Middleton Road

How I see the world

A photo walk down Ngaio Gorge


Today I walked down the Ngaio Gorge track. I used to do it every month or so but for no particular reason hadn’t been there since before COVID. Quite a lot of work had been done on steps and footbridges, but the very bottom was blocked off as work continues to repair a slip on the nearby road.

I’ve been going down a big rabbit hole of looking at Fuji, in camera, recipes lately. All the shots below are straight out of camera JPEGS using the Shinrin Yoku recipe from film.recipes. Shinrin Yoku apparently translates from Japanese as “forest bathing”. I suspect that it is one of those concepts that when translated into English and adopted by Anglo cultures loses something. But a walk in nature is always calming, even when, as in this case, you can hear (and in a couple of places glimpse) trains on the suburban Johnsonville line.

It was complicated light, because it was a gorgeous summers day but there were lots of trees, and the banks of the gorge. In some shots the result was a bit warm/yellow for my tastes, but in other cases its worked out well.

A photo walk of course calls for a which way photo …

Some other walkers might need to pull up a seat

Gorge of course indicates a river (or in this case a stream) and there was pretty much water, water all the way (although the stream is so clear it might be hard to see here)

and there is always weekend sky to look up at

Lastly there are a few bonuses, like a rare opportunity to respond to Crispina Kemp’s Friday Fungi

or play around with the X100V’s 10cm minimum focus distance for an almost “macro” for Pic and a Word. Having failed to figure out extension tubes I am now really lusting after a real macro lens for my XT-3, although I do like the bokeh the X100V produces up close at f2

9 thoughts on “A photo walk down Ngaio Gorge

  1. <smile> That is plenty macro for me! And, yes, silky bokeh. πŸ˜‰

    Yeah. Macro extension tubes are kinda cranky beasts. I shot the one used for this week’s challenge with the 55-200mm at 55mm on my X-T4 with two Meike tubes, 10mm and 16mm each for a total of 26mm extension.

    I’ve tried them with my 10-24mm but no joy. The focus distance is right on the lens. A little better with the 16~55mm, but the 55-200 seems easiest to work with, though the lens hood has to come off.

    The depth of field is astoundingly narrow with macro at the best of times, even with a proper macro lens. Extension tubes can be even more extreme. Trying to shoot handheld is an exercise in frustration. Both for focus and camera jitter. So a tripod is pretty much essential. And focus manually. It also helps if your subject will do the kindness of staying still. lol

    It’s possible to widen the depth of field substantially using focus stacking. Your X-T3 has a couple of options to setup a focus bracket taking numerous images at different focal lengths. These files can then be merged using Lightroom and Photoshop. It can be a bit processing intensive depending on how many brackets you shoot. (The X-T4 took 61 for my original! But I ended up cropping substantially so could’ve gotten away with fewer in the end.)

    My Christmas present to myself this year is the TTArtisan 40mm f2.8 macro. I’ve only noodled with it a bit. Macro is very different method for lensing and framing, and I’m still wrapping my head around it. But it was about $130 Canadian dollars, so inexpensive and I had just upgraded my camera bag so there was some extra room which needed filling. πŸ˜‰ It’s a fully manual lens, so if I want to focus stack with it I will have to do it manually.

    If I end up falling in love with macro, I’ll consider upgrading to a full auto lens. πŸ™‚

  2. What a fantastic post; to hit so many posts in one is brilliant πŸ˜ƒ

  3. Beautiful! I love ferns so much and that sunlight is gorgeous. Also: yay, happy doggies! πŸ™‚

  4. What a fun walk down photo challenge lane! πŸ˜€ Those fungi are really cool. Much more graceful than the ones typically found in my neck of the woods!

  5. Pingback: Missed Opportunity ~ Pic and a Word Challenge #339 – Pix to Words

  6. Pingback: Weekend Sky #84 – Jan 7th – Blog of Hammad Rais

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