Black and White Photography

Karri Forest I - Forest Light (Archive)

 Karri Forest Light 


John Austin on Karri Forest Light

Light is the fundamental subject of photography, everything we as photographers do is dependent on the light, all of it.  Texture, form and everytthing are the things which modulate this light.

Tragically, and despite the title of this page, Forest Light no longer exists.  Forest light was dependent on an intact forest canopy to hold localised moist air which gently modulated the light in the understory.  Now that the forest canopy has been opened by unsustainable logging, and to a lesser extent "white fella" broadscale fire regimes, forest light no longer exists in the karri forests of Western Australia.


Originally photographing under the karri forest canopy required about three stops increase in exposure.  Now just one stop increase in exposure is uisually enough, in better cases two stops, but canopy removal has allowed harsh dry light into the forest, further dessicating it.  Jarrah forest never stopped as much light as karri, but there was a need to increase exposure there too.

  • Karri Forest I - Forest Light (Archive)
Boorara Karri Forest, Before Logging, Australia, black and white landscapeForest Landscape 2000 - © John Austin Xanthohorroea and Zamia, Macrozamia riedlei, Wilmott Forest, Australia, black and white landscape  - © John Austin Fruiting Zamia, Macrozamia riedlei, Quinninup, Macrozamia riedlei, Australian Forest, black and white landscape - © John Austin Burnt Regen', Karri Forest Quinninup Brook, Australia, black and white landscape - © John Austin
Zamia, Macrozamia riedlei, Australia, black and white landscape - © John Austin Xanthorrhoea, Southern Flinders Ranges, 1983 - © John Austin Xanthorrhoea, in Karri and Marri Forest Giblett State Forest 1997 - © John Austin
Casuarina, in Karri Forest, Wattle State Forest, backlit, 1997 - © John Austin Karri Forest, Borrara State Forest 2002 - © John Austin Smoke Line Obscuring Setting Sun, Mt Frankland, 1988 - © John Austin
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