Monday Memories: Sublime Sunset at St Kilda Pier, Melbourne. Sunset at St Kilda Pier, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Copyright © 2022 Terence Carter / Grantourismo. All Rights Reserved.

Monday Memories: Sublime Sunset at St Kilda Pier, Melbourne

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We were blessed with brilliant weather during our Melbourne stay on this particular trip. No, really. While our Sydney friends griped about having experienced one of the worst summers ever, we were soaking up the sunshine in a city that can famously serve up four seasons in one hour.

On one of our last days in Melbourne, while on a photo shoot at The Prince hotel in St Kilda, I noticed that the weather appeared ripe for a wonderful sunset, with clear conditions overhead and some wispy clouds floating over the horizon. St Kilda pier is a bit of an icon of this fashionable suburb and known for the occasional glorious sunset.

Sometimes it fizzles out to nothing (something that often happened to me in Dubai while trying to shoot a Burj al Arab silhouetted at sunset), and sometimes you get a chance to take a photo like the one above.

Travel magazine photo editors love these shots, because you have an identifiable landmark and plenty of headroom to lay type over – they often end up getting used as an opening page spread of a story.

To get this shot I literally ran from the photo shoot at the hotel to St Kilda pier, snapped off a dozen frames, and then ran back to finish off the shoot.

I would normally have my trusty Manfrotto tripod to take this photo but it was still set up in one of the hotel rooms for the shoot! Because of this I had toshoot at a higher ISO speed (@ ISO1250) than I normally would and with a much shallower depth of field.

It was too good an opportunity to miss in a city where the locals joke that if you don’t like the weather at the moment, just wait five minutes.

Details: Nikon D700, 80-200mm F2.8G ED-AF @ F2.8 @ 1/200th second @ ISO1250.


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Terence Carter is an editorial food and travel photographer and infrequent travel writer with a love of photographing people, places and plates of food. After living in the Middle East for a dozen years, he settled in South-East Asia a dozen years ago with his wife, travel and food writer and sometime magazine editor Lara Dunston.

6 thoughts on “Monday Memories: Sublime Sunset at St Kilda Pier, Melbourne”

  1. Oh lordy, that really is a great photo. I’m the same with sunsets… who isn’t? What I keep being amazed by is how different sunsets are around the world (and around Australia for that matter)…. I live on Moreton Bay, and every day the sunset is different here. I can’t believe i spent 40 years never really noticing them… it really has only been in recent years that I’ve become as fascinated by both sunrises and sunsets (usually only awake for one of those). But… and I know this is a conversation-killer… my number one favourite place for sunsets is the Thames from the southside looking out on a clear day. Might be the water, old buildings that just look different with the sunset (again, possibly with sunrise too, I really would never know) butted up against the water as they are… and the bridges. I don’t mind if these moments are publishable (though lamentable that it’s cos of type, It’s the reality I guess) because it’s like pictures of kittens, it astounds me how daggily I gravitate to them! They really do hit pretty hard into the core… I think it’s the colours, and maybe that’s it about London too… it’s a pretty grey city, which is lovely, but when a colour show hits it, it’s even prettier.

  2. Thanks Sandy. I guess just like London, people in Melbourne do really appreciate good weather. There were so many people stopping to look at the sunset that day, I can recall one summer evening in London where people were just so happy to be able to have a pint outdoors as the sun went down. Having lived most of my life either in QLD, Sydney, and Dubai and Abu Dhabi, I guess I don’t really appreciate a sunny sky and a good sunset as much as those living in places with real weather.
    These shots always remind me about the first travel photographer I ever worked with who used to always say to me “clouds are your friends” when we’d be selecting images with him.
    Clouds, whether whispy, fluffy or foreboding add something to photographs that makes a clear sky look boring.

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