The National Journal Presents

Summer Sunset on Gunnamatta

If timed right, a lazy summer afternoon on the Gunnamatta course might just offer the best closing stretch views in Australian golf. As the sun melts into Bass Strait, the 16th and 17th holes let you soak in spectacular views which are matched by the exceptional quality of the golf on the ground.

Photographed by William Watt

Long Summer Nights

As a golf photographer always chasing golden hour, summer in Australia brings pros and cons. The longer days mean a more generous shooting window, as the sun slowly works its way across the long arc of the warmer months. The courses are generally looking their best too, with the fast-growing conditions offsetting any increased traffic on the fairways, and out-of-play areas usually offering a strong visual contrast with the pristine playing surfaces. But the warmer months also mean longer hours (for example, I’m often out on course by 5am, or until 9pm, during a January shoot), the occasional mass-mosquito attack (a bottle of Aeroguard is usually added to my photography kit a month too late), and a condensed work schedule when most friends and family are on holidays. None of that really matters on a night like this one at Gunnamatta though. With a bag of clubs on the cart, a warm breeze blowing across the course, and only a handful of golfers out on the property, Gunnamatta was a blank canvas.

The sunset did not disappoint, expressing the muscular contours of the course through warm highlights and cool shadows, and just enough cloud cover to create a spectacular finish. The resulting album of still photographs from the day are some of the best I have taken at The National, and the 40-minute ‘Ambient Golf’ video created during the same shoot offers a relaxing look at my favourite holes on the course.

Ambient Golf on Gunnamatta
Sunset 18 on  Gunnamatta