2012 calendar season showcasing Rob’s work

September 2nd, 2011 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

That time of year when our calendar publishers unveil there collections.  Here are a few dedicated Rob Suisted titles and covers you’ll see in all great stores around New Zealand:

2012-rob-suisted-calendars_t

This year would be one of the best looking line ups of retail products we’ve done.  Rob is very happy with the quality – they look really good. The New Zealand Panorama title is especially delicious – full of his heartfelt favourite panorama images.

Antarctica in one photo only

January 25th, 2011 § 6 comments - add yours

How do you sum up Antarctica with one photo?  Tough?  Impossible?

I’ve done over 15 expeditions to the Ross Sea, Adelie Coast and Antarctic Peninsula, but took my first photo last week that nearly captures the essence of Antarctica for me.  Here it is:

Crabeater seals in Antarctic iceberg graveyard. Booth Island

Crabeater seals in Antarctic iceberg graveyard. Booth Island

I had about 30 minutes to myself amongst an area of stranded icebergs.  The sky was heavy with no wind.  Magic starts to happen. I had to find it.  Slowly I weaved my zodiac boat amongst … > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

An inspiring woman and inspiring photo job

December 20th, 2010 § 2 comments - add yours

Bianca Edwards doesn’t do things by halves.  But her back was broken in halves.  Her story is as remarkable as her attitude.  Several weeks ago I shot the New Zealand Geographic Magazine article on ‘Happiness’.  Bianca was part of this story.  I enjoyed meeting her, and thoroughly enjoyed working together on an image that captured her remarkable spirit.  On the drive back to the office, my assistant Aliscia Young spoke about the inspiration we’d both experienced.   Let me tell you about it.

Bianca was a top athlete, competing in multi-sport events, and while training, was hit from behind by a van at 100km/h.  Her back was shattered and she was lucky to survive.  What followed is a remarkable recovery led by determination, optimism and, I think above all, the unwillingness to be a victim to her situation.  The article by Dave Hansford focuses on how Bianca was able to readjust her expectations; from expecting to win events, to making simple steps, like wiggling a toe.  A trait that some research suggests is key to being happy.

So, knowing this, how do you approach a photo shoot that gives dignity to the subject, captures their spirit, and avoids creating another cliched photo of a disabled person toiling against obstacles? 

Discussing angles on the phone with Bianca was a joy – full of ideas and keen to give it her best, we threw around ideas about the things that were important to her – fitness, swimming, study, Ducatis…  Motorcycle riding was key, especially with her friends and fellow Ducati owners Carla and Fiona (friends like this that Bianca rates in her recovery) .  Hang on….from not being able to walk, to riding big motorcycles?!  The angle fast became clear.  But, how to shoot a portrait that captured this story? 

Carla, Rob, Bianca & Fiona. The Ducati women of the Wairarapa.

After the shoot. Carla, Rob, Bianca & Fiona. The Ducati women of the Wairarapa.

Bianca’s story in the happiness article for me is one of ‘freedom’ – freedom of movement, but also freedom of mind.  So, it was important that we had a very dynamic image to portray freedom. We tried to accomplish this with an open face helmet, but the freedom died.  With considerable care we took this without the helmet.  I think we caught Bianca’s spirit in the image below. What do you think?

Bianca Edwards and her Ducati, with Fiona and Carla

Bianca Edwards and her Ducati, with Fiona and Carla

TECHNICAL SPECS: We pottered very slowing along with a 1/8th sec shutter with ND filter, while using my aerial photography gyro stabiliser to maintain sharpness but achieve a blurred movement.  I super-clamped and magic armed 3 strobes to the back of the vehicle, and shot from the rear hatch.  Canon 1dsMk3, 16-35mm, ND filter, 3 canon flashes, Kenro gyro.

New Zealand calendar season starting already

July 26th, 2010 § 3 comments - add yours

It’s that time already – calendars for 2011 are starting to appear in shops. It seems earlier and earlier each year.

