Portrait of the Australian outback

By AG STAFF 14 October 2016
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This week’s reader photo looking down an overflow creek of the Umberumberka Reservoir in Silverton was inspired by classical historic artworks depicting the Australian outback.

Congratulations to this week’s AG Flickr group member Giovanni, for his image ‘The Quintessential Australian Dry Creek Bed’.

“I had planned a two week trip to take in the outback sights of Griffith, Mildura and Broken Hill hoping to capture the quintessential red earth images that I had so often seen in many historic artworks of the Australian outback,” says Giovanni.

“However, due to the heavy rains that had been experienced in the interior, the land was lush with green and flowers were in abundance, and I felt I wasn’t seeing what I had driven so far to see. So when I drove across this dry creek bed on our last day out west while on a dirt road leading to the Historic Daydream Mine between Broken Hill and Silverton in NSW, I almost jumped out of the moving car to start capturing some images.

“I already had in mind that I wanted to replicate the various artworks I’d seen in the past and it had to conjure up the Australian outback. In my mind’s eye, one of these images had to contain large and strong trunks of the river red gums in the foreground, meandering red dirt and perhaps smaller gum trees in the background to fill in the gaps and draw the eye in.

“I found this composition by concentrating on the edge of the riverbed where there were the most trees and focused on the largest tree trunk I could find. This image faces a south-westerly direction with the morning sun out of view to the left of the image. In post-processing of the image, I used a colour wash and minor reduction in clarity that I hoped would give it a slightly painted look but at the same time keep it natural. As I had used a wide-angle lens, the image has been cropped.”

This pic appeared in the Australian Geographic Flickr group. Share your own photography and it could be featured on Australian Geographic online!

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