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  • Writer's pictureRubber Monkey

Kase Filters 'Colour' Photography Competition Winners

After recently announcing the top 3 for our Kase Filters 'Colour' photography competition, we wanted to share their photographs, alongside comments from our Monkey judges and a short interview with the winners.

You can view more of the amazing entries on our Facebook page!



Xiao Bin Wang - Magic Droplet

'When you use a micro lens, you can see a different world.'

"This image stood out to me from the very beginning. The different shades of gold across the frame are spectacular compliment each other perfectly. The water droplet houses an entirely new world amongst the vibrant background colours, it's something really magical."

- Rubber Monkey Judges Comments

Introduce yourself! Who are you and where are you from? How did you get into photography?

My name is Xiao Bin Wang (Bill Wang) and I come from China but I’ve been living in New Zealand for the past 33 years.

I began learning photography in 2017. When traveling I sometimes ruined the beautiful scenery with my poor shooting skills. Because of this, I decided to learn photography and bought a second-hand Canon Mark 2. I taught myself using the internet and practiced shooting a lot.

What is your favorite type of photography?

My favourites are bird and landscape photography and also micro lens. I went to Muriwai Beach many times to shoot the birds and landscape. The micro lens is perfect during pandemic period. You just stay at home and play with the micro world.

Where were you when you captured the shot? Is there a story behind capturing the image?

I took this photo in my backyard after some light rain. The rain drops on the grass reflected the flowers nearby which looked amazing so I took the image with my camera, micro lens and tripod. I knelt on the wet grass to get the right angle but the real challenge was using full manual focus and burst shots to get the best image.

Why did you choose this image to enter?

I choose this photo because it matches the theme of colour - in this case, the beautiful natural yellow. Micro lens opens another window for people to understand the world, which is very different from what we see with our eyes. It combines perfectly the recognition of the world and the appreciation of nature’s aesthetics that we appreciate little within this technological world.

What camera gear do you use?

The image was shot with a Canon R5, Laowa 100mm micro F2.8 lens, and Manfrotto tripod. The setting was f2.8, ISO 200, at 1/2 second.

Do you have any other hobbies/interests?

Besides photography, I enjoy travelling, hiking, listening to music, and taking my dog, Mochi, on long walks.



Atley Durette - Hidden Colours

'I spent several hours hanging out with the Kea while at a conversation center in Queenstown. Beyond their usual cheeky antics, this Kea was allowing me to get close to it with my camera so I snapped a few pictures of its back feathers. I wasn't aware there is so much colour underneath their visible feathers so I was pleasantly surprised I could capture this.'

"The composition and colours across this photo are excellent. The cooler blues, purples and greens bordering around the crisp and vibrant orange feathers add a really nice rainbow contrast to the image. An all round gorgeous photo."

- Rubber Monkey Judges Comments

Introduce yourself! Who are you and where are you from?

My name's Atley, I'm a Canadian currently living in Wellington. I've lived here about 2.5 years and I'm an occupational therapist doing neuro rehabilitation for Health New Zealand.

How did you get into photography? What do you enjoy about it?

I got into photography purely out of my impatience with videography. It felt too tedious trying to trim and edit my videos, so I tried photography as a "faster" means of creative expression. Ironically, now that I mostly do astrophotography it's even more tedious than video editing was - I just think I found my niche. I enjoy photography because it gives me a creative outlet that I haven't had in ages. After completing 7 years of university and 2 degrees, I felt that any hobbies I once had were stomped out. It's the first time in a long time I felt at ease doing something - there's a certain consistency with photography, and with how uncertain these past few years have been, it provides a sense of grounding and relaxation.

What percentage of shots you take end up as keepers?

Compared to when I first started out, I’m much more deliberate with what I’m shooting - a lot of my shots involve a lot of planning. Even so, I reckon I only keep about 20% of the shots I take.

What camera gear do you use?

