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Surfing up a storm………

29 May

I have posted images of surfing before on this blog, hey lets face it I do live about ten minutes from a suburb called Surfers Paradise.

Usually when there is a rideable wave near here, its standing room only out the back and each wave is hotly contested.

Not the case today when this bloke was all alone, surfing up a storm…………………..

Good Morning Gold Coast……………..

12 May

It truly is good for the soul to be on a beach at sunrise and here on the Gold Coast the secret is well and truly out.

People come from everywhere, runners, walkers and of course surfers.

There is a mixture of cooking bacon, coffee and sea spray in the air.

Its tough I know, but someone has to do it !!

Beach and surf…

30 Dec

Yep, it’s so easy to just get up and sit by the water’s edge anywhere along the Gold Coasts many beaches and headlands and find something to photograph. At the moments most models are partying fairly hard and the thought of getting out of bed for make up and hair at about 3.00am just doesn’t excite them, so to keep in practice I am shooting everything, and using all the lenses and bodies I have. Sort of moving away from my comfort zone, even when it comes to processing techniques, …always learning something new.

The trouble with stretching yourself is that you discover short comings, both in knowledge and GEAR.

I quite like finding out that I need to learn more about something I thought I was on top off. Learning is easy when its your passion, and time just flies by reading articles on techniques, what I don’t like so much is realising that to step up to the next level further financial investment is required. I need studio lights..now, and I what I want to do with them is take at least one outdoors on location powered by a battery pack . Oh dear, not cheap but the flexibility provided by having so much light will help me produce a greater range of images. Strobist with speedlights is great, and I enjoy the simplicity of this setup, but!

Anyway the surf was lower today but the usual crowd were out in force.

No snow …..just rain

23 Dec

Well, the sunny Gold Coast looks like being the rainy Gold Coast for the Christmas holidays. The weather department has indicated that up to six cyclonic lows will build up over the summer. Now not too many people will be happy with that, especially after last years disastrous flooding, however there is always some groups of people who look forward to extreme weather events.

Here on the coast its the surfers, the thought of ten to twelve-foot waves’ is totally fully sick, dude, and of course there is the photography buffs.

Wild weather tests us completely, firstly most of us use digital equipment. Ummm..water and electronics, break out the plastic bags, rubber bands or the specially designed camera condoms to keep the water away from the all important sensor. Next, the lighting, dark, light, dark as gale force winds blow clouds across our area of interest. And then, there is the wind itself, threatening to topple your expensive pride and joy with two kilos of lens  and filter system attached into the rapidly growing muddy quagmire at your feet, or a very least leave you with an image so blurry that it looks like a panning trial gone terribly wrong.

Still its fun to get out and see another side to this wonderful area of Australia, sunny beaches littered with tanned bikini babes can get a little ho-hum.

Its great to see the sea……

21 Dec

Home again after another stint in the bush. One of the things I miss the most after the obvious ones, my wife and kids, is the ability to just spend time looking at the sea. Where we live here on the Gold Coast, there are several headlands where ancient volcanic rock spills into the ocean, covered in the main with lush sub tropical forest. If you look one way you can see the high rises of Surfers Paradise, look the other and there is a scene straight out “Bali Hi” or some other Hollywood adventure/romance epic.

I am always amazed that these locations can take on such different characters depending on the mood of the weather, when its sunny and calm, there are kids playing on their boogie boards, a game of cricket spilling over amongst the bikini clad girls working on their tans, then the next time you look the weather has become sullen and moody, and there are threatening waves clawing the sand from the foreshore, with wind that delights in blowing your hat out to sea.

I just love the ever-changing feel of the coast, and it is the best way to feel alive again after the rigors of time spent away from family and home.

Its a hard life (not)………

5 Nov

When a designer says ” do you think you would have time to do some shots of some of my designs for a magazine editorial?’, I have to say it doesn’t take long to reply yes!!.

