The 2007 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit meeting concluded with a fireworks display over Sydney [ - two shots taken the same night from different sites.

Not selected for Google Earth or Google Maps [?]

Comments (20)

Marilyn Whiteley on November 20, 2007

Wow! We were gone before APEC began. That was good because sightseeing would have been much more difficult during the summit, but bad because we missed out on this spectacular colour! Wonderful shot! I've posted a much quieter photo showing that we saw a little of Sydney's APEC colour. Marilyn

Ian Stehbens on November 20, 2007

Dear Marilyn, My grandchildren like this one. As shown in the tags, it is a photoshop exercise and went up too quickly for there are some mistakes or missing bits in it. They are consecutive photos - one with the lighting right on the buildings and the other with exposure for the fireworks and reflections. If I had photoshop-pro rather than just photoshop-elements it would have been simpler. But I enjoyed practising - and my finished image seems perfect. I feel a bit fraudulent with my first try at this, but it is what we saw, and the grandchildren like it. It makes me a little nervous about what photography may become. Solomon Islanders who come to us, never having seen movies before, see "Prehistoric Park" and other creations as reality tv. My point is that we learn to differentiate or develop a cynicism. I trust that photography is always appreciated for its remarkable creativity, even with the use of differentiation rather than discarded by cynicism. Maybe Bartowian has a comment on this for us.

Marilyn Whiteley on November 20, 2007

I understand your ambivalence about the implications, Ian, but this end-product is a glorious, joyful image! And I admire your skill in both the taking and the processing.

You succeeded in producing what you saw, and I'm very comfortable with photoshopping that does that. Our eyes adjust to dark and light, etc., and naturally pick out centres of interest in ways that a camera can't--at least not in a single shot. But of course in situations beyond that there are big questions.

A little story: I have a copy of a cherished family photo. My father's mother emigrated from Sweden when she was 14. Most of her siblings eventually went to the US, too, but she never saw her parents again.

The picture is her family group: her parents, her siblings, and, looking over the heads of some of the shorter ones, my grandmother--looking older than 14. If you look carefully, you can see that she's just a tiny bit too large, and the light on her face is coming from the wrong direction!! Part of her photo, sent from Chicago, has been inserted by the photographer, and in that way, the family circle was kept intact!

That's apropos of nothing, except that for me it raises the interesting question of why we do what we do. Marilyn

Ntinos Lagos on November 20, 2007

Nice nightshot Ian, bravo!!

I like also the story of picture.

Cheers, Ntinos

Ian Stehbens on November 20, 2007

Thanks for the appreciation, Ntinos. And Marilyn, is there any possibility of my seeing a scan of the family of your grandmother? I am a family historian, as you may have already discovered if you have been doing any Googling, and I'd simply enjoy seeing what you have described. This could start another whole thread of conversation on the forum too. Ian

Marilyn Whiteley on November 20, 2007

I'll check someday, Ian. I think I have an unframed copy as well as one I had framed. I'm sure the scanner would prefer that! But I won't check immediately. Having e-mailed off the Touchstone profile just over 24 hours from now, I'm now relaxing!!

I also have a family photo of my father's father that I think is interesting in a family history/social history way. When he came from Sweden, he went first to the logging camps of northern Wisconsin. They had a rough, coarse atmosphere, and I think that's at least part of why he left there for Chicago (where he met my grandmother in a Swedish Baptist church).

I have a wonderful studio portrait of him and his best friend (probably late 1890s), taken in the town nearest to the logging camp; the cardboard has the photography studio's stamp. Both young men are carefully dressed in suits. Between them there is a music stand with music, and both of them are playing the violin! Now this is no fake: I know that my grandfather did play "the fiddle" (though by the time I was born he couldn't any longer because he'd lost finger tips in a factory accident). But in the terms of social historians, this is a picture of two young men from the lumber camps "constructing themselves" as young gentlemen--and no doubt sending copies of the photo back to family in Sweden.

These musings are certainly off the topic, so please feel free to delete--also the one from the other day that must be lurking somewhere on your blue-flowers photo.


Bruce L Crandall on April 11, 2008

Great shot!!! And very nice work with photoshop. Keep up the good work!!!

Ian Stehbens on July 25, 2008

Thanks indeed, Bruce. Sorry I have only just stumbled upon this response from you after so long. And as for the image above, I really thought after uploading it that I should not have done so, until I had perfected the photoshop work, but now in some ways I am pleased its imperfections are still there, or I'd feel that I was misleading people.


© Mustafa ERKEK on October 23, 2008

bravo ...

Abdussamet © on February 3, 2009

Fabulous picture,

excellent photo!


Greetings from TURKEY

this my favourite.

Ian Stehbens on February 3, 2009

Dear Canon O'Brien and Mustafa,

Greetings from Sydney. (belatedly, Mustafa. I am sorry.)

I really appreciate your comments on this combination of 2 pictures. As it was a time of excessive security, we the public, were not permitted in the usual areas to watch the fireworks, so I have taken the fireworks from a different angle, and then corrected it to the usual Kirribilli vantage point from which we would normally view the fireworks and the city.

Kind regards,


Abdussamet © on February 3, 2009

perfect pose (s) realy. bravo.

greetings for Ian.

Abdussamet © on February 3, 2009

you are my favourite.

Ian Stehbens on February 3, 2009

I am honoured. Thank you very much. And greetings from Sydney to Istanbul.


Reiner Vogeley on February 28, 2010

A beautiful fireworks and night scene. the photo is really beautiful!

Regards, Reiner

Ian Stehbens on February 28, 2010

The guys who create fireworks and design the complicated displays are to be commended as great artists, I think, Reiner. And we owe many tributes to the convicts who were first sent here to start this city and the myriad of planners, architects, builders, administrators and bankers who have helped to create a city befitting its setting.

Best regards,


Ian Stehbens on January 14, 2011

That is wonderful praise, Roberto. Happy New Year!!

& Thanks very much for the link.


©Würmer on January 15, 2012

this will be my viewing point (but it will be bigger and more spectacular and more polluting)

darn, missed it again -- but just wait till next year... ;-)

have a good 2012, IanS !! (and all other old and real-soon-now Pano-friends)

Ian Stehbens on January 15, 2012

It was spectacular again, IanB. Got to weigh up the alternative pollution - 250000 backyard barbecues or 1000000 harbourside watching one fireworks display that lasts 20 minutes? And a financial boost to the public transport system that helps to keep it appealing to the commuters till next NYE.

However you celebrated 2012 in, I trust it was a good start to a peaceful and fulfilling 2012 at you place.

Warmest regards,


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Photo details

  • Uploaded on September 8, 2007
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Ian Stehbens