About Me

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I'm a Cairns, far north Queensland, Australia professional photographer specialising in travel, editorial and environmental portraiture.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Travel photography and what it brings to the world.


I had a great time at the Cairns Pechakucha Night last night. There was about 100 people there and some really inspirational speakers covering all sorts of topics from cleaning up beaches of rubbish, advising the Rwandan government on how to transition their education system from French to English, to a skateboarder trying to benefit the world through his passion for his sport.

And then there was me. I spoke about one of my passions - the Japanese island of Hokkaido. Mine was a rather light-hearted affair. Being the last one up I got to watch all the other presenters do their thing. There were some amazing talks of people really changing the world. And here I was selling a destination. I felt a bit light weight I have to admit.

But after a night to think about it I'm not so sure. Yes there are lots of pressing problems that need to be solved, many of their environmental. And travel might not seem to be such an important thing in the grand scheme of things, after all it's just people enjoying themselves.

But is that all there is to it? I really believe that conflicts, racism and a lot of our misunderstandings about other people and cultures come about because we don't take the time to get to know other people. To see where they live, how they interact with each other and how their lives are not so different from ours.

My job is to help break down the doors between different cultures. To show people who might not otherwise get the opportunity, that for all our differences we all basically want the same things. That the world is full of decent, friendly people that you would have a lot in common with if you just had a chance to sit down and talk to them.

So whilst I might not be saving the world, or even a part of it, I believe I'm helping make it a better place. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Of big hairy spiders and blending


Now this is what I call a fun job! Not holding the pipette, photographing the spider. :)

This is another image done as a series for James Cook University here in Cairns to help them promote the amazing research their staff and students undertake. Here David Wilson is milking this pretty ferocious looking funnel web spider.

David and his colleague Norelle Daly are trying to find a way to cure breast cancer using this very toxic venom.

Photographically I thought I would have to be really quick to help freeze the motion of the spider. I needn't have worried as these guys hold that pose for upwards of half an hour - giving me plenty of time to try different set-ups. This is actually a blend of two images because I couldn't get enough depth of field with my 200mm telephoto lens.

The first shot is focused on the spider (which rendered David out of focus), and the second shot is focussed on David (which causes the spider to go blurry). The two images are then blended together in post-production to create a single image.

There are two flashes at work here. One through a see-through umbrella lighting David and the spider, and one in the background to stop the rest of the room going pitch black.

I love my job! Can you tell?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Is a small camera in my future?


Call me crazy but I actually like carrying round a dSLR with lenses. Maybe it's the continuous paranoia of not having the right equipment for all situations. An inability to accept that you can't photograph all the great stuff you see.

I've never been much of a street photographer per se. Yes I photograph festivals quite often, and enjoy walking around with a camera, but I'm never really worried about whether my camera is inconspicuous or not. Usually just by being a foreigner you're pretty conspicuous.

Does photographing people with a big telephoto lens make them uncomfprtable? I guess that kinda depends on how comfortable you make them beforehand. If you take a look at my website you'll notice that the vast majority of my portraits are shot up close and personal. There's invariably an interaction with my subject beforehand. After I've formed some sort of rapport I will then choose whether to photograph them with a wide angle lens, to include more of their environment for a sense of story, or maybe to back off and photograph them from a distance with a telephoto.

Both lenses have different looks, neither one better or worse than the other. Different lenses for different situations I say. The important thing is that my subject knows I'm photographing them and is happy about it.

I can't imagine paying a lot of money to go half way around the world and not being prepared for as many photographic opportunities as possible. As far as I can tell (and correct me if I'm wrong!) but the smaller cameras don't seem to have the same capabilities yet.

Even though many of them have interchangeable lenses the focal lengths seem to be at the shorter end of the scale. For many of my images - particularly landscapes - I like to go really long to pull details out of the scene. Some of my most well-known images have been shot using a 400mm lens with a 1.4x and sometimes 2x converter attached.

And, to be honest, even though your shoulders might be sore at the end of the day, I actually like the feel of something hefty in my hands. I carry a point and shoot for fun family events and I never quite feel like the real deal.

So for those of you shooting with the smaller formats how do you find it? Do you get frustrated with missed photographic opportunities or do they do everything you want? Does the convenience of light gear trump any of those inconveniences? I'd love to hear your opinions, especially if you think I'm totally wrong!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Recent portrait for James Cook University


 


For a number of years now I have been responsible for producing a series of images for advertising use for our local university here in Cairns - James Cook University, affectionately known as JCU.

