Last weekend I came across this spot whilst on holiday on the Kapiti Coast. I had been taking photos all day, and had just headed up in a different direction to before. Upon hitting the beach down a sandy path, the scene jumped out at me and I stopped. I stopped, put out the tripod and began getting the levels.
Switch: M Mode. ISO 100. f/8. 1/200 sec. Focal Length 17mm (as wide as possible). Live View (avoid mirror shake)
Snap: 2 sec delay (avoid hand shake). Medium JPG. Check exposure. Done. Happy.
Switch: Medium JPG + RAW.
Snap: Medium JPG + RAW. Check exposure. Done. Happier.
Wait: To get home to process the photo.
Usually when I get home and off-load the photos onto my laptop, I go through and cull a whole heap of the duds, and then put them into a collection to keep them organised. This time, I honestly couldn’t wait to scroll through the photos, find this one, develop it. So I did.
Step 1: Original Photo.
Need to: Lighten. Add contrast. Sharpen. Add Clarity. White balance. Vignette.
Step 2: Lighten. Straighten.
Lightened. Straightened. Clarity added. Sharpened.
Step 3: Final Image.
White balanced. Lightened. Push Contrast. Vignetted. Done.
Once I had developed it and was happy, I uploaded it to my favourite photo site, 500px.com.
Within seconds there was a vote and a comment.
Within minutes it was listed in ‘Upcoming’.
Within 2 minutes it was listed as ‘Popular’.
By the end of the day, it had a rating of 99.2 out of 100, and made it to the top 4 pages of Popular photos for the day. 20 images per page, that makes it in the top 80 photos on 500px on October 22, 2012.