The Fountain Court, 1820 Settlers National Monument, a Photo Essay before #NAF18 takes over

As #NAF18 draws closer the 1820 Settlers National Monument gets busier and busier. So I took a chance yesterday that there would still be some peace to make a photo essay of my favourite part of the building – the Fountain Court. It’s quite a challenge being a central atrium that’s several stories deep. There’s natural light spilling in from two sides and down from the top but artificial light on the other two sides. I settled on my tiny 9mm fisheye body cap lens to pull in as much of the space as possible. The rectangular shapes of the famous yellowwood scaffolding sculpture, the many long pillars and banner-like Skotnes murals all help make dramatic shots. The fisheye lens does a great job of curving them round the Millstone Fountain and sunburst roof decoration.

 

Victoria Falls: a Black and White Photo Essay

I was fortunate to visit Victoria Falls last week and tried to capture them in black and white. Photography can be really tricky because of the showers of mist:  you are likely to get soaked and so is your camera!  So I took along my waterproof Pentax WG 3 and carried my Olympus OMD in my backpack for safety.  Fortunately the water levels in the Zambezi were fairly low and so shooting conditions weren’t bad.  I managed to get the Olympus out (and stow it away) quickly between the waves of mist as they blew over.  It’s a two hour walk through the mist forest park on the Zimbabwean side of the Falls and you make lots of stops at all of the viewpoints along the edge of the gorge.

The first and last pictures in the slideshow are of the Falls from a distance away.  They’re taken from Elephant Hills hotel just after 5am on the days before and after my trip.  You can easily see why they’re referred to as The Smoke That Thunders – Mosi-oa-Tunya.

At the start of your walk along the Falls is the imposing commemorative statue of David Livingstone.  Then you work your way along the edge of the gorge opposite the sheer drop of the Falls.  The Devil’s Cataract is a really impressive amphitheatre of mist forest.  The Main Falls have huge streams of water separated by Livingstone Island.  If you look back along the way you have come from Danger Point you see the mist billowing high up into the air above you.  It’s quite an experience and something I hope I’ve managed to capture with this set of black and white pictures.