Montague Island Day Three (Afternoon)

Montague Island, New South Wales, Australia, 8 to 11 November 2019

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

Having returned and after lunch, I settled down at a tern colony near the lighthouse to photograph them in flight.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

I was mounting my long lens on a gimbal (the mechanical type, not the electronic variety for video) which attaches to your tripod and allows your lens to sit at a point of balance, for easier and quicker responses.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

This is the wing of a silver gull.  This shot wasn’t intended and it isn’t entirely in focus but I still like it.

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A tern coming in to land.

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Some distance away, over the sea.

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They are small and fast5, making it a challenging exercise.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Head on.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Silver gull with nesting material.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

Silver gull coming in to land at a silver gull colony.

 

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Silver gulls were patrolling around the edge of the tern colony.  Just below me, a mother tern stood up and left her egg exposed.  A silver gull hopped in and took the egg.  The mother is protesting and the egg is in the middle here but you may have to click on the image to make it larger to see the egg.

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Chicks can also be in danger, so here parents are protecting a chick.

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Back to the terns coming in to the colony.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

This was the most successful flying tern image.  Coming in with fish and completely sharp.  Well exposed to retain detail in the black head and eyes white while not losing detail in essential white areas caught by the sun.  There is an element of luck in this as there is no room for error and the image on the histogram on the back of the camera shows less than the RAW file captures.

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Montague Island Day Three (Morning)

Montague Island, New South Wales, Australia, 8 to 11 November 2019

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In the morning I went down to the south end of the island again.  In the last post, the time exposure of the old jetty included a white rock in the distance with great cormorants sitting on it.  This is that rock, through a long telephoto.

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They are all facing in the same direction, probably scanning for signs of fish.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

I was at the old jetty and this is maybe a post they tied up to.

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A bit further south, a fur seal climbs up out of the water.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

He is eyeing a place by one of the females but the master of the harem notices him.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

… So he backs out and soon slips away into the sea, discretion being the better part of valour.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

There is a silver gull on the rocks.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

Also a pair of sooty oystercatchers.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

I had mainly come to this end of the island to make some more focus bracketing studies.  This involves taking many exposures at different points of focus and combining them later to get a greater depth of focus that would be possible in a single exposure.  First a landscape exposure from macro to infinity.  You may prefer to click on some of these to see the greater detail of a larger version.

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Now a few macro images at the same location.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, seascape, Silver gull, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

This image is macro in the foreground and the background is the cliffs at the other side of the small bay.

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Montague Island Day Two

Montague Island, New South Wales, Australia, 8 to 11 November 2019

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The lighthouse in the early morning with the sun behind it.

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Crested terns.

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Crested terns courting.

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Silver gull.

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Silver gull chicks.

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View from the lighthouse, looking over the cottages (where we stayed).

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View from the lighthouse looking south, showing the stones sacred to the Aborigines and also the small lighthouse cemetery.

There are two children and a keeper buried there.  The children got sick but there was no access to the lighthouse, apart from trying to hail a passing ship.  The children died before medical assistance could be occurred.  More on the keeper later.

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Looking west to an islet of great cormorants.

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Looking north.  There are two parts to the island, joined by a narrow neck.  The northern part is out of bounds due to breeding birds.  An artist from our group is sitting at a table at the bottom and there is a colony of terns to his left.

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Looking down more closely on the colony of terns.

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A view of the lighthouse from the back gate of the cottage we stayed in.

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The same tree from the stormy images of the previous post, this time n the calm of daylight.

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The cottage we stayed in, behind the tree.

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The old wharf, a long exposure of 15 seconds.

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Tiny flowers on the ground near the south end of the island.

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Banksia cone, banksia serrata or old man banksia.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Little Penguins, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, Sea Eagle, Seal, seascape, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

Banksia serrata cone.

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Sea eagle.  I only had my macro lens with me; I could have got closer wit my long telephoto.

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View of  lighthouse and cottages from the south.

There was a time when supplies were unloaded at the old wharf and taken up to the lighthouse using a horse and cart.  Part of the route was up the rock below the cottages.  The horse didn’t like this and used to run away and hide when the time came.

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One day it all went wrong.  The horse slipped on the rock incline and the cart came careering down the slope on top of the keeper.  His spleen was ruptured and he died some days later, ending up in the lighthouse cemetery..