One of the main reasons I love the work is the fascinating people I get to meet. The entree into lives and fields of study I would otherwise know nothing about.

I can't profess to becoming an expert in any of these things but speaking to experts in their field certainly helps me expand my knowledge.

The other thing I love is the challenge. Very often I have a very short period of time (my subjects are always really busy people) in which to figure out how I'm going to make their portrait exciting and vibrant whilst being different from the others we've done.

And they're often in the last place you would ever choose for a photographic portrait - like inside a tiny little cubicle of a server room with a whole bunch of pretty unattractive (to the untrained eye!) wires and doodads everywhere.

In situations like this my first instinct is to reach for some coloured gels. Colour can turn bland into fun. I firstly reached for a couple of blue gels and two flashes. One pointed at the server box in the foreground and the other pointed at my subject - Postgraduate student Adam Rehn.

With only blue flashes though, the problem then becomes that Adam looks like a smurf. You can see the stripe of blue down the left hand side of his face? His whole face looked like that! So to overcome that problem I enlisted the help of a third flash to the camera right - this one gelled with a slightly orange colour to warm up the tones on his face.

The two blue flashes were sitting on top of computer doodads (the technical term I believe), whilst the orange flash was on a light stand and I was shooting through a hole in the stands filled with servers. A very tight squeeze!

Update on Pechakucha night - the other speakers announced!


Well, it's official! I'm not the only speaker, even though my ugly mug is the only one up on the page so far. The other speakers for the Pechakucha Cairns Night on the 20th November at 6.30pm at the Tanks Arts Centre are according to the email I just received:

Good Morning to all our PechaKucha Night (PKN) fans and Cairns community,
We have another real treat for you for this Wednesday evening with a wonderful line up of storytelling at the TANKS. This time we will be located in TANK 5 as the crowds keep getting bigger and bigger.
 
PechaKucha Nights are about people sharing their stories & passions. They have 20 slides & 20 seconds per slide, thats 6mins & 40 seconds about a subject close to their heart.

The presenters this month are from all walks of life such as printmaking, photography, conservation, teachers, travellers, skateboarders and many others coming together to celebrate their passions and stories. The presenters are:
 
Heidi Taylor
Lyndal Berry
Adam Garnet
Denis Walls
Pascale Gerson
Rosemary Hill
Dian Darmansjah
Adam Walker
Paul Dymond
 
So please come along and support them and their stories, see the information below for all the details as well as the poster attached, we would love to see you there.
 
DATE: Wednesday 20 November
COST: $5 | Tickets Sold on the Door ONLY
DOORS / BAR: 6.30pm
EVENT STARTS: 7.30pm
VENUE: TANK 5, TANKS Arts Centre, Edge Hill
Please spread amongst your networks
 
Warmest creative regards,
Sarah and Sue
PechaKucha Nights Cairns
 
 
Looks like I'm closing the event - the pressure is on! Hope to see you there. Oh and now I've figured out how to link to my blog from my website then I'll make sure I post regularly once again. Stay tuned for more irreverent commentary on the word of photography. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Pechakucha talk on Hokkaido November 20th.

So I've been really slack here on the blog! Apologies for that but I seem to have gotten lost in the social media world and have been posting to my Facebook page more often than not. I promise to be more attentive in future!

Anyway I wanted to let you all know that I'll be giving a little talk here in Cairns on the 20th November at 6.30pm at the Tanks Arts Centre.

Pechakucha is a Japanese word meaning to talk and talk and talk....so needless to say I thought it would be a good idea to talk about Japan. Well my favourite place in Japan and second home anyway.

So the title of my talk is 'Hokkaido - the wild side of Japan'. I'll be showing 20 slides (some of which have two images in them) for 20 seconds each, all taken over a 15 year period on the beautiful island of Hokkaido.

Expect pictures of the beautiful city of Sapporo (above), as well as the incredible landscapes and natural beauty to be found. There'll be portraits of locals enjoying festivals, giant snow sculptures and a squirrel or two. :)

So if you can make it come along and for more information click here. It's only a $5 entry fee at the door.

