2020 Photography Retrospective

December 30, 2020  •  Leave a Comment

Well, it is the last day of 2020 so as I usually do, I am spending a bit of time putting together a photography retrospective for the year.  I don’t need to tell you that 2020 has been a year like no other – everyone knows that.  Photographically for me it has been different….mainly because the ability to travel was significantly impacted and even though in Australia now there is some freedom to travel, you never know when you might score yourself two weeks quarantine based upon where you have been.

It has also been different as the majority of the photos that I share below have been captured with a neat little FujiFilm X100S!  I’ve had the FujiFilm X100S for almost 5 years I think, but in March/April I purchased a compact little set of filters for the camera and it is really awesome!  I have been so impressed by this little camera that I upgraded my main camera system to a FujiFilm XT-4 in late November this year.  Truth be told, I haven’t fully put it through it’s paces photographing the usual landscape scenes I shoot, but I look forward to doing that in 2021.


Little did I know that one of the first images I took in January 2020 would truly reflect what was about to pan out for the year.  I headed to the Sand Pumper Jetty at The Spit on the Gold Coast and captured this image.

I also captured a typical panorama without the foreground.
The Sand Pumper JettyThe Sand Pumper JettyI headed down the Gold Coast yesterday as my son was having a sleep over at his cousins house. I thought I would go and take some photos as I was down there. I have never done some proper landscape photos at this location, and was hoping for some colour at sunset. Given all the clouds that wasn't to be, but the moody nature of the clouds really helped. While I photographed, by daughter played in the water (supervised by my wife) and she got soaking wet!
Canon 5D Mark II
17-40 @ 26mm
ISO100 f/16 152sec
Lee 0.9 Hard Grad
Lee Big Stopper
Capture time: 5:50pm 17/1/20

For the Australia Day long weekend we went away on a family trip to Noosa.  I was able to get out and capture a few images.

Sea StretchingSea StretchingThis shot was taken in Noosa National Park. I have stopped to photograph this tree before - it's just near the path at Tea Tree Bay. It's quite neat, and this shot was balanced nicely with a couple of people relaxing on the beach and a father and son just entering the water.
Canon 5D Mark II
17-40 @ 26mm
ISO400 f/8 1/125sec
Capture time: 5:48pm 01/02/2020


In February (on Valentine’s Day in fact) I ventured out and captured a few shots at Wilson’s Outlook.  I didn’t get anything too spectacular.  I can remember the best part about this photo outing was the take-home gelato pack I bought from the gelato shop down at Howard Smith Wharves – they had a special Valentines Day flavour…and it was awesome!  Sorry – no photographs of that.

Brisbane ReachBrisbane ReachI headed out to photograph last night as I thought the sunset might be ok...it wasn't! I did find out they have cleared some trees up the top of Wilson's Outlook, which meant I could shoot this full pano of the Story Bridge and the stretch of the river looking down to New Farm.
Canon 5D Mark II
17-40 @ 19mm
ISO 100 f/11 30sec
6 images stitched

Capture date: 14/02/2020
P.S. If you know anyone who got engaged on Valentines Day in Brisbane and they may want a print of an image like this - put them in touch.

Also in February I headed out with the family and we took some family photos down at Roma Street Parklands.  It was a fun afternoon!


In March we headed on a family trip out to Stanthorpe with the extended family.  We have some family friends who own a Cabin on a block of land and we based ourselves there while visiting the Apple and Grape Festival.  I took a couple of timelapses while we were away and also photographed the fireworks.

Celebrate!Celebrate!We visited Stanthorpe on the weekend for the Apple & Grape Festival. On Saturday night they had some fireworks, so I took my camera down to photograph!

Canon 5D Mark II
17-40 @ 19mm
Two exposures merged:
ISO100 f/8 4sec
ISO100 f/8 3sec

Capture time: 07/03/2020 7:47pm


I also ventured out one night to capture some stars above the Ballandean Pyramid.

MesmerisedMesmerisedWe spent the weekend out at Stanthorpe on a property owned by some friends of my Mum. I headed out to the Ballandean Pyramid to photograph the night sky. This was a quick 10 image star trail. I realised after 10 images I hadn't quite set it up properly so I stopped it and took a few more images then headed home.
Canon 5D Mark II
17-40 @ 22mm
ISO400 f/4 30sec
10 images stacked
Capture time: 6/3/2020 9:34pm


We weren’t allowed to leave the house in April unless it was for essential things.  We had a rainbow lorikeet visit the back yard, so I photographed that and we also held a virtual birthday party for my son who turned 7!