Every year we work with many publishers, designers, companies and printers to create a large range of quality calendars.  Retail calendar have just started hitting shops, and samples are arriving (it seems to get early each year).  Here are a few just in, with one that we particularly like below:

2011 calendars by Rob Suisted, a selection so far

2011 calendars by Rob Suisted, a selection so far

We particularly like the NZ Panorama title.  It was developed with John Sands based on the large collection of quality New Zealand panorama stock photos that Rob has created over the last few years. It’s a large calendar, and with metallic embossing on the front it looks great.
 2011 New Zealand Panorama calendar by Rob Suisted Have a closer look. These should be appearing in stores mid August.  2011 New Zealand Panorama calendar back by Rob Suisted

For your info, we have a massive collection of images perfect for NZ calendar production.  The calendars above are publically available in stores, but we also create numerous specific in house  titles directly with companies, such as banks, insurance companies, supermarkets, consultancies etc.  Please contact us if you have a calendar project in mind; they are a great full year promotional tool.

‘Rob’oCam – The art of spying on birds

March 12th, 2010 § 1 comment - add yours

New Zealand Geographic featured a nice article about Rob’s TankCam, otherwise known as RoboCam (nice touch guys!). If you’re interested in a behind-the-scenes look of the Fairy terns shoot please check out the article here and Rob’s video here.

Let us know what you think, it’s always great to hear your feedback!

New Zealand Geographic RoboCam article

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Helicopters and cameras behind the scenes in Fiordland, wow

February 8th, 2010 § 11 comments - add yours

I’m doing a lot of commercial helicopter photo work at the moment, mainly for Tourism New Zealand. I want to take you along behind the scenes in Fiordland New Zealand, on a job I just got home from.  Spectacular!  Things don’t go as forecast so it’s an interesting day with some interesting sights and some interesting blokes. You have to watch this:

The day started in a run of perfect weather, but mysteriously a thick layer of fog/cloud filled Fiordland making filming tough for myself (stills photog) and the HD Cineflex video helicopter team to operate. What happens next?

You’ll see a lot of the equipment we use, several helicopters, and… > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

Antarctica. Your Fois Gras is OUT. What to do?

January 27th, 2010 § 5 comments - add yours

Now for something completely different….. Antarctica does funny things to people. Executive Chef Lothar Greiner is no exception.

Executive Chef Lothar Greiner on ice

I snapped this shot after a formal portrait session on the sea ice edge near Mawson’s Historic Hut in Antarctica.  An Adelie penguin was running between the both of us and it only took one glance to do the obvious.  With a twinkle in…  > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

Shooting New Zealand’s RAREST bird with a TANK

December 15th, 2009 § 12 comments - add yours

TANKCAM (‘Rob-o-cam’). Tough assignment to film NZ’s rarest bird – the Fairy Tern for NZ Geographic Magazine.  Less than 40 birds known, they nest in the open and human disturbance may stop breeding.

Solution was to build a remote control ftcam_tvehicle that I could very slowly inch towards the nest over an hour while we monitored the birds’ reaction and leave it set up to capture intimate scenes (very, as you’ll see below!).  So that’s why I built TankCam. We’ve kept the highly successful assignment under wraps until now.  This video tells the story and gives you an idea of three days worth of filming, behind the scenes.  Please view and post your comments – it’s great to get your feedback:

Why not use a large telephoto lens you might ask? … > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

Craft your work around your lifestyle. It’s possible

December 8th, 2009 § 2 comments - add yours

This just out in the Sunday News newspaper. Cath Bennett was interested in what motivates me to craft the lifestyle I have.  It’s makes it all sound pretty glam, but of course there’s a load (a truck load actually) of hardwork invovled, but that’s part of anything we love.
sundaynews_t
I’m really into motivating people to craft lifestyles that they love, so hopefully this article shows it’s possible, regardless of the path you choose. What do you think? Is it possible for most people? Cheers Rob

Latest New Zealand Geographic Mag feature shot on Mana Island, Nov 2009

November 6th, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

Teamed up with Editor of NZ Geographic Magazine, James Frankham, to do a feature on nocturnal Mana Island.  Photography of wildlife can be tough, but doing it alone, in the dark, fitting between southerly cold fronts and short timeframes makes it all the sweeter for me when it comes off. I enjoyed this one, and working with James in a can-do style.