My kids rarely let me out of the house so I'm looking forward to it! Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Should our professional bodies be responsible for our business practices?




What is the role of a professional body representing a group of artists? I have been a member of a couple of professional bodies over the years - photographic and travel writing - and there's always been debate over what exactly the role of the body is.

The majority of Australian organisations seem to think that the body's role is to elevate the level of the work of its members through competitions, workshops and other learning opportunities. The more gold points you get in print competitions the higher your grade within the organisation. The theory being that a rising tide floats all boats and that, as a result of everybody's work getting better it is seen by the general public that it's worth hiring a member of said body of professionals. In other words, by being a member you have a marketing advantage because you're seen by people outside the organisation as producing a top-notch product.


But is this where the resources could best be applied? My problem is that they often emphasise the artistic/creative side of things whilst pretty much ignoring the 'professional' side of the equation. In the photographic industry in particular, I don't think we got into the mess we're all in today because of the flood of crap imagery. I mean, let's face it, the stuff you find on photo sharing sites like Flickr, 500px et al is often brilliant. I mean truly exceptional.

Even in my local arena, a small country town of less than 2000,000 people, taking a look at the websites of photographers working around me it's often beautiful, refined work that any working pro would be proud to show. So I think that the professional bodies' emphasis on raising the quality of the art is a bit misguided. The marketplace will do that for us. Produce shitty work and the entire world will know about it seconds after you post it online. Try getting any more clients after you totally overexpose every shot from a wedding, or shoot a commercial client's brochure in low quality Jpegs. If your work isn't good enough technically or artistically then you're not going to be in the game for too long at all. And I hate to be condescending but, you don't scare me!

So who am I scared of, and where do I think the professional bodies need to be focussing their attention? I'm scared of the capable photographers who don't know their cost of doing business, what kind of a profit margin they should be aiming for, or what the going market rate is. The ones who are happy to take a job at any cost, damn the consequences for them or those around them. That's who I'm scared of and that's who I think needs help from our professional bodies.

Granted they run lectures and symposiums, online discussion groups and other stuff. But is it working? Do people care? Do they pay attention? Here's a radical concept. Instead of not allowing people of a sub-standard technical ability to join (which many do through pre-membership portfolio reviews etc), let's change things up and say 'You can't join our professional photographic body unless you prove that not only do you know how to run a profitable photography business, but you put that knowledge into practice.'

Let's make it so that our professional photographic bodies stand for 'professionalism' not just in terms of our abilities behind the camera (which I would again argue the market will judge for us), but by our abilities in all aspects of our 'business'. Hold the members accountable. Undercutting a job just so that somebody else doesn't get it? You're outta there! Deliberately lowballing so that you get as much work as possible without thinking about its effect on the market around you? You're outta there!

Unintentionally charging less than you need to run a sustainable business? Well that's where the professional body can help you through education. Discussion groups, mentoring, online articles etc. And when you can prove that not only have you read this stuff, but you've taken it to heart and are using it day in and day out...well then we'll let you in. And your clients will know that when they're dealing with a member of a professional body that they're not only going to get a great product, but they're going to be dealing with a complete and total professional.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

View from a Wat



Well I've been a bit slow with new posts, I know. Blame it on school holidays I say! How do two little people manage to make a mess of something in such a short period of time when it takes me hours to clean it up again? Anyway, where were we? Ah, Thailand.

Here's another shot of Bangkok chaos, brought to you after the chaos that has been my household for the last couple of weeks! This was taken from the top of Wat Arun, on the banks of the Chao Praya River.

It was taken with a telephoto lens, which I chose because of its ability to compress a scene and make things look really crowded. Not that the Chao Praya needs much help in that regard mind you. But the telephoto does do a nice job of really compressing the perspective and giving it the wow factor.

You can see the various ferries and barges as they make their way up and down, and back and forth across this giant river. In the background you can see the rooves of the Grand Palace. I could have sat here for hours and just watched the boats go up and down and life go on in this busy metropolis.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What's what at the Wat?



I have a special place in my heart for Buddhism. I don't profess to understand all its tenets, or adhere to them all but I try to live my life along the lines of its teachings as much as possible. I find Buddhist temples to be calm. relaxing places and very different from country to country - obviously a reflection of the national character more than the religion itself.

