Three sisters and snow

Three sisters in snow

Three sisters in snow

After the promise of snow in the blue mountains from the weather bureau came and went a few weeks ago without even a flurry, it was finally great to see a decent amount start to fall on thursday night (16-07-2015). Now over the last few years I’ve been trying to capture an image that combines the iconic three sisters in Katoomba and some snow in the scene as well. Each time there has been a snowfall I’ve raced off down to the three sisters to capture this image that has been sitting in my head for a good few years. Anyone familiar with the landscape side of my photography knows that I’ve attempted to capture the three sisters in as many different moods and weather scenarios as possible over the years. So with family and friends in tow we set off on foot down the street as the snow started to blanket the streets into a winter wonderland.

As we walked and slid our way down to echo point and the lookout, the wind was really starting to howl. I remembered the last time it snowed I had come down and my umbrella blew inside out in the first few minutes, luckily for me it was 90% rain and there was no shot to get. So this time armed with a few handy assistants I liked my chances allot more. Knowing the three sisters are lit up at night was a real deciding factor for coming here in such horrid conditions. So with my partner holding the umbrella for me and a friend giving me some light via the phone light I set up my tripod and camera. A big part of photography is pre visualising a scene in your head before you take the shot. Prior to coming down I was 90% confident of the shot I wanted without even knowing how much snow was around. As I set up the conditions were rapidly getting to the point where it was really hard to keep the camera covered from the elements. The floodlights though strong, were not going to shed enough light to highlight the snow which was rapidly swirling around us. I attached my trusty speedlight (flash) and metered the scene in camera. I manually dialled in how much fill light I wanted in the flash, wiped down the lens element of snow for the umteenth time and pressed the shutter……..got it!

I was really happy with the outcome of the shot and was glad to have finally captured the iconic three sisters in some snow. I came back in the morning on sunrise hoping to get the sisters covered in snow, you know that picture perfect postcard esque scene…. but alas that wasn’t to be. The snow hadn’t settled on them as the wind had been far too strong (you can see this clearly in the B&W image below) overnight and the sisters elevation in the valley proved a little low for a decent snow dusting….with any luck it might snow again this winter and I’ll be able to tick a few more of my “must have”images of my list.

I also went out and captured some images of the blue mountains township of Katoomba when it was covered in the beautiful snow. See the photos here

About Ben– Ben Pearse is a commercial and wedding photographer who works and resides in the beautiful blue mountains, Australia. Ben also sells and licenses his portfolio of blue mountains landscape images. These are available from this website in the shop section.

Follow Ben’s photographic journey on any of these social media platforms Facebook  Instagram  Google+  Twitter  Flickr  500px  Pinterest 

Website- benpearsephotography.com.au

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Sisters under snow siege

Sisters under snow siege

Three sisters on sunrise with a little snow

Three sisters on sunrise with a little snow about…

Snow over three sisters

Snow over three sisters

Three sisters in a snowstorm

Three sisters in a snowstorm

Blue Mountains winter wonderland

Blue Mountains winter wonderland

Katoomba gets some snow

Katoomba gets some snow

 

 

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Cockatoos

Watching the sunset

Watching the sunset

I think you either like Cockatoos or you don’t. They are a very common Australian bird and can be rather cheeky and a little noisey at times. I for one really like them. I think they have allot of character and I like their cheeky side too. They also do make a pretty easy target if you’re trying to capture them in a photo as well. Over the years I have managed to take quite a few shots, especially of the sulphur crested Cockatoo, which is very common species throughout the Blue Mountains where I live.

I’m really looking forward to getting some shots of the majestic black cockatoo in time as well. They have proven to be much more elusive to get a really top notch photo of. I have come very close on a number of occasions whilst trying to stalk them through the bush, but alas I’ll have to keep trying to get the really great shot that I feel does justice to this beautiful bird…

I hope you’re well and enjoying some time in the beautiful outdoors, cheers ben

pst… I do weddings now too

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more cockledoodledoos

Cockatoo in afternoon light

Cockatoo in afternoon light

a heated debate amongst friends

a heated debate amongst friends

basking in light

basking in light

getting a portrait done

getting a portrait done

soaking in some sun

soaking in some sun

in the dark

in the dark

abstract view

abstract view

taking a breather

taking a breather

snuck up behind me

snuck up behind me

"I said your a... *%^@

“I said, its a bit noisey isn’t it”.

