Travel Photography Inspiration Project: Australia

Travel Photography Inspiration Project: Australia

First, let me apologize for the delay between posts. I was on a trip through India, Oman and the UAE for a month with little time to write.


No other country is also its own continent, complete with the vast biodiversity and quirkiness that is Australia. No other country also get mixed up in people’s minds with Austria, either.

This is the sixth country we are covering in the reader fueled DPS Travel Photography Inspiration Project.

If you would like to be involved in the next country’s post, drop me a line here.


Pastel beauty with moon, Pilbara, West Australia by Andrea Westwood

The rising moon at the setting of the sun makes for beautiful shots, and the trees themselves are photogenic. I like the way the light fades into soft pastel shades. Use a tripod, and you can be guaranteed stunning images.


Bliss by Ashley Strong Photography

Description: The photo was taken in an open field along the highway going from Melbourne to
Jervis Bay, Australia.

Tip: If the lighting is right, take a moment to stop what you’re doing and capture. This picture
was taken right around sunset by simply pulling over on the side of the highway and exploring the open
land right in front on my eyes. Also, play with various angles and subjects within open fields of land. Do
not be afraid to hang upside down, lie on your stomach, stand in a tree or look straight ahead toward
the setting sun.

natural arch

Natural Arch by Dev Wijewardane

Description – The Natural arch was created over millions of years by water tumbling through a roof of a basalt cave in the Springbrook National Park in Queensland.

Tip – Identify exactly what you want to see and photograph before getting to Australia. Distances are vast and getting to places that are far from main cities can be time consuming.

A Marcella AUS Photo 1

Ficus Tree, Royal Botanical, Gardens, Sydney, New South Wales. Infrared image converted to Black & White by A. J. Marcella

Jervis Bay is in the South Coast of New South Wales, roughly a 3-hour drive from Sydney. Find Jervis Bay via the Grand Pacific Drive. This costal journey begins at Stanwell Tops in the Royal National Park and goes through the city of Wollongong, Kiama and Shoalhaven.

Cow in a tree, Docklands, Melbourne, VIC

Melbourne Cow by Nathan Spencer

Victoria, and particularly Melbourne has lots of weird sculptures scattered around the place and I just couldn’t resist this night scene. This is a good example of always taking a camera with you. This was taken on
the way back from dinner and I just happened to take my camera because I expected some interesting night scapes to develop.

picture 1

Sunset on Fraser Island by Bill Ward

The island is one of the largest sand islands in the world boasting a diverse collection of Flora and spectacular suspended lakes providing numerous photo opportunities.

2 - Stormy Whitsundays

Stormy Whitsundays by Juliette Giannesini

I love this picture because it’s the opposite of what I was looking for that day. I headed to the famous Whitsundays for a day, and expected blue sky, clear water and lots of sun. Well, I got that but we were caught in a monster storm on the way back to Airlie Beach, and I snapped this shot from the boat. It turned out to be my favourite picture of the day because the colours are so unique.

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Sydney Opera House by Alexis Meyer

A trip to Australia just isn’t complete without taking in the sites of the Sydney. There’s always something happening in the CBD, and it’s 2 most famous landmarks (the Opera House and Harbour Bridge) are a must. Buttressed by the Royal Botanical Gardens, hosting a multitude of native plants and thousands of flying foxes, and the Harbour Bridge, the Sydney Opera House is a perfect spot to take in the Aussie culture and stunning harbour views.


Make way; Northern Highway, West Australia by Andrea Westwood

We came across this monster on the highway between Broome and Perth. The highway is mostly just two lanes, and from time to time one encounters these massive trucks which take up the whole road. Australia is vast, road trips north of Perth may mean you only see one or two cars in six hours of driving, so make sure you are well provisioned with fuel and food – it’s a long wait for a ride.


Incense by Ashley Strong Photography

Description: This picture was taken in a parking lot in Bells Beach, Australia along The Great Ocean road.

