Project Description

This week’s image comes to us from Daniel Hilton of New Zealand. Daniel has graciously supplied 3 images we’ll run in succession, begining with Nukunamo Island, Tonga.

Nukunamo Island, Tonga
Photographer: Daniel Hilton
Home Town: Wellington, New Zealand
Singh-Ray, Galen Rowell 2 (maybe 3)-stop graduated ND filter
Lens: Nikon 35mm f1.4 AIS
Film: Velvia 50
Shutter Speed: 1/1000s
Aperture: f5.6
Date: 1 January 2012
Scanned using Nikon Super Coolscan 5000.  No Photoshop adjustments.

The Ha’apai Island group in the Kingdom of Tonga is one of low-lying coral atolls.  Nukunamo Island, where this shot was taken, is a five- minute kayak from Foa Island where I was staying.  I can remember thinking that if I fell out of my kayak, it would be an expensive exercise!  Why tripod-mount a shot taken at 1/1000s?  To make working with the ND grad easier.  Why not stop down further to f8 or f11?  Because Bjorn Rorslett rates this lens particularly at f4 or f5.6.  I concur.  In my opinion the slight softness of the sand closest to the camera adds positively to depth perception.  This was only my second roll of Velvia 50 and taught me a valuable lesson – even the excellent matrix metering of the F6 can be fooled in high-contrast scenes with a sensitive film like Velvia 50 (in this case the contrast largely being provided by the filter).  At metered exposure, the shots were two-thirds to a full stop underexposed.  This was the last shot of the roll, and was bracketed up.  I like the simplicity of the image, and the colors of the water and sky.  Thank you to John Crane and the Nikon F6 project.