When restrictions eased slightly, I headed out a couple of times to Shorncliffe and Mount Coot-tha to take some photos.  Conditions weren’t that good but I captured a few frames.

I also headed out one Sunday evening to the CBD Botanical Gardens as sunset was shaping up pretty well.  I have had an image like this in my mind to capture for a while and this particular sunset ended up being my most favourite photography outing for the year.  I got to the location I wanted to be at and just sat and waited for the light to do it’s thing…and it didn’t disappoint.  The top image was captured on my Canon 5D Mark II digital camera and the other using my panoramic film camera – FujiG617 with Velvia 50 film.

Garden's Point Boat HarbourGarden's Point Boat HarbourThis shot was taken from Garden's Point in Brisbane CBD. I have had this location in mind to photograph at for a while but never ventured here with my camera. I went for a run through the Botanic Gardens a couple of weeks before I took this image and sussed out the location I wanted to shoot from (as I ran along...).
This particular shot was taken on a Sunday afternoon when the sky was shaping up to be a good one. I got to this location and just sat and waited for the colour to come...and it did!
Fuji G617
Velvia 50 f22 45sec
Lee 0.45 soft grad
Capture time: 31/5/2020 5:08pm


In June we headed out on a day trip up the Sunshine Coast to Buderim Forest Park. 

Serenity Falls, Buderim Forest ParkSerenity Falls, Buderim Forest ParkI took this photo during a family outing at Serenity Falls, Buderim Forest Park on the Sunshine Coast. This is an 11-image stitched panorama.
Fuji X100S
ISO200 f5.6 1/4sec
NiSi polariser
3LT Tripod

I also ventured out to photograph a sunrise at Kangaroo Point Cliffs.  I really wanted to test out some expired 220 film which I purchased rather cheaply a couple of years ago, so I fired off close to 8 shots this particular morning and had the film developed.  It turned out quite good!  Below is a pano each from my Fujifilm X100S, Canon 5D Mark II and my FujiG617 pan film camera!

KP SunriseKP SunriseI headed out to Kangaroo Point to shoot sunrise on Friday morning. I have read in the last week that they are going to put a foot bridge across from Kangaroo Point to the CBD and I wanted to ensure I had an image which captured the current way this landscape exists before construction commences - surely it will change this scene forever!
I also have some 10-year expired 220 film which I bought second hand about 5 years ago which I haven't shot yet. I wanted to shoot a roll to see how good it is and whether it is worth using or not....so I also shot quite a few (read 7) film frames this particular morning - it is not developed yet!
Fujifilm X100S
ISO200 f/8 1/4sec
Nisi graduated fiter
3 images stitched
Capture time: 26/6/2020 6:56am

Dawn RisingDawn RisingI captured this a couple of weeks ago while testing out some 220 Velvia 50 film that I bought a while ago which expired in 2011. I have had it in my fridge for 3-4 years at least and had never tested it as I need to reconfigure the back plate of my camera to shoot 220 film, but I did it and it was pretty easy...and now I have 9 more rolls I can use! The upside is the film is good!
Fuji G617
Velvia50 f/16 4min 45secs
Lee 0.45 soft
Capture time: 26/6/2020 6:11am
Photographers notes: "Metered 4 to 5 mins but then light getting up so exposed for 4:45mins"


Early in July, Cecily and I headed into the CBD for a run and there was fog still hanging around at about 9am, so since I had the X100S in the car I fired off a few frames to stitch together before we commenced our run.

CBD FogCBD FogMy wife and I both had the day off today so we decided to do a run together in the CBD this morning. There was still some fog hanging around, so I snapped a quick pano before we set off.
Fuji X100S
ISO200 f/8 1/500sec

I also ventured out to photograph the CBD from South Bank, however with construction of the new Queen’s Wharf precinct, there were barges in the river which made images look quite messy, so I went and photographed a bit up stream toward Kurilpa Bridge.  I didn’t quite get exactly what I was after so will have to re-visit this location some time.

We also headed out for a family afternoon to South Bank in late July and I snapped this pano, again with the Fuji X100S and my small, portable NiSi filters.


In August we went on a family camping trip to Bigriggen at Rathdowney.  I took a few pano’s during this trip too!

Rocky RiverRocky RiverI took this photo on a family camping trip to Bigriggen, near Rathdowney on the Scenic Rim. I was really surprised there was this awesomely scenic stream running down one site of the camp ground!
9 images stitched
Fuji X100S
ISO400 f5.6 1/125sec
NiSi HD polariser
Capture date: 1/8/2020


In late September/early October we went on a family holiday to Coolum.  I quite a few photos during this trip.  I took a few from the balcony of our apartment and some while photographing a sunset at Stumer’s Creek.

