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Tonights Sky....

Tonights Sky....
Photo Information
Copyright: Dawn McKenzie Wykes (Dawn) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1101 W: 98 N: 3374] (17650)
Genre: Places
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-02-06
Categories: Nature
Camera: Canon PowerShot S2 IS
Exposure: f/3.5, 1/40 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Sun & Sky, 50-59 points- Part 6, My favorite Nature photos, Century Club (more than 100 points), TEXAS EXCELLENCE AWARD V [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2006-02-06 3:40
Viewed: 8648
Favorites: 18 [view]
Points: 178
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
While sitting eating dinner tonight facing the sea...(approx 8.30pm) this is what appeared before our eyes... a mini tornado ( i presume ) never having seen one before... I rushed upstairs and grabbed my camera... I fumbled around as you do when you are wanting to do something quickly.. and had it on the wrong resolution (which I must of knocked earlier in the day!!)and setting!! oh well, this is how it turned out...(zoomed in ), with a little saturation and sharpening...Kinda looks like a watercolour painting...

Looking out from Manly Whangaparaoa, across the Hauraki Gulf.. towards the Coromandal Ranges in the distance.... later the sky was light up with flashes of lightening...on looking through our telescope we could see the sea being thurned up.

Can you see the little yacht on the water...

Hope you like it...
Cheers Dawn.

My photograph was photo of the week on www.metvuw.com weather site here in New Zealand... I was thrilled.

on further investigation..on the internet... I found this was a waterspout..(a weak tornado) over warm water...how about that!!

chiquito, JohnTulip, cstathoulis, chrisJ, mwebr, Maria74, Refugee, perryhooter, Viking, wck, mr_pedro, puffy, taba, spike1, PavelL, Biance-, Silke, MikiM, MLINES, Josine, evelynn, PierreFrigon, sjurgensen, j_j, shutterbill, Marylou, greghume, vandana2923, SaraT, kbeall, Berkut, korbee, Hendrika, shelbeesmom has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To captainsgirl: HoseDawn 1 05-21 16:42
To jimkilgallon: photoshop..NODawn 1 05-06 15:02
To GreenBaron: you missed this one...Dawn 1 12-23 01:44
To Albatros: thank uDawn 1 08-11 15:28
To mbeware: helloDawn 1 01-12 23:48
To Travelcam: Thank uDawn 1 07-09 20:53
To bemawu: thank uDawn 1 01-15 15:04
To Estrella: thank uDawn 1 12-18 14:36
To Soundsangels: luckyDawn 1 10-24 14:34
To LordPotty: thank uDawn 1 10-21 05:31
To shahx: HelloDawn 1 10-09 19:09
To Sarah171: thank youDawn 1 10-09 16:18
To cse: HelloDawn 1 10-01 01:31
To pltwhite: HelloDawn 1 10-01 01:30
To bolletje: thank uDawn 1 08-24 23:52
To Silke: Hello SilkeDawn 1 06-29 01:52
To LuciG: Thank uDawn 1 06-28 17:46
To rewshearer: Thank uDawn 1 06-27 05:59
To cloverstar: HelloDawn 1 03-25 14:42
To lebois: HelloDawn 1 03-20 18:49
To annagrace: Hi AlliDawn 2 03-01 18:35
To wallie: hellloooooooDawn 1 02-09 17:02
Congratulation Dawnbrashy 1 02-07 06:25
To ScottHale: thank uDawn 1 02-07 03:22
To brashy: thank u..Dawn 8 02-07 03:03
To JohnTulip: thanksDawn 1 02-06 13:57
To Maria74: thank uDawn 1 02-06 13:56
To chefcop: thank uDawn 1 02-06 13:55
To eliferen: thank uDawn 1 02-06 13:54
To Fisher: thank uDawn 1 02-06 13:53
To tournesol: thank uDawn 1 02-06 13:52
To marmottelolo: thank uDawn 1 02-06 13:46
To chrisJ: waterspoutDawn 1 02-06 13:12
To lucbus: waterspoutDawn 1 02-06 13:10
To cstathoulis: WaterspoutDawn 1 02-06 12:27
To lukdm: hi thereDawn 1 02-06 05:33
To Jancie: thank uDawn 1 02-06 05:13
To chiquito: hellooooooooooooooDawn 1 02-06 04:34
To aros: Tonights sky...Dawn 1 02-06 04:23
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • lukdm Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 332 W: 3 N: 21] (1350)
  • [2006-02-06 4:14]
  • [+]

great shot Dawn. good details (Yacht)
Very special !

