Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

Small rooms in the Big House

On a prime piece of real estate overlooking Wellington's harbour there is an old prison that has just ceased operating. They held an open day for the public to get an insight into what it was like behind the brick wall and razor wire - it was actually so popular that they extended it for a second day.
This photo was given a filter called 'retrodrops' in the Retrogram app.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Above and beyond...

A few months back I checked out a very enjoyable New Zealand made western feature film - Good for Nothing - and pre-ordered a copy of the DVD.
I had heard that it was about to be released but was given a very pleasant surprise when the director of the film ambled up our driveway and handed over a beautifully wrapped & wax stamped copy of the DVD... such service!
A benefit of living in the hub of Wellington's movie district.
This 'pack shot' was given the rustic treatment with Camera+

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Guy Fawkes Night

I was fortunate to have a superb ring-side view of Wellington's fireworks show on the harbour (not only a great view, but great food and company).
I took quite a few photos with my DSLR and then got out the iPhone to try out an app called Slow Shutter. It allows you to choose a variety of shutter speeds that aren't normally accessible with the standard camera - this was shot at 1 second and then given a boost with the 'drama' filter in Snapseed.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Ready for action

There are a couple of houses in our neighbourhood that really get into the 'spirit' of Halloween and put a lot of effort into decorating their places.
This shot was taken just on dusk and edited to give some more detail and colour into the scene with the Camera+ app.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Small but perfectly formed

This cute little fella (a Pygmy Marmoset) is only about 10cm tall and looks like wind-up toy. There are about 4 of them in a glassed off enclosure in the cafe of Wellington's Zoo - very entertaining.
I used a couple of filters in my 'go-to' photo app, Camera+, to give the shot a bit more punch and warmth.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Retro Eatery, Retro Image

Another cool place to eat & drink on Cuba Street - El Matador. This place has been given a distressed look and propped with lots of Spanish/Latino artefacts.
The photo was put through the Retrogram app, which seemed fitting.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Big News

Yep, another variation on the iPhone has landed.... and, no, I don't own one... yet.
This shot was taken with my iPhone 4 in a Telecom store and treated with the Halftone app.
The phone itself was very fast at launching apps, scrolling through pages and shooting photos. In fact the camera improvements over the '4' are almost enough reason for me to want to upgrade... I have rarely used my point-and-shoot camera since getting an iPhone, so the device has become a very important event recorder.

Monday, September 17, 2012

First blooms

I liberated this native kowhai tree seedling from a life in a cold dark gulley and planted it on a reasonably sunny slope in Miramar.
It's been looked after as badly as the rest of the trees around it, but despite that, after about 4 years it's finally flowered for the first time. Not many blooms and much later than most, but great to see these intense yellow flowers.
The shot was given a few tweaks with the app Snapseed.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Sunset landing

When I saw this dramatic sky and a plane approaching I stopped my scooter, grabbed out my iPhone and shot this frame.
The best method of actually taking the photo (I find) is to place a finger on the camera icon (shutter button) and lift it off to take the shot. This is not only steadier than tapping on the phone, but it is usually very responsive when trying to capture peak action.
This image was cropped and enhanced with Camera+.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Tasty Design

We were given a bag of coffee beans recently which almost look too good to open. Maybe we'll just put it on a shelf like a piece of artwork...?!
Straight shot from iPhone - no editing.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

All dressed up

Having been along to a Canon photographic roadshow I picked up a couple of pieces of merchandise... and this transfer adds a bit of pizzaz to my laptop.
The photo was given a touch of 'clarity' and 'toy camera' in Camera+.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Low light is alright

While shooting some video of a performance I grabbed a couple of iPhone images of what I was doing. I'm still surprised by how well the 'ancient' iPhone 4 manages to handle low-light situations.
It certainly requires more care than in brighter conditions and I always place my finger on the 'shutter' icon, hold steady then release my finger, rather than tapping on the icon to take the shot (much harder to hold the phone steady that way).

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Sign Time-lapse

I finally got an edited version of the time-lapse online. Although it was shot with Canon DSLR's, the final title frame was shot with my iPhone.
New Wellington Sign - July 2012 from Mike Clare on Vimeo.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Where are we?

I spent a good chunk of a day with a camera set up to record a time-lapse of a new sign being installed on a hill near Wellington's airport.
Of course I also took a few shots with the iPhone - this image was cropped and given a 'fashion' filter in Camera+.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Shades of Banksy

A local graffiti artist seems to be paying homage to the famous Banksy with this stencil piece. I didn't get a chance to see if the the QR code leads anywhere but I'll have to check it out.
Cropped, tinted & given a border with Camera+.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Must be good...