catch ya later

catch ya later

flying by katoomba falls

flying by katoomba falls

taking in the view

taking in the view

taking off

taking off

friendly visitor

friendly visitor

sitting out the rain

sitting out the rain

shy

shy

flap flap

flap flap

touchdown

touchdown

Leura falls, Blue Mountains

Leura falls panoramic

Leura falls panoramic

Leura falls is one of those areas that pops up in a photo once in a blue moon. I had been to these beautiful falls many years ago without a camera & decided it was high time that I went back and took some photos. It’s one of those locations that does require quite the walk out of the valley, so this keeps most people away. Recently I decided it was definitely time to go out and get a heap more waterfall photos, so I packed up and spent three days immersed in the creeks and streams in the beautiful Blue Mountains, Australia.

During the afternoon I was standing knee deep in water and I looked up to see a group of young tourists just standing there staring at me, obviously thinking, “this guys bloody mad”. It moments like these that I feel truly happy and content with my life…..As the afternoon light descended onto the sandstone cliffs, I tried finding some interesting angles of the falls and surrounding area. I always love the challenge of presenting an area with different and unique angles that I can come up with on the day…..

cheers ben-

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more photos of leura falls

last light

last light

through the ferns

through the ferns

I couldn't resist a selfie on this boulder

I couldn’t resist a selfie on this boulder earlier on the day

in B&W

in B&W

shadow & light

shadow & light

Smoke & Light

Smoke & Light

Smoke & Light

In Australia we live under the constant threat of bushfires & hence the need for controlled hazard reduction burning on a regular basis to help reduce bushfire severity. It has been a particularly dry winter period so the RFS  has been out & about trying to burn as much fuel as possible. Now as a person who doesn’t suffer from asthma, I really enjoy the smokey skies and as a photographer it’s mood heaven for me. Every time I hear that they might be burning in my area I always try and head to some of my favourite spots to grab some of the smokey goodness in the skies & valley’s. Smoke is a really great infuser of colour & light and can really set a scene for some dramatic images come sunset.

I really do appreciate the great work that the RFS and all other departments do in order to keep our homes and livelihoods safer come fire season. The fires came close to where I live only a few years ago and the helicopters did a great job of controlling the blaze as it raced towards businesses and homesteads, via repeated water bombing from the air. So even though fires can wield a terrible destructive force, I also enjoy the beauty they can bring to a landscape as well. New life swiftly follows a burnt out area of vegetation with vibrant greens and reds as the environment quickly adapts after a fire. I hope that this season the fires will burn in habitats that can sustain and re-develop quickly and hopefully leave the smoke far from our doors…

Note: After writing this yesterday I came home today to learn that fires have been burning out of control in the lower Blue Mountains and western Sydney region. My thoughts go out to the people that have already been affected by this seemingly early start to bushfire season. Once again I take my hat off to the brave men & women who risk their own lives to keep the greater community safe. I dedicate this image to them…

cheers ben

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mob-0405052660                                                                                                                                                                smoke infused photos

heavy smoke

heavy smoke

Smoke soaked sunrays entering the Jamison valley

Smoke soaked sunrays entering the Jamison valley

silhouettes in smoke

silhouettes in smoke

amazing sunsets

amazing sunsets

Jamison Glow

Jamison Glow

Smoke-in-Katoomba--September-2013--low-res

smoke rays

megalong burns

megalong burns

back open for business

back open for business

scorched

scorched

birds watching the smokey sunsetbirds watching the smokey sunset

tired firefighters

tired firefighters

water bombing the fires

water bombing the fires

new life comes

new life comes

close call in 2011

close call in 2011

cloud of smoke

cloud of smoke

choked valleys

choked valleys

after glow

after glow

shafts of light

shafts of light

colours of smoke

colours of smoke

Ben Pearse Photography

fires of 2009

Narrowneck plateau, Katoomba

Ben Pearse Photography

If I had to name one, if not my favourite, all time locations in the Blue Mountains it would have to be Narrowneck plateau in Katoomba, NSW, Australia. I was first introduced to the this area, along with my brother Simon, some 25 years ago when we first started rock climbing in the area. As young enthusiastic teenagers we use to spend all weekend, cutting our teeth, on the magnificent sandstone walls of this area. Climbing would envelop our life for the next 10+ years, without much room for much else…..

