Rodney Campbell's Blog

Australian Life Competition Finalist…

by on Sep.06, 2014, under Life, Photography

I’m psyched to be able to tell you that my photograph of sunrise over Chris Anderson’s 1000 Surfboard Graveyard at Garie beach in the Royal National Park south of Sydney has been shortlisted as a finalist in the City of Sydney’s prestigious Art & About “Australian Life” photographic competition

For those of you who can make it to Hyde Park in the Sydney CBD between 19 September to 12 October 2014 you can see the work displayed in large scale format in Hyde Park North for the entire festival period!

Australian Life – Boarding

Australian Life - Boarding

NIKON D600 + 16.0-35.0 mm f/4.0 @ 16 mm, 30 sec at f/11, ISO 110

I remember the morning well – Gerry, Suren and I were headed to Garie for a typical sunrise shoot. Just as we hit the sand we could see a large cluster of faint lights way up at the northern end of the beach. Throwing caution to the wind (we’re thinking perhaps some bizarre cult activity!) we investigated. It wasn’t till we got much closer that we saw it was a huge area of surfboards sticking out of the sand with tiny lights at the base of each

We met Chris Anderson – a young artist on a mission – to collect 1000 broken surfboards to raise awareness about a more sustainable approach to the way we manage waste. He’d been collecting boards for over three years and it just happened that his display for the 1000 Surfboard Graveyard was on the previous night

Of course we knew nothing about this beforehand but in a slice of serendipity it was still there in the pre dawn and became part of our foreground interest in our normal landscape morning ritual

Almost half an hour before sunrise – thick moody clouds were on the horizon but a long exposure with the reverse grad brought out some colour and light

To meet the brief for the Australian Life competition I focused on the theme of surfing. Surfers and surfing have now become embedded as part of Australian culture and my aim was to highlight their passion and sense of adventure

My own childhood is filled with memories of being at the beach and altho I don’t surf, I believe that we seascape/landscape photographers and surfers do share a lot in common (you could probably include rock fishermen as well :))

We’re all incredibly passionate about our chosen recreation and go to great lengths to participate. We’re often found rising early and heading to the ocean before the sun rises and often pushing the envelope to get the results. We see the beauty in the world at this spectacular time of day and get to share in the silence and serenity of the pre dawn. It’s a magical time of day which few people really get to experience. It’s not just the light which is often conducive to photography – it’s the whole feeling of being at one with the forces of nature and contemplating the magic of the world around us… food for the soul…

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