This morning I woke up and felt my way to the balcony in the dark, waving my arms around like a blind person, to check the weather… My flat mate was up watching the world cup soccer and I was impressed at his dedication for waking up before the sun. The sky was relative clear so I decided to head to the coast and do some seascape photography at Bondi beach. At 6am Bondi is like an ant farm with worker ants running every which way! It’s incredibly popular to be fit and healthy in Bondi these days and some of the more popular activities are yoga and boot camps. I prefer an extra strong espresso myself this early in the morning 😉

I started up on the cliff with my camera and tripod whilst it was still dark and slowly made my way down to the water shooting compositions along the way. When I shoot a composition I shoot a (0) exposure first and then I take a look at the result on the back of the camera and work out if I’d like any exposures like the (-2) (-1) (+1) or (+2). These help me to bring out details in the shadows and highlights later when I edit the image on my computer. At this time of the day its always good to do a (-2) for the sky at least.

Looking at this image, titled “Green Rock Sunrise“, I shot a series of 4 bracketed images with my camera on a tripod. I love these fluffy green boulders on the surfs edge… They look so soft and make me want to lie down on them or something. Whilst the sun rose off to my left I had fun doing my thing with my camera whilst a group of girls did their morning yoga right next to me. After their yoga they stripped down to their bikini’s and had a quick dip in the ocean! Brave, very brave! At this time of the morning and year the water must be icey cold.

Editing Technique:

HDR tonemapping as well as Luminance masks in Photoshop. I also applied filters selectively from On1 Perfect Effects.

If you’d like to learn luminance masks, I can highly recommend the video tutorials from Jimmy Mcintyre. Luminance mask Video Tutorial LINKS

Software Used:

I used a HDR program from google called HDR EFEX PRO 2 to combine my 4 bracketed images.

– On1 Perfect Effects – An amazing Filter program to stylise your images. Comes as a standalone filter program which can also be launched from Lightroom, Photoshop or Aperture.

– Adobe Photoshop CC  used to layer, mask, make adjustments plus much much more.

Image Location:

View 6 Notts Ave in a larger map

Thanks, guys you can leave a comment below 🙂 


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.


Sony A7r


Sony FE 28-70mm + ND8 Filter

Focal Length




Shutter Speed

1.0, 2.0, 6.0 & 8.0 seconds



HDR info

4 bracket HDR image


Wednesday 18th of June, 2014


7:03 am


Bondi Beach, Sydney Australia.

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