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Posts tagged ‘summer’

Weekend Wanderings: Yackandandah Part 2

Here is the second part of my trip to Yackandandah.  The man from the Spiritus Art Gallery and gave me some directions and ideas of where to go.  I knew I had to get a move on, as I would have to head back to Wodonga soon, and also the sun was starting to get to high for any decent photos, so they aren’t great, but they do give you an idea of what was there.


This was part of the road into town, beautiful scenery really, the whole drive, from Wodongo to there.


After leaving the main street I went to find petrol for the car, and saw a lovely park that I went for stop in. It had a small creek or something at the bottom and they had built steps that you could walk down and then go and walk around.  It was really nice in the morning light.


At the back of the petrol station I saw this building, another art place, only this one is fall of studios.  My friends who told me about Yackandandah had suggested that I find it, they thought I would be interested.  I was, and I thought it was great.  I got talking to Helen Lemke, a ceramic artist. She was waiting for students to come to her class and we had a small chat and she told me about the place.  It is built on where the old station was, or near it. Not sure exactly, but it has to do with the old train station.  Definitely worth checking out if you go there, say hi to Helen for me.


The man I spoke to in the Spiritus Art Gallery also suggested that I should go and check out the Gorge.  He said it wasn’t far out of town, and I wouldn’t have to walk far to find it. which was true I didn’t. Though I did almost drive straight past it.  I also had trouble finding what road it was on, there were no signs in the town to direct you to.  Maybe they don’t want people going there.


This is the gorge. Not big, but from what I can read women made it, I don’t know. It was done during the gold rush to get water for the men mining the gold.  It is incredible to think how these things were built back then, when you consider they didn’t have the tools that we have today.

By the time I got to the gorge, I knew the beautiful early morning light was gone and that the photos wouldn’t be that good, but I had to go and take some photos, for scouting purposes if nothing else.  I would like to go back, but if I do I would go much earlier in the morning, when the sun was hitting it in a soft way.  Though, if I’m truthful, I think I would go back in winter, no chance of snakes, and the light is better then too, so much softer.

Someone mentioned looking it up on Google maps and I realized I hadn’t included a map so here is a map so you can see where the town is.

I have more photos for you now. I hope you are having a great weekend, I have Social Snappers this afternoon, we are going to the Healesville Sanctuary, so I guess there will be more animal photos soon.


Weekend Wanderings: Sorrento, Summer by the Sea

There was a fairly late start to summer here, we actually thought perhaps it had skipped us this year, not that I minded, it is probably the season I like the least, but alas it has found us and it is making up for lost time. It is going to be very hot today and tomorrow and forever, if you ask me. It has been very hot here the last week or so as well.  I don’t like the heat and it is terrible for photos.

I did get a chance to go to Sorrento and Blairgowrie recently for Social Snappers and the weather, while warm was really perfect for the day.  First we headed to one of the back beaches at Blairgowrie.



There are some small cliffs there and the waves hit them and the water sprays everywhere.  This is a series of photos put together so I could make the wave look much bigger than it actually was.  I think it is about 15 to 18 photos.  Gives it a great effect.


I tried doing this for MM, but in the end decided against it.  I put a ND8 on the lens to slow the shutter speed down so I could get lines instead of the usual water spray.  I like how it looks with a slower shutter speed.  There will be more in the gallery.


After lunch we headed to the bay side of Sorrento to take some photos along a beach.  The water is very different on this side, much calmer, that would be because it is inside the bay as well. The colour of the sky and the colour of the water was just stunning. I think the water was very cold though, judging by the people trying to swim in it.


The clouds in the sky were amazing too, they looked like they had been struck by the soft wind that was blowing.  Perhaps I should have tried some long exposures.


These all say summer and what most people think about when they think of summer in Australia. Though it is rarely this idyllic, it is hot and the sun just burns.  Hats, sunscreen and covering up is what we should be doing. Getting burned is not ideal, beside the pain that comes with it, there is also the added threat of skin cancer every time it happens.  I got burned so many times growing up that I try to minimise it happening now.  Besides, red really isn’t my colour.

I have a map for you, you can see the shape, so the bottom part is what they call the back beach, it can get pretty wild there.  The top part is the bay area, so it is always much calmer there, you don’t get the big waves in that area.

I wouldn’t be going anywhere near the beach today, it is going to be 36°C here today, think I will stay indoors and try to keep myself cool.  I hope the weather is nicer where you are, though I hope people in Queensland weren’t too badly affected by the cyclones that just hit them, thinking of them.  More photos now, enjoy your day.