  • aros Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Silver Note Writer [C: 114 W: 14 N: 24] (141)
  • [2006-02-06 4:18]
  • [+]


Not too bad for a grab shot - remarkable spectacle. Despite your panic, you've got the horizon level (or was that achieved in PP??)

Wind you can see... doesn't happen here in Wellington all that often, I understand they get tornadoes down on the West Coast sometimes. Must have been rather freaky.

Kia Ora Dawn!! THIS IS STUNNNING!!!! I've never seen such a thing... what??? mini tornado???? It'd blow the whole Hungary away!! :)))) I hope thay little yacht had survived!!?
Excellent shot, Dawn... please take my appreciation!!
cheers from the still cold Hungary :)

Hi Dawn,

Wow, wow, wow, this is a fantastic shot of what appears to be a funnel cloud (water spout) and a big one at that. In fact I have an interest in clouds and this is one of the best examples from NZ I have seen for a long while.

You should check out the NZ MetVuw site for some examples but you will have to look through the index. You will see a few of my images of the rare “punch hole cloud” phenomena I photo’d on New Years Eve. Here is the link.

NZ MetVuw site

MetVuw also has a reader’s photo site you can post your image to.

Not only is your photo exceptional but the pastel colours achieved in this are stunning and very arty farty.

11/10 for this one Dawn and congratulations.


PS: I know that feeling of the dreaded handshake and the wrong camera settings at that vital moment!!!!

Wow Dawn, I saw the beautiful sky and took some shots, but NOTHING like this one. (Send it into the Herald, I mean it) Excellent. The colours are divine. Great show. You were so lucky to see this and to catch it so perfectly.
But Wayne /Brashy reckons my man in blue in my photo tonight was the cause of it... He could be right!!!

A news paper shot! Strange .. the soft cours make the treath look less dangerous !
John T


This is one hell of a shot considering the circumstances Dawn! I like the colours & detail. Like I said before, you have definitely one exceptional backyard (sea) view! Just one question, what was for dinner that night???

Brilliant & well done Dawn :)

Hi Dawn,
Very impressive shot, it is so clear with great colors. I like to see it completly from top to bottom. I hopt the people in the boat where not hurt.
Very well done.
Kind regards

Hi Dawn

This is a waterspout. Nothing 'mini' about it either. It dwarfs the large boats at right. On land, these are called tornadoes. Where's Dorothy & the Wizard of Oz when you need them? Good shot. Local newspapers would buy this.

bonjour dawn
magnifique photo.j'ai fait un WS pour les legers defauts dans le ciel.

Amazing picture, Dawn! I am amazed at how you composed this image so well in the short amount of time I presume you had. It's perfect!!! You even have the boat. You are blessed by the photographic gods!!!

Hi Dawn,

Beautiful capture of the water spout. Excellent composition.
The sailboat on the bottom right is perfect and adds to the drama.
Noise reduction is needed.


Amazing capture! Such a short period of time, you create eyepleasuring composition. Great tones of sky and perfect decisive moment! Congrats!

Brilliant shot Dawn, such subtle colours, you have captured a wonderful scene.


Wow!! thanks for sharing this, Dawn, it's beautiful and amazing!! something you just don't see every day...you did a great job catching this, congrats!!

Indeed a waterspout Dawn. I have seen a few off the New South Wales south coast back in the 70's. Terrific 'grab' shot and the colours in my opinion are unique. TFS
PS Many thanks for your comment on Gnarled Root

Here in the states we call these a Waterspout (tornado over water)
They are usually harmless and they dissapate before they hit land but a few stay and turn into a real tornado. I actually knew that without research...lol. I live in tornado alley but not close enough to water to ever witness these. I like this photo, the color pink is unusual but kind to the eye. I especially like the part where the waterspout meets the water. Good detail and composition. I'll add it to my favs.
Great work Dawn, This one's a keeper!

Hello Dawn!

It is indeed a nice water spout . I have seen many of those during my trips in the Caribbean Sea during my years at sea. But you captured this one very well. With this sunset, the atmosphere is quite spectacular.
Definitely a favorite!

