Ideal for an al fresco breakfast in the back yard in your PJs.
So when Rosie the 19 year old cat, Poppie the 8 year old Bichon and Bella the nutcase puppy had a chance to lie in the sun last weekend, they took it.
Making use of a Beatles song title seemed the most appropriate way to herald the arrival of the good weather at Pohara – and hopefully the start of a long hot summer break.
I got the chance to head out around the coast yesterday with a camera and accompanied by my photographic assistant to take a few shots. Although we’ve been to Pohara a couple of times in the past, this is the first time I’ve really had the chance to discover the coast. It really is worth seeing.
As I write this the rest of the team are at the beach swimming, jet skiing, building sand castles and soaking up the sun. Just like when we were kids – except for the jet skiing bit of course.
Today at 10:47am everything around our place went a little dark. The culprit was a partial eclipse of the sun – where the moon gets between the sun and the earth and we see the sun partially obscured. It was a little eerie as a beautiful sunny Wellington morning regressed to post dawn light and the temperature turned chilly.
To me it was the ideal opportunity to try solar photography. So my tripod, laptop and camera were set up in the front yard to capture the event.
Now we all know it’s not a good idea to look directly at the sun. Well it’s an even worse idea to look at the sun – even one partly obscured – through a camera eyepiece when a 300mm zoom lense is strapped on the front.
In fact, almost 6 hours later, I still seem to have a mysterious spot of intense white light obscuring part of my vision.
But, good news, I actually got a shot or two and after a wee bit of Photoshop correction it’s a fair representation of the event – nothing spectacular, but up close an eclipse is, fundamentally, just an eclipse.
Having said that, I probably could have simply generated the same thing in Photoshop and saved myself the temporary blindness.
For those who are into the detail, this shot was taken at ISO 100, f32, 1/8000 of a second.
For the other 10 months of the year it basks in the golden glow but for the darkest depths of winter the sun teases us as it passes over the front fence never coming any closer. This was one of the reasons we decided to spend July in Europe each year usually returning just as the sun started to creep inside again.
Over the last few days we have seen the sun start to return – much to the delight of Poppie who spent this morning asleep on her recently adopted rug on the stair landing, warmed by the sun.
For Jean and I it means that summer is that little bit closer.