Yesterday was a lazy Sunday for me. I was at home, the weather was gorgeous and so I decided to take myself on a little photography expedition to get better acquainted with my new Canon EF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS II USM lens. So where could I go? The morning was beginning to get away from me, so I decided to get my gear together, pack some water, and just hop on a train and see where I ended up.
When I arrived at Waverton Station, I decided to visit the Former BP Site which is located in the Balls Head Reserve. It’s the same place where I celebrated New Years Eve with friends.
Background to Carradah Park – courtesy North Sydney Government Site
The former BP Berry’s Bay bulk fuel storage and distribution terminal is located on the cliffs and foreshore area of Balls Head/Waverton Peninsula approximately 1.6 km northwest of the Sydney CBD. The site was operated by BP Australia as a fuel storage and distribution facility from the early 1920s. BP’s operations ceased in 1993 and the tanks were demolished in the mid 1990s. Premier Bob Carr announced in 1997 that this site, together with the Coal Loader and Caltex Sites on the other side of the peninsula would be preserved as Public Open Space.
In 1999 Council adopted the Waverton Peninsula Strategic Master Plan, which set broad planning principles for all 3 ex-industrial sites. Detailed designs for the BP site were subsequently completed and a Development Application for the proposed parkland approved by Council in 2003. The contractor for construction of the parkland was selected in December of the same year and work commenced in January 2004.
Completion of Carradah Park (former BP Parklands) in March 2005 enabled public access to an area of harbour foreshore that had been unavailable since the 1800s.
Dan ENOUGH of the boring stuff what’s the view like?
Ok since you asked nicely…
My shots sucked, I couldn’t get any of them to work. I could blame the light (the weather went from sunny and picture perfect to overcast about 5 seconds after I arrived). I could also blame the wind (there was flower shots to be had, but windy thwarted me), but that wouldn’t be the entire truth. My shooting mojo just SUCKED yesterday. I was tired, I was lazy, I was really just looking forward to a nap in Bradfield Park for a couple of hours followed by a beer or 2 at The Kirribilli Hotel watching the Aussies thump The Poms in the one day cricket.
But before I left, I tried a few arty shots… Dunno how well they turned out. Something bout them doesn’t quite feel right…
With the first one, I saw the barbed wire fence, obstructing the view of the harbour and decided to use it. I had to actually climb a ledge and then I sat with my legs hanging over and lined up the shot hand-held. It was difficult to get the lens to capture the barbed wire in focus so I had to do a bit of manual fiddling to get it right. Why did I want to use the barbed wire? I thought it was a cool reminder that Australia is a country founded and populated by convicts
The second shot of the water hydrant jumped out at me and I had to capture that vibrant red amongst all the drab grey concrete, piping and steel that juts out all over the former BP site. It was one of the few objects offering any colour to me, so I had to take advantage given that the sun and wind were working against me on this particular day.
I feel like I failed on the shoot. But the mistakes I’ve made I’ll try not to make again. Such as the horizon line in the first shot, that makes the bridge look like its going upwards from right to left, and puts the Blues Point Tower (located at McMahon’s Point – the cream building to the far right of frame) at a slightly skewed angle, when it should be straight.