Horsing Around

Amazed and honoured to have my photo “Horsing around” selected as the Jury Prize Winner in the 2017 Otago Wildlife Photography Competition.

I took this image when I was photographing in Central Otago with my friend.  We were driving along and saw some amazing light in a field with two beautiful horses in the distance.  Of course when we stopped and walked up to the fence they didn’t stay off in the distance where we thought they’d make a great image, they came right up to us to see what we were doing.

With them being so close to the fence I tried to get down low and shoot up so that the fence wasn’t included.  The sky was rather dramatic which helped a lot.  After a while I was happy with the shots that I’d taken so I went to step away.  I turned around to step down the little bank that we were standing on, and at that moment one of the horses decided he hadn’t finished having his photo taken and bit me on my arm!  I’ve never had such a sore arm before!  It started like a red mark but after a day or so was a massive purple and black bruise 😦

I decided then that I wouldn’t ever go near a horse again!  However, after the bruise has gone and now with this lovely award, my feelings have softened towards the horses 😉

Exhibition is on at the Otago Museum until 23rd July.

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Celebrating 125 years

I’ve been working with a few others for the last few months on getting things ready for the 125th anniversary of the Dunedin Photographic Society.  It’s very cool to be part of something that has been around for so long.

The Society started in March 1890 when a small group of enthusiastic photographers got together with the intention of encouraging amateur pictorial photography.  Today, 125 years later, the group is larger and more diverse, but the intent of fostering enthusiastic photographers continues.

As part of the anniversary weekend we organised an exhibition.  It includes a selection of old photos from the Hocken Library and a selection of mini exhibitions from current members.  It was quite hard to chose what to exhibit in my mini collection, but in the end I went with 4 “street” photos.

We also organised a official opening of the exhibition for members, a dinner and a photowalk.  The photowalk included a visit to the old Dunedin Prison (wouldn’t like to have been stuck in there!) and a wander around the Vogel St area.

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Happy New Year

2015! Time flies! I’m not a great one for making new year’s resolutions – let alone keeping the ones I do make, but this year I am resolved to try and post more regularly on my blog.  Not lots of text, just sharing my photos once in a while. Here’s the first one of 2015, from the 1st Jan when I went on a wee solitary photowalk around town exploring the street art that has emerged recently.

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eBooks

London Streets eBookLife has been somewhat busy lately and while I’ve been taking lots of photos, this blog has been a bit neglected. Anyway, I thought now was a good time to get a post up about my latest thing… making eBooks for sale on Blurb.

I’ve made a couple of print books and have been very pleased with the way they have turned out. However, I find myself reading more and more books and magazines on my iPad these days, so thought why not try making an eBook.  I have made two so far: “London Streets” http://bit.ly/1tgykVT, and “Dunedin: the land, architecture, and people” http://bit.ly/1xD1Rd7.

They are really fun to make – I love putting all the photos together and working out which ones fit together best, and it’s great to see the final result.  It’s just a shame that they are only available for the iPhone/iPad at the moment through the Blurb store.

Book Published – Dunedin: the land, architecture, and people

I have just finished creating a book for the final paper of my Photography Diploma.  I chose my home town of Dunedin, NZ as the subject and have focused on the Land, the architecture and the people of the city.

This was a fantastic challenge and I have learnt a lot from the process. We could chose to do a book, exhibition, or website and had about 6 weeks to take and process at least 50 photographs.  Originally I had thought I would do an exhibition, but when it came down to it a book seemed like a nice keepsake from the Diploma.

I have used Blurb for publishing and I’m still waiting for the final hard copies to arrive, but it was really easy to use and integrated seamlessly with Lightroom – I had a collection that I used for all the photos to be in the book and then just created the book from that collection.  There are lots of different page layouts you can use, but I tried not to get too carried away and used only about 3 or 4 different ones in the end.  The hardest part was working out the layout of the images in the book.  I would have an image I liked, but then when I sat it next to another image the clouds wouldn’t match, or the horizons were at different levels and they looked funny.  There were a lot of trips back to some locations trying to reshoot photos to get what I wanted.

In the end, I’m happy with what I have created, and if you would like to check it out you can do so here: http://www.blurb.com/books/5414984-dunedin

Dunedin
Dunedin
The land, architec…
By Melanie Middlemiss
Photo book

Sunrise on St Clair

One of the best things about belonging to the Dunedin Photographic Society is going out with others on photo walks and field trips.  On Sunday a group of us met up at the shark bell down at St Clair beach to watch the sunrise.  From my place it looked like it was going to be quite foggy, but that seemed to roll out to sea quickly and we were treated with some beautiful colours in the sky.  Well worth getting up for, and made all the better by a hot chocolate at the Esplanade to finish the morning 😉

Dash for the beach

St Clair, Dunedin

Taking a moment

St Clair, Dunedin, NZ

The Hydro

Garden stroll

I met up with a couple of tutors from the Online Photo Institute (OPI) today (they used to be tutors on the course I’m doing at SIT), and a few other SIT students and photographers from Dunedin. It was great to put names to faces and hear about the plans Phil has for the OPI.

Afterwards, I took a moment to grab a couple of photos – I had intended to photograph the new worm sculpture, but the sun (strangely enough – it’s been raining so much!) was too bright for the metal.  Anyway, instead I happened across this lovely couple out for a quiet stroll around the gardens.

Garden stroll by mjm_nz
Garden stroll, a photo by mjm_nz on Flickr.

Evening Rush

Evening Rush by mjm_nz
Evening Rush, a photo by mjm_nz on Flickr.

This print, and three others of mine, are currently on display in the Dunedin Community Art Gallery as part of 44th Dunedin Festival of Photography Exhibition www.dps.org.nz/

The exhibition is free and is open this week 10-4pm, closing at 2pm on Sunday.  I’ll be on the desk Wed 4-6pm and Friday 10-12noon if you want to come and say hi 🙂