These are images of an area in NE Skye called the Quiraing which is an area of huge landslips. In fact the area pictured is still slipping to this day! It’s a surreal, almost Tolkiensque landscape that I had to myself for an hour or so and the howling gale just added to the wild, untamed feel of the place. On more friendly days it is very popular with walkers for obvious reasons.
Being careful not to get too close to cliff edges in case I got blown off, I managed to get a couple of shots that were fleetingly lit by the sun peeking through the racing clouds which was just above me. An exhilarating photo session indeed!
A nice peaceful image from one of my favourite short walks in the Cradle Mt area. The Dove Canyon track starts from near Cradle Mt Lodge and follows Pencil Pine Ck through beautiful Myrle Forest for the first kilometre or so before heading along the top of the Dove Canyon.
The full walk is quite a hike in places but takes you through some magnificent highland country but everytime I am in the area I always go for a short walk along this track because it is such a peaceful place and I am hoping to one day catch a glimpse of a faerie because I am sure they inhabit the area, or maybe a troll!
This will be my last post for a little while as I am off to visit Europe and hopefully Scotland for a month and hopefully return with some good images!
See you all soon!
If you have had a look through my blog you may have noticed that I have a fondness for mountains with clouds around them. When I notice stormy clouds settling around high ground I start looking for some sort of interesting foreground and hopefully some sunlight filtering through the advancing (or retreating) clouds, not always as easy as it sounds!
While driving around the Western Creek area in Tasmania I noticed clouds advancing across the Great Western Tiers, so after heading down a couple of side roads with no success I finally found this scene. It was just a matter of waiting for sunlight to hopefully illuminate the foreground to contrast with the threatening cloud over the mountains.
I was reading an article by Ken Duncan the other day and he was extolling the virtues of “wildlight” or “chíaroscuro”as it was termed by Renaissance landscape painters. “Wildlight” refers to the conditions where sunlight is broken up by passing cloud and is often associated with the back end of stormy weather. Great to find but it can be difficult light to work with!
Waiting for the light to fall just where you want it can be an exercise in patience and frustration interspersed with mild panic as a rain shower descends upon you! If you have the time to wait you can be rewarded with some great images.
This image was taken at Lake Mackintosh near Tullah in Western Tasmania, an area of rugged mountains covered in thick temperate rainforest and is subject to wild & highly changeable weather conditions. This really was an exercise in patience as I waited for the sun to illuminate the foreground & the cliff face simultaneously and get stormy cloud in the background! After attempting to tone down the bright foreground in the colour version with little success, monochrome was the answer!
Canon 5D II, 24 TS-E lens,1/60@f11, Iso 100
First of all, it appears this blog has picked up a small following, which kind of surprises me as I don’t consider my images to be anything really special. There are far better images out there than mine! But to those people who follow my blog and those who stumble across it and leave a ‘Like’ thanks very much! I will endeavour to keep it as interesting as I possibly can. Please feel free to leave a comment about the images I post,good, bad or whatever!
It occurred to me that most images of Cradle Mt. are shot with wide-angle lenses which show a lot of foreground which is hopefully interesting but also push the mountain into the background. Luckily, with that distinctive shape, it will still get the attention it deserves. As I was driving up to Lake Dove one day I noticed that at one spot the mountain seems to loom over the surrounding buttongrass plains with little else to compete with it. On the way back I decided to investigate that view a little more closely and this is the result.
It is a slightly different perspective of the mountain helped by the use of a 105mm focal length.
‘Confession’- I have replaced a rather dull, featureless blue sky with something a little more interesting! Canon 5DII, 105mm, 1/5s @f16, iso 100, polariser
Another image from Coles Bay, this time it is of The Hazards. Even though the light is not the best, I like the contrast between the bright, lichen covered granite in the foreground and the stormy sky.
Guess I will just have to go back one day and wait for the good light!
This image is from earlier in the morning and was a brief show of colour around Cradle Mt. Back over my left shoulder the sky was aflame but I wanted that distinctive shape, so I had to hope that the slowly moving cloud in the mountain’s direction would ‘light up’!
A little tip for those of you contemplating a trip to Tassie for photography, at the height of summer the sun rises at about 5:30am and sets about 9:00pm. Add to that about an hour of twighlight at each end of the day and your photographic day is pretty long! Especially if you are travelling around as well.
Somewhere in that 24hrs you need to eat, download images, scout around, and do th0se other things that life demands AND get a good night’s sleep! Not to mention the amount of people that visit iconic sights like Cradle Mt & Freycinet Peninsula. Next time I go down it will be in March-April or August- Sept when the days are a bit shorter and Autumn colour or Spring flowers are showing.
Anyway, hope you like it! Canon 5D Mk II, 24mm TS-E Lens, 2 stop ND Grad Filter
If you have been following this blog you probably know that Cradle Mt. and I have a complicated history,photographically speaking! The weather Gods just seem to give me the thumbs down whenever I go there. During my little sojourn around Tasmania in a campervan recently I spent 3 days there with Mort Ellis to make sure I gave myself a fighting chance of getting some good images of the mountain.
