Australia and New Zealand with Jussi Grznar

A few weeks ago I received a phone call from a good friend of mine, Matt Gilsenan from Endless Road Entertainment, about tagging along on an upcoming New Zealand and Australia trip.I would be joining Matt, professional surfer Blake Thornton, NZ photographer Ryan Anderson and cinematographer Christian Whyte. New Zealand being on my bucket list for a long time, this was an easy decision.

The plan was simple: jump in an RV as soon as we get there, travel all over the South Island and pack as much fun in three weeks as we possibly can. Easier said than done. Photographing surfing, snowboarding, bungee jumping, mountain biking and everything else in between in one trip made the packing quite challenging.  In this case a large snowboard bag did the trick.

Here is a list of few items I was able to take with me:

A couple of days after our arrival and a quick boat trip up Milford Sound, Ryzee (Ryan) and I jumped in a little plane for a short flight over the Southern Alps. I find local knowledge very useful every time I travel and this trip was no exception. The pilot was kind enough to take the doors off the plane, which made taking photos much easier.

Local Photographer Ryan Anderson in his backyard. Tip: High shutter speed (strong wind) and gloves. A few days prior to this trip I got a chance to get my hands on some of the latest Pro Master lens filters.  The polarizing filter worked great in this case, as I was able to control the amount of reflection shooting through the window on the other side of the plane. It made for really nice tones and colors.

Waterfalls at Milford Sound are beautiful, I highly recommend taking the boat tour.

After an amazing couple of days in Queenstown we hit the road towards our next stop Temple Basin. As I showed up a few days later than the boys and missed the bungee jumping part of the trip they decided to stop at Kawarau Bridge to pop my cherry. Thank you Ryzee for snapping the photo. Note how the polarizing filter controlled the water reflection.

Temple Basin is probably the smallest ski resort I have ever visited. After you drop all your gear at the “goods lift” it takes about an hour to hike up to the lodge. Once you get up there the views are amazing, great variety of the terrain right at your doorstep.


Photo taken with 5D mark 3 and Sigma 150-600mm Sport with Pro Master Polarizing filter

The main focus of the trip was to film the last episode of season 1 “Chase that Feeling” TV series. Here is a BTS photo of the production process. Can’t wait to share more details about the series soon.

After a couple beautiful sunny days up Temple Basin we jumped back in the RV and headed towards Franz Joseph Glacier. I was really looking forward to photographing the glacier. Due to climate change places like this may not be around for too much longer and so it’s a special feeling documenting them.

To top off an amazing trip I decided to join Blake Thornton and a few friends for a couple surf sessions in Australia.  “In water” photographs taken with the Canon 1DX , Canon 8-15mm fisheye and Del Mar Water housing. The “land” photographs were taken with Canon 1DX and Sigma 150-600mm Sport lens. The Pro Master Polarizing filter was used to fight the midday sun reflection and bring out the blues and greens of the water on a Manfrotto 190 cxpro4 tripod.

Thank you Endless Road Entertainment, F-stop gear, Lens and Shutter and Sigma Canada for an amazing trip!

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