As the weather cools, especially during the night we can expect to see fungi in big numbers sprouting up.
This season should be exceptional when you consider the amount of rain we have had all up the eastern coast.
I am happy to admit I have some plans in place to get out and about over the next couple of months to see what I can come up with.
Right now, as far as I'm concerned, is the start of the peak fingi season - the best time for photographing fungi is usually the months of April, May and June.
It would not be a surprise, however, on the back of the rain, if fungi is showing now. Certainly they are small subjects, but the images can be quite spectacular.
I don't mind admitting it's a photographic time I look forward to each year.
It's probably fair to say we don't have the variety of Bowerbirds, nor with quite the same wonderful colour and displays that they have in Papua New Guinea, but they're nonetheless an incredibly interesting subject.
I've spent quite a few years travelling around photographing them.
Probably the most common is the Great Bowerbird. From my experience, they can be found pretty much all the way from Broome northward and across the Cape in far north Queensland.
Great Bowerbirds aren't hard to find. They can be close to homes, playing fields and, in Townsville for instance, in the common and along the waterfront.
We are fortunate to have some excellent locations right on our doorstep.
Some areas tend to start earlier with their fungi display than others,.
The first spot I tend to visit each year is the Blue Mountains where there are some great little spots.
Also not too far from us are also good areas in the Watagans, Chichester rainforest, and the Barrington Tops.
One of my favourite days is a great drive up past Gresford and over the hills to Chichester area.
It's not only scenic and relaxing, but there are a great number of subjects - and a great variety too it, must be said - in the area.
Sometimes, though, you may visit an area thinking the time is perfect, only to find none.
Believe me I've experienced this more than once. It can nonetheless be very frustrating but it is all part of the game.
Let's now look at methods of photographing fungi. I should point out other photographers have there own methods, but this is what seems to work for me.
First check your equipment ... camera flash, one main and one small unit for back light.
A tripod, preferably one that goes down to ground level. A cable release is very handy, and a light towel or sheet to place on ground to help you keep dry as it's usually quite damp. It keeps the leaches at bay too.
A couple of points that will help, when you find a subject.
Make sure you set up the camera square with the subject, in focus from left to right. This is very important as you have limited depth of field working with Macro lens.
Settings for the camera start shutter are speed 200, F11 ISO 200, adjust your Fstop to get perfect natural light, set you flash on manual 1/16 power.
Those settings are short duration and also help to correct any motion, but at the same time I recommend using the cable release.
This leaves you free to use your small back or side light with this light, set at 1/16 power take shots.
I do hope this helps younger photographers who may be looking to photograph fungi for the first time.