PhotoGRAPHy 101: Week 3

Pop of Colour

As you travel around the suburbs of Sydney at this time of year your eye is drawn to the pop of colour amongst the greenery. The beautiful Jacaranda tree is full of fragrant purple flowers during the spring-time.  I fell in love with this tree on first sight in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg  40 years ago.

jacaranda tree


Those who follow my blog will know that I am very keen on architecture. Old, new, entire buildings, small details – I love architectural images. So what to select from my week in Sydney? Something old? Something new? The challenge asks you consider shots that will translate well in black and white.  I think these two shots do because a) the clock has such a striking pattern and b) the modern building is practically monotone anyway. See what you think.

 Clock on the Customs House
Clock on the Customs House

old architecture (b&w)



A couple of unexpected moments occurred this week whilst out walking. Although asked to experiment with blur and movement I had no time to do that with the wren as it just literally flew in front of me – I am surprised that there isn’t more blur! As for the kookaburra he was so still that I thought at first he wasn’t real, until he turned his head to look at me.  Anyway, these were such special moments I wanted to share them with you.

A Superb Fairy-wren at Bondi Beach
A Laughing Kookaburra at Barrenjoey Beach



Today’s challenge is to look at things in a great number.  As a rule I tend to avoid places where there are a lot of people, but the streets of Sydney’s CBD are pretty busy – pedestrians AND traffic! So far I haven’t been bothered by swarms of flies. The corks are working a treat 😉 So how about a swarm of little life-savers on the beach at Dee Why? Cute eh?


A year or two ago I would not have classed myself as a landscape photographer. My main focus then was  close-up shots of flowers with the odd bit of architecture thrown in.  But I have been seeing the beauty of landscapes from other photographers whom I admire, so now and again I’ll have ‘a go’ especially when visiting the US National Parks which is where I first started to consider landscape photography.


This is Palm Beach – the location for the Aussie soap ‘Home and Away’ and the furthest most northern beach suburb of Sydney (it takes about 2 hours to reach here by bus). To get this view I had to climb up to Barrenjoey Lighthouse, 350 feet above sea level, on a rather warm day! I hope you all appreciate the efforts I go to to get a photograph! On your left is the Pacific Ocean and Palm Beach, on the right is Pittwater and Barrenjoey beach. The ocean side was very windy, the right was like bathing in bath water – well the first few feet were anyway. I wouldn’t mind living here 🙂

Well, that’s it for another week. A very warm week here I have to say, and some of my explorations have been cut short because of the extreme heat. This poor English rose has wilted badly!


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I have lived in the UK for most of my life, but when young I definitely had wanderlust and even ended up living in South Africa for several years which was a wonderful experience. I now look forward to a long and leisurely retirement doing what I like most - gardening, photography, walking and travelling.

41 thoughts on “PhotoGRAPHy 101: Week 3”

  1. Jude now that is quite the varied gallery and shows the diversity of your talents. Yours I the second Kookaburra I have seen this week and until this point in my life I had no idea what one looked like. I am particularly fond of the black and white of the old clock but all the images are gorgeous.

    1. Thanks Sue. Hard to know what to select, but I am trying to get some posts written whilst I am here so I don’t have too many to post when I get home. Fortunately the photo challenges are right up my street this week 😉 I love the kookaburras, but they are VERY noisy – a cacophony of pan-lids falling out of the cupboard is how I’d describe them.

    1. It becomes quite exhausting in the heat, but it is a long way to come to stay indoors all the time. I’m trying to take it easy every other day, which seems to be working. It’s not supposed to be this hot already! Making the most of the light and sun – storing it up for the winter back home 🙂

  2. I loved all your photos but I do love a fairy wren (we have them around the river here). Did you know the little life savers are called nippers? Thank you for climbing up to the lighthouse – we all appreciate it, truly!

  3. All terrific, Jude – but I am consumed with jealous rage for your sighting of the fairy wren: I have never laid eyes on one in all the 38 or so years I’ve lived in Sydney. And they haven’t all been in the city, I promise !
    Goodonyer !

    1. I was so astonished to see this flash of colour – landed on a railing, but too far away for a good shot, then went into the bushes beside me – there were at least three of them, I was so happy to see them, let alone get a reasonable photo. Sorry I made you jealous – serendipity my friend 😀

  4. You are right about making the most of the sun Jude, as it is chilly, dull, and raining here. (At least in Norfolk).
    The B+W pictures work very well, though the red ring around the clock does make it look good in colour too. That beach looks inviting, and I noted the comment that you could imagine living there. Perhaps this is the coastal location you have been seeking? It would be too hot for me, I suspect.
    Regards as always, Pete. x

    1. I have tried to get into Australia many times Pete, until I realised that banging my head against a brick wall hurts! And you’d have to have millions to live in this part of the coast. No I’m afraid it’s not going to be Oz. And yes, I think the heat would be too much for me too, especially as it seems to be getting hotter.