A cheeky name for some makeup - for those times when you need it!
This shot was given the Instagram treatment which seemed to work. Sometimes square pictures can be clean and simple but also have a boldness that other shaped images lack.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Wheels and water

A beautiful winters morning and a walk along the promenade at Lyall Bay. There is a fairly strong following of these classic Japanese bicycles in the Capital - a great way to get around.
Un-retouched photo, straight from the iPhone.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Kindly vandals

We've had some rather cool days lately so it's nice to know that there are some radical guerrilla handcraft vandals out there who are considerate towards the Capital's statues.
I ran this photo through a couple of filters in Camera Awesome.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Evening glow

There's usually something photogenic going on along the waterfront - particularly around dusk.
The panoramic nature of the scene lent itself very well to using the 6x17 format crop in the 645 Pro app. I later made a few adjustments to the image with the app Snapseed (one of the only apps I have that allow for localised adjustments).

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Winter colour

Downtown Wellington is often pretty drab at this time of the year, but it's usually not hard to find a few splashes of colour.
Unedited shot - straight from the phone.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Room with a view

This house bus found a great place to park on Lyall Bay and view twilight over Cook Strait.
I imported the image into PhotoForge2 to crop it and increase the colour saturation.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Italian delight

Finally had the chance to sample pizza fresh from the wood-fired oven I helped install - delicious.
This late afternoon image was edited with the Camera+ app.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Seasonal Colours

Another use of Frametastic - this time to show some of the colours that are everywhere in the Wairarapa. We don't get the Autumn colours to the same extent in Wellington.

Monday, May 14, 2012


A weekend over at the Wairarapa coast meant that I got my first real taste of riding (driving?) a 500cc quad bike.
A lot of fun, but I can see the need to be wary of them in some situations - quite a few people have managed to crash these things.
This morning-light shot was given a bit more zing with Camera+ clarity setting.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Hospital treatment

I realised that I hadn't followed up from an earlier post regarding our son's iPod Touch that had a broken screen.
The micro-surgery went very well and everything is back to working (& looking) how it should. It was certainly a fiddly and delicate operation - one that I wouldn't like to attempt again... hopefully I won't have to.
The amazing thing is that I managed to find a replacement screen, with tools, a spare home button, a cleaning cloth and a special adhesive pad sent from China to New Zealand, all for about NZ$25.
This shot was captured with my new favourite 'Polaroid' app called ShakeItPhoto.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Real People, Real Guns

I took this quick reference shot before installing my photographic exhibit at a local gallery. These are large A2 sized prints (the images themselves weren't shot on the iPhone) and I've knocked together some rustic timber bases for them. A few nails to hold them in place and Bobs your uncle...
This shot was given some 'clarity' and a black border with Camera+.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Ripsnortin' Good Time

While hunting through an op shop bargain bin and found this gem amongst the LP's.
There are websites devoted to similar record covers - I think this deserves a place.
The shot was cropped and desaturated using the Camera+ app.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Harvest time

Our crop of crab apples are looking ripe (well as ripe as these deceptively pretty fruit can be)... so now we've got to decide whether we need any more crab apple jelly or if there is something more interesting we can make.
This shot was enhanced with Camera+ (some warmth added to the sky colour).

Monday, April 16, 2012


A nasty fall onto a hard surface is the nightmare of all gadget-carriers. Unfortunately our son had this experience with his lovely white iPod Touch.
A hunt on the Internet soon found a replacement screen winging in from
the States... now it's time for a steady hand, some small implements and the courage to rip apart what Apple deemed to be a no-go zone.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Rolling with style

This rather gorgeous old garden roller is leaning up against a wall of Mansion House on Kawau Island.
We had a fun-filled 24 hours on the island where we were looked after very well and celebrated a friend's special birthday.
This shot was given the 'miniature' selective focus treatment and a rough border with the app Camera+.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Always best to be on the lookout for outbreaks of sarcasm.
This shot was imported into CameraBag where it was cropped to a square and tweaked.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Look up!

