Travel Photography - Photo Walk
By Darren Stones
In Victoria, one of my favourite locations to enjoy a travel photography walk is the area on the Surf coast between Point Danger and Rocky Point at Torquay. Three hours along this stretch of Great Ocean Road coastline is a great way to relax and unwind, whilst also being able to let the creative juices flow.
Torquay can toss up some interesting weather conditions, and it really does make for great photographic opportunities. I usually park my car in the car park at Point Danger and begin to soak in that coastal ambience ... the smell of the sea, the rolling waves, the gentle breeze, and the surrounding photogenic vista.
On a sunny day, the ocean is the bluest of blues, and the striking contrast from the ochre-coloured hue of the cliff faces and rounded rocks causes any photographer to get a little itchy in the trigger finger. With waves washing up and creating patterns along the shoreline, the wet sand adds a curving leading line into the distance.
Every so often, you can see something out of the norm, and a stack of rocks can become another photographic opportunity. Exposed rock shelfs at low tide draw the adventurous ones a little closer to the wave action - but be careful, as it's quite possible to get the cuffs of your pants wet when looking through the viewfinder.
With lookouts along the cliff top, a meandering walking path, seats facing the ocean, grassy areas ideal for picnickers, a surf club abuzz with activity, and a creek at the mercy of the tide, photographers have an abundance of subject matter to explore.
I love watching the safe swimming flags fluttering in the breeze, people entering the water with their boards, kids making sandcastles, and surf lifesavers keeping a keen eye on the water.
Spring Creek enters the ocean near the Torquay Surf Lifesaving Club, and when the creek is gently flowing, it is a genuine point of interest and a minor challenge for photographers to negotiate as they walk towards Rocky Point.
This stretch of coastline is within a comfortable 1-hour and 20 minute drive from Melbourne. A brilliant location for a day trip, with modern facilities nearby.
When it comes to what equipment to take for a photo walk, I keep my kit in a Lowepro backpack because it allows me to have both hands free. A selection of zoom lenses covering wide-angle to telephoto allows for versatility. A polariser filter and neutral density filters, a tripod, and a cable remote switch all come in handy. I highly recommend the use of lens hoods.