Hunua Falls

 Behind the lens (Ok, it's from a slightly different spot from where the final image was taken).

Behind the lens (Ok, it's from a slightly different spot from where the final image was taken).

Hunua Falls.

Hunua Falls is a 30 metre waterfall in the Hunua Ranges regional park. 

We stopped off here briefly on our way to meet some friends in Mt Maunganui. It was the first time I tried my new 3 stop Marumi ND filter in conjunction with my Polariser. This gave me a total of around 6 stops, meaning I could get shutter speeds low enough to blur water in bright sunlight.

I've combined two images here, one for the landscape and another for the waterfall itself. In this case a two stop over exposed image was used for the landscape, it was lowered by two stops in lightroom to bring it to the right exposure. I was lucky that the overexposed image didn't have any blown highlights (except for in the waterfall itself) meaning I could use it. Remember, it's always better to darken a bright image that to lighten and dark one! The overexposed image also gave me a better blur on the pool. Next the waterfall from the correctly exposed image was masked into place. I didn't need to use the under exposed image as the highlights on the waterfall were fine in the correctly exposed image.

Next a few mundane contrast and saturation adjustments were applied to make the dull RAW image pop. Finally I darkened the edges a little to draw the eye into the image and used levels in photoshop to dodge the grass and rocks in the foreground a little as I wanted them a little brighter.