This place reminds me of a waterhole where i used to go as a kid, myself and other suitably crazy friends would swim in ridiculous murky waters and jump off rocky overhangs – how i made it to adulthood is still questionable 🙂

Now, many years later, rather than looking at the scene with eyes for what I could jump off, now I look and see how nature has arranged stuff over the last few thousand years and how I can turn it into a worthwhile photo composition 😉

What I like about the panoramic format is 1) well its pretty damn easy to compose and 2) it naturally flows the viewer through the image without the need for complex lines or anchor points 3) there is no limit to the amount you can include in the frame 🙂

This particular location lent it self very well to a panorama, the rock on the right and the overhang on the left 'bookended' the scene and the falls under the morning light just naturally draws the viewer in, the lines of the water/rock edge also help send the viewer right to the good stuff.

Its a 4 shot panorama (landscape orientation), i did bracket the images so I had a slightly over exposed frame, however found that I did not really need it and I liked the way the left and right extreme frames naturally sunk into the shadows.

ya gotta view this large 🙂

Exif love:
4 images stitched in PS CC
D750 coupled with Nikkor 16-35mm f4 @ 22mm Aperture: f14 and Shutter Speed: 2s
ISO 100
Out front – and Hoya CPL

Waterfall Cradle

Kellys Falls, number 2

The misty spray was just enough to be painful on keeping the filter clean but not enough give that misty look in the scene… 🙁

I love panoramic shots of waterfalls, they can add such a different perspective to a scene and to be honest, composition wise they are much easy than a single 6×4 frame 🙂

3 frames stitched together in +Adobe Photoshop
Exif love:
D750 coupled with 16-35mm f4 @ 24mm Aperture: f/14 and Shutter Speed: 5s
ISO 100
out front – Hoya CPL and lots of darn water drops


Upper Kellys Falls

I'll admit that I did arrange these leaves, I was looking for something a bit more in the foreground than just a flow of water, there was plenty of nicely coloured leaves here, particularly as we head into the throws of Autumn, which reminds me, I must visit the Blue Mountains for the Autumn colours, I have never really had a good look at them, anyway, thats for another day

So I collected a few of these leaves and +Rodney Campbell tracked down some others and I put them on the little bit of rock where the water was not rushing past. it does take some effort to arrange them such that is does not look…. well.. look arranged 😉

Exif love:
D750 coupled with 16-35mm f4 @ 16mm Aperture: f/18 and Shutter Speed: 6s
ISO 100
out front – Hoya CPL and some delicately arranged leaves 😉

Lower Kelly's Falls

view large (c'mon I know ya want too and I promise its not a dodgy low res version)

I am sure I could come back here in 12 months and it would be a completely different setup with logs and branches moved about by the water flow.

What is amazing is the sheer size of the tree trunks that are strewn around the falls, this one, which I have dubbed the divider is quite large but probably 1/4 the size on one just off to the right of this shot. How they get there is pretty amazing too, there must need to be alot of water coming over the falls to push them around.

Kellys Falls reminds me very much of the National Falls in the Royal National Park, which is not all that surprising since that particular falls is only 30 mins drive up the coast from here, but they have very similar rock formations and are similar heights, (based on my super accurate thumb in the air kind of measurement 😉 )

The trek in is pretty short, however there is a bit of rock climbing required and the mandatory trust your life to a dodgy bit of rope that someone has tied to a sapling which is clutching to life in the muddy soil 🙂 however it is well worth it and there is actually two falls in close proximity so more bang for your buck (or climb)

One of the hard things about shooting waterfalls is actually 1) getting to the place where you want to compose your shot and 2) getting your darn tripod to be in the right position based on all the freaking uneven rockage. There is also the slippery-ass factor too, thats just thrown in there to test your nerves, joints and bones 😉

I wanted this log in a slightly different possie, however the final composition was dictated by the rocks, minimisation of the possibility of ending up in that murky-ass water and how long I could sit with a pointy-ass rock trying to split me in half ;-(
It is a blended image in that I took three frames of different exposures to capture the highlights up top but also maintain the shadow detail in the rocks, water and trees.

Exif love:
3 images manually blended together in +Adobe Photoshop :
D750 coupled with 16-35mm f4 @ 16mm Aperture: f/14 and Shutter Speed: 13s (normal exposure), 1.6s (highlights, just that bright bit up top) and 30s (shadows, for those dark areas in the trees, rocks and water)
ISO 100
out front – Hoya CPL