These are not dangerous,

  • Great 
  • padre Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 1419 W: 90 N: 263] (4035)
  • [2006-02-06 20:12]

Amazing water spout and the color is fabulous. You did a great job of capturing this. You should print it. B

Awesome, Dawn! A very frightening scene, wasn't it?! I don't like tornadoes - weak or not! :))) One in a million shot, with those great pastel tones. Our skies turn greenish when tornadoes are in the area, and so do I! ;)

Gayle :)

Great soft pastel colors, wonderful composition and a very lucky catch. We have these on the lake during the summer, sometimes as many as 5 are out there dancing around. But they never look like this...tfs!

Hi Dawn,
wow, this is spectacular - I love this moment with the pastelle-colours in rose and blue.
Excellent shot, I love it, thanks
Sabine - wishnugaruda

Hi Dawn, thanks so much for keeping your cool and photographing this AND sharing it with us. I've seen a couple of them when I lived in the Southern part of the US. I was so mesmerized by them I never took a picture of it.

Those guys in the little boat must not have felt very comfortable.

Great shot and thank you very much.


Wow! Wow! Wow" What a moment!!! Great catch!

  • Seena Gold Star Critiquer [C: 70 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2006-02-08 0:20]

Good composition! hope to see more of your fine work :)

good catch of a twister. or you can call it a funnel cloud over the warm water too.
good color , a bit noisy but good composition.

Dawn let me bring the score to 50!
Afterall its not an everyday photo.
Where you not scared? Take care; Rob

Very great shot, Dawn. Great colours and even a tornado can be dangerous, the picture has a great mood. Well done.

Best regards and a hug (John and David (Refugee)? don't be jalous.........)


  • Great 
  • harpya Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6058 W: 174 N: 1935] (7534)
  • [2006-02-09 21:11]

Hi Dawn,

Beautiful visual rosy
a great shot here.
Wonderful, big!
Congratulations, I adored the picture


Wow! Lucky you! I never see anything like this!!
Great shot - fantastic colours - sailboat just finishes it off perfectly!
Thanks for sharing it Dawn! You are very talented - love a lot of your other ones too

  • Great 
  • wck Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 697 W: 36 N: 423] (3851)
  • [2006-02-12 21:12]

Woooow... this really amazing my friend luckily you got it successfully. Superb image indeed!


Hi Dawn,

Great colors and comp. Very well captured.


  • Great 
  • Karey Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 73 W: 14 N: 67] (779)
  • [2006-02-19 4:10]

Hi Dawn, I came to this picture from a link on Janice's site. This is freaky, you did a great job of capturing it in a rush, it's a very attractive photo (and yes, your horizon is straight!) Next time you are at Auckland Museum, visit the new Volcano 'live' demonstration, this also gives you an interesting view of the Hauraki gulf with Mother Nature busy at work! TFS cheers, Karey.

  • Great 
  • puffy Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1540 W: 114 N: 2985] (16653)
  • [2006-02-21 15:18]

Wooo, what a rare catch, and is look so dreamy but sharp, so beautiful, it is one of those kind of shot that you will see in magazine, :) Very well captured my friend... I especially like the splash at the end of the tornado... Good work, thanks for sharing...

Wow, Dawn, you saw a waterspout and didn't even know it at the time! Amazing photo with wonderful colors. I love the boat on the bottom right; they must have been shi...ng themselves, LOL!


  • Great 
  • btokaz Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1049 W: 127 N: 167] (5744)
  • [2006-03-10 18:04]

Great shot Dawn. Beautiful colors and mood...

What an absolute stunner! I'm not surprised you won 'photo of the week' with this shot. It just goes to show what you can do when you have a camera handy!
Glorious shades of pastel colours complimented totally by the framing.
Give yourself a big pat on the back from me!

I can't believe I missed this one Dawn. This is spectactular. A rare sight to see. Congratulations on getting this as the photo of the week. Well done.

Beautiful result Dawn! We rarely see this type of thing here either, and I've never had the opportunity to photograph one. The composition is excellent, and the soft colours add to the overall effect. Congratulations on capturing this at all, let alone so well.

Hi Dawn...
Cannot quite make up my mind on this one... Is it photojournalistic, or is it an artistic expression..?
I have decided this fine image is both.
Well done in most ways, even if I understand the result would have been different provided you had more time!
Pablo -

Greenie will be forwarded later! OK-

Hi Dawn,
Wow! Talking about being at the right place at the right time. Stunning capture here and the small boat adds a great sense of scale.

