the passenger seat

spitting dragon falls
August 21, 2009, 11:16 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , ,

Hey everyone, hope you’re all well (gee I sound like Nat) now that everyone’s exams are over (well, except for those few stragglers who were away). Just the speech to go (which is practically a copy/paste of our essays anyway) and then no more school assessments ever. Ever. Wow, we’re almost at the end! But until then, I think we all deserve to take some time off.

So I did just that by going down to the waterfall/creek at the Wildlife Sanctuary near my house, as mentioned in yesterday’s blog.

You know if your exams are over and you have a spare day, you’re meant to sleep in and catch up on all the sleep you’ve lost in the last month? Well, on my first day of freedom, I awoke earlier than I have over the past few weeks. Set my alarm to 7:30am, as opposed to 8:00am for exams. And I am not a morning person at all; I hate waking up early. But alas, all in the name of photography. I guess this shows my… dedication? Heh. Anyway, so the whole point of waking up this early was to have sufficient time to get ready and eat and all that while still having a fair amount of time to photograph before meeting Janet after her VA exam at 10:40.

I left the house at about 8:45am (yes, I take ages to do stuff in the morning) and headed down the road to the Wildlife Sanctuary, which my family just calls “the bush” and thus as I will be referring to it henceforth. Wait, I tried to say that in a cool way but it didn’t come out right. Ah well. Anyways, so with me I carried my camera around my neck, with 55-200mm lens and Hoya CPL Filter attached, and my backpack, which carried: 18-55m lens, lens hood, filter case, iPod and a towel just in case I had any boo-boos with dropping stuff (or myself) in the water. I didn’t actually end up using the iPod at all, since it was nice to just soak in the calmness and quiet of the bush.

It felt good to be outside. I hadn’t done anything relaxing like this for about a month, and I actually hadn’t been down to the bush since like last year. Yeah, ’tis the sad life of a year 12 student.

I took a few photos along the way, but overall it was pretty uninspiring; just the same trees and stuff all along the track. Not much in terms of variety. But when I got to the waterfall, I was pleasantly surprised to see that it was flowing a little. I expected no flow at all since it hasn’t rained for the past few days, but I guess I got lucky. So I got to work and set up my tripod and camera and whatnot and tried to take some photos.

It wasn’t as easy as I had imagined. I thought it would be a simple matter of setting up the tripod wherever, playing with the settings on my camera to get it right, and then just shoot all over the place. Well, it didn’t go like that at all. I had a few difficulties, and this was the most difficult subject I’ve photographed so far in my short career as an amateur photographer.

The problems were many. Firstly, the lighting. Being a relatively dense forest, the trees shaded the low morning sun, and so the area around the waterfall and its pool was quite dark. Secondly, I was using my brand new Hoya CPL Filter, which I’ve never used or even taken a photo with before, and so it took me a little while to get used to the way it worked and how to shoot with it. I think the main problem was probably the tripod. It’s a crappy tripod that my dad bought from Malaysia many years ago at the request of a family friend, but it turned out that it was too crappy for that friend. I now realise why he rejected it. The legs of it were shaky and the head had no maneuverability whatsoever. But I guess it was better than nothing. Coupled with this was the fact that there were only very few flat spots where the tripod could be placed. All of this meant that it was very hard to get the composition I wanted, not that I’m making excuses or anything. The last problem was the subject matter itself. Being a waterfall, it was obviously moving. But the good is that waterfalls look best when they’re taken with long exposures so that the water “blurs” into a white stream, so that was okay.

Remember how I said I packed a towel in case I had any boo-boos? Well, sure enough I did. After I had used my lens hood and put my filter on, I put both the hood and the filter case in my jacket pocket. Yes, they fell into the water. But no harm done; they’re both just bits of plastic.

So yes, therein lies my adventures at the waterfall. When it was about 9:50 I headed back home and had a quick look at the photos before changing and heading to school to meet Janet.

Oh, I almost forgot! On my way back home, there was a cat wandering the bush tracks. So I tried to snap some shots of it. But this was made very difficult, since it kept walking up to me and rubbing against my leg. Does that mean it likes me? I had to keep running like ten metres from it before I could take some quick shots as it walked towards me from my original position. I actually kind of liked it; it was a fun game between the two of us.

So, you might be asking where the fruits of my expedition lie. Head to the Flickr set, linked below:

Hunts Creek Flickr Set

Unfortunately I’ve reached the limit for Flickr uploads this month (100mb), so I only got to upload my favourite ones. The rest are in a Photobucket album here. I’ll upload them to my Flickr when the limit resets next month.

The creek is called Hunts Creek, but I think I want to rename it to “Spitting Dragon Waterfall”. Or maybe “Crocodile Rock” would be more appropriate (see what I did there?). I hope I’m not the only one who sees the resemblance. Check out the sets to see what I mean. Specifically this photo.

No song title for this blog. The last one was “In Relief” by John Frusciante, off his album Shadows Collide With People. Don’t worry, I didn’t expect anyone to pick that one up.

Anyway, I’m not sure how often I’ll blog in the future, but I’ll try to post whenever there’s something worth blogging about. Remember my daily then two-daily routine? Yeah, screw that. It’s way too hard to keep up in the midst of year 12.

So for now, that’s all folks!

PS. I felt oddly out of character in this blog. Did anyone else notice?

5 Comments so far
Leave a comment

You usually have a nostalgic underlying tone in your blogs. πŸ˜›
Was the cat called Wolly? If it was, he/she lives near me πŸ˜€ I always play with it because it scratches on our flyscreen πŸ˜€

Comment by mishmashmosh

So that’s where that bush is ! I think I’ve only been their once with the school sports/PE staff and I loved it.

That rock does look like a croc. I like your ‘Waterlogged’ title. Very apt.

Re PS: Yeah a little, no song title, two blogs in a row, no actual pictures, no nostalgia πŸ˜€

Comment by detailsinthefabricx

Get a gorillapod tripod, it looks mad. Although not really suited for anything other putting your camera in wacky spots.

Comment by jonald

I would, but they cost like >$60 and I actually think they’re less versatile than regular tripods in most situations.

Comment by thepassengerseat

So cool how you were able to capture it spitting water.Keep it up!

Comment by bk201

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