Page 1

| Contents |

Foreword |


Introduction |


| vi |

| viii |

NEW SOUTH WALES Byron Bay Hinterland


Bellingen and Dorrigo National Park


Sydney Harbour

| 14 |

Blue Mountains National Park

| 20 |


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High Country

| 28 |

Wilsons Promontory

| 34 |

Healesville and Yarra Ranges

| 40 |

Great Ocean Road

| 46 |

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Freycinet Peninsula and Great Oyster Bay

| 54 |

Kakadu National Park

| 136 |

Cradle Mountain

| 60 |

Mount Borradaile

| 144 |

Devils Marbles

| 150 |

West MacDonnell Ranges National Park

| 156 |

Uluru–Kata Tjuta National Park

| 162 |


| 66 |

Simpson Desert

| 72 |

Kangaroo Island

| 78 |


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QUEENSLAND Cairns and Surrounds

| 168 |

Great Barrier Reef

| 174 |

South-West Forests

| 84 |


| 180 |

Albany Coast

| 92 |

Outback Queensland

| 186 |

Shark Bay

| 100 |

Sandstone Belt

| 194 |


| 106 |

Fraser Island

| 202 |

Millstream–Chichester National Park

| 114 |

Sunshine Coast

| 208 |

Kimberley Gorges

| 120 |

Purnululu National Park

| 128 |


| 214 |

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| Sydney Harbour |



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Bellingen/Dorrigo National Park

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The sparkling blue waters of Sydney Harbour on a clear day

If you had to pick an iconic view of the city, it would have to be from Mrs Macquaries Chair, on the eastern side of the Botanical Gardens. Of course, this is hardly a secret location and every evening there will be quite a few people, since this is one BALLINA the best times to take a photograph here, particularly if there is some colour in the sky as the sun goes down.

must rank as one of the great sights of Australia. Better still is the soaring arch of Sydney Harbour Bridge, seemingly joined at the hip to the white sails of the Opera House, one of the most recognisable images of Australia, and indeed, of any place in the world. It’s a must-have picture for a

Make sure you don’t head off as soon as the sun has set, as most people do. If you wait for a while, approximately 20 minutes or so, the darkening sky will gradually match the lights on the Opera

photographer and fortunately Sydney Harbour has plenty of accessible places from which to shoot it. HOTSPOTS






Harbour Bridge


Illoura Reserve 4



6 5


Bradleys Head



The Domain




The Gap

Sydney Harbour NP

Sydney Opera House

Circular Quay





Lighthouse Reserve


Previous pages: Sydney Harbour at dawn HS3 Above left: Aerial view of Sydney Harbour Above right: View from Illoura Reserve HS4 Opposite: View from above Watsons Bay HS2


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Lamington NP


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House and – with the aid of a tripod, of course – this is when some of the best shots are to be had. If you feel like getting up really early, head over to the North Shore and Blues Point Reserve. The view here faces east, so the pre-dawn light silhouettes the huge Bridge with the Opera House below. At this time of day there will be few people about, so you can enjoy this lovely spot in peace. Further afield, also on the North Shore, are two places that allow you to capture the wider expanses of the harbour. Cremorne Point and Bradleys Head both offer easy parking and at dawn you should

have them mainly to yourself. Cremorne Point does not offer a view of the Bridge but there is a good aspect of the Opera House, particularly with a longer lens. Bradleys Head is further away, but you can see both Bridge and Opera House – ideal if you’d like to try for a panorama. One of the other distinctive features of the harbour, although not strictly part of it, is the sweep of towering sea cliffs to the east, outside the Heads, particularly around Rose Bay and Vaucluse. There are some lighthouses scattered along the top of the cliff that make good subjects, and from the back of Watsons Bay there is an excellent view to the city. Sydney Harbour

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| Great Ocean Road |



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Bellingen/Dorrigo National Park