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The path back went through a silver gull rookery.  This is at the edge of it.

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A silver gull incubating an egg on a rudimentary nest on the ground.

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Later, we went down to the new wharf to see the little penguins coming in at night.  These are silver gull chicks in the fading light.

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Terns against the sunset.

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The little penguins are coming ashore.

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They climb up surprisingly high to nest.

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Then red lights were turned on around the platform where we were standing, to provide light without disturbing the penguins.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Little Penguins, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, Sea Eagle, Seal, seascape, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Little Penguins, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, Sea Eagle, Seal, seascape, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

There was a stiff wind above us and silver gulls were hanging motionless in the air.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Landscape, Lighthouses, Little Penguins, Macro, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, Sea Eagle, Seal, seascape, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

Montague Island Day One

Montague Island, New South Wales, Australia, 8 to 11 November 2019

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We spent a weekend at Montague Island, off the coast of New South Wales near Narooma, organised by NatureArt Lab, based in Canberra.  We also went with them to Sabah and this time it was mainly with artists rather than photographers.  I also went there in 1987 when I toured around Australia taking photographs of lighthouses for the book From Dusk Till Dawn.

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We needed to drive down from Canberra and be at the wharf for the boat at 11:15 am, so to eliminate the risk of misadventures we drove down from Canberra the night before.  Late in the afternoon we discovered Handkerchief Beach, south of Narooma.  This is a picture of Montague Island from there (actually properly spelt Montagu but that is a losing battle).  We would be staying near the lighthouse in the lighthouse cottages.

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The lagoon at Handkerchief Beach.

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It appears it gets windy at times.

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A nearby pelican next morning as we are waiting to embark.

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From the boat, underway but still inside Narooma’s Bar, a cormorant is drying its wings.

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Humpback whale going down.

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We were lucky to be escorted by a mother and her calf for most of the journey to Montague.

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Australia, Crested Terns, Humpback whale, Landscape, Lighthouses, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, Sea Eagle, Seal, seascape, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife .

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Australia, Crested Terns, Humpback whale, Landscape, Lighthouses, Montague Island, Nature, Photography, Sea Eagle, Seal, seascape, Travel, Wilderness, Wildlife

There are many seals on the rocks by the sea.

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And we encountered quite a few lounging around in the water.

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At some distance, sitting on his favourite rock, is this white-bellied sea eagle, in this case with a full crop.  He does not live on the island but flies out every day from the mainland.

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The seals are either Australian or New Zealand Fur Seals.  The New Zealand Fur Seals are smaller and darker and climb further up on the rocks but they are very similar and I’m not going to try to tell them apart.

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Launching into the sea.

The New Zealand Fur Seals have been recently renamed Long-Nosed Fur Seals (in Australia) because people may have thought they were not native to Australia though they live in both places.  They were called New Zealand Fur Seals because they were first described in New Zealand and are still called New Zealand Fur Seals in New Zealand.  This renaming seems to me like pointlessly kowtowing to ignorance so I will continue to refer to them as New Zealand Fur Seals.

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Great Cormorant and Crested Terns, still from the boat.

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A colony of Crested Terns, from the road to the Lighthouse.

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In the late afternoon, we were hit by a huge storm with high winds.

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A little later, walking back from Cottage 1 to Cottage 2 at the back of the cottages, I was blown along by a wind so strong that it was pointless to try to walk against it.

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Some of the terns relocated from the more exposed side of the island to the relative calm in the lee of the cottages and the island.

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Then an hour and a half later, it was clear and calm.  This is a sacred aboriginal initiation site at the end of the island, not accessible to the public.  The rocks represent the whale, the shark and the tortoise.

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(Trivia note:  There are now more than 15,000 images in this blog, not counting the links to nearly 11,000 live music images, and also more than 350,000 words, equivalent to several books).

Red White Amber and Blues Festival 2019

This is the first Blues Festival in Canberra for over twenty years, taking place over three days and nights on a weekend at the end of October. Here is a selection of images, and links at the bottom to more.

Under the performers, I’ve added YouTube links to their music.

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On Friday there were five performers, playing acoustic.

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James Southwell.

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Mark Easton.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel
Geoff Achison.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Lloyd Spiegel.

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Then it rained heavily, while Lloyd Spiegel was still playing.

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Phil Manning.

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There was eight bands on Saturday.

