Australian eucalypts are a muse for this Japanese-born photographer

Eucalyptus mimica

I was born in Japan and moved to Sydney in 2003. My love for eucalypts began when I saw the beautiful colours of the bark on one sunny day in late spring a couple of years ago, while I was walking on the street near my home.

At that time my mind was deep in thoughts and it was difficult to relax. As I kept walking, I suddenly saw an amazing mix of colours – green, pink and orange – on the bark of the tree I walked past.

I was shocked by the unexpected beauty of the colours so I stopped and moved closer to the tree and I realised that it was a eucalypt.

I had never seen such colours on any other tree bark in my life, so the whole of my curiosity was overtaken with the desire to learn more about eucalypt trees.

I started discovering the different characters of each species of eucalypt and I wanted to capture this uniqueness through my lens.

It didn’t take long to fall in love with such beautiful trees and, thankfully, they are everywhere in Australia!

Ever since, my passion and the focus of my photography has shifted towards eucalypts.

Photos of eucalypt trees

I am so fascinated by the colours of the trees in Australia. They are the inspiration for my photographic work. It is the subtle combination of the raw colours under the Australian sky that adds a special ethereal quality like no other.

I feel a connection with the Australian trees like no other trees in the world. Their colours are rich and beautiful and they seem to capture the Australian essence of life.

I feel pure joy when I see those beautiful trees and their magical colours.

Unidentified eucalypt - Sydney
Unidentified eucalypt – Sydney
Snowgum - Sydney
Snowgum – Sydney
Angophora costata - Sydney
Angophora costata – Sydney
Lemon-scented gum – Sydney

Photos of eucalypt bark

Some trees were born to be abstract artists.  The colour of  their bark is always changing.  The colour changes are absolutely amazing, even dramatic.

The appearance of the bark depends on the time of day and season, different light conditions and the weather – cloud, sun, rain, fog and even wind can produce different effects.

Visiting Currency Creek Arboretum

Recently I had an opportunity to visit Currency Creek Arboretum in Adelaide and enjoyed an educational tour by owner Dean Nicolle.

Dean Nicolle guiding a tour at Currency Creek Arboretum. Image: Mayumi Katakao
Dean Nicolle guiding a tour at Currency Creek Arboretum. Image: Mayumi Kataoka

Dean has 95% of all known Eucalyptus species on his property, which I believe is a remarkable effort.

I had a chance to see some rare species I had never seen before, so my visit was truly worthwhile. The arboretum also gave me an opportunity to meet other like-minded people who have a passion for eucalypts.

‘They seem to capture
the Australian essence
of life.’

The colours of eucalypts are rich and beautiful and they seem to capture the Australian essence of life. The colours are just magical: a pure balance of simplicity and beauty that is uniquely Australian.

When I see these trees they always excite me. They encourage and invite me to discover and study more about them. Nature is such a beautiful gift to us all and it is fundamentally our most precious life partner. My true purpose is to capture these feelings through a lens so you can experience these moments in time.

My passion is to show to the public the hidden beauty of these wonderful trees. So the next time you do walk past a tree you will stop… just for a moment, and really ‘see’.

Banner image: Eucalyptus mimica subsp.continens. Courtesy of Mayumi Kataoka. All images courtesy of Mayumi Kataoka. You can see more of Mayumi’s photography work on her website, Organic Photography.

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