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while it has been frequently photographed, the changeable weather means that it’s never the same twice – a clearing storm at dusk can still be very rewarding. The tip of the Otway Peninsula is also worth visiting. The lighthouse stands isolated on a high promontory, looking across the Southern Ocean, one of the wildest oceans in the world. Nothing lies between here and Antarctica; even at the height of summer it can be woolly-hat weather as the surprisingly cold wind whips off the sea, changing people’s perception of Australia as a country that is always hot. 50


1 Aire Valley Road S38.6319° E143.564°

This minor road starts in Beech Forest and heads south-west, winding through delightful forest scenery to Beauchamp Falls, Hopetoun Falls and the Aire Valley. At Aire Valley Reserve an incongruous stand of Californian redwoods among the native tree ferns creates an unusual scene.

Above: Redwoods in Aire Valley Reserve HS1 Opposite: Another angle on the Twelve Apostles. Since this shot was taken the nearest Apostle has finally succumbed to the power of the sea. HS4


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2 Cape Otway S38.8566° E143.512°

On a wild day this lighthouse stands out dramatically from the dark skies. The Southern Ocean can dish up some fierce weather so be prepared for wind making it difficult to get sharp images. The lighthouse itself is quite handsome so make sure to get some close-ups too.

3 Hopetoun Falls S38.6684° E143.581°

This is probably the most photographed of all the Otway waterfalls, but that does not diminish its graphic appeal. Standing 100m or so away, you can frame some strong compositions, with the stream leading the eye towards the distant cascade. It is best on a cloudy day.

4 Twelve Apostles S38.666° E143.104°

No matter how many times this scene is photographed, it is still worth the visit since the light is always different – it’s a ‘must-have’ in any photographer’s collection. To add an unforgettable element, visit at dawn during a full moon, when the moon sets over the classic sea-stack view. Since this shot was taken the nearest Apostle has finally succumbed to the power of the sea.

Great Ocean Road

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| Mount Borradaile |



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Bellingen/Dorrigo National Park

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If you’ve visited Kakadu and enjoyed the amazing wildlife,


scenery and rock art, you might like to know about another MANGARDUBU

place that is more remote and a lot wilder, has even more rock art and even more crocodiles, and offers a totally different



experience: Mount Borradaile, or Awunbarna to the local

5 Alli





Indigenous people. You will find no fences, no bitumen, no


Jabiluka Aboriginal Land Trust



R ive

crowds here – just classic unspoiled NT wilderness.

Kakadu National Park


Co op er


1 4






Arnhem Land Aboriginal Land Trust





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Davidson’s Safari Camp is a privately leased concession located at Mount Borradaile, roughly 100km north-west of Oenpelli, itself just across the boundary between Kakadu National Park and Arnhem Land. The camp is run by Max Davidson, an incredibly well informed gentleman, who will often personally guide visitors to art sites and explain the stories behind all the artworks. The facilities have been upgraded in recent years and it’s now very civilised, with solar-powered cabins and excellent food – in fact, some high-end tour operators bring their guests here, which is as good a testimonial as you could hope for.

Previous pages: Cooper Creek Billabong HS1 Opposite: The Catacombs HS2 Above: Cooper Creek Billabong HS1

the Mount Borradaile massif. It’s permanent water, so even though the level varies throughout the year you can always be assured of being able to head out in the small motorised pontoons or dinghies that the guides operate. Travelling by boat is the best (and safest) way to see the most famous denizens of Australia’s north, the saltwater crocodile. And see them you will – the place was groaning with them last time I visited and I was even able to get near enough to shoot the head and eyes in close-up, albeit with a 600mm lens (I’m not crazy!).

You can get to Mount Borradaile by road without too much trouble, but you do need to have obtained a permit to cross Aboriginal land – Max and his team can arrange this for you. Alternatively, you can fly in from Jabiru, or even direct from Darwin, and take in the scenery on the way – the most usual way to get there.

Dusk is the best time for seeing crocs on the riverbanks, as that’s when they bask in the last of the day’s sunlight and you can sometimes see them gaping their mouths wide open to shed excess heat – always a great shot. It’s not all crocs though: the birdlife is astonishing and easily seen in relative close-up by boat. If you are a birder, you’ll be happy as a croc in mud.

