Way Down South

Warperup Creek by Paul Amyes on 500px.com
Warperup Creek, Margaret River, Western Australia. Apple iPhone SE panoramic mode. Exposure: 1/1000, f2.2 at ISO 40.


I had the chance to nip down to Margaret River for the day while my partner, Helen, was playing croquet in Bunbury. Most people when they think of Margaret River think about wine or surfing but there is more to the area than that. It is a beautiful part of the world with forests and beaches that are home to some very spectacular flora and fauna. I was looking for orchids, but as I had the dog with me I wanted to tire her out before so she would be more settled while I was on the hunt. I don’t know whether you, my dear readers are fans of so-called cosy crime TV such as Morse, Lewes, Midsummer Murder, or Endeavour, but when you watch those it is always the dog walker that finds the body. To be more precise it is the dog who finds the body. Well we were just walking along a track when Frida – the dog – took off like a rocket into the undergrowth and after much thrashing around emerged holding a large femur. As far as she was concerned she had found treasure and after a couple of minutes later thundered back into the bush and reappeared with another. At this stage I was wondering whether she had found a body and whether I should have a look, but I decided to have a look to see what sort of bones they were. Now whenever Frida gets a bone she becomes very possessive and develops a level of distrust befitting a paranoid schizophrenic. Fortunately she hands over the bone nicely as she obviously feels that she a great big pile of the things and again dives into the bush to return with the skull. Definitely not human, much to my relief, it was a western grey kangaroo which had obviously been hit by a car and managed to drag itself to these bushes to die. My overseas readers may not realise this but ‘roos are a bit like rabbits, if they get dazzled by car headlights they will just sit in the road rather than take off. Unlike rabbits they make more of a mess of your car.


Alas Poor Yorick by Paul Amyes on 500px.com
Frida’s treasure. The skull of a western grey kangaroo round near the busy Caves Road, Margaret River, Western Australia. Canon EOS 6D with a Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM lens. Exposure: 1/400, f5.6 at ISO 100.


Thankfully after all that excitement we managed to find what we were looking for which were leafless  and hare orchids.


Leafless Orchid by Paul Amyes on 500px.com
Leafless orchid (Praecoxanthus aphyllus), Margaret River, Western Australia. Canon EOS6d with Canon EF 100mm f2.8 IS L macro lens. Exposure: 1/100, f11, at ISO 1600.



Rise Above The Rest by Paul Amyes on 500px.com
Hare orchid (Leporella fimbriata), Margaret River, Western Australia. Canon EOS6d with Canon EF 100mm f2.8 IS L macro lens. Exposure: 1/60, f8, ISO 800.



Mistaken Identity

Easy Rider Horse
Easy Rider Horse, Kulin Tin Horse Highway, Western Australia


The other day I got an email from 500px telling me that some of the pictures I had listed with them for licensing could not be accepted because I didn’t have model releases for them. On contacting 500px I got the following reply:

 “We recently ran an algorithm to detect images that had people in them with no release attached, this was our attempt to speed up the ingestion process since we are working through a bit of a backlog at the moment. It has certainly been effective in identifying unreleased photos, but it sometimes tags photos that don’t have people in them so we still have some tweaking to do :)”

500px Prime

Now I can sort of understand how the shot at the top got selected by the computer as the sculpture does have some anthropomorphic features. But this next one sort of defies any sort of reasoning.

White Spider Orchid
White spider orchid, caladenia longicauda, is one of Western Australia’s most well known orchids. Mokine, Western Australia


Tiananmen Square.
A stone lion guarding Tiananmen Square.

Here the program picked the face of Chairman Mao on the wall of the Tiananmen gate tower to the Forbidden City north of Tiananmen Square. I don’t think I’d have much chance of getting a model release from Mao Zedong  seeing as he’s been dead for 39 years! I also think it’s a bit late to get a release from the subject of this next photo.

Australian Gothic
Australian Gothic. An old kangaroo skull found on Mount Brown.


I was even expected to get a model release from Elvis Presley for this next shot.
York Motor Show 2013
There’s a little bit of Elvis in all of us. York Vintage Car Show 2013. York, Western Australia

The annoying thing was that were 134 photos with this error so it doesn’t inspire a lot of faith in 500px to actually do a good job of selling the work because when you buy stock you enter what you want into a search engine and their computer has just demonstrated that it has no clue as to the subject content despite captioning and tagging.