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Posts tagged ‘gardens’

Tuesday’s Bits and Bobs: A Slow Week

There’s no point pretending that it has been a busy week, it has, but not really in the ways you would normally expect. I’ve been spending more time writing for Digital Photography School. I think I just had a few days too where I just wanted to relax and not take much in. I was feeling quite lazy. Let’s see what I’ve got to tell you.

Trip to the USA

I’ve been trying to see if I can get some sponsors for the trip. I will be borrowing a couple of Tamron Lenses, and I have a ripponleal-20131011-8956Lowepro bag to try out on my trip. So I decided to see if I could get some other sponsors.

One thing that I thought would be good would be a travel tripod.  I sent an email to Gitzo to talk to them about the possibility and got nothing back, never heard from them.  I sent an email to Manfrotto and got some generic email back saying if they were interested they would let me know, needless to say I didn’t hear anything back. Then I sent an email to Right Stuff, and they were quick in their response, they couldn’t help me, but at least they responded.

I have to wonder if I am in a good position to get things like this. I did try sending an email to Merrell about maybe lending ripponleal-20131011-8905me a pair of hiking shoes for the trip, but I did only send it today, so who knows. I do love their shoes, well, I’ve only got one pair, but I wear them everywhere these days when I’m going to take photos. I can’t believe how comfortable they are.

It seems that I’m set for the trip and today when I looked at my tickets they said that I was leaving in 70 days, wow, so soon, I will be there before I know it.


I’ve spent a lot of time this afternoon trying to get my computer working. Seems I have a small problem with shutting it down and then getting it to turn back on. I had a technician here all afternoon and it seems the problem isn’t quite fixed, but shouldn’t take too long.

Learning from Me

I’m supposed to use this day to remind you that I can teach you photography as well, so if you are in Melbourne or coming here then you can book a One on One Photography session. I can teach you photography as we wander around the city taking photos. For more information click here.

ripponleal-20131011-8896If you can’t get here then I also do online courses, you can book, one, three or five sessions with me. For more information then please click here.

Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

I don’t usually talk about television here but I’ve been watching Miss Fisher on television and I find it such a thrill when they have buildings in it that I recognize. It is filmed in Melbourne, and set in the 1920’s. It is not a very serious show, but I love it. the costumes are great, but what I love is the architecture. I especially love it when it is a building that I have been too and love or recognize.

One of those buildings is Ripponlea. I’ve been there a couple of times and today I thought I might share with you some photos that I’ve taken there of the gardens. They are always so beautiful and they photograph so nicely.

Today I’m just going to leave it there today. I hope you enjoy the photos.

Weekend Wanderings: Royal Botanical Gardens Cranbourne

The other day I showed you some photos that I took of the Royal Botanical Garden in Cranbourne and I said I would show you some photos that I took last weekend when I went there to visit. We were there for Social Snappers and we had a great afternoon. As I was heading there it was raining. When I got there it was still raining, so we headed to the cafe and had coffee. By the time we were finished it was like this outside.


Overcast, but no rain. It seemed too true to be perfect. We decided to go out and see what we could get.

The above image is the big garden you first see when you get there. You can’t go in there and can only look at it from behind a fence.


There is so much to see there and if you like gardens it is a great place to wander around.  You can see what is possible, though it is also great because I think this one is more about Australia and what you can find here.

You can see that the sky was lovely and blue, we really did get lucky with the weather.


You get to see some amazing things, and things that you have no idea what they are.  The above was like that for me. What is it? We all wanted to know, but none of us had any idea.  From the side it looked like a pineapple. So if you know would love to hear.


There were little birds everywhere.  It was great to see them. Of course I had the wrong lens on, so I had to do what I could.  I might have to go back another time with a bigger lens.


It was so amazing, it was sort of like every where you look there was something different. I think you could spend quite a bit of time there exploring everything. I might have to try that one day, go there, when the weather is better, and just take photos all around.  Maybe take a bigger lens to see if I can get the birds as well.

I have a lot more photos for you now which I’m going to show you in a gallery.  I have more photos to take today and I hope you will be doing the same this Sunday.  The weather is meant to be beautiful here so that will be nice.

Quiet Thursdays: The Macro World

The weather last weekend was shocking, we had lots and lots of rain.  Don’t get me wrong, the rain was good, but not good for taking photos.  After using my macro lens again recently I’ve really got back into  macro and am having a lot fun taking photos with it and then processing them.

I’m trying to keep experimenting on the macro images, like the ones I did for the International Flower and Garden Show.  I am trying to refine it more and work out what I want with them.  I do like where they are going.  I will continue to keep experimenting.

The other day I took the Tamron 150-600mm that I have on loan from Maxwell International Australia back to the Melbourne Zoo and was taking photos.  As we headed to the gorilla enclosure we walked around the corner and there in front of us was Kimya and her baby. She has a name name and is being called Kanzi. She was sitting on a hill eating.  I quickly got some photos then, as I was doing that, she climbed down and within a couple of minutes she was gone. I got a nice image of the new baby, so I thought I would share it with you today.


I will leave you there with the image of mother and daughter. I’m out and about again today.  Some busy days ahead.  Think I will leave next week very free.  I hope you get some quiet time.

