Sight Unseen Photography

The photographic journal of Brisbane photography studio: Sight Unseen

Walking in the Winter Wonderland

Christina and I just drove back from Sydney with Charlotte. We had to make a few short stops to let her stretch, and during one of these moments I took this quick candid shot.

A Very Special Day

I’d like to start by wishing all mothers a very happy Mothers Day!

This year, more than any other, I’ve come to realise the significance of this day because Christina and I are the proud parents of a new born baby girl!

News of our little one’s impending arrival was both serendipitous and terrifying. We were both very excited about the prospect of being pregnant, but I suppose we’d thought it would still be a couple of years before we actually planned on starting a family.

The real excitement began when we went for our first ultrasound. We really didn’t quite know how far along we were – I thought maybe 8 weeks, and Christina thought around 6. We decided to have a little bet to see who was the closest, but regardless we were both super excited for the chance to catch a glimpse of our ‘little jellybean’.

As it turned out we were a litle futher along than we’d thought… at 14 weeks, and our little angel was more the size of a grapefruit than a jellybean! We decided then and there that this little surprise package would be nicknamed Jellybean, and when we told our story to our friends and family, the name just stuck. I’d also decided, well before she was born, that I’d need to do a Jellybean themed shoot – and this is what I came up with:

She was around 10 days old then, and now that she is approaching 4 months I am honestly amazed at how fast she has grown and developed. So I decided to put together a very personal post of images from a few moments after birth right up to a few days ago as a Thank You to my beautiful wife – Happy 1st Mother’s Day darling, and thank you for giving me my gorgeous baby girl!

Shooting Raw 2011

Finally… finally one of my photos has won a competition! It was the smallest, least known, worst awarded… but one that’s pretty close to my heart!

My photography competition entering would be considered… casual… at best. In the last couple of years I’ve entered some shots in a couple of the biggies, and have surprised myself by doing pretty well, but have never actually taken out first place with one. I guess I’d be excited if I did though, and the thought of winning cash and prizes is always one worth entertaining. But if truth be told I’ve never really bought into the fanfare of the bigger comps and, probably to my detriment, have always been a little vocal about how much I dislike the fact that many photography competitions are becoming Photoshop competitions. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a firm advocate for all things Photoshop, and can’t honestly remember the last time I displayed an image that hadn’t gone through post processing, but I’m also weary of the over-emphasis many of my fellow enthusiasts place on fashionable post processing tricks to make their images stand out rather than good old fashioned photography know how.

And don’t even get me started on Instagram…

I’m probably getting carrier away, but all this rambling does come to a point.
Late last year I discovered that a small group of Brisbane photographers were holding an annual competition called Shooting Raw. Run very similarly to Naked In The House, this competition is all about exercising basic photography skills – Light, Composition and Creativity.

There were only 12 photographers in the competition and we were all given a time to turn up at a location in the city that none of us had visited before. We were all given the task to shoot fine art nude portraits of a model we’d never seen before. And we all had to obey some pretty simple rules:

  • We were allowed a 10 minute perusal, and 20 minutes of shooting time to capture no more than 12 images total.
  • All 12 images had to be consecutive (ie no deleting and trying again), shot at the same ISO or roll of film, same camera and same lens.
  • The model was completely posed at our direction and could not pose herself

Of the 12 images we took we had to present 3 for judging. They had to be converted or prepared in Black and White, and the only post processing allowed was to push/pull exposure by up to 2 stops, but if we chose to do that then it had to be applied the same to ALL the images.
The organiser took a copy of our images as we left our shoot in order to confirm that no further processing techniques were applied.

When all the dust had settled and the judging done, this little picture of mine was chosen as the winner. :)


For the benefit of readers who might be viewing this in public I’ve hidden the rest of the images from the main page. To view the them just follow the link below for more, or click the title of the post.
Read the rest of this entry »

Footwear Optional

There are just some days where I REALLY love my job and Amber & Dan‘s wedding was one of those days.

Picture this:
Cruising down to beautiful Byron Bay, sky is a sapphire blue with not a cloud in sight. Wind is light but just chilled enough to make being outdoors on a balmy summer afternoon a true delight.

I pull into the heart of Byron for a quick snack before heading to the beautiful Shambhala, which had been booked out completely for the event. I spend some time walking the grounds (exploring the hidden treasures) in the fine company of the happy couple and their families.

Eventually I share in their special day, play around with the bridal party (Hula Hoops anyone?), catch a tuk tuk back to town, dance spontaneously to the beat of a street band, and finally kick back with a beer as a truly magnificent sunset unfolds before me.

Oh.. I managed to get some photos too!