Great shot Dawn, Very special time!


Hi Dawn!
Very good photo!
We in BG dont have an y tornados.
Maybe I will never see hurigane!

How is it possible.
My point-and-shoot shots look like ... snapshots.
Your point-and-shoot is sheer art. Magnificent.

Great picture regardless of the resolution! And I must say I'm rather amazed at how well it turned out, considering the pressure and the circumstances you were in! I just get way to nervous when something exciting is happening, and I usually completely forget to even get my camera out to capture the moment. :P You're quick.

Congratulations on this beautiful shot, and yes it does resemble a water-painting. I love it!


  • Great 
  • LuciG Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1206 W: 151 N: 655] (8171)
  • [2006-06-28 16:23]
  • [+]

Hi Dawn!
This is surely one of the most impressive pictures that I have seen!
Furthermore I enjoy the tender soft colors which are beautiful!
It goes straight to my favs!!

  • Great 
  • Silke Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2572 W: 237 N: 6132] (24044)
  • [2006-06-28 23:06]
  • [+]

I just stumbled across this photo ('cause someone ese has you on his favourites list) and I must say: I'm a newbie, so I cannot figure this out: How can I give you 20 points instead of 2? This is the most amazing shot on so many levels!
Major kudos to you
Best regards from Canada

  • Great 
  • MLINES Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1350 W: 102 N: 1081] (9125)
  • [2006-07-21 20:43]

Hi Dawn, This is wonderful to see. It must be a rare event i would have thought in your part of the world! Excellent result. Great to see on TL. Murray.

Fantastic photo.:-)
Bye bye , Josine.

You have a lot of variety in your gallery Dawn. This one sure got my attention as it did for quite a few others too. It is a winner for sure.


Evelynn ; )

WOW Dawn,
An amazing picture!

Amazing photo and colors.
Hope it didn't degenerate after that.

  • Great 
  • cse Gold Star Critiquer [C: 276 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2006-09-28 6:31]
  • [+]

Hi Dawn,
seems wonderful..
werent you afroid of?

Cihan Selcuk Eksi

Hello Dawn
I remember seein this. Was it in the NZ Herald? Fantastic shot - very unusual for NZ. I am from Browns Bay. Do you go to the North Shore Photography Society?

Wow. Perhaps the shot of a lifetime. These kind of images don't come along every day.
By the way, your gallery is wonderful. Many, many quality images.


  • Great 
  • shahx Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 86 W: 34 N: 58] (662)
  • [2006-10-09 16:26]
  • [+]

I love this picture...Is that a sailboat on the right bottom???
Most of it is already said.
Just Wow.

Wow, don't know what else to say!

  • Great 
  • sway Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 80 W: 2 N: 26] (349)
  • [2006-10-18 5:02]

I came across this shot while looking through your photos. I just had to add a smilie.
Great shot. Fantastic timing.
Great colours

I love this one Dawn.
The colours actually lok great too.
Yes,a waterspout,over the Hauraki gulf.

You had the chance to take a photo of a tornado! Lucky You! And it is very nice! Look soft it's true and have a very nice line!
And with that color... That tornado is a little girl :)

Waouh! :o
Magnifique cliché et magnifiques couleurs... le bateau semble petit à coté de ça ... Bravo!

Hello Dawn,
What an impressive pic! Incredible nature! Pink color is great...


Woooww....to be there at the right time...
Amazing and wonderful to see it...
Thanks a lot...

Hi Dawn,
Absolutely wonderful capture.
Fantastic composition, it's a fav for me!
Excellent PP work on this too.

  • Great 
  • fff Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 600 W: 0 N: 40] (2738)
  • [2006-11-28 8:56]

interesting like the colours

Hello Dawn,

Excellent work, Great colors, Bg, POv DOF, nicly composed and captured photo, great work,

TFS Kyle

  • Great 
  • owrwe Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 28 W: 1 N: 26] (242)
  • [2006-12-07 0:21]

Hi Dawn,

Excellent shot, especially in your rush.

You don't get to see these kind of stuff everyday and I understand your rush.



Hi Dawn,

weren't you scared to see such a tornado eventhough it was a mini one?

nice picture though!
thank you?


