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Fossil Cliffs Dusk to Dawn

The Fossil Cliffs on Maria Island are one of the highlights of even a short visit, and an absolute must shoot location from dusk to dawn for some great seascapes and starscapes for those who stay overnight.

sunset fossil cliffs maria island

Perfectly clear sky as the sun starts to set

 

fossil cliffs maria island at dusk

The last of the days light behind Bishop and Clerk

Given the dire state of interstate travel right now and the resultant lack of bookings on my workshops I decided to take myself away for a night on the island last week, taking advantage of something I read online about winter being a great time to do night sky photography in Tasmania 😉

dusk fossil cliffs maria island

This gulch made for some great long exposures as the waves crashed in and out

 

long exposure seascape photography maria island

Another of the beautiful rock pools

First of all I hired myself a bike and that turned out to be a brilliant option. I was able to zip between Darlington and either the Fossil Cliffs or Painted Cliffs in 10-15 minutes or so, and even spent the whole next day riding down to the isthmus between north and south Maria which was a great day.

Blue Hour Milky Way, with Bishop and Clerk

Blue Hour Milky Way, with Bishop and Clerk

 

Dark Sky Milky Way, with Bishop and Clerk and some very faint airglow

Dark Sky Milky Way, with Bishop and Clerk and some very faint airglow

 

Fossil Cliffs with Bishop and Clerk at night

Fossil Cliffs with Bishop and Clerk at night

Anyhoo, I had stunningly clear skies which is great obviously for stars, but meant there wasn’t an awful lot of colour in the dusk and dawn. Nevertheless I was able to entertain myself – and more importantly, you too I hope, dear reader – with waves crashing on the awesome rock formations.

Crashing waves at dawn. Fossil Cliffs, Maria Island

Crashing waves at dawn. Fossil Cliffs, Maria Island

 

Crashing waves at dawn. Fossil Cliffs, Maria Island

Crashing waves at dawn. Fossil Cliffs, Maria Island

These shots were all captured “au naturale” – my camera that is of course. Setting up for my first shot of the evening I could not find my NDs and realised I had left them at home! Normally I like to use NDs for long exposure, but this time I couldn’t. I did however do a few “interval composites” to mimic the process so all was not lost.

View north to Shouten Island (Freycinet)

View north to Shouten Island (Freycinet)

 

sunrise maria island

The last shot of the morning was a quick phone photo, which just happened to catch some beautiful pink sunlight on a wave crash

All in all a great trip 🙂

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Luke O'Brien

About Luke

Luke O'Brien runs a stall at Hobart's popular Salamanca Market every Saturday where his prints and cards are available for purchase. Follow Luke's photographic adventures on Twitter at @lukeobrienphoto, at his Facebook page or by subscribing to his email newsletter.