Australia 2017 – A Photographic Journey


It’s always been a dream to travel to the other side of the globe. Finally here was the chance. Booking the flights in early January I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. Full of clichés in my little head I started the journey through Australia.

To put it short and sweet: the experience of three weeks ‘Down Under’ has blown me away. The sheer beauty of vibrant landscapes, cities, nature, wonderful people and very different wildlife, sights and sounds was refreshing in so many senses compared to the daily slug in good old Dublin.

To say it with a bit of Aussie slang: it’s been a ripper!

As a photographer the camera has been a loyal companion on this trip. A trip that brought me from the west to the south to the east all the way around the coastline with its flush green landscapes. So let me take you on my photographic journey.

It all started in Adelaide. Where dark, rain filled clouds welcomed me on the very first day. Disappointment initially. Little did I know that the very same evening rain and sun fought out an epic battle for supremacy in the sky – a blessing for photography.

The sea is a prevalent scene in and around Adelaide. So are the hills that rise high right on the door step of the city that’s widely mocked as the “boring city”. Not so boring in my mind, at least if you’re into landscapes, nature and hiking.


On to Perth in the west. Quite an isolated place, far away from the next big city centre. In fact Perth is actually closer to Jakarta in Indonesia than Sydney.

For all of that it offers white sand beaches, plenty of sun (that alien yellow thing in the sky that’s sighted way too little over my beloved Ireland) and as a consequence a laid back atmosphere- and of course only a short ferry ride away wildlife paradise Rottnest Island.


From one side of the continent to the other one. Sydney, the vibrant metropolis. Where to start, where to end? Simply spectacular. Harbour Bridge, Opera House – sure, but there is so much more.

It wasn’t all plain sailing. It actually were quite wet days in Sydney. I couldn’t do, see and photograph everything I would have wanted in an ideal world. There will be a next time, though. Hopefully with a little bit less torrential rain.

However those conditions can often set up the most stunning scenes. On the Circular Quay ferry, having endured another downpour, there it was, a massive double rainbow spanning all the way from Harbour Bridge across to the city center. A moment I won’t forget anytime soon.

And there was ‘Vivid Sydney’. As if Sydney wasn’t spectacular enough during the day, it transformed into a sea of lights and digital art during the night.


Spectacular nature isn’t too far away from Sydney either. On the downside I didn’t see too much of it. The Blue Mountains were covered in fog so thick I could barely see the hands in front of my eyes. Though, for a brief moment the cover broke and gave way to the stunning landscape.


Finish with a bang: the Great Ocean Road. This part of the world left a lasting mark on me. Hard to find words for its beauty. No photo can do it justice. Sunset at the Twelve Apostles – a dream of oh so many nights became reality.

A final view on the last day over the lush green hills of Apollo Bay before real life bites back. It’s been an amazing ride. I’m in love. I’ll be back. Soon.


Equipment used:
– Nikon D7100
– Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM
– Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2
– HOYA PRO1 Digital Filter Circular Polarizer
– Rangers Clarity Series ND Filter kit
– Koolehaoda Portable Camera

Rottnest Island



The last day in the west – but this one had it all. From Fremantle as the starting point it was a leisurely ride on the “Rottnest Express” through the open Indian Ocean over to Rottnest Island. I hired a bike for the day for an extra 30 quid. A good decision.

The island is best explored on two wheals. You really don’t wanna rely on a bus that shoves you from viewing point to viewing point with a loud group of other tourists, but rather find those little coves and beaches where it’s only you, the warm, white sand and the crystal clear water.

Despite putting plenty of sun lotion on my arms, legs and head, I baked like a baked potato without thin foil on a grill. It’s been a hot day. But hey, living in Ireland most of the year I don’t wanna complain.

Photography wise the island provides opportunities to shoot wildlife like sea lions, all sorts of birds, lizards, the odd snake and of course the ever present quokkas. Known to be the “happiest animal on the planet”. Turns out they aren’t. Like in all those seemingly fabulous working marriages, they have their own problems beneath the surface.

In the distance I was able to spot some feeding humpback whales. They were a bit too far away even for my 200mm lens.

I had all the heavy gear in my back. That made the climb on the one-gear-only women’s bike up the hilly land a bit tricky and I didn’t shoot as much as I wanted as I also wanted to get around the whole island but also didn’t want to miss the last ferry back to the mainland.

Still I got a bit of wildlife and the stunning landscape. Never needed to up the ISO beyond one 100 on a masterfully bright and sunny day. Sunsets on the island must be breathtaking. Great composition looming everywhere. Another time. Sydney is calling.



Subiaco Oval Panorama



HDR Panorama of the Subiaco Oval in Perth – 6 vertical frames, 3 shots each 1 stop over/under.

WAFL & Tamron G2 shooting Demons vs. Swan



Opted to go to a Footy game in the regional WAFL in Perth today and used this chance to put my new toy – the Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 through its paces. This beauty has accompanied me for this Australian trip for the very first time – and while some of the landscapes posted in this blog have been shot with the new lens, the real beauty should happen when shooting sport.

Conditions were ideal: mostly sunny, here and there a cloud – perfect for a round of footy, which is a free flowing, action packed sport!

Now I use this lens on my Nikon D7100 – bear that in mind judging the results. Most shots were taken at ISO 100-200 with shutter speeds varying between 800-1600 and usually wide open around f/2.8 to 3.5 shot at 200mm.

Given a Footy field is quite large and one is often far, far away from the action on the other side of the ground (sprinting up and down would not be advisable if one wants to survive four quarters) I’ve been impressed with the speed and accuracy of the auto focus and the sharpness of the images even at 200m and f/2.8 in those situations.

Now, you’ll find plenty of reviews on the internet that go into great technical detail on this lens. I wanna make it short: the new Tamron 70-200mm rocks!

Of course it’s all the more fun if the sun is out and you get to see a sport you love. That says: Footy rocks too! Full gallery below – click thumbnails to enlarge photographs.




Lathlain Park

Lathlain Park Perth – Sigma 17-50mm

Perth – I’m in Love



4am in the morning, it’s only a mere three hours ago when I went to bed. What exactly was the reason to catch the very first plane in the morning out of Adelaide? Not so sure in those early hours….

…. though it’s well rewarded eventually. I leave chilly Adelaide – the thermometer fell to 2 degrees during the night! – for a more balmy in sunshine bathing Perth. This city on the far west of Australia, a whopping 2.500km away from the southerly Adelaide is a little cosmos of its own.

It’s the open ocean and white sand beaches, it’s a calm bay area, it’s green and most importantly it is warm! Over 20 degrees during the Australian winter…. that leaves a mark on its citizens I feel. In a positive way. The sun put a smile on peoples faces. Open, friendly, relaxed people.

I even braved the Ocean and took a dip in the “Indian”.

I’m renting an apartment suburb of Perth – Mosman Park. To the left the open ocean – I actually was brave enough to jump in and take a swim  – and to the left  the so called called “Bay View”. A small park that offers splendid view over the Perth Bay all the way up to the city centre with it’s high rising office buildings.

The best: there is nobody. No tourists. None! What a wonderful place this is. Already after two days I can say: Perth – I’m in love.