This particular morning I got up there early and had the place to myself for a while before the holiday crowds started swarming and came away with some nice images of which this is one.
Funnily enough, the weather was actually a little too nice with minimal cloud around the mountain during the morning twilight but I managed to get a couple of nice ones which I will post soon. What made this morning pretty special though for me was the absolute stillness of the water which made for some great reflections.
Hope you like it! Canon 5D Mk II, 24mm TS-E Lens
With the recent passing of my uncle,I was going through some old photos last night and also watched a video shot by a family friend. The video was of my father recounting his memories about the early days of Cradle Mountain following the death of Gustav Weindorfer.
He mentioned that Waldheim Chalet and surrounding land was eventually purchased by the Connell family and run as a guesthouse for a period and it was this family who put in many of the tracks in the area that are still in use today. In those days it would have been hard physical labour indeed as it was all done by hand including the cutting of the timber “cordoruy” used in lowlying areas to make walking easier.
I have posted before about the Ellis brothers who originally built what is now known as Cradle Mountain Lodge back in the ’70s. Ossie Ellis, over the years surveyed,marked and cut many of the day walking tracks around the lodge that I have been fortunate enough to walk over the years. One of my favourites is the Canyon track which can be quite challenging in places!
On one of my recent visits to the area I went for a walk along the track to some hidden falls and was delighted to see that some of the original cordorouy & original marker posts that Ossie put in were still there albeit in sad disrepair in places.
Even though helicopters were used to drop materials closer to the more remote parts of the track, the labour involved in putting it all in would have been huge as all the boards were split by hand, tied together by wire and nailed where needed. Not to mention the digging of drains and levelling where needed! Ossie was in his ’60s at the time.
Eventually the miles of cordorouy that Ossie and some friends put in will rot away or be replaced by timber walkways which will conform to safety standards and constructed by teams of builders & volounteers
This image is my homage to a breed of men & their skills that are slowly disappearing into the mist of time.
This is one from Tasmania again, and I am sure you have seen quite a few images from this place posted by me previously! I nearly always drive up to this place each sunset when I am in the area because it offers a magnificent view of Mt Roland and the old barn is great foreground.
This time I decided to let the barn and the mountain become the background and focus on a different element in the scene. The light cooperated nicely as well!
This is an image I shot last time I was in Tasmania. A classic case of conditions coming together while I was packing my gear away! As the sun entered a narrow window between a cloud layer and the horizon, the face of Mt. Roland was lit by pale yellow light which changed rapidly to a vibrant red-orange just before the sun disappeared.
This made up for all the times when the conditions didn’t happen!
Another image from Cape Gloucester, looking toward Gloucester Is. just before sunset.
It seems like ages since I posted any images of the beautiful Whitsunday Islands which unfortunately I don’t get out to very often these days! This is an image of Hill Inlet which is at the Northern end of Whitehaven Beach. I shot this quite a while ago and it is one of my favourites of this magnificent place!
As you can see, it’s quite a low tide which was not ideal for the great aqua shades you get in the water when the tide is higher. You can see some of it on the left of the image, but what attracted me was this Hoop Pine sapling growing out of a cleft in the rock and despite the odds doing quite nicely! Not a bad place to put down roots!
This is an image I shot a few mornings ago. As the weather cools up here in the tropics and the wind drops it is great conditions for early morning fog around the canefields. I had been looking for a high vantage point and believe me they are few and far between, but I went up a road called the “Highway to Heaven” and found this spectacular view!Actually very restricted in shooting positions due to the intrusion of power lines, which are the bane of my photographic existence! Shot just as the sun illuminated the fog in the foreground and within 20 minutes it was all gone!
On my way home from Lucinda, I had a little bit of time up my sleeve so I headed into the mountains to see if I could find some waterfalls of which there are many in this area. About halfway up the Paluma Range, I came across this beautiful rainforest stream by the name of Crystal Creek.
Spent a rather enjoyable couple of hours here before the busloads arrived and this was the last image taken before the rain settled in with a vengeance! By the time I made it back to the car, I was sopping wet but my camera gear survived. Good onya Lowepro! Made it back home just before the rain covered Nth Queensland for the next week and flooded most of the roads.
First up, apologies to all for not participating in the blogosphere as much of late. My new job is to blame, early starts,long days & plenty of ’em! Not quite what I was envisioning but that is the marine tourism industry sometimes. GFC, what GFC? you would not know it existed here at the moment, a large improvement on previous months!
Needless to say, I have been as busy as a one- armed paperhanger and have not had much time for photography related activities.
This image is testament to an old adage of repeatedly visiting a place until you get the shot. Every time I come to Tasmania I visit this spot at least once a day usually at sunrise or sunset, because you just never know what may transpire. Even so, I have been caught out a couple of times after packing the gear away after a fruitless wait only to see the conditions come together within minutes!
