Zion Narrows is the most extraordinary place. Light plays tricks in this narrow canyon - bouncing off the Navajo sandstone walls and collecting more reds and oranges as it reflects.

The Snappy Gum is the prevalent large tree species in the arid landscape of the pilbara. These starkly white-trinket trees have large scars of blackened heartwood where their bark has stretched and "snapped". The contrast between the almost pure white and black trunks with rich olive green foliage against the red iron-stone soils is extraordinary. 

The north east of Tasmania provides the photographer with a most extraordinary palette of blues and oranges. The granite and lichen combine to provide a foreground of amazing warmth and texture set against the cool blue of a summer sunrise and a silken sea. It is always extraordinary how easily nature finds complimentary colours. The deep cracks and fissures in the rocks speak to the power of the ocean and of the forces that mould these beautiful places. 

Half way down the Blue Mountains escarpment the mist-like upper tier of Wentworth Falls feeds a series of smaller cascades and mustard coloured sandstone pools fringed with bright green ferns among the dark-stained and textured  rock wall. These pools in turn spill over in a series of small waterfalls and cascades until eventually the water plunges over the remaining escarpment to the Jamison Valley floor. From this perspective the falls seem to go back and up forever. This middle tier of the 187 metre high Wentworth Falls is like a place that time forgot. 

The Hobart Hydro Company built this pier and pump house on Lake St Clair in the 1940s in an attempt to drought-proof Hobart. The plan was to pump water into the head-waters of the Derwent River near by. According to the locals the pumps have only ever been run three times and two of those were only for testing. A gray, wet, windy day highlights the irony of the slowly crumbling pier and pump-house and our futile attempts to control nature. A splash of sunlight breaks the cloud to highlight the distant shore of the lake.

Valparaiso is Chile’s second biggest city. It is built on a series of incredibly steep hillsides and many of the buildings feature extraordinary colours and even more amazing building techniques. An earthquake devastated the city in February 2010. With many buildings seriously damaged the locals have used whatever materials they had at hand to repair their damaged homes. The multi-coloured and multi-textured repairs give the city a ramshackle and visually striking appearance. Almost like it was the product of a graphic designer.

About half way along the Coomera Circuit track this wonderful small waterfall never fails to please. The circuit is a long day walk of just about 20km but well worth it for the array of waterfalls and cascades along the path.

The Styx Valley’s ancient temperate rainforest almost transports the hiker back to the time of Gondwana. It is a place  of breathtaking beauty and immense natural value. Some of the planet’s largest and oldest trees are to be found here. This iconic Tasmanian waterfall is in the nearby Mount Field National Park. Beyond the better-known and over-photographed Russell Falls the trail follows a stream as it meanders through a wonderland of bright green moss to this almost-too-perfect waterfall.

The 180 degree bend in the Colorado River is near Page, Arizona. This viewpoint is around 300 metres above the river with shear cliffs (and no rails!). 

Just before the waters of Kedumba Creek plunge 187 metres over the Blue Mountains escarpment in the 3 tiers of Wentworth Falls, they cascade over a series of smaller falls.  One of these is The Queens Cascades a perfect veil of falling silver water. The use of a filter has helped ensure the sandstone is rendered dark and textural while the water remains bright. This place marks the beginning of the famous “National Pass” trail a roughly 10km hike along a ledge mid-way down the cliff face. 

Driving Utah Scenic Byway 21 from Bryce over to Moab takes you through such a range of landscapes. From stark dry buttes and canyons up over a ridge at the foothills of the La Sal Mountains and back down into the Colorado and Green River basins the views are astounding. Up near the snow line the silver birch or Aspen trees form large stands. In fall their leaves turn the most intense range of yellows and oranges I have ever seen. 

A struggling grey dawn sets off the extraordinary turquoise blue of the water near Tasmania’s Binalong Bay. The water here is deep, clean and colourful. A stripe of flame orange lichen at the high-tide line could almost have been painted onto the boulders. 

Climbing up the Blue Mountains escarpment towards the end of the National Pass Trail requires substantial exertion. Thankfully the walker passes a series of spectacular waterfalls that make perfect rest stops. One of these falls is Sylvia Falls. Recent rain ensures the slick black rock literally weeps with cascades and creates a fairyland scene. The main waterfall is almost like a wedding cake with its hundreds of small tiers.

Kermit's Pool in Hancock Gorge. The water he is cold, deep and a wonderful emerald green. A short but challenging hike including either a swim or some scrambling along rock ledges as well as a short "spider walk" through a narrow canyon leads to this extraordinary deep green pool. It is a truly magical place. if you are lucky enough to have it to yourself you can sense an almost spritual connection. its like being in a natural temple.

Zion Narrows is the most extraordinary place. Light plays tricks in this narrow canyon - bouncing off the Navajo sandstone walls and collecting more reds and oranges as it reflects.

Fern Pool is at the start of Dale's Gorge just above the better know Fortesque Falls. The water here is deep and clean. Cormorants patrol for the many fish and outside the summer months the occasional European tourist dives in for a swim.

