Exposure is a series of photo galleries showcasing photographic talent in Australia. Our featured photographers will share their best shots and give us an insight into both their creative and technical processes. If you are interested in being featured in Exposure, or know any photo buffs who might be, contact us at cnet@cnet.com.au.

Chris Dalton

Photographer: Chris Dalton

Shooting subject: Portraiture, Landscape, Weddings, Sports

Equipment: Nikon D200, Nikon D70, Nikon 18-200mm VR lens, 18-70mm, 70-300mm, 50mm f1.8, Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 and 200-500mm lenses.

After studying Visual Arts and a Diploma in Multimedia, Chris Dalton says it took him a while to find a medium for his creative outlet. Initially picking up photography as a means of creating stock images for the Web sites he was creating, he then realised he enjoyed the photography more than the Web site work.

Purchasing his first digital SLR, a Nikon D70, in 2002, he discovered a love for capturing sunrises and sunsets around his then-home in Manly Vale, Sydney. He was torn between wanting to surf the waves and wanting to take photos of them. As he built up a decent-sized collection of approximately 30,000 images, he began doing the odd photography job -- a wedding here and there, some family portraits, and then selling them as canvas prints or framed works.

It was around this time he captured his most popular image -- lightning striking over the Opera House with the Harbour Bridge in the foreground. Taken at 11:35pm when a storm rolled through Sydney, he had decided to go for a drive to check it out. Crazy and lucky, he says. This image was the winner of the Casino Beef Week 1st prize, his first photography award.

His photography business, IndigoReef Photography, is named after his two boxer dogs, Indigo and Reef. Working in the corporate arena, he also shoots weddings, portraits and covers sporting events, his favourite being the Foster's ASP Quiksilver Pro on the Gold Coast for which Foster's comissioned him.

"I love capturing weddings and feel so privileged to be a part of such a special time in the bride and groom's lives. You cannot help but get caught in the emotions of the moment. My job is to capture it."

He is in the process of organising his first exhibition, something he has wanted to do for a long time. The event will be advertised on his website.

Camera details: f25 - shutter 30sec - 25mm

Sydney Harbour Lighting
One night about 11:30pm, a storm rolled through Sydney. I was living at Manly at the time and thought I would pack my camera and see if there were any photo opportunities. I was standing alone at Blues Point, watching the lightning and taking some shots every now and then. I got several great photos from the night and this one was the best. This photo has won me more awards than any other in my portfolio and always seems to get a response. I almost packed up my gear to head home when I thought I would stay for just another couple of minutes. Luck or good management I don't know, but one thing I do know is that if I think there is even a hint of a photo opportunity I make the effort to be there.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f5.6- shutter 1/125 - ISO 200 - 18mm

Emma and Shaun's Wedding
This image was taken in Ballina, Northern NSW. The wedding ceremony had finished, we had taken most of the photos for the afternoon. I had some images of the couple sitting down and had advised that I had all the images I needed and for them to just relax and enjoy each other's company. I was tinkering with my camera gear and could see they were relaxing more and enjoying the moment with each other, I grabbed this shot before they had time to realise. It turned out to be one of their favourite images.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f14 - shutter 5 sec - ISO 560 - 46mm

Byron Bay Lighthouse
I was in Byron for some business one day and thought I would take my camera to the lighthouse to try and get some shots. This proved to be the pick, there was something special about being there alone at night.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f6.3 - shutter 1/2000 - ISO 400 - 500mm

Duranbah Northern NSW
This guy was surfing pretty well all afternoon. The sun was behind me and going down quickly. By having the sun behind me it created almost a thick glass looking texture in the spray from the big turns. I just love the explosive power of this surfer and love the movement frozen in time.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f8 - shutter 1/250 - ISO 200 - 18mm

Palm Beach QLD
Messing around with white balance I captured this scene on my afternoon walk.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f11 - shutter 1/500 - ISO 400 - 18mm

Cradle Mountain Tasmania
I visited this exact location the afternoon before this image and couldn't get out of the car due to the heavy snow and miserable weather. This was the last day I was in Cradle Mountain and thought I would leave with out getting a decent image. When I arrived to see this sight I was truly blown away by its beauty and tranquility. I was glad I got to see it the day before and think that it made me appreciate this day even more. I walked to the summit and took some photos looking back down to the car park. This is truly a beautiful place with an ability to turn ugly at the blink of an eye.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f3.5 - shutter 1/30 - ISO 560 - 18mm

Currumbin Beach Qld
I was down at the beach taking photos of Elephant Rock and thought I would hang around the point as the sun went down to see what images I could get. The colours in the sky amazed me. The surf was pretty good and I loved the image of this lone surfer looking back to see what the surf was going to be like the next day, or perhaps he was looking back thankful for the surf he had just had.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f7.1 - shutter 1/2500 - ISO 400 - 500mm

Josh Kerr, Fosters ASP Quiksilver Pro at Snapper Rocks 2007
I was fortunate enough to be the photographer for Fosters at the Quiksilver Pro in March 2007. I was particularly interested in watching Josh Kerr, a Rookie on the tour and a brilliant surfer. He is known for his aerial antics, however in his first year has proven that he has more tricks up his sleeve than just boosting airs. I love this image with Q1 and other Surfers Paradise buildings in the background.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f1.8 - shutter 1/8000 - ISO200 - 50mm

Sunset
Sun setting in the background and an experimentation with my 50mm 1.8 lens. Another one of those images taken on my afternoon walk.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f4.5 - shutter 30sec - ISO 200 24mm

Burleigh Headland
More lightning, this time looking from Burleigh Headland back towards Surfers Paradise. This bolt of lightning like so many others this night was making contact with Q. It is amazing to watch the electricity seek out the spire of Q1, there are other shots of the lightning traveling horizontally, and then straight down to Q1. Perhaps the Penthouse has it's pitfalls.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f10 - shutter 1/350 -ISO 100 - 31mm

Skater
This young guy was ripping at a local skate comp in Cabarita, Northern NSW.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f13 - shutter 1/640 -ISO 640 - 18mm

Palm Beach Surf Life Saving Club
Palm Beach Surf Life Saving Club wanted some images for their monthly brochure. This is one of the Life Savers who volunteer their time to save the lives of people on the beach. This shot was my favourite and although didn't make the cover, it was my pick for the day. It was one of those picture perfect days, the sun was starting to get low and the colours were starting to become vibrant in the afternoon light.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f3.5 - shutter 1/60 - ISO 200 - 45mm

Experimenting with High Dynamic Range Imaging
This is my gorgeous daughter Willow. She had just finished feeding and was lying on her back so peacefully. I love her eyes in this image and the high dynamic range removes any distractions.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
Camera details: f6.3 - shutter 1/80 - ISO 640 - 18mm

Tom and Kelly - Mona Vale NSW
It rained heavily all day and the only time it stopped was when we were due to be taking photos outside. I love the cheeky smile on Tom's face and the passion in the kiss from Kelly. You hear people say that some couples are a match made in heaven, well these two are a classic example.

Photo by: Chris Dalton, IndigoReef Photography
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