In 1969, I purchased my first real camera..
... a Pentax Spotmatic SLR - complete with Super Takumar 50mm f/1.4 standard lens, a 200mm f/4 tele and a 28mm f.2.8 Sigma wide angle.
Soon after, I picked up another Pentax, this time the ageing manual Honeywell model. In 1970, a couple of months after the birth of our son Simon, my wife Helen and I were transferred by my firm from South Australia to Port Hedland in the North West of West Australia.
In my spare time, when not fishing, I was involved with both cameras, capturing many hundreds of black and white images - on either Ilford HP IV or Kodak Plus-X - of the stark landscapes and derelict mine sites. I still have the Spotmatic, but only as a museum piece.
In 2000 I went digital, and a marvellous new world opened to me. The medium is perfect for improving technique with the time between photo session and end result being minimised so that errors can be quickly corrected.
The passion for stark landscapes and ageing (and sometimes quirky) subjects remains. with me.
I purchased my first digital SLR the day the Canon EOS 300D was released in Australia. My son Simon now has that camera and my old 40D, and I’m currently the proud owner of Canon 50D, a new 70D and 5D MkII SLRs.
The 70D was a necessity to complement the new Tamron 150-600, as I wanted to improve the image noise level and flexibility currently limited by my old 50D workhorse (now a backup for the 70D). The 70D sits behind the Tamron, frequently cranked out to 600mm (in real 35mm terms, 960mm), and the new Carbon fibre tripod limits vibration, and improves vibration damping enormously.
Last year - 2013 - I also invested in a "Travel Camera" - a Panasonic Lumix FZ200 with it's 24 x Leica f/2.8 lens. I also keep a Canon Powershot G11 in the car at all times, and year older G10 as a spare, shooting both RAW and jpg. These little beauties, although not capable of massive zoom ratios, keep me with a camera close at hand in most circumstances - sometimes where the DSLRs and even the FZ200 might be inappropriate. The G11 is my first choice when a quick macro is needed.
I use a range of Epson papers that include Archival Matte, Semi-gloss Archival, Full Gloss, Vivid White Watercolour and the new Cotton Rag paper. My printer is an Epson Stylus Photo R3000. All this is tied together with a ColorMunki screen/printer calibrator.
As can be seen by the range of images on this site, I spend quite a bit of time shooting working sheepdogs. These intelligent, hard working dogs are a pleasure to be with, at times rewarding me with exhibition standard images (although many thousand exposures are made).
I also take great pleasure in shooting casual portraits under available lighting conditions (the 5D is great for this).
Many of my images are to a large extent attributable to my wife Helen who I fondly refer to as my “Director of Shooting”. She has a Canon Ixus 960IS because she says that my SLRs have too many buttons!
A retired electronics buff, I now divide my time between gardening on our 3.5 acre property at Strathalbyn SA, grandchildren and my (obsession) - photography.
5D MkII SLR
7D MkII SLR
Panasonic Lumix FZ200
EF 17 - 40 f/4 L
EF 24 - 70 f/2.8 L
EF 24-105 f/4 L IS
EF 70 - 200 f/2.8 L
EF 100 f/2.8 L Macro
EF 50 prime f/1.4
SP 150-600 f/5-6.3 Di VC USD
430EX and 580EX II flashes
Custom Macro diffuser for 580EX
Manfrotto 144 and 190 aluminium tripods
Manfrotto 055CXPRO3 carbon fibre tripod
Manfrotto 484 monopod.
Manfrotto 715B lightweight tripod (for G11 and FZ200)
Portraits (particularly Animal)
In October 2012, my wife gave me a Peter Eastway Landscape Masterclass DVD. Many thanks Helen - and to you too Peter - my image quality has suddenly taken a great leap forward!
My main post-processing software is CaptureOne Pro 9.1. At times I resort to Helicon Focus and Photomatix Pro for focus and exposure stacking, and use Aperture 3 for simple processing and storage/presentation.