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Marji Curran, Marji Curran Band.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

John Gwilliam with 19-Twenty.

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Kane Denelly with 19-Twenty.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Milena Barrett.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Ali Penney, Ali Penney and the Moneymakers.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

James Southwell with James Southwell Band.

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Marshall and the Fro.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Marshall and the Fro.

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Steve Edmonds, Steve Edmonds Band.

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Kevin Borich, Ken Borich Express.

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On Sunday, there was another seven bands.

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Rebecca Davey with Dreamboogie.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Darren Jack.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Sammy Owen, Sammy Owen Blues Band.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Lachy Doley, Lachy Doley Group.

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Shane Pacey with Bondi Cigars.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Bondi Cigars.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Matt Taylor with Chain.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Phil Manning, Chain.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Dirk du Bois, Chain.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

John Creech with Russell Morris.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Russell Morris.

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Australia, Blues, Blues Festivals, Canberra, Live Music, Photography, Red White Amber and Blues Festival, Travel

Russell Morris Band.

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There are many more images. On the Other Blues Festivals Page . you will find links to images from this Festival. Links include top 100 images, selected monochromes and one for each of the 20 bands.

Alternatively, there is also a direct overall link to all Red White Amber and Blues Festival 2019 images in JAlbum (with overview images and images by band organised by folder). There are 362 images in all.

For other images of a particular band I may have taken since 2006, see the Musicians and Bands Page .

Last Day in Havana

Havana, Cuba, 12 September 2016
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On our last day in Havana, after breakfast, we first visited a small outdoor art area not far from our hotel.

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We then visited the Castell de la Real Fuerza.  Here is the entrance from a few posts ago.

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It was built in 1557, replacing a earlier fort that had been destroyed by a French privateer.

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However, it was too far inside the harbour to be effective and was also too small.  It was effectively replaced by the Castillo de San Salvador de la Punta at the entrance of the harbour and became the residence of the Governor of Havana.

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It is considered the oldest stone fort in the Americas and these days houses a maritime museum.

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This and the next three images are from the Museo de Arqueología.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

This and the next image are from the Salon of Mesoamerica and Ecuador.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Next we visited the Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, the residence of the Governors in the eighteenth century, now the museum of the City of Havana.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Early Cuban Flag, I think from the independence movement in the 1890s.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Inlaid box with ancient Egyptian references.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Street performer.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

A couple we encountered recommended we visit an art market at the waterfront, so we did.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

The old loco was just outside the art market.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Walking back to the hotel…

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

View from the window of our room.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

In the late afternoon, I went for a walk in the back streets.

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Art, Cars, Castell de la Real Fuerza, Cuba, Havana, Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Street at night after rain.

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So that was the last post on Cuba, although there are four monochrome posts to come next.

 

Havana – Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis

Havana, Cuba, 11 September 2016
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The first six or seven images are taken from the taxi on the return trip from the Botanical Gardens to the Old City of Havana.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

1949 Plymouth, just about to leave I think.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Café Colon.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

1947 or 48 Dodge and 1950 Plymouth.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

1950 Plymouth.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Lada or Moscovitch broken down.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

At the corner of Parque Aracelio Iglesias on the Havana waterfront.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Back in Havana, we visited the Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis (i.e. It was originally the Church of St Francis of Assisi).

Exactly one year later, this scene would have been under about two metres of water, as Hurricane Irma hit Cuba as well as other Caribbean islands.

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Architecture, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

From an earlier post, Early Morning in Havana, this is an external view of the basilica across Plaza de San Francisco de Asis.

It was originally built by the Franciscans in 1591, but was rebuilt and extended from 1716 to 1739 after storm damage in 1680 & 1692 and the toppling of the tower by a hurricane in 1694.  The British occupied Havana in 1762 during the Seven Years War and used it as an Anglican church.  Consequently, the Catholic Church considered it desecrated and never again used it as a church.  These days it is used as a concert hall and has excellent acoustics.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Looking up, inside the basilica.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

A view of El Capitolio, under renovation.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

Looking down on the Plaza of San Francisco de Asis.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

As you can see, we are inside the belltower.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

People and pigeons in the street below.

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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

At night after rain.
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Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel .

Architecture, Cars, Cuba, Havana, Basilica Menor de San Francisco de Asis, Photography, Street photography, Travel

The resident band in our hotel (Conde de Villanueva).

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