I have a few pieces of gear:

- For landscape and bird photography I use Sony A7IV with Sigma 100-400mm, Sony 24-105mmG, Sony 85mmG, Samyang 18mm AF

- For astrophotography I use Sony a6400 with a Hydrogen Alpha Mod and Nikon Z6 with a Hydrogen Alpha Mod. The lenses vary between a Tamron 17-70mm e-mount, Saymang 135mm e-mount, Nikon 40mm Z, and Samyang 14mm Z... I probably have too much gear, but I’m always researching what I could add to my collection next.

Why did you choose this image to enter?

For this particular competition, this shot was an obvious choice in my portfolio. It exhibits all the colours of the rainbow, but also, I think Kea are universally loved and I wanted to showcase that.

Do you often pursue Bird Photography?

Honestly, I don't pursue bird photography often. Based on where I live in Wellington I do have many convenient spots to bird watch, so I’m not short of opportunities. Bird photography is something I will partake in if I'm going somewhere that has a lot of wildlife, like Zealandia. I do however tend to focus more on astrophotography.

Do you have any other hobbies/interests?

As for other hobbies and interests, I'm into running and gaming. I try to kid myself, but photography takes up a lot of my free time so if I'm not out shooting, I'm at home editing or learning new things about it. It's one of those things I feel a tad embarrassed about because I don't want it to be the only thing that people know me for, but I think demonstrates that I'm very passionate about it.



Lia Priemus - Monsoon

'I am presently in Dharamsala , India and it is monsoon season. This image is shot indoors looking out through the window during a good down pour . I love this mix of colours the back ground combined with the people made. Them wearing their rain coats and using umbrellas as they rush about in the deluge with the rain drops on the window almost creating a lovely colourful abstract'

"Was instantly reminded of Leonid Afremov upon seeing this photo, the rain droplets really nicely mosaic the busy street outside. The pops of yellows and greens contrast really well amongst the darker blues spanning across the frame. The colours and framing are just really stunning and the image gives off an almost melancholic beauty."

- Rubber Monkey Judges Comments

Introduce yourself! Who are you and where are you from?

When not traveling through Asia I reside and work part time as a hairstylist in the beautiful coastal town of Whitianga , Coromandel Peninsula

How did you get into photography?

I have always had an interest in photography right from when I was young . After buying numerous cheap little plastic film cameras as a teenager(some actually took surprisingly good photos ) I progressed to my first "good camera" a Canon TLb.

When digital photography became a thing I purchased a Canon 400D (which became my first travel camera ) and enrolled in an online photography course with the Photography institute

Why did you choose this image to enter?

I chose my Monsoon image for this Colour Photography challenge because obviously there is a nice array of colours and I felt it looked a little "arty abstract". To be honest I was intending to to take a photo of the colourful people rushing about in the monsoon deluge but then I caught the focus on the window and liked what I saw so went that way instead . Shot with SonyA6000 and FE 3.5-5.6/ 28-70 lens

What kind of photography do you enjoy the most?

When traveling I love photographing people/street/photo journalism type images and when at home I turn our living room into a studio at times and shoot creative portraits for which I do the makeup, hair and costuming. Some of those images are shot mainly for competition work and I do use photoshop for editing

What camera gear do you use?

Not all but quite a lot of the photography gear I own is second hand . I travel with a Sony A6000 which I purchased new in about 2019 specifically for the lightweight put it in my shoulder bag situation, as well as my trusty Canon 7D first edition and an EF-24-105 mm plus an EFS 55-250mm lens and then for the Sony the FE 3.5-5.6/ 28-70mm lens, all second hand. I have numerous batteries and memory cards , a good laptop (PC when at home ) and portable hard drives for back up.

Do you have any other hobbies/interests?

In the past I have been involved with middle eastern dance (belly dance) community and while I don't formally dance anymore I still like to be a little bit involved with the dance community and as such am an admin of the New Zealand Middle Eastern Dance Forum as well as I keep on the lookout in my travels for ethnic costuming and jewelry for fellow dance friends


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