From the rust-coated outback to emerald green, Jurassic rain-forests, the wind beaten, primeval canyons to indigo blues of three guardian oceans, Australia’s beauty is abundant yet scarce, raw yet comely, humbling yet humble. And topping that list, the first among equals, is none other than the Great Barrier Reef. Without it, Australiana is never 100% complete. With it, history unites with geography, while a proud past fights against a fragile future.
Comprising over 3000 reefs, the largest reef in the world has existed for millions of years, though the present infantile incarnation is ~10,000 years old, existing since the last ice age. Seen from any angle – below, above or from space, the largest living organism on the planet exudes nothing but awe and overwhelming wonder. And yet, one breath under its kaleidoscopic waters reminds us of our own insignificance, ushering a moment of modesty.
I was lucky to visit Airlie beach, one of many outposts near the reef in a bright and sparkling October. From heart shaped, incredible reefs to blinding white silicate sands, rainbow coloured tattooed fishes to meditative turtles, it was an experience in wonderland. Words cannot describe the colours of the palette – I therefore had to compile the best of my shots to create a small memoir. Only to look back each time and realise that these hundreds of shots were a desperate attempt to capture but a speck in the 2600 km stretch of the Great Barrier Reef. Incredible. Numbing. And hopefully, timeless.
Check the postcards here: In the Heart of the Reef