Photographing Trees – Part 2


What an incredible amount of feedback I’ve had about a story I published here a couple of months ago – Photographing Trees. Thanks to everyone for the very kind comments left on the post itself, and the messages you have sent to me directly. I appreciate them all.

That story has had hundreds of views, prompting me to take another look at the topic, so here, logically, is Photographing Trees – Part 2.

As the weather here has not been conducive to getting out and taking photographs, I have spent quite a bit of time trawling through my photo archives and I surprised myself to discover that not only have I been photographing trees forever, but in many instances, they have been the main subject of an image.

I have my favourites in this wee collection, but I’d love to have your thoughts, good or bad, on what you see here.

Photographing trees part 2

a good indication of the prevailing wind direction

Guess which way the wind blows – taken with a Nikon D5100 and 18-55mm kit lens

The first time I photographed this windblown tree was with my now departed Nikon D5100. This particular photograph is one of a series of bracketed photos from when I was experimenting with HDR photography.

Originally in colour, this is the “exposed to the right” RAW shot, adjusted in Photolab 4, and converted to black and white in Nik Silver Efex.

Before I go any further I should add that Nik Silver Evex has been used for all the black and white conversions of these images.

lone old pine at oreti sands golf course

Old man pine – taken with a Nikon D300 and 15-55mm f3.5/5.6 lens

Old man pine stands on his own in the middle of what used to be a fairway at the southernmost 18-hole golf course in the world – Oreti Sands Golf Course – a few kilometres from my home.

Oreti Sands has long been abandoned as a golf course but is now a popular off-leash dog walking area.

Original image taken with a Nikon D300.

nighttime queens park invercargill

Queens Park – taken with a Nikon D5100 and 18-55mm kit lens

I often tell people that we have the best front garden in the city of Invercargill. This is because we live directly across the road from beautiful Queen’s Park.

Trees line the main path that runs north to south through the park.

This photograph, captured with a Nikon D5100, was my first ever serious attempt at night-time photography.

trees at the edge of a ploughed paddock

Nikon D5100, Holga plastic 60mm lens

Yep – I know it’s a very lo-fi image. That’s because it was shot with a 40mm plastic fantastic Holga lens on the front of my D5100. With zone focusing, and a fixed aperture of f8 which seemed more like f16, Holga produced some quirky, heavily vignetted,  fun, toy-camera-style images – but only in bright conditions.

In my mind, this image certainly deserved a retro/vintage black-and-white finish! Does it work? Mmmm – not sure. You be the judge.

new zealand cabbage tree

New Zealand cabbage trees – taken with a Nikon D5100 and 18-55mm kit lens

I’m sure that we’ve all taken photographs of trees against a bright blue skyline before. I’ve got dozens in my collection.

So common wherever you go in New Zealand, these particular trees are New Zealand Cabbage Trees.

I’ve overcooked the processing a little on this image with the tips of the long leaves showing a bit of a halo effect against the sky.

reflections in the otepuni stream

Upside down in the Otepuni Stream – taken with a Nikon D5100 and 18-55mm kit lens

No – it’s not upside down.

Taken on World Photo Day back in 2017, this could almost have been shot at night with the reflection on the water being the moon. But it’s not – it’s a watery sun (pardon the pun), the image having been captured on a dull, mostly cloudy day.

henley lake reflection

Henley Lake, Masterton – taken with a Panasonic Lumix G95 and 12-60 kit lens

This is my favourite in this collection.

It was taken at Henley Lake, Masterton while we were motor homing around New Zealand’s North Island earlier this year.

Windswept and bare, trees at Orepuki - Olympus Trip 35 photographing trees - part 2

Windswept and bare, Orepuki – Olympus Trip 35

This row of windswept trees is at Orepuki, overlooking Te Waewae BaySouthland.

The bare effect is as a result of constant exposure to the prevailing winds coming off the bay.

Thanks for looking. I hope you enjoy what you see and read here.

Please feel free to comment below – or email me directly with any feedback.


See al the photos in this story in a slideshow:

6 Responses

  1. Troy says:

    I really enjoyed your pics & commentary.
    Thanks for sharing. I will fumble around the internet and try to find part 1 of this series.
    Thank you.

  2. Amanda says:


  3. Craig Shute says:

    Sweet collection. I like both the one you’ve taken with the Hola plastic lens and the one from Masterton. Maybe it’s the vintage style that has turned what would possibly be an ordinary photo into something that appeals to me. You may have just inspired me to dust off(or charge the battery)of my D7200 and get out this weekend.

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