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Tawhai Falls

Posted by
Darkelf Photography (Perth, Australia) on 3 February 2017 in Landscape & Rural.


Tawhai Falls in Tongariro National Park, New Zealand. It is a lovely waterfall found not far away off the road towards the Whakapapa Village.

When we drove by this area back in 2011, we stopped at these falls. However, back then I was just taking very early steps into photography and did not really have a concept in mind. I was just shooting to get as many shots as I could and to practice as much as I could. I would like to think that the few years between visits made a difference in my photography and also in my approach to landscapes. I had a more defined plan during our last trip to NZ and also allowed more time to explore and photograph various scenes the way I envisioned.

It was also a bit of a "rest" day for us so we did not want to stray too far off the main roads. The entire previous day we hiked the Tongariro Crossing trail - a 19.4 km hike through the volcanic terrain of the national park. Having extra time allowed us to slow down a bit and take in the waterfalls and lakes we visited that day more thoroughly.

An overcast day also helped to set the scene for a long exposure and I wanted for the flow of the stream and its shores to lead the eye towards the fall itself. Shooting long exposures has an extra benefit associated with it - it gives me more time to just enjoy the sight and soak in the atmosphere of each place as the camera takes the image. The downside is that I am only able take a few shots in a session. For this image it took a little while to explore, test the light and plan the composition, then four minutes of exposure and then additional four minutes for the camera to go through its long exposure noise reduction process.

If light is changing rapidly, it means that I might only get one chance to nail the composition and exposure. After the process has finished the scene might look very different and I often have to adapt and start again.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV 240 seconds F/11.0 ISO 100 17 mm

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This image has been featured in 2 Remix collections.

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waterfall 2017 by omid