The story is contained in the 100th issue of NZ Geographic Magazine (a great milestone for James and the team).  How about getting a copy as it’s a beaut read – in fact it’s so good I can’t think of a reason not to.  Better still I think you should subscribe).  Here are a few of the frames selected for publication and a bit of info behind them.   nzgeomagnov200901I wanted to show rarely seen wildlife living on this special island, but contextually it’s so close to our capital city (hence I wanted the light pollution illuminating the skies beyond). The shot above was taken after sitting motionless in the dark for 2 hours in camouflage clothing waiting for the diving petrels to return to their burrows after dark. I was ready to leave when a lone bird landed nearby amongst the flowering native ice plant - what a stroke of luck. It sat there preening while I careffully took it’s portrait.
nzgeomagnov200902Above is one of the island’s geckos. At night they all come out hunting insects and …. > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

A new Weta species for NZ? Going back to find today…video added*

October 25th, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

Two weeks ago I was on Mana Island (a special Island sanctuary for rare NZ creatures) on a wildlife photo shoot for New Zealand Geographic Magazine (here’s a small sneak preview)  for their 100th issue (congratulations to James and the team!) and while out filming past midnight I spotted a very unusual weta species.Weta Discovery Mana Island, Rob Suisted

I got some good photos, realised it was different and contacted the weta experts.  No one has seen anything like this.  There’s a chance it’s a juvenile Cook Strait Giant Weta with odd markings, but then there’s also a chance it’s a whole new species.  Very exciting…colouration and some body features are very different.

So today I’m heading back to Mana Island for the night with 4 weta experts. We want to see if we can catch the insect again so they can determine how significant the find is!  Back Monday evening.

Update 26 Oct 2009: Well, we found the spot I originally spotted the unknown weta (shown above), but strong winds conspired to make the search tough. We’ve marked and will be monitoring it for future developments.

We did have a top night though, finding a couple of Gold-striped Geckos (Hoplodactylus chrysosireticus) and a beautiful pair of Cook Strait Giant Weta (Deinacrida rugosa), some of the heaviest insects in the world – real whoppers! I’ll post a few photos of these shortly.  Also, we saw the first nests of the very endangered New Zealand Shore Plover (Thinornis novaeseelandiae) on the beach.
In fact, this morning I was enjoying a cup of tea sitting in the sunshine on the beach and a pair of rare plover came over and bedded down not far from my feet – how lucky is that! So, not successful this trip in finding the unknown weta, but great to see all these rare creatures.

Update 29 Oct 2009: I’ve just added a video of the Giant Cook Strait Wetas as they make great video actors! Check this out:

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A nice welcome home to NZ…

October 15th, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

Saw the new arrivals hall inside NZ Customs, at Auckland International Airport, when I got back. I’d supplied a special shot made of 10 high resolution digital files merged to make a very large photograph.  To see a shot of mine welcoming us over the threshold onto NZ soil is a great feeling.

Arrivals Hall, Auckland International Airport

NZ Customs got a bit excited when they saw me taking photos in this area, but I’d already asked, and they joined me with a nice compliment. The shot represents ‘Aotearoa – the land of the long white cloud’. > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

Brilliant Banners 4 DOC, check them out.

October 5th, 2009 § 1 comment - add yours

Nice work just in from Tanya and Norris at Mission Hall Creative here in Wellington, using our images to create a stunning range of 2 metre high ‘pull up’ branding banners for use by the NZ Department of Conservation. We reckon they’ve done a top job and would recommend their services if you’re after creative professionals.
Seeing my own work used to create quality output

Department of Conservation banners by Rob Suisted and Mission Hall 01 Department of Conservation banners by Rob Suisted and Mission Hall 02 Department of Conservation banners by Rob Suisted and Mission Hall 03

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New Zealand Sealion graces the cover…

October 2nd, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

We’ve another really nice cover with my photo to show off today.

New Zealand Sea lion F&B Calendar 2010 by Rob Suisted
New Zealand Sea lion F&B Calendar 2010 by Rob Suisted

New Zealand has the rarest Sea lion breeding on our shores.  In my previous conservation career I was the national marine mammal advisor to the NZ government….. > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

My NEW BOOK. A sneak peek at the cover…

September 27th, 2009 § 13 comments - add yours

Well, printing is finished and we’re counting down until bookshop release date 9th November 2009. I couldn’t find a good reason not to share the cover with you. So here it is:Majestic New Zealand Book by Rob Suisted

Update: Internal pages added to view below.

