Stormy Season

I have to say that I love the stormy season, and recently the Great Ocean Road has been providing some amazing scenes.

Whenever there is a slight chance of thunder and lightning being forecast I drop whatever I am doing at the time and head out towards the coast. Due to my emotionally charged state of mind, a moody sky pulls me in all the time; add to that some stormy seas and you will see me doing cartwheels on the sand.

Waist-deep in water, feeling every moment of energy as I reel off frame after frame. Not stopping for air, I make my images in a mad frenzy like a nutty professor who has just stumbled upon an amazing scientific breakthrough.

Onlookers watch in bewilderment as I’m just about knocked over by incoming waves, relentlessly one after the other. I stand my ground firmly against each onslaught, rather than retreating and possibly slipping or stepping into a rock pool due to the fact that I’m unable to see the bottom.

My first reaction if the water level may be too high is to raise my camera and tripod above me; otherwise I grasp onto the tripod firmly to keep its place secure. If you’re looking to do seascape photography, you can stand out in the car-park and set up from there, or alternatively be prepared to get wet.

It’s so important to know your tide times and photograph as the tide is receding, but always trust your instincts and never turn your back on the sea (unless you have eyes in the back of your head) :).

Darren J.

while l slowly slip away, red johanna beach, great ocean rd, victoria, australia

no way forward, apollo bay region, great ocean rd, victoria, australia

“Photographer of The Year 2011”

For the second year running I have been awarded the title of “Photographer of the Year” at the Melbourne Camera Club; once again I am honoured to receive this award.

Other awards for the year include…..

* The Len Mullumby Trophy for A Grade Aggregate Prints 2011
* Set Subject Aggregate Prints Trophy 2011

Best Nature Print for ‘Peek a Boo’

peek-a-boo, boorte, country, victoria, australia.

Best Colour Print for ‘The way we were’

the way we were, portrait, old town, xing ping, guilin, china

Best Landscape Print for ‘Burning Embers’

burning embers, bright, country victoria, australia.

Intro Course Coordinator

I have recently been appointed Coordinator of the Highly Successful Introduction to Photography Course at the Melbourne Camera Club. The club runs 2 courses per year, providing a series of lectures and practical workshops over a six week period.

The first course commences 7th February 2012 and followed by the 2nd course which commences in August. Our February course sold out within the first week of going online and we already have a waiting list for our August session. The course consists of 6 lessons (tuesday evenings) and 3 workshops (sunday mornings). The course is conducted at the Melbourne Camera Club.

The Intro Course has been running for over 20 years and continues to be a huge success.

I am looking forward to this new role, we have a great team of presenters that include Australian Landscape/travel photographer Peter Walton, who has been in the photographic business for over 40 years and has a wealth of experience. Robert Groom, who has been running the Intro Course for the last 15 years, is a well accomplished freelance photographer/educator and has been instrumental in getting the course to where it is today. Peter Chapple has been photographing fashion for over 20 years, his work speaks for itself and a host of other assistants.

You can check out their websites here……

Should be a great year ahead and keep in mind that l will be running land/seascape workshops throughout the year. Drop me a line with your interest.

Darren J.

Pieman Heads

Here is an image from my 2011 archives. March 2011 was my first Tasmanian photographic expedition; fellow photographer Rob Featonby and I spent two weeks travelling around Tassie, living out of the four wheel drive in what was an amazing getaway.

This particular image has been hiding away in my files until recently – I was back-tracking through my Tassie images and stumbled across this beauty – with a few Photoshop adjustments it’s looking a treat.

The location is Pieman Heads in Tasmania’s Tarkine Wilderness. Access is via a river cruise from Corrina along the Pieman River on the Arcadia 11 down through to the wild West Coast at Pieman Heads.

I’m looking for a few seascape photographers or lovers of nature to come and explore this wonderful region of Tasmania. Approximate time 1 week, setting off on a boat cruise down the Pieman River to the North side of Pieman Heads, setting up tents in the coastal camp.

The region is harsh and rugged, remote with no local shops and no way back except for boat pick-up. If you are interested in exploring this region, drop me an email expressing your interest and availability.

Darren J.

take me with you, north pieman heads, tasmania, australia

Cape Woolamai

Seasons Greetings to you all.

It seems like an eternity since my last post (three weeks), so I hope you all had a safe and happy festive season and wish you all the best throughout the coming year.

I would like to say that I have been keeping busy with photography, but this time of year I tend to take a little break-away from my photography. With the holiday makers, heavy crowds and traffic the best place for me is staying close to home until the holiday season comes to a close.

One of the reasons why I love being a photographer is being able to escape away from the crowds and busy lifestyle that surrounds us in a city environment. The feeling of being out there in the wilderness or ocean setting alone keeps pulling me closer and closer to it each time I visit.

My longing to be out photographing in the elements is overwhelming; these days I struggle to find my place within the urban sprawl, with the masses congregating and going about their daily business I am continuously dreaming of photographing the landscape.

This time of year is just way too crowded and busy for my liking, to be taking photos and camping out amongst all the holiday makes it very difficult to find ‘my space’ in the landscape.

For now I will bide my time and wait for the new year to unfold and then unleash myself into what I love best.

The images below where taken at Cape Woolamai, which is a small town and beach at the South-Eastern tip of Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia. Both images show the same rock formation with slow water motion creating an ‘s-curve’, which leads the eye around the foreground of the image, late sunlight hitting the foreground rocks giving a lovely lift to the scene.

When photographing foreground rocks it’s always more visually pleasing when the sunlight is reflecting onto them just after they have been hit by an incoming wave to create a glistening surface, although it depends on the type of rocks – some rocks will always have a dull craggy look about them.

So it’s important to choose your foreground rocks wisely for more impact. After a while you will become more familiar with what to look for, but always keep an eye on how the light falls upon on the rocks; it makes all the difference.

Also become familiar with the way water works its way around the rocks, watch the patterns and flow and envisage those movements within your own image, then capture it.

Darren J.

cape woolamai, curve, phillip island, victoria, australia

woolamai curve, cape woolamai, phillip island, victoria, australia