Hi Dawn
First I've seen of this shot - it's stunning. Composition is uncluttered, the yacht adds a nice although disturbing touch. Pastels are spectacular of this relatively rare phenomenon.

WOW, what a wonderful capture of this tornado Dawn. I'm waiting to capture such photo, as my town do come in Tornado alley. :) Vandana


  • Great 
  • SaraT Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 165 W: 0 N: 217] (1155)
  • [2007-01-14 14:53]

very neat photo
I like the purple and pink colors in the photo.
Very nice colors and details
I wouldn't want to be in that boat in the water next to the tornado.
Amazing photo

Hey Dawn, what a spectacular shot! You should forget about settings and just take pictures if this is what happened when you used wrong settings. Congrats for making pic of the week. Very, very nice. Defenitely going into my favourites.

The colors are great! And just like a pastel painting. Blessing in disguise indeed when you fumbled down in haste to capture this moment.

congrats! TFS

  • Great 
  • kbeall Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 513 W: 108 N: 902] (3598)
  • [2007-02-05 21:00]

Hi Dawn,
Congratulations on this capture, as well as your award! Sometimes the best shots are by accident, and your settings on this one made it special as well as memorable.
All the best,

nice colours, like your photo.

Greetings Marjolein

natural power!! i love this pictures :D

Good morning Dawn

Absolutely fantastic capture here, focus or no focus it matters not. The colours are superb and what a catch.

TFS regards Helen

Hi Dawn
I am EXTEMELY impressed with your water spout photo. It is simply amazing. You must feel on cloud 9 having taken this one. The subject matter, composition and lighting is altogether fantastic. I really like the subtle hues and the miroring of colours between clouds and sea. The effect of the water surface disturbance at point of spout contact has been well captured adding to its vibrance and sense of action.


Hi Dawn,

great moment capture! Excellent composition too!



Wow, For a on the spot picture, i'm impressed. Nice that you included the yacht. It gives a sense of size.

:) Lovely pictute, nice soft colors;)




I have to admit I am starting to get very, very jealous. ;)

It seems, you only have to take three steps out of your house, point, shot and win...

This is an absolut stunning shot, even though you fumbled (as you mentioned) the cam, somehow..

I really like the colours and the smnall boat gives the spectator the right imagination of size and depth.


Best regards

  • Great 
  • korbee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1483 W: 0 N: 1852] (14495)
  • [2008-08-30 4:18]

Extremely luky to be at the right spot on the right moment to capture this dream scnene so well Dawn,the boat is just there where it should be.

Hi Dawn,

A good thing this one was in your featured pictures - what an amazing event.
Little waterspouts can occur here as well, only the chance of ever seeing one is very small - how about that indeed.
Indeed those settings have created a kind of a poster. Love the look.


Hi Dawn,
Why did I never critiqued this posting? You may smack me! Superb impressing of a water tornado. Your reward is given, a lot of points but more important the photograph of the week on the world famous www.metvuw.com weather! What more do you wish!
No more words needed than superb!

Hello Dawn,

What a great moment to witness. Love the colors and the lighting. Also the composition of the tornado coming out of thw clouds going to the water is great. And the sailboat in the front...

Greetings from Holland

Hi Dawn
Looks like a liquidfy result in photoshop, but it sure looks natural enough to be watersprout. which I have never seen before. I love the small boat showing depth while the tones are super.

  • Great 
  • bri Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 751 W: 13 N: 1404] (6384)
  • [2009-05-13 5:26]

Hi Dawn,
The points are well deserved for this one - I dont thing there is anyting that has not been said in earlier posts so I will congratulate you with a couple more points.

Hi Dawn,
Wow...what a sight!! I can't imagine seeing something like that! I've always wanted to but never had that chance YET! Its a beautiful photo, I love the pastel color hues...TFS

( Looks kinda like a long hose!)

Somehow I missed this shot of yours Dawnie and it's truly one of the best I've ever seen! You get an award for this! Sorry it's 3 years later! A water spout or tornado is something that I've only seen ONCE, photographed ONCE...I hope to see more, SAFELY! Love the pink! Marvelous!

Ahh Im a little late like Linda :-)
But I'm here thats all that matters :-)
GREAT photo Dawnie, I'm Lovin' it haha.
Beautiful coloUrs (the large U is for Linda)

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