Landscape Photographer from the South West of Western Australia

Archive for June, 2011

Tornado Mayhem

In the early hours of this morning a front went through with strong winds (forecast 125km/hr!) and heavy rain. But this is winter and you have to expect that. However there was a strip from Quindalup (near Elmore Road), to the Quindalup Siding Road, and from there along the Vasse Yallingup Siding Road, and down Chain Avenue to Carbanup that got hit by an extraordinary storm. You can see by these photos that this was an exceptional wind event. It was fortunate that most of this area is farmland, and very few houses were hit directly. We saw one house in Quindalup that had lost its roof and another in Old Dunsborough that had been damaged by a large tree falling on it. The damage shown in these photos is only a few km from where we live, and we were unaware that the storm had been so bad.

Old Dunsborough

Marri trees in carpark in Old Dunsborough foreshore


Old Dunsborough Carpark

Old Dunsborough Carpark


Old Dunsborough Car Park (near toilets)

Old Dunsborough Car Park (near toilets)


Vasse Yallingup Siding Road (near Chain Avenue)

Vasse Yallingup Siding Road (near Chain Avenue)


Vasse Yallingup Siding Road

Vasse Yallingup Siding Road


Chain Avenue 1st image

Chain Avenue 1st image


Chain Avenue (2nd image)

Chain Avenue (2nd image)


Chain Avenue (3rd image)

Chain Avenue (3rd image)


When these photos were taken the local Shire had been working for hours and in places had only managed to clear a single lane by pushing the trees off the road. It is clear that it was very fortunate this happened in the early hours of the morning, and no-one was driving on these roads at the time. If there had been I doubt they would have survived.


Boranup Forest

This was taken about half way along the Boranup Drive. It is worth taking this deviation off Caves Road if you are in the area.

Boranup Drive

Boranup Drive


Nannup-Balingup Tourist Drive

This road follows the Blackwood River through some very hilly country. It twists and turns all the way, and is one of the prettiest drives in the South West. This was shot from the roadside.

Nannup Balingup Drive

Nannup Balingup Drive


Sugarloaf Rocks

On Sunday morning I got a call from Mark Stothard. He was at Sugarloaf Rocks and wanted to know if I wanted to join him in a shoot. I think he was really looking for someone to watch out and rescue him if he got washed in! (See his recent post, although he wasn’t in any danger when he got wet). As I had just got a new Nikon D7000 the day before, I was out there before you could say “ISO6400 wow”! There are a few differences with my old D90, and I had a bit of learning to do. This is my first panorama from the D7000. It was a bit tricky because of the waves.

Stormy Sugarloaf

Stormy Sugarloaf


So far I am very pleased with the D7000. Focussing while zoomed-in in Liveview wasn’t possible with the D90, so at times especially in low light it was hard to focus accurately. The low light capability of the D7000 is a leap ahead from the D90, and it has better mirror up functions, an intervalometer, slightly more megapixels and much more.


More from Dardanup

Lovely colours - I doubt it looked this nice new.



Beautifully restored. Amazing workmanship.



Inside another shed. Caterpillar and John Deere.


Dardanup Heritage Park

Yesterday I went out to Sugarloaf Rocks in the morning shooting with Mark Stothard. Just as well his camera is waterproof as he and his camera got hit with the spray from a large wave. In the afternoon I went to the Dardanup Heritage Park and got a huge surprise. This place is massive and full of old machinery. They are so big that they have different sheds devoted to brands of tractors eg one shed for Massey Ferguson, one for International and so on. If you are interested in old machinery you could spend days here. They are open Wednesdays and Sundays, or to prearranged groups of around 30 people. Here are some images to give you a feel for the place. These are nearly all shot in separate sheds. I will post more later.

Dardanup Heritage Park

Old truck

An old truck beautifully restored.
Dardanup Heritage Park

Large motor


A very large motor (The two motors like this take up an entire shed!)
Dardanup Heritage Park

Dardanup Heritage Park


Another motor in its own shed
Dardanup Heritage Park

Dardanup Heritage Park


This truck is not restored fully, but I liked the colours
Dardanup Heritage Park -Euclid earthmover

Euclid earthmover


Euclid earthmover
Dardanup Heritage Park

Dardanup Heritage Park


Inside one of the sheds


Balcony sunrise

In the leadup to the recent rain we had some good sunrises. It seems that every time I decide the clouds are too low on the horizon for a sunrise, nature decides that I am not the person to judge, and puts on a spectacular show. (That’s my excuse for getting up too late to go somewhere to photograph this sunrise!) This image was taken from our balcony. The water you can see (just below and to the right of the sun beginning to peep out) is Geographe Bay. Busselton is at the right hand edge of the water as you are looking at it.

Sunrise from my balcony

Sunrise from my balcony


Under the Busselton Jetty

As a young child I lived in Narrogin. My father was a keen fisherman, and not so keen farmer. Once the harvest was finished, we all went down to Busselton until school resumed. We stayed with thousands of others on the camping grounds in Busselton. In the middle of the day it was hot in the tents, and most days we went down to the beach and stayed under the jetty during the heat of the day. It was packed day after day, and the jetty foreshore was always crowded.