Weekend Wanderings: Melbourne in the Summer

This last week I took a trip into the City of Melbourne to do some photography with a friend, Christine Wilson. Our aim was to get some photos for that exhibition that I was telling you about the other day, the one on street photography or urban photography.  I thought all the images had to be in black and white, but I have since found out they can be colour as well.  I will get you a link to it soon.

Anyway,  we were in there to take photos of the city, well to help me find some images.  I love walking around the city taking photos, but not sure I like it when the sun is glaring down and it is quite warm.  We did out best, and perhaps what I got was Melbourne in the Summer.


Summer in Melbourne is about getting out of the sun, sitting in the shade.  A couple of guys sitting in the shade in Hosier Lane.


Some kids playing in the water in the City Square, we even took a walk in the water there, it was really nice, I didn’t want to get out. On hot days there you will always find kids in the water there.


Melbourne is big on lanes and eating in them.  This is part of Hardware Lane and lots of places to eat.


It’s hot so people don’t want to go outside, so often places like the lanes are great to photograph because no one is around.  We went into that place and sat for a while and had some cold drinks.  It was really nice, the staff were lovely too.

Towards the end of the day we went to Centre Place,  a very busy place during the day and though we might try taking some long exposures there.  (I’ve taken more long exposures with Chris that I’ve ever done, it has been fantastic.)  So the first was just a few seconds and no filter, the second I had the ND400 filter on and it took about 3 minutes.  I liked the effect with the filter, shame about that pram there, but those people weren’t moving for anyone.  Oh well, next time.

It was great getting out and taking photos with Chris, and we did it again yesterday, but you will have to wait until tomorrow to see those.  She knows so many places I don’t know, which is fantastic. We have another trip tentatively planned for next week too.  It is hot here now, while not those soaring temperatures, it is still very hot to be outside, especially in the sun.  The sun is always hot here, I think the hole in the ozone above us makes it worse.

I have a gallery for you now. I hope you have a brilliant start to your weekend.  I’m looking forward to doing not much of anything.


Weekend Wandering: Warburton and Lala Falls Part 1

Can you believe it he waterfall is really called Lala Falls?  I was there yesterday, my first trip out for the new year.  I don’t know that I would call it a great trip, but it was nice to be taking photos again.  As I said yesterday the weather has been heating up and while it wasn’t really hot when we went to the waterfall, it was warm, and then walking to the waterfall was hard work, it was uphill all the way. It wouldn’t normally be considered a long walk, but when you are doing it in the middle of summer and the uphill is never level, or any down, it was hard.  I was so glad when I got there.


I used the macro for most of the walk.  It was wonderful to keep looking for little things to photograph and I think I got quite a few things.  You do have to walk and look all around you.



Then there were the things you didn’t expect to find in a rain forest, earrings growing from ferns.


The walk was great to look at, and everywhere you looked it was so pretty.  I think I like rain forests.  They are so green and on a hot day they always seem to be so cool, you can feel the moisture in them.


I even managed to get a dragonfly, I was excited when I got home and saw this.  I did find it hard to get many macro shots, perhaps because I was so tired and my heart was racing.  I really need to get fitter.


The waterfall was lovely, and I put my ND 400 filter on and put the camera on the ground and got some long exposures.  It really didn’t look like this, but I like the effect.  We went to Warburton with the purpose of doing a few things, but in the end didn’t do a lot.  I would love to go back, maybe stay a couple of days.  It would be great to be there in winter I think, and I also think there would be a lot more to photograph in the rain forest during that time.

A map to show you where it is.

I have a gallery of more images for you now.  All these images were taken on the way to the falls, tomorrow I will show the photos on the walk back, and some that I took around the river at Warburton.  I hope you have had a chance to get out and some photos this year.


Quiet Thursday in December

It is getting here, summer has definitely arrived and December is bound to be a very busy month, what with Christmas and most of us, well in Australia, not wanting to go out much in the heat.  I like these quiet Thursdays, it means a peaceful day.


This is an image I took last weekend while I was in the city wandering the streets.  I loved the way the sun was hitting it, but I also liked it in black and white so much more.  It did have a beautiful sky, but I replaced it, and part of the reason for doing that was to get rid of some of the distractions that were around it.

Just quickly, I have started the one four challenge again, well my entry for it, though it is over on my other blog, go here, One Four Challenge for December Week 1.

I have also done another image for Stacy’s AB Friday, well I have sent it to her but it won’t be published for another day or two, so keep an eye on my other blog, and Visual Venturing.