Tip: Details. Pay attention to details. Just because you are in a parking lot, does not mean something won’t capture your eye. Everything and every being is amazingly unique and by paying attention to detail, one can capture that uniqueness even if it is a simple as a piece of wood and barbed wire.


Sydney Harbour by Dev Wijewardane

Description – Reflections of the Sydney CBD across the Harbour

Tip – There are a number of locations around the city from which the CBD can be photographed across the harbour.

A Marcella AUS Photo 3

Infrared image of Australian coast at Hyams Beach in Jervis Bay, roughly three hour drive south from
Sydney by
A. J. Marcella

Foggy, glowing sunrise near Minnie Waters (Near Grafton, NSW)

Morning fog in the country by Nathan Spencer

Couldn’t resist the sepia-toned fog scene near Minnie Waters, which is off the main highway between Grafton and Coffs Harbour. I love road tripping all over Australia because there is just so much to see, but some of the most interesting subjects are hidden away from the main roads. Don’t be afraid to explore off the beaten track because there are interesting subjects to be found at all times of day almost everywhere.

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Rock pool Coogee Beach Sydney by Bill Ward

Coogee beach is situated in the South Eastern suburbs of Sydney and is a splendid spot to visit for not only sea and sun but good food at reasonable prices. The sweeping views from most vantage points are very

5 - Sydney From Above

Sydney From Above by Juliette Giannesini

This is the last picture of the trip, and one of my favourite ones. We were flying back from Sydney to LA and the pilot treated us to an amazing trip over the city. To take pictures out of a plane window, don’t stick your lens too close to the window and switch to manual focus.

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Raven and Kookaburra by Alexis Meyer

Australia has some of the most unique creatures in the world. The bird life is plentiful, and while most species in the cities are lackadaisical about humans, a long lens allows you to get some stunning behaviour shots.


Ancient Art by Andrea Westwood

Just a small detour off the road can take you to hidden aboriginal sacred sites, many of them are unknown and it takes some local knowledge to find them. Always treat them with respect, these are sites of great antiquity. The brilliant blue skies of Australia contrast with the red rock of the desert; it is almost impossible to get a bad shot.


Another World by Ashley Strong Photography

Description: The photo was taken outside the Chinese Garden of Friendship in downtown Sydney, Australia.

Tip: Be curious – if you see something from a far and cannot determine what it is, move closer toward that specific subject. Move as close as possible as one does not need a macro lens to capture the minute details and uniqueness of a subject, such as this Australian flower that appearance to be from “another world.”


Sylvia Falls by Dev Wijewardane

Description – The blue mountains region of NSW is full of stunning waterfalls and is definitely worth a visit.

Tip – Take a tripod!

Bodyboarding - Nobby's Beach side of the breakwall. Some interesting little wedge style waves.

Lookout by Nathan Spencer

This man was standing there checking out the surf up the beach and I justcouldn’t resist. There are so many interesting things to take photos of at Australian beaches, from panoramas to portraits. The key to this shot was to make sure I looked down enough to get the beach in and give context, even if the background is blurred.

picture 4

Chinese gardens, Sydney by Bill Ward

These gardens are situated in the heart of the Darling Harbor redevelopment and provide a welcome respite from the busy hot summer streets. There are many opportunities to take photographs in these peaceful gardens where some people dress in traditional costume.

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Blue Mountains by Alexis Meyer

Just a 2 hour train ride outside of Sydney is the town of Katoomba, the entrance to the Blue Mountains. Known for it’s geological wonder of the "Three Sisters," the national park offers easy hiking trails and stunning landscapes in an easy day-trip from New South Wales’ capital city.


Beauty Reflected; Karijini National Park WA by Andrea Westwood

When travelling, some of the most interesting shots are the ones reflected in water. Here the colours of the Pilbara region are reflected in a water course.

Sunrise Silhouette at Hunter Valley Wetlands, near Newcastle, NSW.