Most of the photographic opportunities are centered on three main sites, although there is a lot more to see if you have the time. Cooper Creek Billabong is a long stretch of water running along the base of

The rock art at Mount Borradaile is especially fascinating, not only because of its quantity but because it’s undisturbed and in some amazing locations. You need a guide to take you to it, and it would be Mount Borradaile

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5 Carnarvon Gorge – The Art Gallery S25.0470° E148.2024°

6 Lake Nuga Nuga S24.996302° E148.684101°

A huge overhang of white rock shelters an impressive gallery of rock paintings

Nuga Nuga National Park protects this isolated lake and a small area of

dating back many thousands of years. There’s a boardwalk, so please stay on

native bonewood scrub in the midst of a heavily deforested area. Head into

that to shoot images. There is plenty of light for handheld shots, but if you

the campground, which is next to what looks like a small island on maps but

use a tripod you need to be aware of other people moving around – you don’t

is actually not fully separate from the shore. The lake is definitely best at

want to get in their way and their footsteps can cause vibrations.

sunset, when the distant escarpment ramparts light up bright orange behind masses of skeletal flooded trees.



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7 Lonesome National Park S25.488285° E148.879099° Opposite: Dead trees in Lake Nuga Nuga HS6 Above: Reflections in Lake 30 Nuga Nuga HS6 Right: Lonesome National Park HS7 Far right: Kangaroos, Mount Moffatt HS1

This is another small park but worth visiting to view the great prows of its massive sandstone cliffs. Arcadia Valley Way goes right through the park, but you’ll need to hit the dirt to get to the campground on the Dawson River where the best scenery is to be found. If you don’t want to get your car dirty, a lookout on the main road provides a fine overview.

Sandstone Belt

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| Photo Tips |

High Contrast Scenes This picture of Mount Warning and Doughboy Hill was shot early in the morning from one of the trails in Nightcap National Park. As the sun rose, it illuminated the main flank of the mountain while the foreground remained in shadow. The eye can easily handle this sort of brightness range but the camera has trouble with a highlight-to-shadow range of more than about 200:1. In this case, it was a choice of washed-out sky or black featureless shadows in the valley. There are two solutions to this problem, one best suited for film and the other for digital captures.

Graduated Filters

Modern cameras make it relatively easy to get satisfactory images of most subjects, but, as with many creative activities, there are subtleties to understand or master. In this section of Photo Tips, I explain how to deal with difficult subjects, how to ‘see’ new opportunities and, most important of all, how to make your images transcend the ordinary.


A neutral density (ND) graduated filter is half clear and half grey. You position the filter in such a way in front of the lens that the grey part darkens the sky while the clear part lets the shadows expose normally. ND grads come in a variety of strengths, normally 1, 2 or 3 stops or 0.3, 0.6 and 0.9, depending on the manufacturer’s unit of measurement. To use the filters, set the exposure for the shadows by using manual mode and pointing the camera down to take a meter reading. Then re-compose the image, slide the filter on and adjust it until the grey region is over the brightest parts of the scene. Now make the exposure and bracket by 1 stop either side of your setting.

Digital Blending Digital cameras can handle a wide range of brightness and make it easy to combine two different exposures in a single frame. You’ll need a tripod to ensure that you shoot two identical frames. Simply shoot two shots of the same subject: overexposing one shot by one stop and underexposing the other by one stop. Then, working on the computer, combine the two shots into one, using the bright areas of one frame with the dark areas of the other. The simplest method is to drag one image onto another in Photoshop (while holding down the Shift key), making a single image with two layers in perfect alignment. Then use the erase tool to remove the top part of the image to reveal the darker version below. | See page x