Narrowneck is a narrow ridge line that cuts it’s pathway between two majestic valley’s, the Megalong & Jamison. Approximately 12 kms in length, it commands attention within it’s landscape of the world heritage listed,  Blue Mountains. So here I am some 25 years later wandering the plateau again, perhaps not clinging to the side in desperation or for life, but still clinging, hanging, camera in hand…………..in search of light & mood. I’m not sure what attracts me to this location so much, perhaps it’s the balancing act, perched between to the two valleys, constantly tugging at me from each side, luring me in for another shot………………who knows, but I love it. I’ll continue to wander this landscape getting lost in thought & time searching for that elusive perfect light & mood for many moons to come, perhaps I’ll see you out there one day……

cheers ben

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   more narrowneck splendour

waterfalls of mist

waterfalls of mist

Golden light

Golden light

summers afternoon

summers afternoon

trees with colour

trees with colour

balancing act

balancing act

a popular abseiling location

a popular abseiling location

Fog rolling between valley's

Fog rolling between valley’s

dissecting the valley's

dissecting the valley’s

moody skies during bushfires

moody skies during bushfires

last light

last light

Me training a few years back

Me training a few years back

Me.....back in the day

Me…..back in the day

a view of cliffs nearby

a view of cliffs nearby

looking into the jamison valley

looking into the jamison valley

heavy smoke on the plateau

heavy smoke on the plateau

jamison valley glory

jamison valley glory

Ruined Castle

Ruined Castle

Ruined Castle

The ruined castle is a popular and distinct  sandstone rock outcrop in the Jamison valley within the World Heritage Blue Mountains, Katoomba, Australia. I have ventured out there for a walk on numerous occasions and also camped within the ruins many moons ago. A great sight of this wonderful sandstone structure is to witness the last sunrays falling across the castle in the jamison valley on sunset.  I have often stood at a lookout watching the last rays of the day lighting the sandstone walls of the castle walls. I’m guessing that it got it’s name, as it appeared, “castle like” to somebody walking through the area some time ago and in which they probably said something along the lines like, “Hey, don’t you think that looks like a castl, you know, like a ruined one”! I’m sure this is totally incorrect, but it will do for now and if you need to know, I’m sure  google has the answer somewhere…..

If you do find yourself in the area and you have a few hours in which you’d like to get your heartrate up a little and be rewarded with a beautiful 360 degree view at the end, then this just might be for you. A great way to get there is to descend the golden stairs off the Narrowneck plateau. If however you would just like to admire it from the distance like the many thousands of tourist each year, then Echo Point in Katoomba is a great vantage point for this spectacular Blue Mountains landmark. I hope you find time in your week to get outdoors to explore…..

See you out there

cheers ben                                                                                                                                                                                          more castle views

surrounded by mist

surrounded by mist

last light touches the walls

last light touches the walls

hazy light

hazy light

without colours

without colours

hidden in bushfire smoke

hidden in bushfire smoke

aglow

aglow

glimpsed through the trees

glimpsed through the trees

A storm approaches the castle

A storm approaches the castle

Guardian of the Castle

Guardian of the Castle

Conquering the Castle

Conquering the Castle

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Tuncurry, NSW Australia

Ben Pearse Photographyrecently found myself enjoying a little sun & sand in the gorgeous coastal town of Tuncurry in NSW, Australia. Located approx 300 kms north east of Sydney, it is a a popular tourist destination for many holiday makers. One of my favourite places to take a stroll is on the beautiful 9 mile beach where I often tried my hand at catching some fish and I’ve also seen many dolphins swimming just offshore from here.

I managed to do a sunrise walk along the beach one morning and was really glad I made the effort as I was rewarded with some beautiful light, colours and a pod of dolphins playing in the waves on sunrise. I had forgotten just how beautiful the ocean can be when the weather and conditions are just right. The colours that engulfed the ocean and beach on this morning were just spectacular to witness. Moments like these I feel so privileged to be a photographer and a dedicated chaser of light. It was a great way end to my short stay in the area and I’ll be eagerly awaiting my next trip to beautiful Tuncurry. If you get a chance to visit the area I’d highly recommend it as a beaut spot to get away with friends or family.

See you out there,

cheers ben

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golden sunrise

golden sunrise

here fishy fishy

here fishy fishy

riding the swell

riding the swell

moody seas

moody seas

sunset glow

sunset glow

oceans of light

oceans of light

dolphins riding the waves

dolphins riding the waves

not a shark...

not a shark…

waiting for the waves

waiting for the waves

surfer dude

surfer dude

pod of dolphins

pod of dolphins