In Japan the temples are often very calm, serene places lacking in ostentation. There is hardly any sound at all as people whisper and move about in hushed, reverant tones. In Tibetan Buddhist temples I tend to find people walking around chatting with each other as they spin their Mani Wheels and catch up on the latest town gossip. Almost as if the temple takes the place of the local coffee shop as a meet up place. Whilst some of the temples contain very ornate statues and decorations I often find that it's not particularly over the top.

And then there's Thailand! Wow, there's more gold here than Smaug the dragon could have hoped for! Everything is bright and lairy, opulent and ostentatious. Well at least it is here at Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok. My kids were gobsmacked at all the 'jewels' and 'gold' plastered everywhere the eye looked.

For a photographer it's a dream come true as the bright golden chedis contrast with the (often) grey sky. When the sun comes out and gives you a dash of blue it's perfect. Technically speaking the one thing you have to be careful about is blowing out the highlights - especially in the red channel. Keep an eye on your histogram and make sure you are recording all the information and let the shadows fall away if you need to because it's important to keep the detail in all the bright areas of the frame.

Friday, March 15, 2013

If Spiderman can be a photographer by day....

I try not to give away my secret identity, but for you trusted readers I'll let it slip.

Yes, mild-mannered photographer by day, crime fighting justice fighter by night.

I was having a lovely holiday in Thailand when this dastardly criminal tried to steal our tuk-tuk.

Needless to say I couldn't let him get away with it.

Just as Jimmy Olson is Spiderman's official photographer, I too have my own accredited snapper - my eldest son Mirai!

A little bit of lightheartedness to send you into the weekend!

Have a great one. :)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bangkok at night


Night time in Sukhumvit, Bangkok, Thailand If you're on assignment it's a no-brainer, but when you're on holiday do you take your tripod? I can't count the number of times I've taken mine and not ended up using it. Or had my wife look at me angrily as I try to squeeze it into the suitcase between the kids' socks and toothbrushes!




But I invariably take it. This time I made things a little easier for myself in the getting yelled at department by taking said tripod in a padded bag all of its own which I could check in. I have a very old Manfrotto tripod that has seen more countries than most people I know! And it has the scratches and dings to show for it but I love it and would never think of replacing it.

Anyway, this trip I managed to put my tripod to good use. This is the view from the top of our hotel - the Legacy Suites - in downtown Sukhumvit, looking along Soi 29. As you look out over the city you can see the BTS skytrain in the middle foreground. Often the train would speed past so all I got is blurred lights, but every so often it would stop just there for a couple of minutes so I could take its photo. How considerate of it! And a car going down the alley to boot.

So yes, I always take my tripod. I don't always use it, and I often get dirty looks but it's my constant travel companion.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Please don't break on me now camera!



The last time I visited Wat Pho, home of the giant golden reclining Buddha, was fifteen years ago. I was on a 12 month journey around South East Asia, India and Nepal. I was about half way through after having initially spent a couple of months in Thailand and then three months in India with my then-girlfriend, now wife.

As I headed into the giant hall to see the Buddha I noticed my camera acting funny. I always turn the beeping sound for my autofocus off, but still check the little light on my viewfinder to make sure it comes on to tell me autofocus has been achieved. That's especially important in dark places.

Anyway that little light suddenly started flashing every time I half pushed the shutter button down. For some reason it wasn't auto-focussing. I took the lens off and re-attached it. No good. Changed lenses. No good. Took the battery out and put it back in. No good. My autofocus was stuffed and I would have to focus manually.

But was what I was seeing through the viewfinder accurate? In other words if I focussed manually would the focus be OK? This was the days of film so I had literally no idea. And I was shooting slide film so there was no real way of checking. Plus we were headed to the Philippines for a month of diving the next day so no time to get it looked at in Bangkok.

So, with 6 months, the Philippines and Nepal still to go I was more than a little worried. I eventually bought a cheap roll of print film in the Philippines and did a bunch of test shots. Everything seemed to be OK so I just kept on using it. My venerable 21st birthday present lasted until the end of that trip with no more problems but I sure gained an appreciation for the guys who worked before the invention of auto-focus!

So as I headed back into Wat Pho fifteen years down the track I was sending a few wishful thoughts out to the big golden Buddha not to let it happen again. He had the same serene smile on his face as last time so I was hopeful. By the time I walked all the way down to his feet and photographed back along the length of the statue, then walked around the other side and out the door I was officially safe. No second time jinx for me!

