on landscape The online magazine for landscape photographers

Outback Trees

Benjamin Stevens

Benjamin Stevens

I am a landscape and nature photographer based in South Australia. I am passionately curious about the natural environment and love to photograph small and intimate scenes. I prefer to go deep, rather than wide and really get to know a place intimately.
I also enjoy writing about mindfulness, creativity, and philosophy and I am a firm believer in the power of mindfulness for creative photography and sound mental health.


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Firstly, this portfolio depicts my love of Australian trees in the desert. I love their shapes and forms and the way in which they interact with the landscape. I love their bark, which comes in such a varied range of colours and textures. Foliage too, in its various forms of life and decay, can provide much visual interest.

Iā€™m also interested in the cyclical nature of life and death. Some trees die, and other trees take their place. Some others senesce or go dormant until the next rains arrive. I am endlessly fascinated by their ability to survive prolonged dry periods ā€“ and these are the stories I am inspired by. To some extent, the themes of life, death and the struggle for survival are metaphors from my own life.

My images were taken in the Flinders Ranges, South Australia ā€“ an area which has been in a severe drought for the past three years. The Flinders Ranges is a semi-arid desert, but rainfall has been very much below average during this time. Even though the plants (and many of the animals) are adapted to the desert climate, many are nonetheless showing signs of severe stress. It is one of my favourite locations, and I regularly visit with the same sense of excitement I had on my first visit. But with so much investment in the story of the landscape, it has been sad to see many plants and animals meet their end recently.

To some, the Flinders Ranges landscape is bleak, barren, and uninviting. But I see the infinite beauty of the natural world. There is beauty in death and there is beauty in the struggle for life. There is much to see for the photographer who is willing to see it. Benjamin Stevens 1

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