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Winter in the South West of Western Australia

G’day all.
Im not sure if Western Australia and the term winter actually exists or if its just a irony.

The South West of Western Australia has a reasonable climate, it gets hot but not Pilbara hot with road surfaces melting.  And it gets cold, but no snow, maybe down to just above 0 deg C.

For people like me who have missed the rain for a few years, there is a fair bit of it, some clouds and not much lightning to boot.

Over the last few days the Bureau of Meteorology has forecast some “bad” weather, large cold fronts, higher than normal winds etc.  It makes for some great shoots though.

Here are a couple taken over the last few weeks.

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South West. Western Australia.

Its now been 5 months since I did my ankle with no immediate resolution in sight.  The outcome to date is high grand rupture of lateral ligaments, fracture (common in this type of injury) and Complex Regional Pain Syndrome.  Never heard of it?  Neither had I until they told me about it.  Short story is… the nerves in my foot up to my knee have gone haywire. The surgeon has advised that there could be a recovery of up to 18 months with further consideration of surgery in a few months.

On a brighter note.. Im off the meds, able to drive and off the crutches.  I still can not walk far and do it with a reasonable limp. Im happy with my recovery to a certain degree and continuously pushing what I should be doing to try and decrease my time period.  I still do my day job.  Just a scaled down version of it.

Over this time I have used my “down time” to scheme and plan for my next overseas trip  and have a look around the south west of Western Australia.  Ive plotted a lot of locations to visit and now it looks like a mass of yellow stars.  Its coming together though.  Its a shame that I can’t purchase and book things more than 9 months out (flights specifically).

We moved down to Bunbury once before in 2004 with work and moved back to the city 12 months later after some family emergency stuff.  It can be a interesting place however down turn in economy and increase in unemployment appears to strain peoples life styles.

This time, Ive now been down here almost 18 months and whilst I adore the rain, cold weather and smell of burning timber in the air (its a novelty) Im still not hooked on this place.  Great for a holiday, definitely!  Its just not me. Don’t get me wrong, life is cheaper but I miss that interaction I got with community up north where everyone helps out.  There is even a community connection with the landscape. Something I don’t really see down here.  My minimum tenure is up come Feb 2018 and will probably look at heading back up north.  I also miss the major storms, lightning and cloud structures you get to see during wet season.

So getting back on track.  I have had the wife driving me around the country side heading to locations and shoot what I can.

Margaret River is well known for its wine, surf, cheese, chocolate and arts.  Busselton and Augusta have some amazing traits that people will want to visit.  There is Collie, Gracetown, Nannup, Bridgetown and Manjimup just to mention a few other locations  Bunbury is also in this field though I find that people just pass through now rather than just staying and checking out the dolphins etc.  And why not? Flights to places like Bali, Thailand are so cheap! Why holiday locally when you can live like a king for a few weeks on a portion of what you would spend in Australia.

As you can probably figure.  My passion is still America and shoot (photography) there.

Here are a few shots taken over the last few months.

Time flies

My last trip to the USA was from Sept-late Nov 2015.  Of that I took about 22 gig of images. Soooo…  almost 18 months later Im still processing photos from it.

Now I have never hid the fact that I love shooting in the US.  I literally saw 4 seasons in a few days driving through Oregon.  You just can’t get that in Australia.

I miss it, I miss the feeling of being able to explore, the life style and great customer service.  Australia, you can pay 7 bucks for a coffee and only be offered a grunt for conversation.  We are quite behind the times when it comes to that.

I would dearly love to spend more time over there.. Im not worried about living in some major city… just somewhere I am close by to nature with power and internet.  If anyone knows how to achieve this Ill happily listen.

Im still sitting on my backside at the moment with my busted foot 😦  Feeling the misery of not exploring and photographing the world.  It has given me some time to go back through and appreciate what I have seen and plan some more.

Have a great weekend if you are already there and if not, it means Happy Saint Paddy’s Day!

Below are some shots from Montana.

Part 2 of the travel Video

Today, last year… I would have been in Whitefish Montana enjoying the feeling of snow and the fine folk that I met.  I really miss that experience and am planning my next trip in 2018.

Here is a short 6 minute vid of some of the images from Las Vegas through to Idaho Falls.

 

Hold my beer and watch this…

Ive been photographing for about 6-7 years now and have a regular need to capture mother natures finest scenes.

Ive dodge lightning strikes, illness, hauled aside by US customs over my camera equipment (very professional with their service and polite) but never really hurt myself.

Saturday, I was having a walk around Canal Rocks Western Australia. Not even shooting, just getting out and about, getting some fresh air as my shifts did not permit me to go out over the last few weeks.

