Matt Evans is a NSW based photographer who set himself an alternative Explorer Challenge that would push most people’s patience buttons just that little too far. Matt’s also a perseverer though, and it paid off with stunning results. Here’s Matt’s challenge story:
Being fairly new to photography, to try and immerse myself into it I set myself the goal to shoot the sunrise every morning last year in what became my ‘Sunny Side Up Project’, about half way in I was contacted by Henry from We are Explorers about setting myself a side challenge for his NSW explorer challenge, with the idea to showcase that there is more to NSW than just Sydney. Which I thought was a great idea, since I was originally from country NSW and now living in Sydney.
So I set myself the challenge to try and find a kangaroo to shoot in one of my sunrise sessions. I was originally planning on trying to find one on a beach, because they can be easier to shoot as they’re used to having humans around, and in the country they’re very skittish and quickly hop away. I never ended up getting to the spot on the beach at Potato Point I had in mind, so I just kept on waiting and hoping I’d come across some one morning.
As the months quickly went by I thought I had no chance and was going to let Henry down, and over the Christmas break was going to be my last chance. I was in Bathurst over that time and on the 23rd of Dec, I went out to a spot at Brewongle. I’d been there once before and thought I might have a chance. It was drizzling rain and i’d grabbed a few shots of this lone tree in a field I liked, a few sheep were there grazing, but no kangaroos. I had just hopped in my car and was reversing out of a driveway when all of a sudden I noticed this gathering of 5 big kangaroos. I quickly pulled back in and grabbed my camera and went over to the nearest fence while trying not to scare them, they all stopped and looked down at me for a few seconds, before quickly hopping away. My camera wasn’t really set up at the time for firing off shots at anything fast moving, but I just managed to make a couple of tweaks and fire a few shots off before they all disappeared over the horizon.
It certainly turned that drab wet morning into something quite special.
Then if that wasn’t enough, the next morning I went out, to Mount Panorama, and I spotted 3 more, which happily posed for me for a few seconds as the sun came breaking through the clouds.