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The Road To Self Sustainability

One thing I set out to do in 2016 was to be more self sustainable. Living in the bush with no power wasn’t really what I had in mind but I do want to talk about a few things.

Glass blog

Mass production of goods, people not knowing where their food comes from and plastics. Bloody plastics.

I haaaaate plastic. I hate the idea of it, I hate how it doesn’t break down and I hate how we can’t recycle the majority of it. Yet here I sit, using a lot of plastic.

MIke 3 blog

One of three things is that I really want to focus on here was the reuse of as much plastic packaging as I can. I’m doing quite well in this department after having made a few basic changes.

Secondly, I’ve really set out to gather a lot of my own meat and this of course means catching fish. Or spearing it in this case. Instead of just filleting and throwing the rest away, we’ve refined the (kingfish) process to filleting, then prepping the spines, heads and wings for smoking. The tails and odd ends, as well as bones post smoke all get made into berley. The only thing we throw out is the skin and guts which go back into the water. Sustainable yes.

Lastly, I really want to grow my own veges. I have nothing to report here but am working on it ha. You get the idea.

Chilling homies blog

Anyway onto this week. I spent last weekend skimming about at Wenderholm with the team and at the Aotearoa Surf Film Festival. Saturdays vlog is here

Sunday was spent in the water where we managed to snag four Kingfish which were all prepped and the remaining parts smoked on Monday. We then hit up a really fun skim sesh at Pakiri. You might not want to watch this video if you’re not keen on seeing a bit of the errrr filleting process

The weather seems to have improved and I’m gearing up for another fun weekend!

Pakiri south blog

See you at the beach.

-Sam

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When Sharks Attack (Sort Of)

Well the last week has been interesting. The official Summer season that blessed us with either perfect, boiling hot days or torrential rain has now passed. Overall I have very mixed feelings about what was meant to be Summer, we all know that Autumn is the best time of year anyway. On that note here is my latest 4K drone video

I snuck in a few shoots over the week but this post is more about the weekend and our friend Fred. Fred appears to be the resident 8ft Bronze Whaler who hangs around us when we spearfish at Leigh. Another early start and a Kawhai in the bag very quickly.

Fred

Then in came Fred. I had just shot a nice size Drummer and he (or she) decided that it wasn’t my fish anymore. Still being fairly new to experiencing this, it really isn’t a reason to panic. Intense is probably the way to describe which I’m going to cover more shortly in a video. Peep the vlog below

I would really love to start getting some great shots of this sort of thing which requires a lot more coordination in the water from those around but we’re working on it!

Sunday is Fun day. Another early(ish) start to do the Ti Point walk with a friend. The weather was a beauty compared to what was forecast and we even saw some dolphins a long way out! I snapped a couple of panos with this one being my favourite

Ti Point Pano 2 blog

Not a pano but yes please

Ti Point 1 blog

The rain came in later on as forecast and I had the chance to have a look around this immaculate 6.5 million. Dollar. Chopper! Check it all below

The print room has also been getting a bit of use during the week as I wrapped up this job for the Bluefins Spearfishing Club

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As always it’s nice to survive another week 😉

See you at the beach!

-Sam

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Aerial Panoramas – How I Shoot Them

People seem fascinated by the aerial perspective of most things. So I am. It’s the feeling of being able to see something from a position you physically can’t get to.

Having no training in the field of photography makes things interesting. Throw a drone into the mix and too many ideas can complicate it at times but I’ve now well and truly welcomed myself to the world of HDR Panoramas.

HDR stands for High Dynamic Range and means you’ll be taking multiple exposures of the same image, stitching it together in post and editing the results. For landscape photography I love shooting HDR. Like A LOT!

Now throwing the word Panorama or Pano at it means more multiple images stitched together. Again this is a really beautiful procedure for landscapes.

Here is an example of a non HDR Pano.

G course Pano blog

Nice colour (although it clouded over), a fair bit of wow. Pretty simple.

Here is a HDR Pano of Omaha

Causeway 2 site

Sun was out, the tide almost perfect and lots of range!

This one is of Omaha Bay from Rodney Road. I was about 10 minutes late to get this shot. You can find out why by clicking here

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Obviously weather and angle plays a big part in the final result but the dynamic range in the HDR is so much better. This allows you to pull more detail from the shadows and drop the highlights so they’re not as blown out!

Better results, better images with more of a wow factor and better fun! HDR can be done poorly as well. When it’s overdone it’s just a bit…. Blaaaa.

There’s so many places I’ve been over the last year that I need to go back to and reshoot so it’s all in the planning.

This shot isn’t a Pano but it is a really nice HDR of the Omaha bridge

Causeway 4 blog

So many photos to take and so little time. Here’s to more HDR Panos.

 

See you at the beach!

-Sam

 

 

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Tyred

Sometimes I write blog posts when I’m bored. Sometimes when I have to. Sometimes late at night when I should’ve done it yesterday.

This one right now is new. I’m writing this because my ever reliable ute is sitting in the driveway with two flat tyres so I can’t leave my house. Yes two! How the hell did I manage that?