I’m really proud of this book – my seventh to date.  This one is key – it’s my heartfelt work and showcases favourite places and images. Click for a large view. I’ll give you a sneek at some pages shortly if you want.

I have a hope, and tiny suspicion, that it’s going to make a few Kiwis teary eyed. Actually this arrived 2 minutes ago from Kara of Herkimer Coffee in Seattle when I showed her last week:

“Thanks so much for sharing your book with me.  Ian and I were taking a look.  This is a must, your pics are ah-mazing!  We were about in tears, oh the beauty!..”

I’d love to hear your reaction if you’d care to leave a comment below… Thanks, Rob

Update 22 Jan 2010: We now have signed copies available for supporters. If you’d like to consider a copy, have a look here

And Churches don’t have a sense of humour?!

September 25th, 2009 § 3 comments - add yours

Fresh in from Auckland today: God bless your pet
I did a range of shots of our rare New Zealand native Falcon recently that I’m really proud of. M&C Saatchi and St Matthew’s Church teamed up and used one of my shots to impress upon Guinea Pig owners (and other pet lovers) the importance of pet blessing.
God bless your petNo Guinea Pigs were hurt in this design! The full technical story of this film shoot is recorded here. Other falcon photos can be seen here. But please check out this shot below – one of my favourites. A click will show it in full size glory.NZ Falcon photos

A few new covers for September 2009

September 22nd, 2009 § 2 comments - add yours

Had a few nice covers this month to get home to.Wilderness Magazine September 2009Tide times calendar 20102010 diaryThe Miro journal

First up another cover for Wilderness Magazine, following the winter 2009 cover we did. This one is of sea kayaks pulled up at Abel Tasman National Park. Check out the great shots I got here this year.

Then it’s calendar release season, and you should see about 15 calendars this year of my work – many exclusive. Here are two that just arrived on my desk (one for the Tide Tables, and one a desk diary.

And to finish off, here’s a cover for a kids Maori language journal from the Ministry of Education on the Miro Tree.

Wonderful Whitebait

August 12th, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

With Whitebait season due to start in New Zealand on the 15th August, we thought we would share some of the wonderful photos in the collection that highlight the beauty of this popular local delicacy…..

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Speed and beauty, NZ falcon shoot up close

July 5th, 2009 § 16 comments - add yours

It was a privilege to work with the rare and little know native New Zealand Falcon this month… New Zealand Geographic Magazine were running a feature on the rare NZ falcon, but didn’t yet have the wow shot to sell the story, so asked if I’d have a crack at it. Knowing that these birds are amongst the fastest on earth, very cryptic, and not particularly large meant that a challenge lay ahead.  I love a tough assignment that pushes thinking beyond the norm; the satisfaction of success is very sweet.  Here is part of the result:

New Zealand Geographic Magazine Cover this month

New Zealand Geographic Magazine Cover this month

The other part includes the next photo as an internal double page spread.  It blows me away and I just can’t stop looking at the result below…MORE…

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Watching the seasons ’round – summer to winter photos

June 22nd, 2009 § 2 comments - add yours

Had a challenging, but fun, photo job last week in Rotorua with the rare native New Zealand Falcon (really exciting photos coming very soon! Sneak peek below). While there I managed to shoot down twice to a great spot on the Waikato River where I’d shot during summer, as I thought comparision photos would be very interesting. I couldn’t wait to prepare them alongside each other, and share them with you. So, here they are – a nice little study of interest I think. Nice when a simpy idea comes off like that:

Waikato River, Summer season

Waikato River, Summer season

Waikato River, Winter season

Waikato River, Winter season


The last shot below was taken in -3 degree celsius frost. While it’s hard to see here, there was a tremendous hoar frost forming on the trees from the freezing fog along the river. Not as epic as our Central Otago hoar frosts, but always stunning to see. I’ll have a few waikato hoar frost shots up in my library in a few weeks….MORE…
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Very rare creepy-crawlies. Mentoring a young photog for NZ Geo Magazine

June 15th, 2009 § 13 comments - add yours

‘We’d like you to mentor a ‘Young Gun’ photographer’ was James Frankham’s request from New Zealand Geographic Magazine.  The ‘Young Gun’ was Spiderman Bryce – a keen young chap from Hamilton who has a penchant for bugs, especially big spiders. Bryce was super keen, and while spiders are not one of my fav critters, I’m always up for an interesting challenge, giving  back to a good cause and something different.