Kids toy meets industrial mega-machines. One of many sculptures in Wellington that embrace the wind.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Taste of Cuba

Havana Cafe & global headquarters of their coffee empire is such a cool place to hang out. It has a great cosmopolitan vibe and a classy fleet of vehicles - like this old Studebaker truck.
This image was dipped in some Tilt Shift sauce before posting.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Exposure Magic

More use of the HDR option within the iPhone's camera.
This scene at Maranui has a huge exposure range - from dimly lit cafe to seascape - but the HDR (high dynamic range) manages to grab three quick shots at different settings and combine them with software to try and show detail in the shadows and highlights. The waitress on the right shows some slight ghosting from her movement between frames.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Run in the sun

A glorious Friday afternoon at Oriental Bay sitting on my scooter watching the world go by.
This shot hasn't actually been edited by me, but I had the 'HDR' option set in the native camera app. When this is on the phone snaps 2 shots (edit: 3 shots) in quick succession and combines them to try and get the best from highlight areas and shadows - so the runner moving between the shots is ghosted in the finished image.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Reach for the sky

So, although we're technically into autumn now this little scene has a very spring feel.
I ran it through Instagram with the 'lo-fi' filter... just 'cos.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Visitor from Makara

This beauty (OK, maybe not visually beautiful) and a friend made for some delicious eating and they certainly have a unique look.
The photo was run through a new app called Camera Awesome which is chock-full of features for taking photos and has some great post-production filters to apply. The app itself is free but if you'd like extra 'filter packs' they are payable.
I love the name given to the filter used on this shot - More Cowbell (the name is based on a great comedy skit).

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Fresh as, bro'

If you can't catch your own fish the next best thing is to get some from the boys selling straight off the back of their boat in Chaffers Mariner.
I used a filter called Otherworldly Glow in the app Simply HDR - giving this shot the look of a hyper-real painting.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

The eyes have it

Yet another app to play with... Cinemagram - this app helps to make the creation of cinemagraphs an easy task. Essentially this is an animated gif where only part of the overall frame is moving. 
This was my second attempt at creating a cinemagraph and it won't be my last

Thursday, February 23, 2012

City view

Wellington, like many cities I guess, can take on different personas (personii) depending on where you direct your gaze, or iPhone.
I ran this image through an app called Simply HDR (which extends the details in the different tones) and also cloned out some distracting elements with another app called Retouch.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Into the light

A late afternoon scene that tests the quality of the iPhone 4 camera. I have noticed that it can produce some odd-looking red lens flare in harsh situations similar to this - I guess it depends on the contrast range of the scene - this scene was captured with a natural look.
When this was taken I also shot an in-camera HDR frame but it had a very muddy surreal look to it - so here's the unedited image.

Monday, February 13, 2012

On the road...

Snapped out the window during a trip north (no, I wasn't driving) this scene shows some effects of the iPhone's 'rolling shutter'. The upright post on the left has been captured as leaning due to the progressive way the scene is saved during exposure.
Cropped and 'clarified' with Camera+.

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Our daughter has just started photography class at high school and unlike her older sister, she will be using a digital camera. I think they may have boarded up the darkrooms...
This shot of Victoria holding her camera was taken on my camera and then photographed with the iPhone. It was then adjusted with Photogene2 - a rather clever app that I got specifically to add information into the metadata of my photos.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Bugging out

I don't know whether this VW owner was actually packed for a sporty weekend away or whether they just loaded it up with things as props, but it looked pretty good.
Tweaked in PhotoForge 2.

Friday, January 27, 2012

The party's over...

After a fun-filled week in Golden Bay, South Island, the family and I returned to Wellington on the evening ferry.
This shot, as we were about to leave Marlborough Sounds was treated with a 'spot' filter in the app RetroGram.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Get the message!

The Mussel Inn near Takaka does a good chowder, but if you yak on your phone it may get nailed to the post.
This shot was very pink from the sunlight coming through a red sunshade do I converted it to black & white using Photo fx.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Make my day

Cruising around the remote upper South Island we had a moment of excitement when spotting this classy caravan of caffeine consumption.
It's been parked up at various events and locations around Wellington for a few years so it was a complete surprise to see it at Collingwood... but wonderful to get a sublime coffee fix (of Sublime Coffee).
** also shown in the 'Frametastic' posting.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Photo safari

Using the app Frametastic I grabbed a few images from my photo-wandering today.
Although the iPhone screen tends to pick up unwanted reflections in the sun, as long as the brightness is up high enough the screen makes a surprisingly good viewfinder for general photography.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Photo with flare

I thought this hanging shell ornament in the setting sun was bound to make an interesting image.
This hasn't been edited at all, the iPhone 4 has a tendency to flare quite strongly with a light source in the frame but this time the flare has taken on a flower-like pattern.