When they closed their Lavender Farm on Yarramalong Road, Warwick and Margaret O'Rourke looked for something else to fill the leisure hours they intended to enjoy. They are both very keen photographers. It was logical therefore that they should look to activity that allowed them to take photos
Armed with a four wheel drive, an off road Complete Campsite camper trailer and their photo gear, they set off for adventure in the Australian outback.
They travelled from Yarramalong through country New South Wales, to the Flinders Ranges, Lake Eyre and across the Oodnadatta Track to Alice Springs. From there, they headed further west across the Tanami Desert to the Bungle Bungles, Fitzroy Crossing, Broome and Cape Leveque at the tip of the Dampier Peninsula, and then south to 80 Mile Beach and the Ningaloo Reef. They returned via Perth, the West Australian Goldfields towns and the Nullarbor Plain.
They discovered that everything they were told about the outback was true. The landscapes are vast, the air fresh and clear, the night sky is filled with multitudes of stars and the people are friendly and welcoming. And although the outback is magnificently beautiful, above all it displays a spiritualism that is hard to describe.
If there was a highlight of the journey, it was the Karijini National Park and its gorges. Virtually unheard of in New South Wales, the Karijini was a photographer's paradise. Gorges to be climbed into and out of, streams and waterfalls to be negotiated. And within the gorges, iron filled rich red rocks, interleaved with layers of bright blue asbestos – perfectly safe in its natural state and green and gold forests dotted with the white trunks of the bloodwood tree.
Needless to say, in the course of a journey covering more than 22,000 kilometres, they each took several thousand photographs along the way.
Warwick and Margaret will be exhibiting a small selection of their photographs at the Wyong Creek Hall on the weekend of 7, 8 and 9 March 2014, from 5 to 8 pm on Friday, and 10 am to 8 pm on Saturday and Sunday. On Friday refreshments will be available.
Wyong Creek Hall is a 50 minute drive from Wahroongah, via the the MI Pacific Motorway (old F3).
Entrants may wish to make a gold coin donation for the benefit of the Yarramalong Rural Fire Services.
All are welcome to attend. Prints of the photographs will be available for purchase.