This particular morning everything came together nicely for about an hour and I came away with a good selection of images. Enjoy!
Only made it up to Cradle Mt. once this time around. True to form, the weather was cold,blustery and RAINING which is the norm rather than the exception in this part of the world. I sat in the car for a while cursing my luck and eventually a break in the rain came through so hopefully I set off to a couple of spots that I wanted to check out.
Of course, 100 meters away from the car and a light rain started. I pulled out the camera gear a couple of times in the hope of getting a shot that wouldn’t have water spots on the lens and this was the only useable image.
I call this an environmental portrait of Cradle Mt. with the mountain taking a backseat to it’s surrounding environment of buttongrass plains which cover a large part of the surrounding area.
Anyway, hope you all like it!
After having a bit of a look around the West Coast of Tasmania and vowing to spend more time in the area next time I am in Tasmania, I decided to head up the Western ExplorerRoad as this would cut a lot of travelling time to my next destination.
With little information about the condition of this road which has been pushed through the Tarkine Wilderness I headed into the wilderness hoping my hire car was up to the task! As it turned out the road was in good condition but rarely have I felt more isolated, even in the Kimberley! For the next 3 or so hours I saw no sign of civilisation apart from the road I was on. If I had any sort of problem it was going to be a long wait for any help.
About halfway I stopped to stretch my legs and saw this scene behind me which summed what I was feeling at the time perfectly!
Of all the forests and bushlands I have wandered through over the years, I think the type of forest that gives me the greatest pleasure would be the Myrtle Beech forests of Tasmania.
To me, they are places of magic and mystery. Cool damp forests mostly found along alpine streams, the only sounds you hear are the burbling of the stream or the occasional thump as a wallaby scoots off into the brush.
The colour palette here is a lush emerald green as nearly everything is covered in a variety of mosses and lichens. Looking about, I nearly expect to see elves and faeries to be perched on a log looking at me quizzically.
Photographically, they are a delight, you could spend all day in one of these places and travel no more than 100 metres. Sunbeams,mist and the sheer variety of colour, texture and shape will engage your senses for hours!
Shot near Pencil Pine Creek on the edge of the Cradle Mt- Lake St. Clair Nat. Park.
Another quick one from Tasmania. This was processed and stitched in Lightroom & PT Gui on a Netbook!
I found this neat little scene on my way back fro Mossman to Cairns. Took off up a side road and drove for miles to find a spot where the sugarcane wasn’t obliterating the mountains in the background!
This is a scene that is so typical of FNQ and the fact that the Great Dividing Range is so close to the coast makes it a great area for photographers.
On another note, this will probably be my last post for a while. I am just about to head to Gladstone for 5 weeks as the Master of a 40m barge with a huge backhoe on it, basically a non-propelled dredge which is part of the push to build new infrastructure for the Port of Gladstone in Central Qld. It will probably be fairly dull but the pay is well worth it, which means a long overdue camera upgrade is definately on the cards! 🙂
Trawling through some of my early files, I came across these three early attempts at some Photoshop selective colour techniques.
While they wouldn’t win any prizes, I thought i would jump on the ‘ältered landscapes’ wagon for a bit. I always love seeing a plant growing where they have no business being! it always delights me to think that no matter how much we try to tame the natural world and smother it with ashphalt, concrete or any other atrocities such as poison, nature will have the last say!
These images are my little commentary on that theme.
I’m off sailing for a week, see you all soon!
Hope everybody had a great Easter Break. Judging by the lack of activity here, you all found better things to do than turn your computer on. As for me, I was back at sea for the first time in nearly 2 years!
Yesterday. I had to travel to Townsville for a doctor’s appointment at which they gave me some better news than I was expecting. The down side was they kept me waiting for nearly 2hrs and I nearly missed the great light in this image.
I had scoped out this area on a quick drive through on the way up, but had little idea of the area and what the light angles were going to be around sunset. Hightailing it along the Flinders Highway I could see some really nice light on the peaks in Bowling Green Bay Nat. Park. Sun was sinking fast and there were some large black clouds hovering along the western horizon.
Taking a chance, I ducked down a side road hoping I could find somewhere to take advantage of these conditions when this bent -up windmill appeared. I managed to fire of a 5 image stitch and a couple of single frames before the light disappeared. Whew!
Sometimes you just gotta take what you get and hope it works!
I think I just got away with it this time.
Looked like it would be a good sunset so I hung around for a while and then figured that it was a dud and started on the 3hr drive home. Looked into the rearvision mirror to see the lowering clouds lit from below beautifully, but by then I was in the wrong place heading in the wrong direction. Oh well, next time!
Just looking through my files and I found this image of the same tree but with a looming storm in the background. Whatever the conditions, that tree seems to draw your attention and to me both images are quintessentially Australian!