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About

Awareness

I began my love affair with photography when I was 15. A cover of American Photographer caught my eye in a newsstand. It was an Ansel Adams B&W landscape image. I was smitten.

Beginnings

I saved my pennies and bought my first camera in 1976. It was an Olympus OM-1 - a manual 35mm SLR, which went on several trips to the Himalayas with me and which I still have. I now don't recall why, but I shot mostly with slide film, and I'm glad I did. More recently I had hundreds of slides shot in Thailand, Nepal, and India in the early 1980s cleaned and scanned at 4000 dpi. Even today, the detail in those images matches and surpasses the digital realm.

I was just about to start building my own darkroom when I discovered girls and rock music. My interest in photography was distracted.

Renewal

Years later, divorced and with 3 kids, I began dating a photographer. It didn't last, but she later sold me her back-up camera - a Canon EOS 10D. Welcome to the digital age.

One of the first EOS 5D Mark IIs to arrive in Australia had my name on it, and from November 2008 until it drowned below Weeping Rock in the Blue Mountains in mid-2012, taking out my 16-35mm f2.8L II lens with it, the 5D2 was my main camera.

And the 10D? It wasn't worth selling, but it was still a good camera, so I sent it to the US to get converted by LifePixel into an Infrared DSLR. I chose a Deep B&W IR filter, equivalent to 830nm. One of the best gear decisions I ever made.

Today

I shoot exclusively with Canons, including the EOS 3 - the last film SLR made by Canon and which still surpasses most DSLRs today, eg it shoots at an incredible 10 fps. After using a friend's old 1-point AF EOS 5D Mark II for almost a year as my main camera though, I decided not to fork out for the 5D Mark III, but instead buy a second-hand EOS 1Ds Mark III - my dream DSLR. Until recently Canon's top-of-the-range camera, with a price tag to match, it can now be bought for much less than a 5D Mark III. Such is the changing world of digital photography.

I also upgraded the IR 10D with a new-near 5D Mark II that a friend had had converted to infrared - also by LifePixel and also with a Deep B&W IR filter. This rather special IR camera is a joy to use, and to this day brings me that "wow" reaction to what it can achieve in the right light. Apart from being rare enough to be hired by an ad agency to shoot a TV commercial, the IR 5D2 produced most of the photographs in my first solo exhibition - Fields of Focus and Light (the rest being shot with the IR 10D).

Exhibitions
  • Add On - 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015
  • Australian Geographic Magazine/ANZANG - 2013 and 2015
  • Fields of Focus and Light - 2014 (Solo Exhibition)
  • The Moody Blue - 2015 (Solo Exhibition)

Recent Awards
  • Gold, Silver, and Bronze - 2012 International Loupe Awards, Amateur Section
  • Finalist - 2013 and 2015 Australian Geographic/ ANZANG Nature Photographer of the Year
  • Finalist - 2013 and 2014 Australian Landscape Photographer of the Year
  • Silver and Bronze - 2013 and 2014 International Loupe awards, Amateur and Open Sections

Peter Hill
April 2015