Of course if my camera had broken it would have given me an excuse to go and buy a shiny new camera. :)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Wat Arun at sunset




If there's one thing I've learnt over the years it's that work is work and holiday is holiday. Which when your work (photography) is one of the biggest passions in your life - well it can be tough balancing your needs with that of the family.

So I try to put them first whenever possible and squeeze in photo opportunities around our holiday schedule. Which sometimes means sacrificing wonderful photos in order to come back with wonderful memories.

I'm sure my wife will tell you I step over the boundaries quite a bit but I try!

Anyway this is one example of where a photograph came together pretty much as I had envisaged and I was right on family schedule! We were coming back on the river ferry from a day of sightseeing and I could see the sun going down quite rapidly and Wat Arun off in the distance. I had my fingers crossed our boat would get there in time.

As we got closer and closer to the temple I could see the sun rapidly heading for the horizong, as it does so close to the equator. I managed to get a few shots of other interesting buildings with the sun behind them but this was my main goal.

Luck was on my side and with Bangkok being so smoggy, the sun quickly turned into a giant red orb and sent the surrounding sky a similar hue. Ten minutes earlier and the sun would have been quite a bit higher in the sky and possibly even more spectacular, but when you're on holiday you have to be grateful for what you get. And this time I'm pretty darn happy with what I got!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Chao Praya

One of our greatest joys was catching the Chao Praya river ferries to various temples and palaces around the city. When the temperatures were nudging 40 degrees Celsius it really was one of the coolest ways to get around - as long as you didn't have to wait in the sun on the dock too long for a boat to come!

There are a couple of different ways to get up and down the river. You can hire your own long-tail boat (most expensive). get an all day ticket for tourists (next expensive), ride the tourist boat (second cheapest) or catch the regular local ferries (cheapest).

We found that the price of the tourist boat (40 Bahts) compared to the regular local ferry (15 Bahts) was so insignificant that we often ended up catchin the tourist boat. They seemed to be less crowded and run more frequently.

After a couple of times not being able to get on to a local ferry after waiting for 30 minutes in the scorching sun we stopped using them!

Monks are everywhere in Thailand and they always give off such a sense of serenity.It was nice to be able to place two iconic symbols of Bangkok in the same image.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Guess where I've been?

Well not just me. I went with my wife and kids to Bangkok for a couple of weeks and what a blast it was! We figured it out and the last time we'd been was 15 years earlier when we were backpackers staying on good ol' Khao San Rd!

This time we had a lovely self-contained apartment in Sukhumvit and spent our days exploring the famous temples, decadent shopping centres and even a Thai theme park! Stay tuned for more pics and lots of adventures for what really is a great place to go on holiday.

This image was taken in the grounds of Wat Arun, on the banks of the Chao Praya River. From our accommodation it was a leisurely BTS Skytrain ride followed by a more hectic river ferry trip. All an adventure.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The year that was...Part 2



It's a funny thing about the photographic industry. Many professionals like to make it look glamorous, exciting and one big adventure. Sure it can be all those things, but the reality for the majority of working travel photographers is that they have a few more strings to their bow. I don't know anyone who makes a full-time living just doing travel photography. Maybe back in the day when travel stock photography was valued a lot higher, but in this day of microstock and free imagery? I have friends who were regularly making a half a million dollars a year in travel stock who would now be lucky to clear a hundred grand a year.

But there's no point complaining about the world and how it has turned. Established pros know that if they want to continue to shoot exciting travel work then they need to do other jobs that pay more money. Which is not to say that they choose any old type of photography that will pay the bills. Some lead photographic tours and workshops, some shoot weddings, some write travel articles (although there's not much money there either!) and some do like I do, specialise in a whole other genre.

One of my favourite parts of travel photography is the opportunity to meet new and interesting people. People living lives that allow them to follow their own passion, much as I have always tried to do with my photography. I love the interaction with these people and the chance to learn something new.

When I'm on the road, however, I don't usually carry much lighting equipment with me. A couple of speedlights and a trigger set is about it. So when I'm here in Cairns I like nothing more than to get on my photographic geek suit and get jiggy with the lighting!

