The Passerby – Torquay

The Passerby - Torquay

The Landing: A cockatoo touches down at Spring Creek Reserve. These birds are part of the fabric of this town – the flash of white wings and that raucous call are familiar sights and sounds in our parks and backyards, morning and night. They’re hardly what you’d call a subtle or even graceful bird but moments like this one are a reminder that they are marvels of evolutionary engineering, built to do something humans can only dream of – fly.

Behind Hue: There’s just something about a rainbow. And this coastline with its ever-changing weather and light has delivered some of the most vivid and spectacular examples I’ve ever seen. But their appearances are fleeting and many go unseen. In this part of the world it’s always worth a quick glance over your shoulder or you might miss a moment like this one at Jan Juc.

A walk with friends: I never plan my pictures, I just head out and see what the town puts in front of me. There was just something about this woman, immaculately dressed in white with her dogs and sunhat at Point Danger. What is her story? I like when a picture not only captures a moment but asks us questions, too.

Patrol: Yellow and red. The colours of the beach flags and those who watch over them. The colours of safety. I managed to capture those distinctive – and important – hues in a moment of symmetry between the water and the grass at Torquay as the next generation of lifesavers honed their craft.

Front Row: A cheap plastic chair left over from an event at the nearby surf club sits forgotten and unoccupied at Torquay beach. With no behind to support, it could look forward and take in the empty beach and striking headland at Rocky Point. As the town continues to grow and change at an unprecedented rate and the new replaces the old, quiet moments like these are harder to find.


Haze: Bent low by the prevailing winds, the trees of Point Danger are a well known sight to anyone who has spent some time in this part of the world. On this day, those same winds were bringing a seaspray that caught the last light of the day and turned it to a golden haze – a cool, salty veil that I’d like to imagine might have brought some relief to those dry, twisted branches and boughs.

Pete: This guy is a survivor. A regular at the surf beach, Pete doesn’t let his loss stop him. Fearless and always hungry, he’s a one-legged opportunist who always seem to appear whenever someone arrives with hot chips. Gulls often lose feet, usually to fishing line and this image is a reminder to take care of the beaches that bring us so much joy.

Backwash: A new lens arrived in the mail and with the light fading I made the dash to the beach to try it out. I stepped out of the car and this happened within seconds. With a big swell running and a king tide, a large wave slammed into the seawall at Torquay before rebounding back out into the water where it met another wave on its way shoreward. The resulting collision was … well, you can see for yourself.

The Cool Change: After a long, blazing hot day a cold front arrived almost without warning. This family at Torquay were caught by the change, making the dash for cover in their thongs. It’s a moment that won’t be unfamiliar to any beachgoer who’s been caught in a summer squall.

The Swing: As the years go by – at least in my experience – it seems almost impossible to escape the press of adult life and to return to the moments of freedom and innocence we enjoyed in childhood. But sometimes, often with the help of a child, we can find that place again, even if it is just for a few fleeting moments. When I photographed what I think is a grandfather and grandson on the swings above Cosy Corner, I couldn’t see their faces but I’m betting if I could, they would both be smiling.