WA is blessed with a significant number of heritage properties. Fremantle alone is an absolute treasure-trove. That’s why you should know there’s still time to enter the Heritage in Focus photography competition, with entries closing on February 12.
Run by the National Trust of Western Australia, the Heritage in Focus competition was launched as part of the 2022 Western Australian Heritage Festival. There are prizes for winners and runners-up in each category, including camera equipment vouchers.
“The National Trust of Western Australia connects communities to the value of heritage through conservation, interpretation, events and education,” a spokesperson for the trust says.
“Heritage is something we have inherited from the past and is valued enough today to leave for future generations. It can incorporate both the tangible and intangible, and is present in many forms including landscapes, landmarks, places, buildings, objects, languages, customs and ceremonies.”
The rules are straightforward. You just have to make sure your photograph “features a heritage place managed by the National Trust of Western Australia such as a building, landscape or an object”. Also note that the use of flash photography or tripods is not permitted inside National Trust properties.
All entries must be submitted via the form at nationaltrust.org.au/wa-heritage-festival-2022/heritage-in-focus/ and received by midnight, February 12, 2023. Winners and details of prize giving will be announced during the 2023 Australian Heritage Festival which runs from April 10 to May 14.
SOME TIPS FOR PHOTOGRAPHING HERITAGE BUILDINGS, LANDSCAPES & OBJECTS
- Whether you’re using a DSLR or your mobile phone camera, always think about the story you want to tell. What perspective best reveals something significant about the subject and about your relationship to it?
- The part can be just as telling as the whole. Look for details – a door, a window, part of a wall, a bell – and focus on creating a compelling composition. Shapes, textures, patterns: they’re discoverable at every level, from the microcosm to the macrocosm.
- Incorporate signage into abstract geometric compositions. It’s a great way to zero in on the specific while creating an otherworldly atmosphere. After all: the past is another country where they do things differently.
- With landscapes, always try to include some evidence of human habitation, either a person or an object. But don’t make a big deal of it; push it off to the side. The effect can be sublime.
- Heritage buildings shot using unusual, dynamic angles can introduce tension into a scene that is otherwise staid and “old-fashioned”. Look for dramatic converging lines and dagger intersections.
- Be aware of your colour palette: muted hues evoke the past, black-and-white even more so. But the past was bright once, too, and restorations invariably feature original colour schemes in all their chromatic glory. Take advantage of them.
- Finally, interiors are especially rich in possibilities. As noted above, flash photography is usually not permitted. That’s a good thing, because natural light, often directional and from a single source such as a window, can be perfect for modelling surfaces and creating tonal contrasts.