Kakadu Photography

Photography in the Top End

The Top End of Australia offer’s some of the greatest photo opportunities going around. The waterfalls change from a trickle in the Dry Season, to a flood in the wet, providing ever unique photo opportunities. Among the sandstone cliffs lays secret streams and oasis’s. Even microclimates such as Zebedee Springs in the Kimberly, where the Livistona palms grow in one specific gorge, forming a biological link between the planet’s continents . Unlike the Livistona Palm’s, photography was brought to the area much more recently. Once people began capturing the stunning scenes and flourishing wildlife in the Top End, it did wonders for the tourism industry. Now thousands flock North every year to get some snaps of their own. But where did it all start? and how has it changed?

The first known photographs of the NT were taken in 1864 on a pastoral expedition, mainly of their houses and structures. Other notable expeditions include that of Hubert Wilkins, who spent 2 years trekking through the Northern Territory preserving samples of native Flora and Fauna. People were already in fear of some species extinction in 1922! He was a keen photographer and captured some of the areas beauty. Kakadu National Park wasn’t established until the 70’s, but iconic Top End destinations such as Purnululu were only first photographed in the 80’s. It took 140 years to discover some parts of the Top End and chances are there is still plenty more waiting to be photographed.

Whether its action shots taken on a jumping croc cruise ,or early morning pink and orange sunrises, the Top End has something for every photographer. Try lengthening your exposure and capture the thick Milky Way that fills the sky in some of these remote areas. If you have a waterproof camera there are endless cliff jumping and swimming opportunities. You could bring a zoom lens and try to capture the bustling bird life and other creatures. Maybe you just want to use your phone or a disposable to get some group shots for memories. A camera is definitely a must bring for anybody travelling to the Top End.

Photography has changed a lot since the days of pastoral expeditions. Now everybody has a camera in their pocket with camera rolls full of pictures. This just means that we need to get more creative and venture further into the unknown to get those magic shots. Part of the experience is forgetting about technology, and taking some time to enjoy the moment. But a true photographer can not resist some of the opportunities, that the Top End holds.

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