Nearing the end of my eight-week central desert trip, I arrived at Big Red on the eastern edge of the Simpson. With clean sand dunes and a full moon due in six days time, this was my chance to capture a classic image. Setting up camp on top of Big Red, I began my research. Mornings and afternoons were spent walking and learning the light, colour and atmosphere that was going to dictate my result. Not having photographed this area before, I was on a steep learning curve. The first few days there was little wind, which meant I had to be very careful where I walked because the soft desert sand could hold a footprint for days, and I did not want to ruin a potential image. Unfortunately the initial concept I had didn’t work because my shadow was always going to be in the frame. The sun and moon would be setting and rising directly opposite each other, and given the height of the sand dunes, I could not use a longer lens to shoot past my shadow. Then the winds came, blowing sand through everything including my computer. One gust came through that destroyed my camp, ripping my awning clear out of the ground and flipping it on top of the car. Was this all going to be worth it? I was having my doubts. Having been on the road for nearly two months, I was looking forward to going home. The day before the full moon, I captured this image. Hoping to get better the next night I waited one more day, but unfortunately was disappointed. The setting sun was covered by cloud and I was left without that final image I had worked so hard for.
Paul's Landscape Photography Tip
Sometimes no matter how hard you try at an image, it just doesn't happen. It might be the gear you are using, it might be the physical conditions but either way I have learnt not every image I see in my mind is possible. If it was where would the challenge be.