Whilst I have dabbled and certainly enjoyed landscape photography and nature photography in the past, I would not say it is something that I am good at nor have I had enough practice to improve. But, when the opportunity arises and the conditions are right I make the most of the opportunity. This past Sunday was just such a day and I really had a great time getting out into the country side and capturing the natural world. What’s more I was able to do so with a great group of people. Camera nerds.
I am a member of a Facebook photography group known as Fuji X Aus. This group was set up for Fujifilm X Series camera shooters to share their love of the craft when using Fujifilm gear. And I must say it is such an incredibly rewarding group to be a member of. People of all skill levels get involved to share their work, seek advice, provide support and of course show off their gear. Fujifilm gear.
The group holds regular competitions and also offers great prizes from time to time. They also organise a range of meet-ups and workshops. On Sunday, the Victorian members were invited to attend a meet-up in the Macedon Ranges. Macedon is a well known destination in country Victoria as the whole area is dotted with gorgeous country towns and natural scenery. Mount Macedon and Hanging Rock are two of the more well known locations. A group of about a dozen photographers all met up at the Honour Avenue near Macedon. This is an avenue of pin oak trees and a memorial to commemorates those from the district who served in World World War One. In Autumn, the oak trees come alive for only a few short weeks and is a popular destination for photographers.
On this trip I was lucky to have my youngest son, who is 7, join me as he loves photography also. We left home in South Yarra well before sun rise and made the hour long journey out of the city and into the country. Given that it had been such a crisp and clear night with no breeze, I was not surprised to see just how foggy it was – both in the city and out in the country. At one point, driving along the highway, the visibility dropped to only a handful of meters as the fog was so thick. As we arrived in Macedon the sun cleared the surrounding hills and the fog began to burn off. But just enough remained to allow for some more dramatic scenery with the beams of sunlight passing through the trees and illuminating the fog.
After some time in this location we all got back into our cars and made the short 20 minute trip to a country town called Malmsbury. This tiny quaint town had two main points of interest to us. The first was the Moto Bean Coffee Roasters Cafe. The second was the Malmsbury Botanical Gardens and Lake. We all met up again at the cafe to enjoy brunch and talk. There was a lot of Fujifilm camera gear on the table and this allowed people to look at gear different to their own and get advice from one another. I love this kind of opportunity where I can talk to talented and passionate photographers about the craft that we love. So rewarding. We spent a couple of hours in the Botanical Gardens taking photos of the geese and lake and also the nearby by brick viaduct. This viaduct is a brick and stone arch bridge that spans 100 meters over the Coliban River. It was built in 1860 and is still used by the Victorian country railway network. It made a perfect scene for photographers to capture.
After some time in the gardens, we stopped for lunch back at the Moto Bean Cafe and had a fantastic meal with more discussions about photography and each others travels and bucket lists. From here many of the group went on to other locations, however my boy and I decided to make our way back home. There is only so much a 7 year old can deal with. It was a great day and one that I found really rewarding. Being out an about on such a gorgeous day and spending time with camera nerds like myself is such good medicine. All of the images in this blog were shot with the Fujifilm X70 – which has an 18.5mmF2.8 lens – and the Fujifilm X-T2 with the Fujifilm XF23mmF2 and the XF50mmF2. If you are an Australian Fujifilm X user then it is worth considering joining the Fuji X Aus Facebook group. It is a fantastic community. Happy shooting.