Have you ever been to a place that has consistent weather, a place that you can have your own beach with not a soul for miles, a place where the waters are so blue you wonder if it is even real. The Pindan layered beaches that from the air look other worldly. The Kimberley, Western Australia is this place.
I flew directly with Qantas from Melbourne to Broome, just under 4 hours, no transit in Perth, straight there baby! I went from 8 degrees, raining, cold and windy, to 37 degrees, sunshine and not a cloud in the sky. Here I am, this pasty southerner dressed in jeans a jumper/jacket walking out on the tarmac and being hit in the face, like you would when opening a fan forced convection oven, boom!
I didn't know what to expect when I landed in Broome, I knew it was a small town at the southern part of the Kimberley. I booked out an airbnb for my stay which was 5 mins out of Broome, Bilingurr, everything is 5 mins from Broome CBD. I don't like staying in the centre of a town, city when I go to a location.
Broome is amazing! Coming from Melbourne I always compare the food and coffee as Melbournians do, we are spoilt for choices. I was blown away. The Good Cartel was my choice for breakfast, their juices are spot on, best I've ever had. The balance of ingredients was bang on, the whole sweet sour ying yang thing. Hit the spot on a 37 degree day. Next up was the the BLAT bagel. So generous with the portion size, 4 rashes of bacon with a massive serving of smashed advo. The bagel was made by an artisan, again, so good! Sorted till lunch. Lunch, The Zoo Keepers store. Right near Cable Beach, Nice food and amazing coffee. The grind was spot on. Finally dinner, it was a mixed bag. The one place that stood out was an Egyption/ Lebonese restaurant. Totally authentic. The kebabs where so good, garic yoghurt sauce all day long. Long story short, you won't be having to look too hard to find food options that match Melbourne's casual dining scene. After being a Chef in fine dinning at 5 star hotels for over 10 years, casual food is where it's at for me. I'm not into the whole gastro olive oil jelly scene. Straight up good tucker!
So the main reason I went to Broome was for some aerial photography. I had a local charter reach out to me for a commission to get some aerial shots for their P.R, branding. We flew with the doors off. Photographing through a window, so no doors on lifted the quality up again as there is one less piece of glass you are having to photograph through. More layered glass/perspex introduces more errors so diffraction and some abberations (Geek talk). The quality goes up again. It's all of these little steps that add up in the end to a high quality print, the true measure of any image/photograph.
My first flight was a bit of a nail bitting experience as it's been awhile since I've flown in a light aircraft. A Cessna 210 was the aircraft. Turns out I felt more secure in one of these bad boys than in a A380. Up until this point I have been doing aerial photography via a drone. I got my certification through CASA, did the whole practical and theoretical examinations, learnt about katabatic winds, cumulous cloud formations but to be honest, after flying in a manned aircraft and getting the quality from my Sony A7rII camera's, I can't go back to drones. The difference in the quality of the image is literally day and night. The amount of detail that is not resolved by a drone is staggering. The amount of detail that is resolved by the A7rII's and my G-master lenses (my weapons of choice) is mind blowing. This quality and clarity rolls overs to the quality of the print. I'm talking professional quality, the drone camera just doesn't have the amount of detail or resolution to handle printing "successfully" to a large print. Viewing a image on-line compared to viewing an image in print are two very different things. There's no where for a print to hide in it's imperfections, it is the true test of image quality and all the steps we take to ensure that the final result is the best it can be.
So I know I've waffled on a bit for this post so if you've made it this far, you deserve a medal!
If you haven't been to Broome or the The Kimberley, put it on your list. I will be coming back to this region and beyond for many years to come I'm that in love with this place. I'm looking to head up further north next time towards Kununurra and Wyndham so can't wait for that.
I will be publishing a new collection titled "The Kimberley" which is a selection of imagery from this trip. If you see an image that you would like in a different orientation so Landscape instead of portrait or vice versa, please get in touch.
Now, here's to organising the next trip, any suggestions apart from The Kimberley?