  5. The beautiful Jacaranda tree truly does pop with colour. And as for the beautiful Fairy wren and Kookaburra, what amazing captures you got there Jude, truly special moments indeed. Lovely photos all, but they are my favourite. The heat you write of reminds me of summers in California and how it was impossible to do anything in the middle of the day because of it. I don’t miss that. Hope you don’t wilt too much and can do most of the things you want to do…including taking more of your beautiful holiday snapshots 🙂 xx

    1. Johannesburg was like this too, though a dry heat so not too sapping. And we had a pool there which was great, otherwise I didn’t venture out in the summer. Cape Town was better as you got the breeze and it didn’t go much above 30 ever!

      BUT this is only their springtime! Summer heat is usually Jan/Feb and these temperatures are like what they are getting in the outback. Crazy! Was going out today, had plans, but 29 degrees already at 9 am so I have decided to pass and just enjoy the sun and warmth in comfort.

      In contrast it is quite cool In NZ where I am going – only 19 degrees there! Hope it warms up a bit over the next week. I’d settle for around 23 🙂

  6. These challenge themes are certainly made for you Jude and you have chosen well for all of them. Wow you are so clever to have caught a photo of that Fairy Wren, we have them around here at the beach but they dart around so quickly I find it impossible to catch a shot of them. On the other hand I actually think the cheeky kookaburras actually pose for photos. Loved the lengths you went to get that the beach shot especially in this heat.

    1. The themes are falling nicely so far. Helping me to construct a summary of the week 🙂 I was lucky with the fairy wren. A jogger even stopped for me to get a photo which was really nice of her. Three of them were flitting in the bushes near Bondi, and this chap sat still for several minutes so I could focus on him. SO happy 😀

  7. Particularly like the clocks, Jude and the landscape is lovely too. I’d wilt in that heat too. However much I think it would be nice to have sun all year round, it wouldn’t suit me really. Had a wonderful walk today in light rainfall – you just can’t beat dear old Blighty!

    1. I suppose you get used to the heat Jenny. I know I did when I lived in SA but I was a lot younger then and I don’t tolerate it as well now. Also being several stone overweight doesn’t help 😦

  8. Well as its cold and wet here I’m not going to feel sorry for you being hot, I’m way to jealous 🙂 🙂 🙂 I love that darling little wren and kookaburras are so cute!

    1. Cute, but damn noisy in the morning, although saying that I have only heard them once here. This morning I was woken up at 5 am by all manner of screeching things. Was like staying at my daughter’s house again 😀

  9. Oh, goody- that means I have a lighthouse photo to look forward to, Jude 🙂 Yes, I could see you being at home there.
    Great shots of the Kookaburra and I like the colour version of the clock, but it does transfer well. Most splendid of all is your header. What a powerful zap of colour that is! Explanation please? 🙂

    1. A small lighthouse, undergoing renovation I’m afraid so covered in scaffolding! And you can’t climb it Jo. Have to come back next year.
      The header comes from the side of a rhino we found at Echo Point. That’s right, a rhino.

      Rhino Art

      There were two of them and actually the other one was better painted I thought, but this one had that gorgeous outback scene which I couldn’t resist. This one is called “Spirit in the Land” by Wayne Krause (good Aussie name|) I’m guessing they were part of an art installation for Save the Rhino Day. The website I have doesn’t seem to work anymore.

        1. No I didn’t, but I know there were elephants in London a couple of years ago. And they auction them off – would have loved to buy one. I’m sure there was something this year in the UK too, but my brain is fried. Was going out today, but temp forecast to reach 43 so I don’t think that would be sensible. May wander down to the beach and sit under the trees and read instead.

  10. Gorgeous photos, Jude. The clock is really good in colour as well as B&W. Do you really have a hat like Crocodile Dundee? I want to see it. Beautiful landscape pic of Palm Beach! Keep cool, if you’re able. xx

    1. Thanks Sylvia – I have so many architecture photos to post, but thought the clock translated well into B&W. Glad you like it. Only kidding about the hat – no corks involved on this one, but it is still unusual for me to wear a hat at all! Even in winter it has to be really freezing or windy for me to put a hat on. Always been the same, even as a child.

      Bush Hat

  11. Lucky you with that fairy wren! Such gorgeous colours. I’ve seen a few of these little guys, but none has sat still for as long as you experienced. I’m enjoying seeing your shots of my (adopted) city, though I am puzzled by the references to the excessive heat — to me, it’s pleasant right now, not hot! 🙂

    1. Ah, you are so lucky to be acclimatised. You don’t find 35 degrees hot? I think I find the humidity worse, I don’t mind sunshine, but I hate feeling so sticky all the time.

      1. I lived my first 29 years in Canada, and I absolutely loathed being cold. Still do. But 35C is my upper limit of comfortableness, I admit. I couldn’t live somewhere like Singapore, where it’s so hot and humid. I was in Vanuatu all last week: one day, 10 of us from the resort (Eratap Beach Resort, fantastic!!!) plus the driver from the resort went to the driver’s village. I opted to walk back the 3.5km to the resort — it was 30C, humid, and in my opinion a beautiful day, but I had to fend off the concerns of a number of people who feared I would collapse en route. Ah well, we are all different, and a good thing, too! 🙂

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