Today is not only the 25th November, it’s also a very important day for women in our community. It’s white Ribbon Day which is actually a day started by men to bring attention to the issue of violence against women in an effort to end it. Sadly too many women in New Zealand still experience violence in their lives, but it’s not just a problem for them, it’s a problem for their family and friends and a much broader societal problem. Click here to find out more about the White Ribbon Campaign in New Zealand and take the pledge.
Below are a few photos from today’s event in Manukau.
The White Ribbon Campaign in New Zealand is a meld of the White Ribbon Day movement in Canada and the United Nations international day for Elimination of Violence Against Women, which is celebrated on 25 November each year. The campaign which now takes place during the whole month of November is driven by a campaign team and community groups in towns and cities throughout New Zealand. White Ribbon events and activities are increasingly supported by businesses, cultural groups, sporting teams, local government, and a wide range of community and government agencies.
There were speeches from a number of people with sickening facts and figures being quoted. I hadn’t realised that one in three women experience violence from a partner in their lifetime, while on average, fourteen women are killed each year by a member of their own family.
White Ribbon is an international movement that condemns men’s violence towards women. Each November, White Ribbon runs a month-long campaign that culminates on 25 November, White Ribbon Day. This year, how about you take the pledge and help change attitudes and behaviour towards abuse of women.
So, the event was great. Great food, music and dance. Plenty of fun things for the kids too with bouncy castles, face painting and opportunities to draw and colour in flags. Let’s just hope the Mums and Dads got the message as well as had a great day out.
What a very pleasant evening! Lance Su’a on guitar, Miguel Fuentes on drums and vocals by Maggie Gould. Quite a lovely sound and a real treat to be able to hear these talented musicians together.
I’d met Lance previously at the Pacific Music Awards and then at a couple of gigs in Manukau and Ponsonby. I’d never seen him with this trio previously and wasn’t sure what to expect. I have to say it worked really well and was very enjoyable indeed. Miguel Fuentes is perhaps better known as a member of KANTUTA member and as Music Educator within Auckland schools teaching percussion and drumming. Maggie may be better known for her work as a photographer. The three of them together though were very good indeed. Well worth going to see if you get the chance.
The three kittens and mother cat remain in and around the compost heap. Looking at the kittens I can see that it won’t be long before we’re going to have to take them off to the SPCA to try and find them good homes. As you can see from the first image in this post, mum is still feeding them.
She seems a lot happier to have me around the kittens which should make catching them a little easier. Problem is they’re growing up fast and are very quick to hide in small places!! One of the kittens – the one not represented in any of the photos – is VERY timid and will be a real challenge to capture. The one with a lot of white on its body is very curious and the first one to go to new places. Quite fascinating to see the difference in character of each kitten even at this early age.
Below are a few more images of the kittens. Maybe I’ll get some more photos to show before they head off to the SPCA.
You may recall me mentioning that the stray cat has returned to the compost heap to produce yet more kittens. This afternoon I tried to see where they were hiding. We’ll need to get them off to the SPCA reasonably soon to be in with a chance of getting them off to some good homes. Folks seem to be more attracted to cute kittens than stropy cats for some reason. It was difficult to decide where they are hiding … and I suspect they’ll find places in which they can escape or hide when I try to catch them. There’s so many little places into which they can run from which I’ll find it close on impossible to extract them.
Whilst looking for their ‘home’ I spotted one of the kittens amongst some undergrowth near the compost bins. Looks like I was the only one doing some spotting!
A question I often ask myself when taking photographs of a property is whether to use lights, or HDR. The effects can, in some circumstances, be quite similar. However, time to setup and time to process are quite different between the two techniques. Also, it’s probably fair to say a reasonable level of skill is required to manipulate the lights to ensure shadows and reflections are reduced or removed. With HDR, the warmth of the incandescent bulbs are easier to accentuate … they can be lost altogether when using lights. However, problems with windows when using HDR can lead to light bleeding into the window frame as you’ll see in one of the shots below.
To give you some examples of the differences I took a series of shots to process with HDR, and then one with light … just for comparison. 9 shots at 1EV intervals were taken to create the HDR image that was then processed in HDR Efex Pro from Nik Software (or is is Google now?) The light shots were taken with about three strobes on stands reflecting off the corner of walls and ceiling. The intention is not the show how good or bad I am at taking photographs, but to illustrate the differences I notice as I process the images using lights or HDR.
All shots are taken in a vacant property that makes shadows from chairs, ornaments etc. a non-issue!
The first pair of images illustrates the front room. Quite a bright window area and the walls whilst looking warm when in the room, look cooler with lights. You’ll notice also the brightness of the window frame with lights as compared with the effect with HDR. You may also notice an uncorrected bleed of light on the left of the window frame as well as some extra glow and warmth from the ceiling light.
Moving further back now to include the entrance way as well as the front room there’s a distinct difference in warmth between the two. Asking my wife which she prefers I got the answer, “somewhere between the two”.
This bedroom was interesting due to the textures in the wall on image left. With HDR the textures are much more noticeable, and the HDR image seems more grey than the one with flash. Just two flash guns used in this shot. One placed around the corner opposite the window, and one to camera left to illuminate the foreground.
The last couple of shots are in the kitchen. Three lights used for this shot with care taken to avoid reflections in the windows and shadows on the floor. The room looks bright, but perhaps a little “stark”. The HDR blend is also bright, but warmer and softer.