The logistics of these style of shoots can blow all out of proportion to the end result, but for this shoot for award-winning designer Nerina Battaglia, it was easy. Her design office is located one street back from Gold Coast party central, Caville Ave, in an 18 story building with two pool decks,nice!! With the setting sun as a backdrop for the first part of the shoot, mother nature provided a colourful canvas. Using only two Nikon SB600s as fill we managed to capture both the amazing detail of Nerinas workmanship and the beautiful display that so often is provided at sunset here on the Gold Coast of Queensland.

The awesome ability of Olivia from Warpaint Make Up meant that by the time we had relocated to the lower pool deck opposite the Hard Rock Cafe, our South Australian model Sheree had a complete clothing change and new make up applied. Never underestimate the importance of a great make up artist, not only do they do the make up but their ever critical eye can pick up all the faults that take so long in post production to fix. All too soon, thanks to the great team we had, the shoot was over, and I was left realising that, taking pictures with great Nikon products surrounded by talented, enthusiastic people in one of the world most beautiful locations isn’t so bad. It’s a hard life, not!   

Iconic Australian Landscapes……..

17 Oct

So, the make up artist is booked, costumes are organised and the locations checked for sun position etc and the model get sick!. Too late to cast a new model, and besides the poor girl can’t help being ill and she is perfect for the concept. The dilemma I face is that I now have an intense need to make some pictures. The sun is shining and my first thought is go to the beach, get some photojournalistic stuff, there is always something happening. But by chance the traffic is already heavy in that direction so I head into the Gold Coasts stunning and under publicised hinterland. This the world of “Terra Nova”(www.fox.com/terranova/), cycads and dinosaur type landscape, creeks and waterfalls at every twist in the road. This is so far removed from the bright lights and bikinis of Surfer Paradise and yet it is only 20 minutes drive. As I drive further up one of the valleys there large rocky outcrops and sheer escarpments on both sides, and I can only wonder what sort of landscape photographers nirvana lies hidden behind the vines and ferns. I’m not alone on this twisty road, a peloton of middle-aged lycra clad cyclists have found this peaceful and scenic route ideal for their sunday jaunt and no doubt will stop at a peaceful and charming coffee shop to get their fill of Lattes and scones before riding home. Armed only with my Nikon D5000 and the terrific, versatile 18-200 DX VR, I shoot some of the landscape, more than anything to add to the location file for later shoots. The road eventually becomes a track and then nothing and I am forced to turn around, however when I get out the car to shoot the following scene, my senses’ are assaulted by the smells of steamy and humid tropical rainforest, fetid yet incredibly clean aromas that are such a contrast to the smells of the Pacific ocean only twenty minutes away. On your next holiday or outing to the Gold Coast do the ‘worlds’, Cavill Mall and Surfers but also spend some time up in the hinterland, you wont regret it.This image was converted to “Water Colour” in Photoshop and is available for sale in various sizes printed on canvas.

World Record Bikini Parade…

2 Oct

Queensland’s sunny Surfers Paradise confirmed the “paradise” tag today when the new world record was attempted for the number of beautiful girls in a bikini parade. Setting out from the Surfers Paradise Surf Life Saving Club, the collection of tanned, toned and made up girls promenaded along the beach for a distance of 1.6 kms and were counted through a stage/runway to the cheers of the thousands of people who had turned out on this glorious day. Not only had all these lovely girls given their time to attempt the record, but they had also paid $25.00 to register for the event.

All the money raised was then donated in full to the wonderfully dedicated people at the Surfers Paradise Surf Life Saving Club. These funds will be put to great use protecting the thousands of people who yearly flock to this iconic stretch of sand.

A big thanks to the girls for posing for photos, and a huge pat on the back for the organisers for making it all happen.

Now did the record get broken, well no, it got smashed, 332 bikini clad maidens were required and in true Aussie spirit, 357 girls of Queensland strutted their stuff. Well done all, great fun, great location and a very worthy cause.