Wetlands Sunrise by Nathan Spencer

Ibis’ silhouetted against the rising sun at the Hunter Valley Wetlands centre near Newcastle.

Sometimes going to wildlife parks isn’t a bad thing when travelling, especially when they are a very natural setting like the wetlands centre (not just animals in cages). I tend to like excluding the sun from most rise/set shots and silhouette something in the foreground against a colourful sky, just make sure you focus on the silhouetted subject.


Termite Man, Pilbara West Australia by Andrea Westwood

These termite mounds take the most interesting shapes, and make for great shots. They are found all around the continent and during different times of the day can provide intense colour shots.

Read more from our category

Peter West Carey leads photo tours and workshops in Nepal, Bhutan, Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles and beyond. He is also the creator of Photography Basics - A 43 Day Adventure & 40 Photography Experiments, web-based tutorials taking curious photographers on a fun ride through the basics of learning photography.

Some Older Comments

  • Rob @ Migration Angels Australia June 11, 2012 09:32 pm

    Wow loving the Ficus tree and Sylvia Falls! Nice collection and some interesting ones here :)

  • AL May 28, 2012 07:54 am

    2 more states to visit before a full collection of all states ;)






  • Judy May 25, 2012 12:57 pm

    Can I add to the tip of "make sure you have plenty of fuel and food" on journeys- MAKE SURE YOU HAVE PLENTY OF WATER! Most tourists in Australia I have met just don't have much concept of how much water you need to drink when it's hot, even when just driving in a car. Carry enough spare in case your car breaks down and you are on the road for a while.

    I remember hearing about a guy who planned to cycle across the Nullarbor, relying only on "passing vehicles" to supply him with water refills. He just didn't realise what an urealistic expectation that was.

  • Lance J May 25, 2012 12:06 pm

    not a single shot of "The Remarkable Rocks" on Kangaroo Island? Inconceivable!

  • Andrea Boyle May 25, 2012 09:49 am

    Thanks for the great memory of our 2007 visit to Australia. It was the vacation of a lifetime and I look forward to returning someday. A great country with friendly people...!

  • DG May 25, 2012 08:57 am

    I would love to go to Australia! This blends two of my favorite things, photography and travel!

  • Denise May 25, 2012 07:45 am

    My husband and I are currently travelling around parts of Australia...we will be on the road for 5 months..Being in our 3rd week I have seen and photographed some stunning countryside..

    We are camped in Alice Springs for a month....

    Inspiring photographs, will checkout this project..

  • David R. Robinson May 25, 2012 05:48 am

    Nice article. I snapped some awesome shots of the flying foxes when I was at the Royal Botanic Gardens back in February (see example in link if curious). They are really cool, but also kind of creepy at how noisy they are. I love the different colors of light that reflect off of the water around Sydney too, they make for some great shots like the one from Dev above (in the article).

  • Ashley Strong May 24, 2012 07:50 am

    This project is brilliant! It's just so amazing to pull together multiple photographers around themes! Especially when traveling is involved! I am so thankful for Digital Photography School! This is truly wonderful!

  • Alexx May 24, 2012 05:24 am

    Oh my gosh beautiful pictures! There's just something amazing about them!

    Here's a picture in Canada, the place I love!

  • Erik Kerstenbeck May 24, 2012 01:00 am


    Have not travelled to Aus...lets not forget about New Zealand! I love South Island, West Coast!

  • May May 23, 2012 12:55 pm

    I'm a bit confused on who has taken the photos. Each photo is credited, however the article implies that it was taken by the author

  • raghavendra May 23, 2012 12:27 pm

    when it comes to travel,
    mostly they show the roads, buildings and animals
    but this article has covered a lot!

  • Mei Teng May 23, 2012 10:13 am

    Beautiful set of pictures. I love the Australian landscape. So much to see and photograph.

  • Scottc May 23, 2012 07:59 am

    Very unique, a beautiful place and inspirational photos.