EOS World Council Member, Jensen Chua, is a travel photographer and writer with Jetabout Holidays, he is also an associate instructor at Canon Imaging Academy. He believes that true photography is about honest imaging with minimal digital manipulation. His work was featured in National Geographic and recently in Smithsonian 2019 Photo Contest. In this article, he shares his photographic escape in Broome, Western Australia.

EOS World Council Member, Jensen Chua

This exploratory trip to the laidback resort town with Alvin Foo (Principal, Canon Imaging Academy) and Cindy Loo (Jetabout Holidays) convinced me that Broome is certainly a photographers’ heaven in Western Australia. For photography enthusiasts with a penchant for spectacular nature, wildlife, landscape and pre-wedding bridal photography, Broome is it!  If you want to explore Broome, a domestic flight via Perth is the way to go.

Although it was just a short four days trip, what we experienced left us with no doubt that this photogenic town will be the next tourist hub when more people get to know what the treasures Broome has to offer. This activity by the renowned Cable Beach put Broome on the map inspiring travellers and photographers globally. The sunset session is recommended for the best colours.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/500s | F6.3 | ISO 100 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

To emphasise on the camels in this shot, I stayed close and walked along with them while I fired the shutter away. The camels are well trained and used to human presence. 

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/400s | F5.6 | ISO 100 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

The stunning sandstone rock formation was ideal to capture great landscape photography. To better convey the venue, the morning golden hour is the best timing. I also took considerable risks by climbing the rocks to add a human element to an otherwise barren landscape. Thankfully, I had a travel partner to release the shutter on my tripod-mounted camera.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/30s | F11.0 | ISO 100 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

Every Boab tree is unique with character and personality as you would expect of such an ancient creature. Some individual Boab trees are more than 1500 years old, which makes them the oldest living beings in Australia, and puts them amongst the oldest in the world. I increased the K-temperature setting in my Canon EOS 5D Mark IV  to better capture the pastel warm lighting of dusk.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/200s | F4.0 | ISO 320 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

We chose to photograph this bus-stop due to its Instagrammable vibe, ambience and location. As most Broome vehicles are generally silver or white, we had to wait patiently for almost 30 minutes for a red car to pass by for punchier colour.  In addition, a polariser filter was used to enhance the blue sky.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/10s | F18.0 | ISO 50 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

This natural phenomenon is observed between April and October only. It is caused by the rising of a full moon reflecting on the exposed mudflats at extremely low tide, creating a surreal optical illusion of a staircase reaching up to the moon. This pic was edited to show the moon closer to the ocean edge, which was blocked by stratus clouds during our session. Just to show what a “perfect” Staircase to The Moon would be.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/80s | F4.5 | ISO 400 | Canon EF300mm f/4L IS USM

Broome has its origin as a pearling centre in Australia. The industry today includes 19 of Australia’s 20 cultured pearl farms and generates annual exports of AUD$200M and employs about 1000 people. In this picture, I used a 100mm lens for the reach and compression to focus attention on the difference between an AUD 10000 and AUD 1000 pearl.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/320s | F3.2 | ISO 500 | Canon EF100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM

Below is a shot capturing a resident Osprey returning to its nest at a rock cliff. Ospreys are essentially sedentary, though they will range more freely in non-breeding periods and they are frequently faithful to a nest site, using the nest for many years. I used the Canon EF400mm f/5.6L USM lenses for this picture with the camera set to the highest frame speed of 7 fps.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/3200s | F5.6 | ISO 800 | Canon EF400mm f/5.6L USM

Broome will especially appeal to bird enthusiasts as it is home to more than 330 species of birds. This is more than one-third of Australia’s total species and includes 55 species of shorebirds, which is nearly a quarter of the world’s total. In the picture of a flock of black-necked stilts, I used a 300mm lens instead of 400mm lens as the longer lens will crop off part of the colony.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 1/3200s | F5.0 | ISO 200 | Canon EF300mm f/4L IS USM

This area is home to one of the most photogenic and unique seascapes I have seen anywhere in Australia and the rocky area holds many dinosaur footprints. To achieve a serenity feel in the bright sunlight, I used a 10 stop neutral density, polariser and graduated natural density filter with the camera secured on a tripod.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 25s | F11.0 | ISO 50 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

The low light pollution at Broome meant that we could also enjoy astrophotography. We were lucky to have a shooting star streaking by when we shot this Milky Way photo. The excellent dynamic range of the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV  meant we could shoot at higher ISO and not worry about noise.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV | 30s | F4.5 | ISO 3200 | Canon EF16-35mm f/4L IS USM

Learn more from Jensen’s travel and photography tips on his website at http://www.jensenchuaphotography.com.sg/.

You may also view his works at https://500px.com/jensenchua.

To find out more about travel packages to Western Australia by Jetabout Holidays, click here.

*This trip was sponsored by Tourism Western Australia