Many years ago, I saw a photograph of Australia’s remarkable round-leaved Licuala Palm, which grows in a very restricted part of the Queensland rainforest. I was so struck by their marvelous shape, and the stunning patterns of light and shadow they create, that I cut the picture out of a magazine and stuck it up on my wall – inspiration, of a sort. That picture remained on the wall for a decade or more before I was able to to see those trees for myself.
On my recent trip to Australia, I found myself not far away from the Licuala forest, and so – finally – I had a chance to make my pilgrimage, and to wander through one of the loveliest forests I have ever seen. Walking wide-eyed with my camera and tripod, I had a chance to play with light and pattern and shadow, one of the things I love most about photography.
What the pictures don’t tell you, however, is that this forest grows in a unspeakably hot, humid, and mosquito-ridden swamp. Oh yeah, and there are leeches. So as delighted as I was to see these trees after so long, I was just as happy to leave them behind…
Still, I’m glad I made the effort… And when the all the bites stop itching, I’ll be even happier!
Nikon D3, 17-35mm lens