You do not need to own a fancy digital SLR in order to capture the moment. Some of the pictures in this article were taken from a mobile phone. You will be surprised at how far technology has evolved and the improvement in resolution quality as each model progresses.
One important observation when snapping up this genre of photography is that the photographer has about a window of 5-15 seconds to capture one nice photo. The light and colour of the sunset changes quickly with every click of a shutter. Thus by the end of the sunset, your portfolio should offer an assortment of contrast and hues.
Melbourne has a variety of locations with a picturesque setting to choose from. The following places are a must for avid photographers:
The Rialto Observation Deck on level 55 used to be home to the highest lookout in Melbourne with superb city views. Since 2010, The Lui Bar and Vue De Monde restaurant (owner Shannon Bennett) have taken over the premises. The observation deck is open to patrons however subject to capacity. There is also a strict dress code and visitors are advised to dress appropriately as it is a high end establishment. You do not have to fork out $150 for a meal in order to enjoy the wonderful views. The Lui Bar is perfect for drinks or snacks after work with friends.
The Lui Bar Level 55, Rialto
525 Collins Street Melbourne VIC 3000
Opening Hours: Monday 5:30pm to midnight
Tuesday midday to midnight
Wednesday midday to midnight
Thursday and Friday midday to late
Saturday 5:30pm to late
Sunday midday to early evening
Eureka Skydeck 88 is the highest viewing platform in the Southern Hemisphere. It offers magnificent 360 degree skyline views, extending from Docklands to even Mount Dandenong. They have only one outdoor deck so it may become very crowded (and windy) during the busy sunset period. It is advisable to reach there early and possibly setup your tripod beforehand. Most of the views have to be photographed through glass so a lens filter to counter any reflections is handy to bring along if you have one. Otherwise, you can still shoot by getting close to the glass as possible and by covering the top of the camera with a jacket to reduce glare.
The beaches stretching from Black Rock to St Kilda offer the perfect backdrop for any sunset photography. If you are in the Mornington Peninsula area, the beaches around Rye, Portsea or Arthurs seat also has beautiful views.
The pedestrian walkway bridges connecting from Flinders St station to the Southbank shopping and restaurant precinct allows you to capture the sunset along with the famous Yarra River. Another bridge near Freshwater Place or on the way to Crown Casino will also give another fresh perspective. If you want to minimise the number of office buildings in the background, there is a bridge along Birrarung Marr worth checking out.
After sunset, the Yarra River becomes alive with vibrant colours that reflect onto the water.
If you live on the other end of town, Sky High in Mount Dandenong has a nice look-out point extending from the Mornington Peninsula to You Yangs regional park.
26 Observatory Road Mount Dandenong VIC 3767
Open 7 days a week including public holidays
• Gates open Monday to Friday 9am-10pm
• Gates open Weekends 8am-10pm
6. The Great Ocean Road.
Entry - free
Last but not least, my personal favourite- the Great Ocean Road.
A landscape photographer's dream, we will bring overseas visitors for a drive down this scenic route and the agenda will always include the 12 Apostles. Technically, only six or so apostle rock statues remain so you must make your way to Port Campbell before the waves wear them down or the Apostles might collapse like the nearby London Bridge rock structure. The long drive is three to four hours drive out of Melbourne so bring along at least two drivers to combat fatigue or stay overnight.