Last month, on the 25th of May, I called in sick due to the sniffles (which is still bugging me 2 1/2 weeks later). While I was snuggled up like a bug in bed, hoping for the sniffles to disappear, my mobile phone rang. It was a private number and I immediately knew that it was Westpac. You see, I just changed banks a few weeks back and the only “Private Number” calls I receive are from Westpac. I picked up the phone, silently wondering if I had forgotten to sign papers and needed to pop in a branch immediately to sort things out. I was relieved when it was not KW (the lady I usually deal with), but … someone else. Our conversation went something like this …
I can’t believe it’s been 3 months since I last posted something here. It’s not that I haven’t been travelling (well, I haven’t been on any long-distance trips but I have been going in and around Wellington), it’s just that I’ve been crazy busy! So many things have happened in the last 3 months – but I won’t be going into those bits – it’s just been crazy. Happy crazy – but crazy just the same. 🙂
Anyway – sometime in October, the whole clan flew down to the South Island for a much needed holiday. It was originally meant to be a week-long get-away to celebrate my mum’s 65th birthday, and for all of us to be able to put our feet up and just enjoy the beauty that is distinctly The South Island.
Remember the workshop I went to in 2012? I mentioned it briefly in my entry “The Colours of Queenstown” – well, the photos on that post weren’t from the workshop itself. Those images were taken at the Queenstown Botanic Gardens and I think Jackie had time to spare so, while waiting, she showed me various ways to use my camera. The actual workshop was held at Skippers Canyon.
Two years ago, sometime in April 2012, I attended a photography workshop at Queenstown (obviously one of my most favourite places here in New Zealand) and though I was initially concerned about the costs it involved – at the end of the workshop, I felt that it was the 4 hour session was well worth the expense. I learned a lot (whether or not I’ve put my knowledge to good use is another question altogether) and it was a completely unforgettable experience. It just opened up a whole new realm of photography. I just saw Queenstown in a whole new different light (and colour palette).
You see, when someone mentions the word “Queenstown” what immediately pops into my mind are the colours white, blue and grey. White, because Queenstown’s known to be the Winter Capital of New Zealand; Blue because of Lake Wakatipu; and Grey because of The Remarkables. I certainly did not expect Queenstown to be awash with oranges, reds, yellows and greens! But yeah – those colours were there!
Jackie, from the QCCP, and I spent about an hour at the Queenstown Botanical Garden and we stayed rooted at one spot. Well – we did move around a bit, but we never strayed more than 5 metres from where we left our bags. From where we stood, Jackie would point out leaves, and trees and twigs – things I would have just ignored and showed me how to look at them, and helped me capture some of their glorious wonder. Would you believe that in that short span of time, we came up with these amazing images?
I couldn’t believe all this beauty was just there – waiting to be seen! I was like …
So anyway, I’m going on another workshop in about a month’s time – still on landscape photography but we’ll go around Wellington instead. Yes, there’s going to be some costs involved but I’ll just close my eyes and go for it – I’ve decided to go for gold. It may set me back a few Ds but I know I will learn heaps (you can’t quantify learning anyway) and will put into practice all that they will teach. If I want to improve on my photography I have to do something about it, right? See. Me. Soar!
capturing better images creating amazing photographs.
Went to the South Island again earlier in the year and spent the long weekend (I think it was Wellington Anniversary Weekend) up at Wanaka. While at Wanaka, I was fortunate enough to have been able to visit an honest-to-goodness working vineyard! I think I was there on a Sunday which is why the place is deserted. It wasn’t the “Walk In The Clouds” type of sprawling vineyard but it was one just the same. Was quite excited about it because I’ve never really been this close to grapes on a vine. Well, mama has some grapes in her garden, but that doesn’t count. 😛
YUZH! I’ve finally managed to find the time to write about something. I had meant to blog about Arrowtown last Wednesday but, for some reason, the temperature dropped and all of a sudden, it became too cold for my body to function. I had all these ideas going through my head but my feet and fingers just wanted to feel the warmth of my electric blanket. It’s really quite chilly – it’s much colder now than this time last year. Brrr ….
Anyway … Arrowtown. On the first day of my second South Island Sojourn (the first was in 2008), after dumping my stuff at The Base, I headed off to Arrowtown to witness their Autumn Festival. I seriously didn’t know this was going to be held on the week I would be in town. I found out about all about it some time before I had to fly off. I think I did a Google search on Arrowtown (I think I was looking for someplace to eat) and the Arrowtown Autumn Festival came up.
Whew! I’m finally somewhat settled after taking that wonderfully gruelling week of travelling. In case you didn’t know, I went to the South Island again, and visited three main cities in a span of 7 days! I went to Queenstown, which was still as beautiful as ever (and had half a day in Arrowtown and a whole day at Skippers Canyon), took the bus to, and spent some time in Invercargill, then took the shuttle and ferry to and spent a few days at Stewart Island. Of course I had to make my way back to Queenstown after Stewart Island for my flight back up to Auckland. I’m exhausted, have several hundred images I need to sift through and lots of stories to tell. I’ll sort out my thoughts first (and finish some articles I need to submit by this coming Monday). I hope to be more coherent tomorrow. Meanwhile, I shall leave you with this …
It’s a photo I took of Lake Hayes, while on the bus to Arrowtown. It’s beautiful isn’t it? Well, the South Island is beautiful, I suppose it has something to do with the imposing mountain ranges which the North Island doesn’t have. The Remarkables at Queenstown really are remarkable and the mountain ranges that lead up to Wanaka and Tekapo are just amazing. Anyway. I’ll compose my thoughts first and write more stories tomorrow.