How We Roll

Ideally, fun, friendly and pretty darn casually… (for the most part!).

About Magnetic Island Photos

Shooting the winter sunsets, I’ve lost count of the amount of conversations that started with me being asked ‘How can I take a photo like you just have?’ by fellow sunset-lovers on Horseshoe Bay.

I began to see that I could possibly combine my photography business and career skills with my diving instructor background, to help others learn some of the tips and tricks of photography. And so, ‘Magnetic Island Photos‘ was born.

It doesn’t really matter what gear you have (or don’t, as you can also test out my gear too). It is much more about understanding the basics of photography and your camera, and what you do with it.

I want you get the best out of whatever gear you have and help you take images you’re proud of. Shoots are informal and fun and as much as possible, tailored to suit you and what you want to shoot and learn.

My History

I’ve always loved photography, shooting from a young age when I ‘borrowed’ my dads work camera. I grew up in the UK, but in my late teens, took myself off to Australia and then New Zealand, soon becoming a Kiwi. I first visited ‘Maggie’ almost 25 years ago and like many, instantly fell in love with the island. A few years after that first visit and my time in NZ, I moved back to the island and worked as a PADI instructor at the longest standing dive shop on the island, Pleasure Divers.

After 3 years on the island, work opportunities took me to SE Asia where my photography career really began. Over the past 14 years, I have enjoyed working on many photo and video shoots, dividing my time between Australia and Singapore. I’m proud to say I have shot for many great clients, including MasterChef, DHL, Sofitel, Dachser, Jones Lang LaSalle and Baker McKenzie to name a few. Now I am back home on my little island, loving the natural beauty, and looking forward to sharing and capturing it with you.

''What gear you have, your level of photography knowledge, and what you want to shoot..? Everyone is different. So there are no set-in-stone classes. Tell me what you want to do, and I'll do my best to tailor the class to suit!''

Home to a wide range of species, the island is teeming with locations for wildlife photography. The ever adorable and popular Koalas, Echidnas, Wallabies and Kangaroos all being Aussie icons.…


As an experienced PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer, I've taught hundreds of people to dive. I've also taught hundreds more to further their diving knowledge with various specialties. The underwater…


Judging by how many sunset shots I have, I'd say more than possible! Sunset photography, especially in winter at Horseshoe Bay is incredible. The sky becomes an other-worldly blaze of…


Magnetic Island macro photography can really be almost anything you want. Even every-day objects become other-worldly images under magnification. The natural flora and fauna of Magnetic Island really does offer…


From the aquamarine ocean kissed beaches, to the rugged, rocky hills, Magnetic Island has a veritable smorgasbord of landscape photography ops. Many locations are near instant picture perfect postcard images,…


The stars and the Milky Way are a serene and stunning sight to behold. The western end of Horseshoe Bay is largely devoid of man-made light; perfect for astro photography.…

You can definitely ‘run what ya brung’

I am here to help you get the very best out of whatever camera you have.

Gear is not the be-all and end-all

I am primarily a Nikon DSLR shooter but also use smaller Nikon and Fuji mirrorless cameras, as well as a number of PnS (Point n Shoot) style cameras too. I have used various Sony, Olympus and Canon cameras as well and even if I have never seen your type of camera, the fundamentals remain the same. So after a few minutes of familiarising myself with it, (OK, and maybe a quick bit of Google-research!) I should be able to help you get the best out if it. Really basic cameras with total auto-mode only not withstanding!

It's mostly about understanding your gear and using good techniques for the task at hand. Not all cameras can do everything. Some will do it better and/or easier than others. But no matter how capable any given camera may be, if you don't know how to use it, it's not going to take that picture for you!

When we get together and go out to shoot, it's all about having a relaxed and enjoyable experience. That being said, safety is paramount. Whilst sitting on Horseshoe Bay, enjoying a cold drink as we shoot the sunset really does't carry too much risk, hiking in the heat, scrambling up rocks to the waterfalls, or going scuba diving does.

The experience has to be enjoyable and needs to remain well within everyones comfort level. Be that what little critters, bugs or wildlife you do or don’t like, what level of fitness for hiking you do or don’t have, or your level of diving abilities; I like to keep things light, fun and memorable for all.

''I want you to feel you've had an enjoyable photography session, with a greater understanding of your camera, and feeling proud of the gorgeous images you have created yourself.''

Wildlife, Landscape and so much more

‘Maggie Island’ is the ideal location to perfect your craft

Seasonal and Time-specific Shoots

The wet season is from December to March, although the Townsville region, including Magnetic Island, seem to get much less rainfall than the neighbouring regions.

However, it definitely does rain. And when it does, many of the rocky gullies in the hills are transformed from leaf and stick-strewn boulder-piles into raging torrents of cool fresh water. Waterfall photography season has begun!

Winter (June, July & August) brings cooler and clearer nights. On top of this, the evenings without a moon (the new moon) are some of the best for Astro photography. On those nights, I’ll be hoping for no clouds, so some Milky Way images can also be taken, as well as some star-trails.

Also, light-painting is a fun style to experiment with. This also works really well on dark clear nights too.

If you do want to see the big bright moon in all its finest, and learn how to get nice clear pictures of it, (again, no clouds please!) then keep an eye out for specific full moon dates! Those are ideal for shooting La Luna.

About Magnetic Island

The name of the island came about because of the apparent ‘magnetic’ effect it had on the ship’s compass of Captain Cook as he passed the island when sailing up the east coast of Australia in 1770.

The island is a haven for wildlife. As of 2013, there are over 800 koalas estimated to be present on the island. This population represents the northern limit of their geographic range. Kangaroos and Wallabies, as well as the elusive Echidna, are the other members of the marsupial family on the island.

Eastern Ospreys, Brahminy & Whistling Kites plus Sea Eagles are the larger predatory birds that soar overhead. Large flocks of Rainbow Lorikeets, Sulphur-Crested Cockatoos, Red-Tailed Black Cockatoos also provide more colourful, if somewhat noisy, bird-photography opportunities.

Divers and snorkelers can see a wide range of corals, as well as many reef-species such as Parrot Fish, Wrasse, Angelfish, Anemone Fish, Reef Sharks, Lagoon Rays, Nudibranchs, Starfish to name but a few.


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