Behind the Lens

Scramble, flowers and rehearsals.

Actinotus Helianthi Flannel Flower
Actinotus Helianthi Flannel Flower
Norah Head

A secret path led to a blissful encounter with Actinotus helianthi along a steep sandy trail. Otherwise known as the Flannel Flower, it is so named because of the soft woolly feel of the delicate petals.

As you can tell by the beautiful sunrise and the stunning blue sky, it was a gorgeous day in Norah Head. My journey was all about these white beauties, although I took many photos of a variety of native flowers and grasses blooming. I'll post more of these in the future.

You can see I like to get down and see the flowers framed by the sky as well as getting detail in the centre of the flowers. These would look sensational on a canvas print framed in natural timber. So relaxing.

Leech rating - zero!

Piles Creek, Brisbane Waters National Park
Illoura Falls, Brisbane Waters National Park
Illoura Falls, Brisbane Waters National Park

Wandering through dry eucalypt forest, this day walk follows the deep gorge of Piles Creek past waterfalls and scenic clearings. It's a bit of a tough one even though it is only 4km.

I did a few scrambles including this one to capture the elusive Illoura Falls. There is a more accessible lookout, but the bush has grown and the position of the sun always makes it difficult to get a good shot from that vantage point.

I love the detail in the fallen trunk. The colours of the pond and the rocks are magical and deep in shadow.

The leeward side is lush and steep. Stick to the path for your safety as there is a massive cliff that drops into Piles Creek. If you are early and step quietly, you will hear the lyrebirds sing. You may be lucky to catch sight of them. If you see them, stand still and let them do their thing. They may reward you with a song.

The windward side is sandstone and rock. It features an amazing variety of wildflowers all year long. Flocks of white and black cockatoos can be heard calling through the gorge.

Leech rating - one if you are unlucky.


I have a lot of theatre shoots coming up. I can't post too much from these but I love the energy from rehearsal shoots. It is a privilege to watch actors explore their characters and directors and their team develop a show. Through the lens, you get a very good understanding of their journey in bringing you a show.

On the weekend, I got to try out my new portrait lens. It allows me to shoot under low light, just like your typical rehearsal shoot (and performance later on). This is the beautiful Gabrielle learning how to be a nun for a Wyong Drama Group's production of Nunsense II.

These are fabulous ladies with tremendous energy. I hope to bring you more about the lovely women with some feature shoots.

Please contact me to purchase or use images from this post at

(c) 2021 Shayne Leslie