Every photographer loves the golden hour, that special time between dusk and dark. Sunsets can be spectacular, unusual and surreal. Since I just got back from Page Arizona to photograph the natural beauty of the area, including of course Horseshoe Bend at sunset, I have decided to collect a few of my favorite sunsets from around the world. Not all sunsets depend on color to make them spectacular, although Horseshoe Bend might be the exception. Often it is the subtle interplay of light and dark, the delicate colors rather than flashy vibrance and it is always about that soft light that fills our senses as the embers of the day play out.
We really enjoyed our time in Hobart in Tasmania and since I had a a few stray pictures, I thought I would share. Hobart is the capital and most populous city of the Australian island state of Tasmania. Founded in 1804 as a penal colony, Hobart is Australia’s second oldest capital city after Sydney, New South Wales. The city is located in the state’s south-east on the estuary of the Derwent River, making it the most southern of Australia’s capital cities and its harbor forms the second-deepest natural port in the world. Walking is the best way to see the city’s sandstone buildings and waterways, from bustling Salamanca Market to the fishing docks. You can stop to taste Hobart’s food and wine in the streets of Salamanca Place or along North Hobart’s restaurant strip. You can explore Mount Wellington on mountain bike or foot or kayak past the city’s wharves at twilight. Just south of the city lies Kettering and small, rugged Bruny Island. You can spend a day walking its windswept beaches, emerald countryside and dramatic cliff tops.
Twelve thousand years ago, sea levels were rising as the period of global glaciation ended. The land mass now known as Tasmania was cut off and the Aboriginal people living here were isolated from the Australian mainland. Before European settlement, Aboriginal Tasmanians lived in bands, each occupying a stretch of coastline and adjacent inland areas. They were hunter/gatherers who moved around the country to harvest seasonal food. As a coastal people, they relied on the sea for much of their diet. Aboriginal women collected abalone, oysters, mussels and other seafood and the remains of these make up the middens which can be found all around the Tasmanian coastline. The boat shown above was typical of the Tasmanian people. Southern Tasmania became a favoured resting and restocking place for French and English explorers journeying to the Pacific in search of new trade routes, products, land, and scientific knowledge. Aboriginal Tasmanians of the Oyster Bay and South East Tribes were the first to observe Europeans. The earliest encounter in 1772, with a French expedition led by Marion du Fresne, was marred by misunderstanding. Men from both sides were wounded and an Aboriginal was man killed. Other early visitors included Furneaux on Cook’s first Pacific voyage and Cook himself on his second voyage. Bligh also stopped over on his two attempts to obtain breadfruit from Tahiti.
When we got to Hobart, Tasmania we decided to roam around. One of attractions we decided to visit was the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Grardens, mainly for the Japanese Garden, the highlight of the garden and the subject of the photo above. The sheltered, landscaped grounds of the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens hold historic plant collections and a large number of significant trees, many dating from the nineteenth century. It also has an increasing number of important conservation collections of Tasmanian plants and the world’s only Subantarctic Plant House. Prior to European settlement local Aboriginal tribes used the site, and traces of their occupation are still apparent. A number of historic structures, including two convict-built walls, date back to the Gardens’ earliest days.