speed on the next section of track. However some drivers abused this signal and took to obtaining reckless speeds. This led to the term being reserved as a label for those considered to be reckless operators.

Several main characters all have a potential influence on the outcome. A young reporter with inside information, a fatigued driver, experienced police officer and others all have decisions to make. Will chance favour the greater good or personal interests?

More to come later…

What makes it click.

A short guide to the image creation process.

Sometimes you can be in the right place, right time and a lucky moment of perfection happens that takes something being above just a photograph. Those moments are rare though, creating an image, something more valuable than just a photograph takes some thought.

There are a lot of decisions to be made before the shutter clicks. Some deliberate and others pure instinct based on a disciplined process of correct technique and choice of gear to do the task.

What is the intended use of the image? What will it convey? Where and how will it be displayed, electronically or in print? Who or what is the main subject of the image. Thinking about these factors helps to quickly narrow down your options in how to compose an image and where you will go with the session. Is this a fleeting moment or have you the time to explore options with the light and composition?

Whether it’s a wilderness landscape shoot or a session with a commercial client, take the time to think about or discuss these core components. We all see things in different ways which is what makes creating works interesting but thought is always required with regard to what will be a usable or marketable image.

All this, even before a click of the shutter. Next after taking an image or series of in RAW (pure data straight from camera CCD sensor) format it’s time to process them in the digital darkroom using a variety of software tools but most likely Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop. This offers yet another layer of artistic interpretation or manipulation of the image style. Time and money is the only limit to your options here.

After a final digital image has been created there is still the chance to control the mood, message and effect of an image by careful choice of print medium. Recently I’ve moved into producing my own fine art prints in A3+ size on Canson papers, a manufacturer with a 500 year proven history in the art world. I’ve found the process most exciting and rewarding as in the digital age we’ve almost forgotten the final process of presenting an image to the viewer.

I hope that gives people a quick overview of the modern image making process and what’s involved in the next step above just taking a photo. Please feel free to comment and ask question either here or via email.


Artist Statement

My first steps into the world of photography started with blending my love of travel and motorcycles. Something inside me compelled a desire to create my own images involving the gorgeous scenery of New Zealand, and at race tracks to capture the dramatic images motorsports enable. An avid reader I read plenty of photography books in these early years and continue to do so to expand my knowledge. No doubt many of the master’s works shown in these books influenced me but even today I like to draw inspiration from a wide range of sources.

In these formative years my work was much more of a documentary style but even then I liked to explore different angles. I like to challenge the viewer’s mind by composing from hard to reach angles and places everyday people wouldn’t reach. A big influence on this would have to be the Australian film crews covering motorsports at Phillip Island especially who seemed to be at the forefront of stepping outside the established styles.

I create images to share the beauty of our world with others and occasionally to pose a question of our interactions with these times and places. I enjoy the feedback from viewers and learning of their perspective; as no matter how deliberately you construct, once viewed the art moves into the realm of the viewer’s world. Moving into new genres lately has made me step outside my comfort zone especially with self-portraits and is leading into some interesting creations.

Humans exist to create things and I’ve found nothing else quite so inspiring to create something that with modern physical and digital archival methods will well outlive the maker. The message I seek to convey is to appreciate, examine and share our world along with a good dose of constructive dialogue.