Autumn On My Mind - Ross, Tasmania - The HDR Experience

Philip Johnson

Newport Beach, Australia

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Artist's Description

BETTER VIEWED LARGER

The great quality of Ross is that it has not been overly corrupted by modern tourism. The town is very typically English and, with its warm Ross sandstone, is reminiscent of the towns which can be seen in the Cotswolds or in north Oxfordshire. In many ways Ross is a town which has been held in aspic. It is beautifully preserved.

Located 117 km north of Hobart and 78 km south of Launceston, Ross is 76 metres above sea level. The district was first explored by Europeans in 1807 when the surveyor Charles Grimes travelled from the north to the south of Tasmania’s central valley area. He mapped sections of the river which subsequently became known as Macquarie River (Governor Macquarie named it after himself when he travelled through the area in 1811).

On his second journey through central Tasmania, Macquarie chose the location beside the river for a township. He called it Ross after the home of his friend H.M. Buchanan who lived on Loch Lomond in Scotland. At that time the river was forded. Later that year a wooden bridge was built and by 1836 the stone bridge, one of the finest in Australia, was completed.

Throughout the nineteenth century Ross was an important stopover point between Launceston and Hobart. As such it was a horse coach changing point, a town for the local garrison and an important destination for produce from the surrounding farms.

Quite rightly the pride of the village this beautiful stone bridge was constructed by convicts in 1836. It is the third oldest bridge still standing in Australia and is recognised as the most important convict-built bridge in the country. It was constructed on the orders of Governor Arthur and designed by John Lee Archer. Built by convicts its beautiful stonework is the result of two convict stonemasons – Daniel Herbert and James Colbeck. They were paid one shilling a day. Herbert, who had been transported for highway robbery in 1827, was freed after the bridge was completed and is buried in the Old Cemetery. He is credited with the beautiful carvings on the side of the bridge. Experts have described the carvings as ‘possibly the richest achievement of the earlier colonial period if not the most significant sculpture on any edifice in the Commonwealth.’ Leslie Greener, who was largely responsible for discovering that Daniel Herbert was responsible for the carvings, has written: ‘Ross Bridge is the most beautiful of its kind today. The carvings have in them that delight in the shapes themselves that our sculptors lost somewhere in the 13th century.

Technique:HDR 5 exposures,processed Photomatix and capture nx
Equipment : Nikon D300,Nikon 18-200mm lens

Artwork Comments

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