The ‘icon’ shots

Any trip to a new place involves a bit of research especially when there is limited time and so much to see. For my NZ trip I spent countless hours looking at photographs from the region and working out where I wanted to go to try and capture images that were visually pleasing.

There were a few shots that I kept seeing over and over again, images that seemed almost ‘iconic’, those must get shots, so I mentally wrote myself a ‘shot list’. Admittedly the list was not that long so it made it easier to achieve success. There were 3 shots that I wanted to get and happy to say I nailed them all.

Shot 1. Glenorchy Dawn.                        I had seen a photograph of dawn breaking across the Humboltd ranges in the west. I spent a cold hour at the end of the Glenorchy jetty waiting for dawn. I had forgotten that dawn breaks later when you are in a valley. Finally the moment arrived and I managed to get exactly the shot that I hoped for. Score 1 for the shot list 🙂

ISO100, F9.0, 1/13sec

ISO100, F9.0, 1/13sec

Shot 2. Wakatipu Pier.                                      Along the edge of Lake Wakatipu somewhere between Queenstown and Glenorchy was a broken down old pier where the only thing left were a few stumps. I wanted to get the classic ‘smooth water’ long exposure shot of this but the problem was 48km of road and very little idea of where this pier was. After much searching online I thought I had it narrowed down to about 15km and went searching. It actually was not where I thought it was however I did find it and voila – score 2 for the shot list.

ISO50, F22, 20secs

ISO50, F22, 20secs

Shot 3. The Wanaka Tree.                            I swear if you were to type Wanaka into an image search within the first 5 images will the famous Wanaka tree. This tree on the edge of the lake must literally be the most photographed tree in the whole of New Zealand. I came, I saw, I conquered.  Shot list completed and a very happy me.

ISO200, F3.5, 1/500sec

ISO200, F3.5, 1/500sec

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2 Responses to The ‘icon’ shots

  1. Tony Irving says:

    Could you help me find the location of the old piers on the Lake Wakatipu shoreline … are there any tips you could give me?

    Thank you

    • Augustine says:

      Hi Tony,
      I have tried to find on a map where I took these photos of the old pier and I can’t remember where it was. All I recall is that it was towards Queenstown on the Queenstown-Glenorchy Road, down near Bobs Cove. I remember that there were some buildings on the left and on the right (lakeside) there were some tall poplars along the waters edge. I glimpsed the broken pier through the poplars and just pulled in to the lakeside where there was a small parking area. I am sorry that I can’t do better. As I recall it was close to where the lake turns to go towards Queenstown. If you do find it I would suggest later in the day when the light is lower and try to put the camera into a slower shutter speed to get the smooth water look. If you find it and need more help email me at and I will try to give you more precise camera settings. Good luck on the hunt 🙂

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