Cook Strait Giant Weta female climbing onto Bryce's hand (Deinacrida rugosa, Stenopelmatidae). Endemic endangered New Zealand insect. Wetapunga. Island gigantism

Cook Strait Giant Weta female climbing onto Bryce's hand (Deinacrida rugosa, Stenopelmatidae). Endemic endangered New Zealand insect. Wetapunga. Island gigantism

NZ Geo magazine have just started a programme where they pair promising photographers with seasoned pros (not sure what my seasoning is yet though). We chose to take Bryce to Mana Island, a Scientific Reserve that is an island sanctuary for some of New Zealand’s rarest animals and plants. Currently Mana is being restored to a pest free island status, which means that the lack of introduced predators gives the local fauna a chance to recover – especially the giant weta and lizards. Kindly supported by the Department of Conservation (DOC), we were collected in the DOC boat and whisked across to Mana Island from Paremata.

Common Gecko licking eyeball while hanging off branch hunting at night (Hoplodactylus maculatus, Gekkonidae)

Party trick. A common Gecko licking its eyeball while hanging off branch hunting at night (Hoplodactylus maculatus, Gekkonidae)

We spent the day checking out Brown Teal, Kakarikiand other creatures (not to mention the volunteer creatures planting trees for DOC) on the before the rain arrived. Sue and Frank, the DOC Rangers on Mana, were very accommodating, pointing us in the right direction to find species and things of interest. Frank took us to a known spot to look for McGregor’s Skink, one of the rarest Skinks in the world. Our luck was in, finding several of these beautiful lizards as the rain set in proper….. MORE…
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Proud of our work – United Nations Handbook cover!

June 2nd, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

Just wanted to share with you a use of one of our images we’re proud of. For 46 years the United Nations Handbook has been printed as the only comprehensive guide to the United Nations system, and how it works. It summarises all UN Organisations and provides essential info on their aims, structures and memberships.

The Handbook is used by all those who operate in, or with, the UN. And currently they have a Rob Suisted photo on the cover! And one of our iconic images at that. We’re pretty stoked about the many thousands of copies globally, some of which are being thumbed by some pretty important folks!

United Nations Handbook cover by Rob Suisted

United Nations Handbook cover by Rob Suisted
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Proudly promoting New Zealand made products

May 13th, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

Rob created some new shots featuring New Zealand made products for a project we’re doing for a well known overseas travel guidebook. 

The photograph was put together in the studio and our purpose was to showcase a variety of natural goods grown in New Zealand such as Manuka Honey, quality olive oil, wine and cheeses, paua shell, merino and possum wool, greenstone/poumanu etc

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Searching 4 Seasons from your armchair!!

May 5th, 2009 § 0 comments, Add the 1st

Do you feel it? That sense of impending gloom as we say goodbye to autumn and plunge headfirst into winter.  Are you longing for some small reminder of Summer to get you through?

Don’t worry we have the solution, so just sit back and relax and take a seasonal tour through the Nature’s Pic Images website.  We have a great keyword search available on the website, which provides a really simple and effective way of finding images related to a specific theme, for example SUMMER ….. > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

Wilderness Magazine cover by Rob this month…

May 3rd, 2009 § 4 comments - add yours

Wow, we’re pleased with how Wilderness Magazine has reproduced a favourite image this week…….wildmag_t

Just arrived in the mail from the publisher. This image was taken on a particularly cold winter’s night on the flanks of Mount Ruapehu – apparently the coldest of the year. As conditions were so clear I spent most of the night working on this image. At 35+ minutes per photo (plus similar time for the noise reducing dark photo phase) you don’t get too many photos for your labours, but this one came out a cracker, and I’m proud of the quality of the final results. Thanks guys. > > > Continue reading : full post + comments > > >

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