2019 365 Photographs: Photo 22

Sometimes the colours you come across in nature surprise you.

This bit of dead wood with this stunning red fungus on it was found quite by accident.

I was wandering around the bush down near Piesse Brook down the hill from Kalamunda in the hills to the east of Perth. As is generally the case, I happened to have my camera in the car. I spotted this on the ground. How could you possibly miss it?

Bright fire engine red!

When I first spotted it I was not sure what it was. Initially I thought something red was stuck on the old branch but I quickly realised it was fungus growing on the wood.

Sadly it was a very overcast day. But even without sun to light it up this red fungus was still bright.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 21

This is a picture of something people in IT these days probably don’t see any more.

This is how Microsoft used to distribute its software library to enterprise customers. Each month you would receive a huge box of CDs/DVDs containing all the software covered by the enterprise licensing agreement.

The CDs/DVDs were colour coded covering the server operating system, development tools, desktop operating system, services (e.g., Exchange, SQL Server), etc.

When it was decided by the company I worked for to chuck all these disks in the bin—because now the software is downloaded over the Internet as needed—I grabbed as many as I could because I was sure I would think of some way to photograph them.

This is just one of my tries. I intend to try other angles and ideas as I come up with them.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 20

This is a close up picture of a large rock of jasper from Mable Bar.

This big chunk of Jasper (about the size of a football) came from Mable Bar many years ago; probably around the mid-1950s. Back before it became illegal to take jasper rocks from the Mable Bar reef.

To take this picture I washed down the rock, then I gave it a thin coat of normal cooking oil to make it glisten. It was then faced into full sunlight and shot using a polarising filter to calm down the reflected sunlight glistening off the oil coating..

Although I am happy with the result, I actually expected more detail in the picture. More little cracks and chips.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 19

This picture has done very well in a number of competitions.

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This shot has made it to the top All Star level in six challenges, plus has a Top 20 and two Top 30 awards.

Getting in the Top 20 in an international competition is pretty good. You are often competing with 15,000 plus other people submitting pictures.

And no. Those bright red thong-style panties do not belong to anyone. They were purchased specifically for the purposes of photography.

Gurushots Voting: Would I print that?

If you join and ‘play’ Gurushots on the Web then you are required to vote for other people’s submissions in the competitions that you have entered. Which is fair enough. Obtaining votes is how everyone ‘levels up’—to use the gaming terminology.

Those submissions that gain the most votes level up through the levels Popular, Skilled, Premier, Elite, and—then finally to the highest level in a competition—All Star.,

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The number of votes required in order to make it to the All Star level can vary from competition to competition. The Guru setting the competition gets to pick the voting levels. But generally, for most normal four picture submission competitions, you would need to get a sum of 1,600 votes for the four pictures collection to make it to All Star. And for single picture submission competitions—which are referred to as Speed Competitions—you would have to get 1,200 votes for the single shot.

So, with all this voting that is required in order to progress through the levels there is one key thing that I ask myself as I vote for pictures. This is my initial litmus test of every picture I vote for:

Would I print that picture?

If it is not a picture I would print, then I just keep scrolling.

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For example, I did not vote for the following picture.

I am sure many of my fellow Gurushots players gave it a click. but for me it is not a picture I would print. It is just a personal preference thing.

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2019 365 Photographs: Photo 18

This is one of the shots you just decide to take because it is there.

I was sitting outside having a red wine, as I often did, and I spotted this Smith’s Barbecue chip bad on the lawn over by the limestone wall. The colours on the bag, the silver inside of the bag, with the limestone wall in the background catching the golden rays of the setting sun, and the green lawn at the front all caught my eye.

So I went inside and got my camera.

It was actually a harder picture to capture than I first expected. Mainly due to the harsh reflections from the shiny bag. I ended up calming down the reflections by putting on my polarising filter.

Using the polarising filter has also given additional depth to the colours.

This picture has actually done very well in a number of competitions on Gurushots.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 17

For about five years of going back and forth to Popanyinning I had driven past these three beautiful trees. Then one day I actually stopped and took some pictures.

This is the middle tree of the three and I walked around this tree three or four times trying to work out ‘its best side’. From this side I would have the fence and road in the shot. But from the other side it looks downhill and put the horizon way off into the distance.

I ended up going with this shot because of the green field in the background and the closer horizon because it is upside of the hill. This angle also puts much less sky in the shot—which I preferred.

I call these trees the ‘Painted Trees’ because of the colours in their trunks.

One day I plan to take some more shots of these awesome trees.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 16

I started my working life at Western Mining Corporation’s (WMC’s) GOJV iron ore mine site. That was a long time ago. A life time ago.

This shot was taken on a visit back to the mine site and shows the main pit.

This shot would have been taken about 35 years after the mine closed.

It is hard to imagine now all the CAT and Haulpak trucks moving the ore, and the massive (in those days) P&H shovel loading them up.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 15

I called this shot “Cotton Candy Clouds”.

This is one of those lucky chance pictures and I had my camera with me. I was driving home from work and I noticed these stunning white fluffy clouds coming up over the hills east of Perth.

I was in heavy traffic and there was no where to pull over when I first noticed them. So I had to wait until I got somewhere where pulling over would not impact the flow of traffic; all the time hoping that the formation did not fragment or drift away.

I decided to include the Roe Highway overpass in the shot to give it a bit more substance than just being a shot of fluffy white clouds.

2019 365 Photographs: Photo 14

This is a shot of some apple blossoms in the orchids around Karragullen. It is you basic 101 depth of field shot with an attempt at pleasing bokeh in the background.

I was fortunate enough to have the sun at about 4:00 o’clock in the afternoon so it it shining through some of the blooms and making the centre of he flower go a very solid pink.

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This picture has done very well on Gurushots by getting to All Star level (the top level) in six challenges.

It has also managed two Top 30% and one Top 20%.