It's a totally different mindset to the documentary style of travel work I do, where I sit around a lot and wait for things to happen. With my environmental portraiture in Cairns I make it happen. I get together with the client first and we discuss who the person is we're going to photograph, what kind of work they do, what kind of props we might use and the type of lighting that will complement the concept. I absolutely love it because it frees me to be creative at a level that often is not possible when you're at the whim of whatever situation you find yourself in.

So this year I've found myself photographing everyone from some of the foremost experts in tropical rainforests in the world, PhD students in conflict resolution and terrorism, turtle rehabilitation experts and people studying the venom of giant funnel web spiders to find a cure for breast cancer! It truly has been a fascinating year and I have learnt so much about so many fields that I knew nothing about.

So below I present to you some of my favourite images from what has been an amazing year with many incredible opportunities to meet, photograph and get to know some truly amazing people.




This is a wonderful lady by the name of Jennie Gilbert. Jennie runs a turtle rehabilitation centre here in Cairns. When I took this photograph she had a few tanks under a makeshift shade cloth in an industrial part of town. Kindly donated by local businesses but not a perfect place for either turtles or photography! I'm happy to report she now has a beautiful facility out on Fitzroy Island.



This is Lance Cochrane. We only had a few minutes to photograph Lance, who had just flown up from Sydney for his graduation from James Cook University. One of their business graduates, Lance had just opened up his own brewery.



Now this was a fun one to shoot. This young bloke is Neerim Callope and he is going to be a dead set superstar. He plays basketball, touch football, beach volleyball, netball. You name it, he does it, and really, really well. At this years National Indigenous Tertiary Education Student Games (NITESG), which I had the pleasure of photographing this year, he just about cleaned up every single award.

For this shot the lovely soft light hitting Neerim is three speedlights on a Lastolite tri-flash firing through a giant see-through umbrella, all held down with copious amounts of sandbags! I'd love to tell you that he did actually manage to throw the ball over his shoulder and get it in but the truth is that it was actually my good friend Kerry Trapnell who'd come to help me for the gig.





Here's a couple of shots from those NITESG games, hosted by James Cook University in Cairns this year. It was a really fun week and I got to shoot some great sports action. For the basketball work I actually had two speedlights on either side of the court lighting it up for me because it was so dark in there there was no other way I could have photographed it. I have to thank David Hobby for his tips on how to do that one!



Without a doubt one of the most difficult things I face is how to make a plain white laboratory look interesting. I mean, they are pretty much all alike. They have lots of white walls and shiny machines. Interesting maybe for people who work in the field, but visually pretty damn boring. In this case the screen and exercise bike were in the corner of a giant empty laboratory! Even more exciting. So what I did was get rid of all the ambient light so that everything not lit by the flash turned to pitch black. I set my exposure to give me a good rendition of the screen, which is showing a section of the Hawaiian Ironman, which my subject Glen Deakin was about to compete in. I had a key light flash on the left which was covered with an orange gel. I had another orange-gelled flash behind Glen giving some detail to his back and the underside of his forearm. And the groovy yellow light in his hair? I placed him in the direct path of the overhead projector to make things even more interesting.



And last of all probably my most exciting shoot of the year! Although a couple of bitter fruit might not look that exciting. Norelle Daly is studying a couple of things to find out if they might provide a suitable cure for breast cancer. One of the things she's studying is these here bitter fruit. Now normally labs are all white, but halfway through the shoot the guys were complaining about how they hate this one little splash of green wall - slightly wider than a person. I nearly jumped up with job when I noticed that the wall was exactly the same colour as the fruit! I know, it doesn't take much to excite me. :) This was lit with one umbrella on Norelle and the fruit, and another on the wall in the background. Not a portrait per se but I love this image.

Oh and the other thing she is studying?



Funnel web spiders if you don't mind! This is David, who works with Norelle. This was taken with a telephoto lens to make the spider look nice and big! It was also macro so it's a combination of two shots - one focussing on the spider and one of David. The spider was so co-operative it stood up like this for a good 30 minutes as we got a heap of shots. I've never had a better model!

So that was my 2012 of envrionmental portraits in Cairns. I hope you enjoyed some of my little projects and enjoyed a different side of my photography. Both an integral part of my vision as a photographer but very different in terms of execution and mindset.

I wish everybody a great 2013 and hope you continue to come back here to see what I get up to over the next 12 months.