Weekend Wanderings: Wrapping up the Year Part 2

It was great to hear how many of you enjoyed the photos yesterday and today I thought I would do the same thing, well similar, show you a selection of images that I have taken in Melbourne.  They aren’t just photos of the city, there are also photos taken within the metropolitan area of Melbourne.

There are parks and gardens galore in Melbourne, so much so it used to be called the garden state.

I was a bit shocked when I realised how many images of this area I have taken and how many posts, apparently 56, that is a good number.  So with 37 posts on the country areas, and 56 on Melbourne Metro, that is 93 posts, though to make up the rest I did go back and revisit some older posts.  I think it is quite an impressive number, and so glad that I have done it.  I can’t wait to see what next year brings and the places I will visit, it should be a good year, I hope you will have as much fun.

Weekend Wanderings: Looking Back at the Photos of Melbourne Part 2

Today I have the second half of the year and lots of the photos that I have taken in the last six months.  It has been fantastic going back over the shots.

It is 12 months ago now that I really hurt my back and was unable to sit at the computer for a long time.  My back has improved and it was interesting to see that some fine art images were slowly creeping back in, as I was able to sit at the computer again. I am starting to get right back into editing my photos again and seeing what I can do.  Some of the challenges that people run have been good to get me back into it, I have enjoyed the push to get me to try some things again, which in turn has made me want to go and try some new work.  Plans are under way, just as soon as I get my energy back.

So today the images are all architectural again, I believe, a few of the river, but I have explored some new areas of the city in the last six months and it has been good finding new places to photograph and then take photos of.  It is going to warm here today, not too hot, which is nice, but still warm enough that the best place to be is inside.  I hope you are experiencing nice weather where you are today.

Weekend Wandering – Abbotsford Convent

On Thursday was another Social Snappers excursion, this time we went to Abbotsford Convent, an old place that was once the home of the nuns that belonged to the Order of the Good Shepherd. It is quite an amazing place.  The nuns sold it in 1975, and today it is more an art precinct, with many artists having studios there.  It is nice to have a place that you can just wander around.


The buildings are much what you would expect a convent to be.  They are large, but they aren’t grand.  Of course they are beautiful, but they don’t have the ornate details that buildings of this size would often have.


“If the walls could talk?” It must have been an incredible place at one time.  It is a very busy place now.


There are some amazing out buildings, and if you are going to go there, then you have to walk around the outbuildings as well.  This one is quite popular and a lot of people have their wedding photos taken in front of this one.


I had been there before, but not for many years.  The last time I was there to take photos I was using a compact camera and the photos I got were not very good.  I am much happier with the images I got this week.  I also don’t remember how the gardens were, which could just mean that I didn’t pay attention.  This time we were pleasantly surprised to find a beautiful garden and many flowers blooming in them.


We chased this butterfly around everywhere.  It didn’t stay still for long. We finally got it on a plant and it just stayed for a while. I got out the Tamron 90mm macro lens and had fun taking photos of the flowers in the garden.  I really do enjoy using the macro lens.

I have a gallery of images for you now. We had a great time at Abbotsford Convent, and I could happily go back there another time. I would like to explore the inside more, the public spaces.  I love buildings with lots of history.  I am going to have to go and do some research now.

On a side note, before the gallery, my daughter got her license yesterday.  She said she will still go out with me to take photos, I hope she does.  We need to plan another trip.  What are you planning this weekend?



Weekend Wanderings – Snapping Around Heide and Banksia Park

Last weekend was another Social Snappers Photography Excursion, hard to believe they have started for Term 4 already.  We were off to Heide and Banksia Park.  The weather was gorgeous, and people were out everywhere.  It was great to see how much our parks are being used.  Heide is a great gallery, with a coffee shop and beautiful gardens around it.  In stark contrast is Banksia Park, it isn’t sculptured and has been left pretty much to itself.


The gardens of Heide are full of sculptures and some are really interesting.  I love this one, it was great to photograph, you could get some amazing effects.  Every time I go there are new sculptures to see.  It is nice that you don’t have to pay to go into the gardens, but you do have to pay if you want to see the art inside.


Some of the sculptures are very famous, My children used to love going here when they were little, they always had to visit the cows.


I took the macro lens with me and had to put it on when we were going through the kitchen gardens and then the gardens around the original house that the Reeds lived in.


Banksia Park was gorgeous and we wandered around on the paths to look at the bushland around it.  The late afternoon sun was gorgeous, and I was trying to capture it as it was coming through the trees.


In some places flowers were growing all over the ground as the trees were getting their leaves back after the winter.  As we were standing here, we heard something rustling in the bushes right in front of where I was standing.  I saw a thin thing, with strips and thought it was a snake, so we quickly stepped back away, only to realise it was a blue tongue lizard.  We were very relieved.


This was the last shot that I took for the day, just before we left.  I couldn’t resist the long shadow with the sun hidden behind the trees.

We stopped at the coffee shop at Heide, the Cafe Vue, and had some afternoon tea. It was very busy, but the service was very disappointing, we couldn’t get anyone to take our order, and while others enjoyed what they got, I wasn’t so happy.  I had the strangest chocolate milk shake I have ever had in my life.  Sometimes I think they go over board with the fancy.  It was also late in the afternoon and there weren’t many snacks left.

It was a great afternoon, and I am really happy with the images that I got.  It is going to be very sad when I have to give the macro back. Here is a gallery for you now of more of the images I took there.  I hope your weekend starts well.