Descending the path toward the famous Columba Falls in North East Tasmania you meander through massive tree ferns as tall as houses and  slowly decaying logs seemingly held together only by the fluorescent green moss that completely covers them. The river glows amber from the mix of sand and ironstones making up its course gravel bed. Its banks are shrouded by a hanging canopy of bright green fronds. This place redefines the meaning of the colour green.

One of the world’s seven natural wonders this waterfall tumbles with absolutely breathtaking power over a near 100m single drop. Iguazú Falls are nearly 3km wide in a series of 275 individual waterfalls. The falls are split into two main sections by an island called La Isla San Martín. It is this island that you see in the top-left of this photograph taken above Salto Mbigúa looking to Salto San Martín - two of the largest drops on the Argentinian side of the falls. In normal flow about 1000 cubic metres of water a second passes over the edge here. 

It's an iconic composition. A place of breath-taking beauty and clear spiritual significance to the remaining Navajo who live here. In early October the moon rises directly behind the famous mittens at about the same time the sun sets.

Antelope Canyon near Page, Arizona is a mecca for photographers the world over. It's a very challenging environment to work in - limited light, lots of dust and tourists all combine to make it hard work. It is however an extraordinary place of exquisite beauty.

Snow melt-water rushes down from high on Mount Tronodor in the Andes through a spectacular Arctic Beech forest gorge. The freezing water is rich with copper minerals making it a striking blue set against the rusty golden Chusquea bamboo cane flowers. A rare sight as this species of bamboo flowers only every 10-15 years. The water here is very deep and yet so clear that it is easily possible to see the bottom of the stream. 

At the base of Wooli Head at Yamba and next to the main surfing beach is a jumble of rocks, a favourite haunt of tidal fishermen. Slightly further around is this platform of rock that sits just below the high-tide mark. I visit Yamba often and always seek out the amazing lines and shapes of this platform for sunrise.

Carnarvon Gorge in Central Queensland is a rare and special place. A place where ancient plants and remnant temperate rainforest still exist next to miles of cleared grazing land. Hidden in the gorge is a small waterfall at a place called Moss Garden. Water seeps from the canyon walls here and bright green moss clings the limestone. It's a peaceful and wonderful thing to sit here alone. 

The rocks around Caloundra take on an almost lunar appearance in the pre-dawn light while in the distance a lone fisherman tries his luck. It is unusual for me to include people in my images but on this occassion the fisherman provided the perfect balance to the image. The fisherman and the patch of bright green sea lettuce clinging to life just above the waves is a simple reminder of the ocean’s extraordinary life-giving capacity and how we should treat it with care and respect.

Once across the emerald green water of Kermit's Pool in Hancock Gorge you reach "The Slide". A steep, slippery cascade where the water falls into Regan's Pool (named in honour of a rescuer who lost his life in a flash flood while trying to rescue a trapped hiker). The view here extraordinary with the lines and ridges of iron stone forming amazing patterns and the reflected sun lightingup the canyon walls. 

The sun breaks the horizon and paints a golden carpet over the moss covered rock shelf at Moffat Head near Caloundra. The rocks here have small rusting bolts embedded in them. Despite much research the reason remains a mystery although it is certain there were radar and machine guns emplacements here in WWII. The crisp, clear winter air has given the light an almost pastel glow and the reflected pool speaks to the deep introspection this time of day can bring.

Antelope Canyon near Page, Arizona is a mecca for photographers the world over. It's a very challenging environment to work in - limited light, lots of dust and tourists all combine to make it hard work. It is however an extraordinary place of exquisite beauty.

Pyramid Rock at Porcupine Gorge stands guard over one of Queensland's most amazing gorge systems. Porcupine Creek flows through the base of a deep sandstone gorge. The flow of the creek has moulded the stone into the most amazing curved shapes and hollows.

The granite rocks around Bicheno feature an intense coating of flame orange lichen just above the high-tide mark.  The rocks are like huge monolithic fingers thrown down at the edge of the sea. Large fissures between them create channels of surging water and traps for the clumsy photographer.  A clear summer morning lights the dawn sky with perfectly complementary warm tones. The detail and texture of the rocks provides a striking contrast to the silver-gray seas and almost clear sky.

Just across from the lighthouse on Wooli Head at Yamba is a small island at the base of the 20m sea cliff. When the ocean is angry large waves break over the island, slowly but quite inevitably washing it away. In summer local teenagers brave the waves to swim over and climb onto then dive off the un-named island. It's a favourite sunrise location of mine and I have many "studies" from this point!

Low tide at Bicheno exposes massive textured granite boulders to the sun’s golden first light. A long slow swell gently surges between the rocks and along the folded shoreline to the south. The massive expanse of golden textured granite will soon be swallowed by the rising tide. The image is a play between the rough texture of the rocks and the silken motion of the water. 

 ABOUT STEF

This site features the work of Brisbane-based landscape photographer Stef Dunn. Most of the images you will see here were made the old-fashioned way. On really big film using a big old wooden camera. One with a bellows. And my head under a cloth.

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All my work is available for purchase. Most pieces are limited edition prints only. Once an edition is fully sold its source printing material is deleted and no further copies will be available under any circumstances. 

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