Australian Vacation and Thank YousG'day Possums!More Like This
I'm off on my travels again, this time back to Victoria in Australia for another tour around that marvellous country. I'm departing on Wednesday evening, 28th January, and will be back on 20th February. Consequently, I shall not be able to deal with very much correspondence unless I find some friendly WiFi and keyboard. I shall be meeting up with kayandjay100 and The-Egg while I'm there and I'm looking forward to that. I expect I shall also encounter my old friend Digger who helped write my past Journals about my adventures down under.
The recent Journals and photographs from my South African trip in November last, and the explorations into monochrome photography I have posted over the last two weeks have had a huge response by way of comments and faves, llamas and Watches. I have tried to thank many of you personally for this wonderful support, but the sheer number of faves has defeated me. Yesterday, to add to the problem, DA decided I was sending spam and st
Birds Are The DevilUpdate 26th February 2015More Like This
I would like to thank everyone who has commented on and faved the photographs from this work - approximately 170 to date. It has proved impossible to thank everyone individually. The support and encouragement is very gratifying, and is very much appreciated.
I always enjoy looking at birds wherever I travel in the World. Being an amateur photographer means that I feel compelled to try to capture any new-to-me birds, exotic or not, whenever the opportunity arises. So it was in Victoria, Australia on my recent vacation. However, birds are the devil when it comes to capturing good images. They are flighty creatures not prone to hanging around while exposure settings are checked, focus regimes put in place, and cameras lifted to the eye. They are noisy creatures, squawking and fluttering in the leaves of trees and bushes, distracting even the most focussed of minds from the task in hand. They are sneaky devils as well, making eyes at the camera until
Here Comes the SunPhotographers love sunrise and sunset as those times usually provide good light for colour, and can provide dramatic 'scapes for little additional post-processing effort. So long as the Sun is more or less visible, and clouds do not entirely cover the sky, then useful shots can be obtained. Provided you make sure that the horizon is level and uprights that should be are vertical, then it is difficult to go wrong with a beautiful sunset shot. Yet, there are refinements, tweaks, little extras that can turn a good shot into something more memorable. I do not know how far I have succeeded in the memorable image stakes with the following short set, but I have tried.More Like This
The first shot was taken at the harbour in Lake's Entrance, Gippsland, Victroia, very shortly after sunrise. I used a lamppost to partially obscure the Sun, and managed to capture the "gold" sky that arises partially through a slight morning haze, before the blue of the day takes over. I tweaked the deep shadows to give more of
Fern ForestMore Like This
I've travelled a bit in my life and visited many a forest in many an odd place. I've swung through the canopies of cloud forests in Costa Rica, and huddled soaked to the skin in rain forests also in Costa Rice; I've stared in awe at the giant sequoias in California's coastal belt, and scrambled through the beetle infested forest floor of the Amazon; the African bush forests seem a second home, I've been through them so many times; the wild unkempt pine forests of Scotland have trapped me on occasion with their dry cracking branches ready to shred the unwary; and I've strolled entranced through the leafy avenues of England's New Forest. Yet, all those adventures left me unprepared for a journey through a fern forest near in the Yarra Ranges National Park near Healesville, Victoria. My dear friend Coco kayandjay100 and her son Jack took my wife and I on a magical tour of this forest while we were in Victoria. I had never seen anything like it, nothing to comp
Bonzer and PalsI was very perturbed to hear in our news media that there has been a cull of koalas in Victoria, Australia, near to where we met my pal Digger on our last trip - Cape Otway on the Great Ocean Route ==> http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/environment/wildlife/article4371773.ece. I can only hope that my old pal, Digger, who featured in the Journals from my last trip has not been caught napping (so to speak) and managed to escape. However, he had passed on the name and address of his cousin at Healesville Sanctuary in the Yarra Valley - Bonzer - so we* went to visit him. This is him in the first shot - fast asleep, cradled in a fork in the tree. His eyes are tight closed, and there was not a twitch from him. Good on you, Bonzer - nice meeting you!More Like This
As I explained in a previous Journal, the Healesville Sanctuary accommodates Australian wildlife, and specialises in unusual and endangered species, with breeding and release programmes to help p
Rivers and CreeksAlthough Australia is considered a dry continent with vast areas of sandy and rocky desert, there are plenty of rivers and creeks in Victoria, the main rivers rising in the mountains of the Great Dividing Range and Australian Alps. Here are a few shots of some of the rivers and creeks that I encountered during my recent trip. The first is of the mighty Murray River, Australia's longest river at about 1500 miles. It flows from the Alps, westward, and then south to reach the ocean not far from Adelaide in South Australia. At this point, near the small town of Corowa, the Murray forms the border between Victoria and New South Wales. Geographers will notice the flood plain either side of the river itself, and botanists might be able to tell which type of eucalypts line the bank. The second image, taken at Corowa, shows a common mode of river transport. Further downstream by a couple of hundred miles, paddle steamers ply the waterway.More Like This
Street Art During my recent stay in Melbourne, I had the good fortune and pleasure in meeting up with Dave Porteus The-Egg :iconthe-egg: for a photo-shoot around the back streets and lanes near the Queen Victoria Market. Dave introduced me to the vibrant street art culture for which Melbourne is well known. We visited several alleyways in which big, bold and brash images painted on brick and concrete walls assaulted the eyes with their colourful characters and compositions. In those couple of hours, I learnt more from Dave about street art and how to photograph it and its environments than I could possibly have imagined. Many thanks for such a wonderful shoot, Dave.More Like This
Dave is a master of HDR and low light photography, two images from our adventure are shown below. This is not the place to give a full blown account of High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography; suffice to say that the technique which involves the blending (tone-mapping) of severally images with different exposures allows detail