Not a clue. I had to change one on my way back from Pakiri yesterday afternoon on route to shooting a mindblowing pano of the bay. Thanks to said issue, it clouded over as I was about ten minutes too late so this is the best one

Pano 1 resize

Anyway the last week has been exhausting with this heat. I’ve been shooting plenty (no pun intended) in and out of the water. Last Saturday was another solid spear session out around the point so you can check the catch here

I also ducked out for a little golf course shoot in the evening and managed these couple of images

G course 1 blog

G course 2 HDR blog

Drone panos are fun. I will be writing a blog post very shortly with some details on this!

G course Pano blog

And yes of course, Sunday. A day like no other! A bit of swell hunting and a lot of photo taking. Peep the days action below

I shot A LOT of images this day, possibly too much. Here’s my favourites

Mike skim blog

Two roads blog

Ash 2 blog

These lads were having fun

Sending it blog

That was last weekend, it was a super fun one. I’m not sure about this one coming as I’m still working through my tyre woes. I will update once I’m rolling again.

See you at the beach!

-Sam

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10 Outta 10 Weekend

The weekends are simply spent doing what we love. At least they should be!

I know this is something I try to do my best at, as well as encouraging others to do the same. If this includes getting up super early and spearfishing until you’re completely exhausted then check out Saturday action below

Sunday again was an early start (shocking I know) but only shoot a couple of images as seen below

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You can purchase this image by clicking it.

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Pines 2 resize

Then it was skim time at a recently found spot at Tapora. Being inside the Kaipara harbour, surrounded by farmland, in the middle of nowhere, this little sand island spot is something truly unique.

Away from the shells and mud, this is probably the best set up for flatland skim I have ever seen. It’s a shame it’s not a little closer and easy to access. Find the days vlog below

I wrapped up the weekend with a little harbourside shoot with the drone. The film is included in the vlog and here is my favourite image

Boat HDR resize

You can purchase this image by clicking it.

Really solid weekend, I write this as I start to get set for another!

Let her rip boys!

See you at the beach.

-Sam

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January – Cyclone Victor, Kingfish & Minute Massacres

I used to do monthly wrap ups on my channel and stopped. I kind of feel with a few recent developments and the varied nature of what I do I felt it was time to bring it back.

January was more than packed with action in and out of the water. Find it all in the video wrap up below

Here’s the mentioned Minute Massacre from up north. This is why I find skimboarding the most fun!

Do you want a serious picture as well?

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Nahhh.

See you at the beach!

-Sam

 

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Spearfishing – The Ins & Outs

Is spearfishing the ultimate sport? It’s a lot like hunting but if you breathe at the wrong time you die. Plain and simple. Adding to that, it’s not like death by a freak accident, but death because you wanted some oxygen.

Having dabbled with a lot of water sports from a young age and being very active in probably the highest impact one of them all (skimboarding), we are now getting somewhat serious about this spearfishing thing. I don’t like fishing on a regular basis. It’s too slow, smelly and well……… Boring.

Spearing fish is the opposite. It’s full of action, it’s one hell of a physical and mental challenge and you get to see things most people won’t. Like sharks, you get pretty up close and personal with these alleged man killers.

I got my full kit late last year and figured it was time. Time to test myself, my rig (below) and my friends haha.

Set up blog

With a little bit of coverage on OXS TV already I just wanted to drop this little clip here and tell you what is up. My addictive personality will take this somewhere amazing, as well as a waterproof housing for the A6000, so we can cover all the action with some serious quality.

I really want to shoot some high quality stills from the bottom so I’ll be working on that shortly.

See you at the beach!

-Sam

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Auckland Anniversary Weekend – Three Days Of Vlogging

Auckland Anniversary seems to always be an absolute scorcher of a weekend. I vlogged the three days with activities such as spearfishing, wedding shoots and skimboarding all in the mix! Check the videos below

This day was rad!

Snapper for dinner!

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Cyclone Victor Coverage

This was a bit of a hard one. I had some big plans to make something really great from this swell but work commitments and the afternoon seabreezes had other ideas.

I would love to fill you in here but you may as well check the clips below from the Victor.



Blog post with pics is here.

See you at the beach!

-Sam

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Cyclone Victors Spoils

If you’re a wave chaser you’d know that the East coast is forecast a few cyclones this Summer. With already a couple of short sniffs of solid ground swells, Cyclone Victor arrived mid Jan with not too much hype about him (it?).

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With a building swell the forecast just didn’t quite line up. Victor didn’t come too close to land, so with expected light winds and seabreezes…. It didn’t quite line up with more conventional work commitments and that’s not to mention the 500m wide closeouts Omaha was dishing up. I didn’t even manage to get away and shoot some proper surf shots so it was more of sunrise vibe.

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The plan was to really shoot something similar but much better to what we did for Cyclone Pam last year. It didn’t quite pan out with those winds but the swell hung around for about a week which was nothing short of impressive. We even found this spot which we will not be telling you where it is.

Moon tree blogShallow reef resize

I did vlog a couple of the sessions with the self titled Cyclone Victor clip below

Here’s to the the next swell (which there’s a little whisper of at time of writing this).

See you at the beach!

-Sam