Times have changed, people have air conditioned caravans, stay in holiday houses and resorts. However under the jetty it is still cool in summer and has a charm of its own.

This was taken before the jetty was upgraded/replaced.

Under the Busselton Jetty

Under the Busselton Jetty


More sawmill playing around

I have been playing around with some new software which enabled me to create the following image in the sawmill using a single handheld flash for lighting. (The previous sawmill images used up to 3 flashes which all needed tripods – cumbersome and awkward in confined spaces. There were also difficulties maintaining line of sight to all flashes). This was more in the way of a “proof of concept” – hence the wild colors. The image was created in three parts – foreground (blue), middleground (purple) and background (red). Each part is treated as a separate adjustable light. Each of the parts is a composite of multiple hand held flash shots painting the area. It sounds complicated but is easier to do than explain, and as a bonus was quicker to take than setting up multiple flashes.

The result was then merged in Photoshop where the fog was added – again as proof of concept to see if the fog (or something else!) could be added between the foreground and the rest of the image. The software I used wasn’t written with this in mind and a few workarounds were needed to overcome some limitations. The developers have expressed interest in this, and are planning to work on this area of the software, so there is a chance they will take on board my suggestions to simplify the workflow to use these techniques.

Since originally posting this image I have added my granddaughter in the image. Because each “light” is in a separate layer, it is easy to place her image between layers (in this case behind the axle).

Wild sawmill

Wild sawmill


Eagle Bay from Pt Picquet

There were strong winds from the NE this morning, and it was creating very rough conditions in Geographe Bay (well – very rough for Geographe Bay!). I normally fish off the big rock that now looks like an island. If you compare this to the image at the top of this page, this was taken from a position to the right of the top image looking towards the left. There is no beach at the moment.

Eagle Bay from Pt Picquet

Eagle Bay from Pt Picquet


More old sawmill

I obtained permission to shoot in the sawmill including evening/night time. The problem in the day time is that the mill is open sided, and the light coming from outside is very bright. This limits the choice of shots. I went back at sunset yesterday and got some nice shots. This was one of the last I took.

Sawmill at night

Sawmill at night


Old sawmill

This unused sawmill was once operated by Jim House. I often drive by, and yesterday I stopped to take some shots.

Jim House's sawmill

Jim House's sawmill


Here is the sign on the office.
Office sign

Office sign


More Willyabrup

Here is a couple more from Sunday’s shoot. Thanks Mark for the loan of your camera! – I needed something for the foreground. I did ask Mark that if he was to take another step backward not to grab his tripod as I would find it useful!

Mark's toys

Mark's toys



We were hoping the sunset would do the right thing for the clouds to the south, but it refused to cooperate and all the best clouds were to the north!
Looking North

Looking North


This next shot was taken a bit earlier. We were hoping to get the late afternoon sun on the cliff, but the sun hid behind some low cloud most of the afternoon.
Looking South earlier in the afternoon

Looking South earlier in the afternoon


Willyabrup Cliffs

Mark Stothard and I went out to the Willyabrup Cliffs this afternoon. It was a good choice because it is away from the crowds of tourists, and it is a pretty spectacular site. The first image I got was this panorama (2 rows of 4 images). Each image is a blend of 4-5 different exposures (my wide angle lens doesn’t take ND filters). This shot is looking back towards the cliffs. There are three people in this image. On the left is Mark in white shorts and a black top. In the centre is a guy in a blue shirt who has just abseiled down the cliffs. On the right is a guy in a black shirt looking on from the cliff.

Willyabrup Cliffs

Willyabrup Cliffs


Willyabrup rock climbing

In February I went to the cliffs near sunset, and took a series of shots of someone climbing the cliff. I superimposed them all on one image. Here is the result. You can get a good appreciation of the scale of the cliffs by the small size of the climber. Unfortunately his shirt blends in well with the colours of the rock, and you will have to look closely.

Willyabrup cliff climber

Willyabrup cliff climber


Willyabrup Sea Cliffs

This is an interesting area. The cliffs are used by rock climbers to abseil down and climb back up. The section of the Cape to Cape Trail between the cliffs and the mouth of the Willyabrup River (about 2km to the north) has many photo opportunities. When the river is flowing the river has interesting patterns in the river bed created by black mineral sands deposits. And sunset on the cliffs causes them to glow a fiery red on the right day. This shot was taken towards the north end of the cliffs, looking north towards the mouth of the Willyabrup river which reaches the coast at the stretch of sand you can see.

Willyabrup Sea Cliffs at sunset

Willyabrup Sea Cliffs at sunset


More Meelup

Enough of storms – here is a shot of Meelup with yellow sand, turquoise water and blue skies. It is easy to see why this beach is a favourite of many people (including photographers).

Meelup morning

Meelup morning


Waiting for the storm

Yesterday a big low pressure system and front hit the south west of Western Australia. This was taken at Canal Rocks just before the storm hit.

Waiting for the storm

Waiting for the storm