Depth of Field — An Australian Fortnight

In photography, depth of field is a term used to describe the zone within a shot that appears acceptably sharp. It is one of the most powerful tools a photographer has to draw attention towards (or away from) a particular subject. It also happens to be the title I chose for a new series.

“Depth of Field” will evolve, I’m sure, but the basic premise is to showcase a chosen theme in photos. I hope that it may also eventually serve as a reminder that though we so often choose to focus on the specifics, there is really much more depth behind every challenge and opportunity.

In September of last year, I humbly accepted the opportunity to travel to Australia alongside the Five Nations Beef Alliance. I still struggle to write of the trip, though it’s never far from my mind. The journey ended up being so more than just a conference; it was a journey through cultures, a tour of industry, an exploration of identity and many really painful sunburns.

"Night Light" Just a few nights before the renowned Brisbane Festival, which paints the sky, as well as the water, with light.

“Night Light”
Just a few nights before the renowned Brisbane Festival, which paints the sky, as well as the water, with light.

Brisbane - Debra Murphy

“A Brisbane Day”
With a population of over 2 million, if the capital of Queensland ever rests, it’s mid-day, mid-week, while the people work

Grounded - Debra Murphy“Grounded”

An exhibit at the Queensland Maritime Museum, this is the ST Forceful, a coal-fired steam tug built in 1925. Behind her rests “Australia’s largest World War II Veteran,” the HMAS Diamantina.

"Tweet Deck" - Debra Murphy

“Tweet Deck”
Our tour was rich with wildlife and the ocean in particular, presented life vastly different from that of the Canadian plains. I speculate these to be Phalacrocorax sulcirostris or Little Black Cormorants.

Charlotte's Forest - Debra Murphy

“Charlotte’s Forest”
If you’re arachnophobic, it’s likely you won’t believe any spider to be entirely harmless, but this spiny orb-weaver is fairly timid and not considered dangerous. Its web can be an incredible 2m in diameter.

Tranquil Waters - Debra Murphy

“Tranquil Waters”

Chuckles - Debra Murphy

This is a kookaburra. With a song that so closely resembles human laughter, every time a kookaburra pipes up, you can be certain a Canadian tried — and failed — to say its name.

Friendly Foe - Debra Murphy

“Friendly Foe”

The Alpha Bull - Debra Murphy

“The Alpha Bull”
This photo was taken at a ranch we toured near Rolleston. The majority of Queensland cattle have Bos indicus genetics, increasing their tolerance to ticks and heat.

Red Drover - Debra Murphy

“A Drover’s ‘G’day'”
Any number of things can drive a man to drove, including drought. One of the biggest challenges can be finding water for the herd.

Hands Full - Debra Murphy

“Hands Full”
Yeah, look: this is a unique handling system, that allows one person to “man” many gates, making sorting manageable with even a small crew.

Great Day, eh? - Debra Murphy

“Great Day, eh?”
John Masswohl, Director of Government and International Relations at Canadian Cattlemen’s Association.

Thoughtful Farewell - Debra Murphy

“Thoughtful Farewell”

Until our next dive into Depth of Field, hooroo.


Debra Murphy

Debra Murphy is a Field Editor based out of central Alberta, where she never misses a moment to capture with her camera the real beauty of agriculture. Follow her on Twitter @RealAg_Debra


Wheat Pete’s Word, Oct 18: Cutting hay, calibrating monitors and harvesting corn

In this episode of The Word, host Peter Johnson takes us through this week's crop notes, and questions around cereals, hay, weed control and poor crops. Have a question you’d like Johnson to address? Or some yield results to send in? Leave him a message at 1-844-540-2014, send him a tweet (@wheatpete), or email him…Read more »


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