Stormchasing in Brisbane

“Everywhere you go – always take the weather with you” goes the classic song from aussie band Crowded House and so far I have done just that. The first day I got to Brisbane it was cloudy, windy and only 22-23 degrees (bloody freezing cold when you come from tropical Cairns!). The next day it was warm and sunny and as Spring has really hit Brisbane the temperature and humidity has gone up every day since with some 33-34 degree days! So I have indeed brought the weather with me. Spring in Brisbane has added something I didn’t bring: thunderstorms! It’s a natural part of Spring in the tropics and the last few days have brought some impressive storms late afternoon and some much needed rain for Brissy.

Storms and the dramatic cloud formations and lightning are excellent for photography – just make sure you can quickly find some cover so you and your equipment doesn’t drown and/or get hit by lightning! Tropical storms can come and go fast! I managed to chase and catch a Brisbane thunderstorm the other day at sunset and here’s a one hour sequence (as always click on picture to see large size):

Click to see larger size on my web - (c) Flemming Bo Jensen

5.33 pm – sunset, something is going on in Sky Theater

Click to see larger size on my web - (c) Flemming Bo Jensen

6.03 pm – a storm definitely on it’s way!

Click to see larger size on my web - (c) Flemming Bo Jensen

6.10 pm – storm is here – run Forest, run for cover now!

Click to see larger size on my web - (c) Flemming Bo Jensen

6.30 pm – I am safe under a roof at the Eagle Street Pier shooting lightning

The shot at 6.10pm was shot just as the rain was coming – I ran for cover and made it to the Eagle Street Pier just as the very heavy rain hit. It was a fairly impressive storm; it raged for about 30 minutes and then it was gone as quickly as it appeared. It was heaps of fun chasing and shooting it, from where I shot I knew I could get to cover in 2 minutes so no worries. Also very cool to get shots with actual lightning in it, a first for me. I know it’s not the worlds largest bolt of lightning but hey it’s there and I captured it and feel I can now add ‘Stormchaser’ to my business card!

There are a few more new Brisbane shots in my gallery.

Randomness

  • My hair was fairly long when I got here, it grows fast as it is and I think the sun here helped it even more (and bleached it as well). So it was longer than ever and I had two choices: get a haircut or buy a surfboard (to go with my long bleached surfer hair). I opted for the haircut. Now; of course I made the mistake of saying the words “it’s too long; you can cut a fair bit off” to a hair dresser ‘cos they just love doing very short David Beckham style cuts and I am no Beckham. Bugger! Now it is too bloody short. I should have gone for the surfboard. Grow hair, grow!
  • These are tough times. The Australian national Rugby team (called The Wallabies) has been playing in the Rugby World Championship in France. Now, no one plays Rugby like the Aussies and The Wallabies are the best bloody Rugby team in the world bar none strewth! Nothing short of winning the finals is acceptable; actually Australia should just be named World Champs of all time. Unfortunately, real life got it the way and last Saturday Australia lost to England in the quarter final. Not only did the Wallabies lose in the quarter finals…but to England. No no no no 😦 These are indeed hard times. Now; the only way to deal with this is the way Australians always deal with any defeat in any sport – complete denial!!! “No that never happened, we never lost to England, England can’t play rugby!”

Quote of the day:

“We’ll burn that bridge when we get to it” – Flemming Bo Jensen

I take credit for this one 🙂 I know I probably didn’t invent it but I’ve used it heaps especially at work!

6 responses to “Stormchasing in Brisbane

  1. I like the lightning shot. It’s interesting to note that, unlike Kodachrome, a digital camera doesn’t turn the sky purple when you do a longer exposure to capture lighting.

  2. I’m impressed with your storm series and impressed with the storm’s swift entrance and exit, too. Sounds like a lot of fun.

  3. Thanks to both of you, glad you like the series.

    A bit about white balance:
    The sky turning purple is due to the white balance of the film or digital shot, not whether you shoot analog or digital. Film or slides have a ‘built in’ white balance (ie for Kodachrome daylight it would be around 5400 degree Kelvin) – for digital if you shoot in RAW you can apply any white balance you like when you develop the RAW shot on your computer with no loss of quality (one of the major advantages of RAW). If you shoot in JPG then you’re basically letting the camera guess the ‘correct’ (there’s no such thing, it’s a creative decision) white balance – or using one of the cameras built in settings ie ‘landscape’ or ‘portrait’.

    For this shot I could have gone more purple, but opted for a more neutral balance.

  4. Hey Flemming. You really take some amazing shots. I am currently studying in Brisbane. Whenever I mis my hometown, Copenhagen, I take a look at your beautiful pictures from “Søerne”. Tonite I am going to kangaroo point with some danish friends and try to get some nice pictures of the eagle st pier too! Keep up the good and inspiratious work.

    Daniel

  5. Hey Daniel, thanks heaps for your comment, glad you like my shot! You know my pictures are for sale should you wish to have “Søerne” at poster size on your walls in Brisbane 😀

    Hope you had a good night at Kangaroo Point!

    Flemming

  6. congratulations on getting your first lightning shots Flemming ! Nice exposure too. Having a car certainly helps if you want to chase storms that is for sure ! 😉

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