Stumer's CreekStumer's CreekWe recently spent a few nights up at Coolum on a family holiday and I ventured out to Stumer's Creek for sunset one evening and captured this awesome sunset! I picked the right night as it was the best sunset of the few days we were there.
FujiFilm X100S
ISO800 f5.6 1/125sec
NiSi Graduated filter
12 vertical images stitched
Capture date: 30/9/2020 6:14pm

I also took some timelapse footage.  Unfortunately some of it didn’t quite lapse together well and I haven’t had chance to fix it – but you get the idea.


In mid-October, I met up with my mate Chi and we ventured out and about around Brisbane to capture some jacaranda tree’s as they looked awesome this year!  We went to New Farm Park and The University of Queensland.

Jacaranda ArchwayJacaranda ArchwayI headed out last weekend to photograph some jacarandas with my mate Chi as they are looking awesome this time of year! We ended up out near The University of Queensland, which is where I captured this shot.
Canon 5D Mark II
70-200 @ 200mm
ISO 200 f/2.8 1/3200sec
Capture time: 17/10/2020 2:40pm

Jacaranda PicnicJacaranda PicnicThis photo was take out near The University of Queensland in the middle of October when the jacaranda's were looking awesome!
13 vertical images stitched
Canon 5D Mark II
70-200 @ 70mm
ISO 200 f/4 1/200sec
Capture time: 17/10/2020 4:47pm

Also in October, I took my camera along to my son’s last soccer game of the season and captured some images.

I also ventured out on Saturday afternoon and captured this image of a storm approaching the Brisbane CBD.  I have wanted to capture an image such as this for a long time and I am so pleased I did.

City Storm ApproachingCity Storm ApproachingI have been wanting to photograph a storm over the CBD for ages! On Saturday afternoon it looked like conditions might be OK, so after my son's piano lesson we jumped in the car and headed to Wilson's Outlook. We got there just in time to capture this before the clouds were too high. Not too long after this we had to sprint back to the car to prevent us from getting soaked!
Canon 5D Mark II
17-40 @ 19mm
ISO100 f/16 0.5sec
Lee 0.6 soft grad
4 horizontal images stitched
Capture time: 31/10/2020 3:09pm


As I stated earlier, I bought a FujiFilm XT-4 in November and ventured out to test it out one evening.  I was hoping to capture some lightning as there were storms approaching the CBD, however the dissipated and I was left with just some dark night sky.

The BridgeThe BridgeI recently bought a new camera, so on Friday night I went out to test it out. I really was hoping for some lightning over the city as there was a storm cell around, however it kind of fizzled out.
Fujifilm XT-4
16-55 @ 16mm
ISO160 f/16 30sec
Capture time: 13/11/2020 8:36pm

My Daughter also graduated from Kindy, so I took a few photos of her graduation and my son’s soccer break up was a colour run.

In late November, my wife and I went to Noosa for a couple of nights by ourselves.  I took a few shots while we were out and about walking through the National Park and shot a sunset from Noosa main beach one evening.

Alexandria BayAlexandria BayThis shot was taken overlooking Alexandria Bay on the eastern side of the Noosa National Park.
Fujifilm X100S
ISO 200 f/8 1/125sec
NiSi HD polariser
10 vertical images stitched
Capture time: 27/11/2020 11:25am


In December I took photos at the usual work Christmas party and family Christmas gatherings.  After Christmas we went to Caloundra for the day and I took a pano of King’s Beach which was really busy! 

I also photographed the sunset this day down on some rocks near King’s Beach.  This was probably the first real test of my XT-4 shooting in conditions I am used to using my filters and tripod etc.  I still need to work on some of the finer aspects of focus with this camera and I do need to get an ultra wide lens also.  I captured these couple of frames. 


Well, thanks for reading about my photo adventures in 2020 and I hope you enjoyed viewing the images.  Surprisingly to me, upon reflection, I did capture quite a lot on my camera this year.  Having said that, I don’t feel too much of it is overly spectacular.  I am really keen to photograph new places in awesome photography conditions, but who knows how the next 12 months will pan out!  Hopefully I will continue to enjoy getting out to photograph and I look forward to continuing to share what I capture with my friends and family.


P.S. If you want to see more images captured in 2020 go to my 2020 Landscape Images page.


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