Weekend Wanderings – Dog Rocks

The other day I was sitting around home and I got a text message with a very interesting invitation.  Christine Wilson had decided at the last minute to go to Dog Rocks and wanted to know if I was interested. My response was where is that, but at the same time, I was thinking new place to take photos.  I loved the spontaneity of the invitation, and hope it happens again.  I was to find out that Dog Rocks a small place near Bateford, and near Geelong.  I googled it before I went, got something about something for dogs, but then I started to see some incredible images. When we go there it was bright and sunny, and our hopes of lots of clouds for some long exposures were dashed, but I was so pleased to have been introduced to this place.


So, what is it?  It seems to be a paddock that is now a park, but the land is very barren.  There are lots of rocks, and big rocks on it, and a few weird shaped trees.  There was a cluster, or group, or what a group of trees is called, just looked up google and maybe a copse.  Our hopes of a cloudy sky disappeared as the clouds all went, so no chance of long exposures.

It was probably the wrong time to be there, and as I looked through my photos I wondered what I would do with them.  There is something I have been pondering on for some time now, about doing images and using the Australian summer light to make my images, to use the harshness of the light.  I don’t quite know how yet, but going to this place gave me some ideas and I played around with them with that idea in mind.


So I played with the colour and actually used some over exposed images.  The summer light here is very very harsh, and it flattens everything and it does seem to take the colour out.  Everything around the country is brown, or golden, so I thought why not emphasis that.


I also thought about trying some in black and white, see if they would come up better.  I was having trouble with the sky, so put in a cloudy sky.  It was interesting as it was obvious where the sun was so I had to be careful which sky I choose.  I hope this is the right one.


Again another replaced sky.  The rock formations were quite incredibly too.  I have no idea what sort of rock it was, but you will see more in the gallery.  Some of the bigger ones had little ponds in them, and even overflows.

I was so happy Christine had invited me.  Of course people go there to photograph the trees, well specially the tree in the black and white image above.  I preferred the tree in the second image.  It wasn’t too bad a drive, so I know I will go back at different times of the year, especially now that I know about it. I have a map of roughly where it is.

I hope that helps you.

I am going to put the rest of the images that I spent yesterday processing into a gallery for you now.  We have a state election here today, it is turning out to be a big thing, a sign of things to come.  I really hate the state of politics here and the cat fights that continue to happen between the two parties, and would really like to see them getting back to making Australia a better country for everyone, rather than a few.  Anyway, no place for a discussion like that here and I think I will be spending a good part of the weekend playing with the new macro lens that arrived here yesterday, my own at last. I hope you have a good weekend, and take care.



Weekend Wanderings – Kinglake Reminds Us

In Australia Summer starts on the 1st of December, and while we tend to think of summer as hot weather, beaches, sand, barbecues, water, flies and snakes there is something else that usually happens that none of us want to think about, bushfires.  There are always fires here,  somewhere.  It is the unfortunate reality of a country like Australia, there will be fires, and we just hope they aren’t anywhere near us and that the loss of life will be nil or close to that. The other day I was back up in Kinglake taking another look at how the bush area there is growing and I also went to some areas that I hadn’t been to before.


In February it will be 6 six years since the worse bushfires in Australian history, the Black Saturday fires.  It all happened, pretty much, in one day, 173 people lost their lives and 2100 homes were destroyed, and it is something that none of us ever want repeated.  Now, 6 years later the communities are still rebuilding and the only place where you can still be reminded of the fires is the bushland.  The new trees are growing, but the dead wood of the burned trees still dominant over the landscape.


Kinglake was one of the worst affected areas with the fires decimating the surrounding area.  The bushland around Kinglake, the national park, was completely destroyed,  most homes around it were as well.

I love going back and watching how the area is slowly growing back, one day you will hardly be able to see the dead trees sticking up out of the canopy.


There are already areas that have regenerated enough that it is almost impossible to tell that the fires went through there.

So I thought I would dedicate this post to the bushfires and the victims as a reminder to all of us that we need to be vigilant and that we need to be very careful, especially anywhere where a fire could start.  The black Saturday fires were close to home for me, they stopped less that 30 kms from my home, and if the wind hadn’t changed when it did, well, a lot more people would have been homeless.

This is what summer in Australia can be, it is part of what happens here and we have to be prepared for it.  I should apologise, I didn’t mean it to be a morbid post, but more a reminder of what was and what is now.

I’ve seen some photos of the snow storm that has hit part of the states, and I hope everyone there is safe and sound. I also hope the snow has stopped.  Take care if you live there, Amy if you are reading this, I mean you.  So I will leave you with a gallery now, my reminder of what can happen, but also how much we recover and move on.


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