Alice Springs Photographer Blog

Tour 65, 26 February 2009

Late Afternoon OrmistonA brilliant tour with a great bunch of people who were not too worried about the extreme heat for all 5 days. We saw some real special things on this tour including a baby Perentie at kings Canyon and it was a sunrise to remember at Kata Tjuta. Thanks to all the crew for making it a real fun tour for everybody onboard.

We had some great conditions for interesting photography at Uluru with a sky covered in small fluffy clouds which can be a great addition to a well shot location. I have thousands of images from Uluru but I am often so busy that I don't have time to really think about my compositions. So although I might have amny images few in my opinion are real stand out images and most of my favourites are due to unique weather conditions.

Day two at Kata Tjuta was lucky the same thou few clouds were present in the sky at sunrise they quickly moved in at the beginning of the walk. I would love to upload them all but that would drown out the real winners too much, its good to be harsh with your selections in the long run. Kings Canyon on day 3 had no clouds and so making quality images was very difficult, it was good for snapshots but not good for constructing winners. If the lights not good there isn't much you can do, its sort of like trying to make a cake without flower.

The best images IMO came from Ormiston Gorge in the West MacDonnell Ranges and yes it is my favourite place to shoot regardless but we arrived late in the afternoon making for a shaded gorge. I can't think of the last time I was there that late in the afternoon so I really relished the opportunity to retake some previous compositions that were too contrasty to publish. I think that the gorge is much better to photograph in the late afternoon as the light is much more even and it has remarkably different colours, even more so than I would have expected.

The final day (day 5) was a stunner with a relaxing sunrise from out campsite along the Finke river viewing Mt Sonder and of course some impressive River Red Gums. Later we moved on to Goss Bluff a 5Km wide comet crater and as we arrived much earlier in the day than usual it was once again a great opportunity to get some new shots. A light covering of clouds in the sky added interest to the usually boring blue fading into the horizon and it was also one of the few times that I've had the B+W polarizer on the front to my 70-200 f/2.8 IS USM. Using a polarizer with the lens hood on it very difficult and requires time to remove the hood adjust the polarizer and replace the hood. Doing this hand held is impossible but when mounted on a tripod it far easier.

Later in the day we made it to Palm Valley but with such high sun image making images was not very exciting. Still it was a great walk as the crew really did find it an amazing location and it is, the Palms really do make this place special. I would love to get back there at the crack of dawn on a overcast day and shoot some HDRs which is a whole lot of manoeuvring but it could be done. Thanks to the Landcruser we were back in town on time and met for a few drink (non-alcoholic for me) and a great meal to top it all off.

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