Monday, 21 May 2012

Time at Toronto

We spent a couple of hours at Toronto yesterday.  Had hoped to spend more but, the perfect day soon became overcast, the temperature dropped significantly and, light rain began to fall.

Toronto is on the shores of the beautiful Lake Macquarie.  It has beautiful fig trees growing in the main street and just down from the main street are numerous wharves for the many boats that ply the lake.

The railway to Toronto was built by a private company in 1891 but was taken over by the Government railways in 1910.  It was originally built privately with the Toronto Hotel to entice out interested real estate buyers!  Operations ceased on the line in 1990 and the Station was officially closed in 1995.  The old station is being used by the Lake Macquarie & District Historical Society as their base.

It's a short walk from the Toronto Public Wharf through Edward Gain Park along Victory Row, passed the old railway station up to the Royal Motor Boat Club. 

I only managed to get in a few photos, thanks to the weather turning, but it's not that far from where I live so there is ample opportunity to return at a later date.

The weather is so has turned out perfect!

Hope you are all well.


Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Merewether Sunrise

The weather of late has been unseasonly mild for late Autumn with beautiful clear blue skies to top it off!

I decided upon Merewether rock pools for this Photo Safari.  I imagined lovely textured rock and calm, serene pools of water reflecting the golden sunrise and blue skies.   Hmmmm...partly correct!

A weather change had come through overnight.  There was no rain associated with it, but the seas on Merewether and Bar Beaches, and on the rock pools were really pumping!   Huge swells approaching shore and a wicked breeze just off shore whipping the tops off them as the curled their way into the sand and rocks!

Although the tide was up, it was receding however, it still meant I had to clamber over some rocks to gain a good vantage point but they were dry just under the bluff and it was easy enough to get to where I wanted to be.

As per usual (and I have been caught with this before), there was a cloud bank out to sea extending right along the horizon.  I didn't let this deter me because, as I have learned, a sunrise reflected off clouds can give out a great spread of that awesome golden light!  It just means that the actual appearance of the Sun may be a little later or sporadic dependant on the cloud type.

I have also learned to point the camera away from the sun, and capture those tones of the new light upon the rocks and landscape as the new Sun greets them.  I have uploaded one of those photos onto here and the texture of the volcanic rock with the softness of the blue water creates a wonderful contrast I think.  Hard to believe that those hard rocks will eventually give way to the incessant pounding of the water.

For all its' roughness, there were a couple of surfers out looking to catch some of those giants as they rolled into the shore.   I managed to get some great pics of one surfer as he contemplated the huge surf and, perhaps, whether or not he would dive into that turmoil.  He was there for quite a while just watching and it gave me a good opportunity to grab different pics as the light changed.  He eventually walked away but, another surfer came walking very fast along the Baths toward the same point a little while later.  I lined up the shot, expecting him to also stop and contemplate his life before joining the tumult but NO, he was straight in and I barely managed to capture him in mid dive!

The building of the Merewether Baths started in 1926, but I believe that they have been extended and renovated over the years.  They are an icon of Newcastle.  Many photographers go to the baths at all times of the day; perhaps it has something to do with capturing the sea crashing over the rocks in the background and the serene, calm water within the baths in the foreground.  Whatever the case, I could not help getting some photos to add to the already thousands that probably appear on the Internet!

I have not loaded all of the photos I captured onto my blog here.  If you wish to view more, visit my Facebook page at Life with Jordy Photography.  If you do visit, please 'Like' my page; I enjoy keeping in touch with people who have the same interests.

Hope you are all well!


Sunday, 6 May 2012

Euro Motor Fest - Lambton Park, Newcastle

I would not have even known about this if it were not for an old workmate, Ray Buscombe, sending me an invite on Facebook.   He is the proud owner of a great sporty looking Renault Clio and was going to be showing it.  He said there would be some great machines at the Fest to get photos of and, he was not wrong!

The day was sponsored by the Hunter MG Car Club which has a club house in Elder St, Lambton.  The Motor Fest was held in Lambton Park, directly across the road from the club house, which appears to be a renovated Masonic Hall.  Actually, in the background of some of the MG photos, you can see the club house!

It was wonderful to see the spectacular cars on show, I especially love the older classics from a bygone era, solid, reliable and lovingly restored !

My favourite for the day would have to have been the 1935 Alvis.  It's owner David Coalbrook was kind enough to allow me inside for a pic!  Such grand workmanship and finish on the inside, and great polished paintwork and shiny steel on the outside turned out some wonderful photos!  In the photo of the engine bay, check out the tools in brackets, especially the sledge hammer which, I am told, is used to assist in removing the wheel!

Another favourite, but for different reasons, was the 1985 Citroen 2CV [at least that is what I understood it to be] owned by Ranald Mackay from the Tea Gardens/Hawks Nest Motor Club.  It looked like an awesome little run around and had 2 huge speakers on the rear parcel rack [which Ranald assured me came with the car when he brought it], along with the roll back sun roof.  It would certainly suit the leisurely beach lifestyle of the Hawks Nest area brilliantly!  Ranald can be seen sitting with his mates in the picture below, enjoying the relaxed atmosphere of the day.

The most difficult thing about photographing cars in this environment, is trying to capture them without people or, other cars cluttering up the shot.  I think I have been successful in most of these cases. When it was unavoidable, I used a low aperture setting [or post-processing !] to create a background bokeh to soften the excess clutter.   In most of these photos I used my wide angle lens and exposure bracketing to create HDR photos.

It was a good day, weather was perfect, and it was great to catch up with Ray after about 16 years over a sausage sanga and coffee!   Never mind.......we'll have a beer next time mate!

Hope you're all well!


Thursday, 3 May 2012

After Dark - Series #1

I was coming up to a couple of night shifts, and figured that it would be a good time to catch up on some night photos.   By the time I get out of work, into the car and get going, there is not actually much time for a leisurely photo safari so I have to have things fairly well sorted in my mind before I get there.

For the first in the 'After Dark' series, I thought that I should visit Civic Park.  It has these beautiful huge Fig Trees, lit by spotlights at night, that look awesome.  Just across the road from the park is City Hall which is a great looking building with a clock tower and, when lit at night, has great light and shadow.

After visiting the park, I took a wander up King Street to an old building on the corner of Morgan & King.  It is boarded up but I have always loved the textures and lines of the weatherboard upper half and the brick lower half.  It has some nice fretwork around the windows.  It looks great at night in the harsh glare of streetlights and even better in the early morning at sunrise with the golden tones of the Sun reflecting off it [but that is another project!]

Also in King St, just down from the boarded up house, is the most fantastic looking footpath!  A footpath can look fantastic, believe me!   All along one side of the footpath is a massive retaining wall built of rough sandstone brick circa 1869 and, to protect the pedestrians from falling onto the road, is a great looking post and rail fence.   It is an old landmark of Newcastle. 

I used my wide angle for nearly all shots, except for the pano.  

I do have other night photos that I will collate and show on here in the near future but, for the sake of keeping track of posts, this is number 1 of my 'After Dark' Series.

Vincent Van Gogh once said     'I often think that the night is more alive and more richly coloured than the day'.....he certainly had a good point!

Good Night!