I was wearing normal attire, my hiking boots that give my ankles support as I have previous injured my right one.  I was about 3 meters from the foot path, walking back to my car and BAM!, left ankle gives out.

Not a life flashing before my eyes moment but Jesus!, fuck me drunk… it hurt, had to sit down after a wave of dizziness (thanks to the 3 dudes that were standing looking at me and just walked off).

So worked out my options and drove to the hospital back near home… an hour away.  Thanks to the person who designed automatic gear boxes!

So now Im sporting a cast on my left leg, apparently my ankle is fractured and off to see a surgeon on Thursday.  Hopefully he will tell me the Doctors in the ED all need glasses and there is nothing wrong with me.

I have been asked to explain how it has happened a few times now.  No amazing story of being chased by wildlife, no “hold my beer, watch this” event… just me… walking…  How boring!

D’oh

Oh well, gives me the chance to process some shots now as Its really the only thing other than sleeping I can do at this second…

 

 

 

USA Tour Video Part 1

Today, last year… I would have been in Whitefish Montana enjoying the feeling of snow and the fine folk that I met.  I really miss that experience and am planning my next trip in 2018.

Here is a short 6 minute vid of some of the images from SF through to Las Vegas.

Yosemite National Park

From San Francisco I travelled to Yosemite National Park in just a few hours.

Spending a few days there was great, maybe next time an extra day or two just to cover off on some astro work/ sunrise and set times.

It was particularly dry when I arrived with almost no water flowing which was a bit of a shame.  Bridal Veil Falls only had a trickle.  Maybe next time eh? .

I saw plenty of bear cubs and other wildlife there though and I saw several groups of rock climbers everywhere.  Those guys and girls are just mad!

Star Trails

Since the purchase of the new camera last year it has given a far greater scope to shoot sceneries.  The Nikon D300 was a great camera (and still is) by the ISO completely sucked above 2-300.  The D810… argh.. just wow… 5000 ISO and nothing that can’t be fixed in Photoshop.

I was recently asked as to how I shot one particular image.  Mind you most of my images are just not one shot.

The image in particular took about 150 images and about a dozen hours in Photoshop to process.

So here is the image and will post a link to Vimeo. (Music: Wrong Way by Creed)

Star Trail Video

Meteor-Shower-Sugarloaf

 

San Francisco/ CA

Would have to have been one of my favourite “City” places that I visited.  Very friendly during the day for the most of it, arty, great food, shopping and sites to see.

I did end up almost punching out a bloke who ran at me whilst trying to evade Walgreens store security for shop theft, but a last minute brain snap reminded me Im not in Australia and not doing my normal day job.  Walked out of that location around the corner and SFPD unloading a robot for a suspicious package threat.

Early hours of the day were another issue.  Whilst suffering the effects of jet lag I was up at 3 am most mornings to start with. I decided to walk around and see what I could photograph.  There were plenty of people that were homeless, shadow boxing etc around the pier.  Kept my distance and life was all good.

Hiking up and down the hills were a killer and don’t recommend if your of poor health.

So in between melting the credit card at Best Buy, REI and a few stores to stock up on equipment/ hardware I also visited many restaurants, Palace of Fine Arts, Painted Ladies, Coit Tower, Lombard Street, China Town and about as far south east as Brannan Street and as far north west as Fort point at Golden Gate bridge, all on foot.

Still to this day I  can’t get over the great prices and selection at Best Buy and REI.

I was fortunate that the Hotel (Pier 2620 on Jones Street) that I selected was well placed.  One thing that did catch me by surprise was the cost of the parking.  I knew it would be expensive but dang!

One of the mornings I also set out to walk to Pier 33 where the cruises to Alcatraz departed from which in all honesty wasn’t that far either.  Another morning after watching the sun rise over the Golden Gate Bridge I spent a few hours wandering around Muir Woods.

Driving over the GGB is an experience in itself.

Alcatraz was a good day out though well packed with tourists such as myself and almost impossible to get photos without people in them.  A good eye opener into its history.

So I stayed in SF for about 4-5 days before heading off to my first location at Yosemite.

In the end I took about 22 gig of photos so whilst Im posting these up I probably till have more to add.  Which I ahem since created a FB page just for this trip:  Facebook Golden Orb Designs USA

 

5 months

Cant believe that I have neglected my blog for 5 months!
So in that time, Ive moved from the Pilbara to the South West of Western Australia and shot some amazing scenery, which I will add in a another post shortly.

Here are a few more from my trip from “up top”.
As I have so many now I will add them by state.
So first off here is Utah.

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