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Successful waterfall images must take into account the fact that the water is moving 1/500th second. Even with such a fast shutter speed the while the rest of the image is not. This may sound obvious water drops are still short lines rather than points. but the difference between a waterfall photographed at a shutter speed high enough to ‘freeze’ the water and one taken with a low shutter speed to blur the water is quite dramatic. The image of Crystal Shower Falls on page 10 was taken with a four-second exposure on a tripod. During that time each water drop is recorded as a white track on the image rather than a single white spot. This is where the misty white appearance of waterfalls comes from. Too long an exposure will not allow enough time for each drop 1/60th second. This is still a relatively quick shutter speed to record at all and the but, as you can see, the water drops have recorded as long water will get fainter and lines while still being recognisable as falling water. fainter. As a rule of thumb, exposures of between half a second and 20 seconds should work well. Recording water drops with a faster shutter speed gives a different effect, as seen here. As to which is better, well that’s up to the photographer, but it’s worth noting that with rainforests being quite dark it is often not possible to use a high shutter speed anyway and the misty plume is the inevitable result. | See page 10

This image of Sydney during a thunderstorm was taken from Cremorne Point at the ferry jetty. This position gives an uninterrupted view of the city skyline with plenty of sky, so was ideal for lightning images. There are two main problems to overcome with these sorts of images – when and where to shoot. When will the lightning flash occur and where will the flash be – both of these are out of the photographer’s control, so you need to make an educated guess as to what might occur. Watching the storm for a while will probably give you a clue where the strikes are concentrated, and very roughly how frequent they are. That information allows you to calculate an exposure that will be long enough to capture some flashes, but not so long that the image is overexposed. It will also show you the direction in which to point the camera, making sure to include loads of sky. At night it’s a lot easier to get successful images of lightning because a typical night shot of a city might involve a shutter speed of 15 seconds at f8 while still exposing the skyline correctly. That’s plenty of time for some flashes to occur whilst the shutter is open. Then it’s a case of keeping the camera exposing for as many shots as possible while the lightning rages around you. Luckily, with digital captures you cannot run out of film and pixels are free, so just keep shooting and sooner or later you’ll capture the classic shot. | See page 18

Photo Tips

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Australia: The Photographer’s Eye (2nd ed) by Nick Rains Description Award-winning photographer Nick Rains travels Australia with his camera, capturing the country’s diverse landscapes and many moods. With this second edition including five additional touring regions, Australia: The Photographer’s Eye displays Rains’ stunning images of over 30 regions around the country. For each region there’s also touring information and a map that pinpoints the best spots from which to capture your own images. In the photo tips section at the back of the book, Rains shares his knowledge of photography, discussing the techniques and skills he has gained over many years, and clearly explains how to successfully photograph landscapes from small-detail shots through to panoramas.

Selling Points • Beautiful photography in landscape format makes this book an excellent souvenir of Australian images. • Includes details on photographic techniques connected to each touring region. • Author is an award-winning nature photographer. • Foreword by well-known TV travel presenter Sorrel Wilby.

Marketing Plan • National PR campaign with author (press/radio). • Discount offer for EAP enewsletter subscribers. • Sponsorship of Australian Traveller magazine photo competition (TBC). Publication Date • September 2013

About the Author


n  $39.95;


n  9781741174274


n  240


n  247mm


n  Full


n  Travel;


n  Explore

Nick Rains has been a professional photographer for over 25 years, starting off in the UK with sports and commercial work before moving to Australia in 1990. Since then he has specialised in travel and landscape work, crisscrossing the country on assignments for many large book and calendar publishers including Explore Australia, Penguin and Australian Geographic. Nick enjoys packing up his trusty 4WD and heading off into the wilderness for weeks at a time, driving tens of thousands of kilometres and camping out under the stars in a never ending quest for the perfect light. This book is a distillation of the most photogenic places Nick has visited –­ places he hopes will inspire you as much as they did him.



pages x 277mm

colour throughout Photography Australia

'Australia - The Photographer’s Eye' by Nick Rains  

Award-winning photographer Nick Rains travels Australia with his camera, capturing the country’s diverse landscapes and many moods. With thi...

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