Congratulations Amber & Dan, and thanks for letting me share in your perfect/crazy/classy/WONDERFUL day!


2012 Site News

Yep, I know I’m running a little late here, but this site has got some New Years resolutions that you might notice in the very near future.

Firstly, there was a big delay around January/Feb and I’ve still got a heap of journal entries to make… as I might have mentioned, I’m a very proud new dad (!) and still getting my head around things like ‘cluster feeding’ and ‘sleep deprivation’ :-)
It’s all getting better though, so we should be back on track in the coming weeks.

Behind the scenes, I’ve (finally) built myself a new photo/CAD processing PC. It’s a massive step up from the previous rig I’ve been using (since 2006…) and has made a big difference to my workflow. One of those changes is that I’ve had to move on from a previous monitor calibration that I’ve relied on all this time. A couple of new monitors means that sometimes what I’m seeing on my screens might be a little different to what you are seeing on yours.
I expect this is something that will also work itself out over the coming weeks as I fiddle with settings and tweak my gamut. (don’t laugh, it’s a real thing!)

The tech-heads reading this might like to know that the new system is:

  • Intel i7 2600k (previously an E6600)
  • 32gb of ram (previously 4gb, or 3.5gb as I was running in 32bit)
  • 2 x 120gb SSD for operating system and scratch disk (previously just one big old 1tb 7200rpm drive partitioned to do both)
  • 2 x 27″ IPS monitors at 110% Adobe RGB gamut (previously 2 x 22″ running a custom calibration)
  • And storage… lots and lot s of storage! :-D


Last of all is the site itself. It’s fatter! I’ve pushed it from700 pixels wide to 800 pixels.
Main reason for this was the way I’m laying out the photos I post up in a story board. The pics in landscape orientation were fine, but I found that the portrait orientated shots were too small when placed in pairs, and too large when placed on their own.
The good news is that now those paired shots are a little bigger!
The bad news is that bigger pics usually mean slower page loading…

Making browsing this site as fast as possible was one of my top reasons for choosing an uncomplicated layout. What I’m hoping though is that times have changed enough that most people are using fast enough browsers to handle a little bigger loadings, and that it will go largely unnoticed.
There are also other things you, my dear viewers, can do to speed up loading times from your end. If you aren’t using Google Chrome yet, then you really should give it a go!

I’m also toying with a few more ideas which will hopefully come to fruition a little later in the year. And no… it’s not a Facebook page…! :-)


PS: Oh, and I was really looking forward to a new camera this year… but Canon have really let me down with the release of their new 1DX. I’m sure it has many redeeming qualities, but none that are of much interest to me. So for now I’ll be sticking with my trusty workhorse and keep my eye peeled for rumours of any new releases.

Beautiful Byron

I’m looking forward to sharing some photos from a recent trip to Byron Bay with you.

I went down with Holly for the wedding of Amber and Dan, and having a week old baby at home I only intended to stay for a couple of hours. It’s not an easy place to tear yourself away from though, especially on days like this, and a couple of hours quickly turned into a full day!


I’ll have some more up soon – stay tuned!


All That Glitters

And now for something completely different!

I had an overwhelming interest for a post I made last year regarding a commercial shoot I did with Enjoy Productions for a Lorna Jane advertisement. When Nicole Manns and Jacob Livermore asked again if I’d like to work with them on a new video project I was nearly tripping over myself in eager anticipation. This time though, instead of a television advertisement, the brief was for a 1950′s themed music video.

These guys and their crews do an amazing job, but I have to admit they also know how to have a fair bit of fun while doing it. And this was no exception – after all, what do you get if you when you cross a roaring backyard 50′s party, a few drinks… and waterbombs!

Hilarity ensues.

I’ll post up a copy of the final music clip once it’s done, but in the meantime keep and eye out for Sterling Silver and their fantastic track ” Don’t Change  “.



Chillin’ With Uncle Peet

The love of my life and the brother of my wife.

More soon.

Summer Loving

I was recently invited to capture Caitlin and Sam’s gorgeous wedding at Caloundra on the Sunshine Coast.  The ceremony and reception were held at a stunning private residence giving a wonderfully relaxed and cheerful atmosphere.  The day itself started with bright azure blue skies and a warm cheerful sun giving very little hint of the late summer storm brewing somewhere to the West….they say a little rain on your wedding day brings plenty of good luck!

Caitlin and Sam – congratulations!

Little Marlies

At just 3 weeks old, Marlies is the youngest newborn I’ve had in my studio so far. It was wonderful working with such a beautiful little girl, as well as her wonderful parents.

I thought I’d include a photo from the shoot as testament to her laidback nature!