I’ve waited a couple of months for the Full moon rising to coincide with the Sunset and they were within 10-15 minutes of each other last night. I really want to get a shot of the Brisbane city Skyline with that beautiful purple/pink colour on the horizon and the Full Moon rising just behind it. To do this the planets have to align, so to speak haha, and last night was the night ! 🙂 But everything was against me, there was cloud cover the whole time in the direction of the moon and it was way too windy to do long exposure times even though I was using a tripod. I’m just going to have to wait a few more months I guess…

So instead of crying about it I just changed my game plan and started looking around for something inspiring. It was sunset after all and I had an amazing view ! I became interested in the the dynamic range on the large cloud over the city and ended up creating this composition. I also wanted to show an aspect of Australia state Capital cities like Melbourne, Canberra, Hobart, and Brisbane (well all of them!) which is that they are surrounded by the bush ! and LOTS of it. We have such a huge country for 22 million people and the bulk of it is still filled with plenty of local flora and fauna. I’ve been in Brisbane a little over 2 years now and it has this feel to it like it’s just a country town that grew and grew. People are still very connected to the country side here and most have friends and family living out in the country who they visit often.

Software Used:

Photomatix PRO – Is a MAC and PC HDR software for creating stunning HDR images. They have a free trial, but if you end up buying a copy of Photomatix you can get a 15% Discount with the coupon code LukeZemePhotography

– Topaz BW Effects 2 is a very versatile black and white filter program from Topaz

– Adobe Lightroom 5 catalog and adjustment program

– Adobe Photoshop CS6  used to layer and mask, plus much much more

Image Location:


View HDR “Mt Coot-Tha” print by Luke Zeme in a larger map

Thanks everyone, Luke

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2 Comments on "PHOTO OF THE DAY- Brisbane from Mount Coot-tha"

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John Davidson
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Hi photographer

Why do you use sepia and HDR? What are the benefits of this process?

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Hello John, Im not sure of how much you know about photography but a camera works a little differently to the human eye and brain. Our brains can take in a scene and adjust to make out details in the shadows and the bright (highlights) of the scene very quickly. But if we were take a photograph of the scene and we adjusted the camera to expose correctly for the dark areas of the image then all the bright areas will be blown out and turn out all white. Similarly if we set the camera to expose correctly for the… Read more »
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