Fronting up / by Mario Mirabile

The advent of publicly available weather radar has been a boon to many. The ability to accurately track rain and storms has great advantages for sailors, sportspeople, party planners, the weather obsessed, and even the occasional photographer.

As lunchtime approached today, a line of intense storms could be seen tracking toward central Melbourne. These fronts can be a source of dramatic pictures for those prepared to brave the weather and risk a soaking. The usual problem for urban weather watchers are sight lines. When the aim is to shoot wide expanses of sky, buildings and wires can be a real pain. Fortunately, the Docklands Precinct around my office offers several expanses of relatively uninterrupted sky down by the river. So, with lightning flashing, thunder booming, and the rain getting steadily heavier, I headed to the riverfront. When I got there, the anticipated tempestuous sky was limited to a narrow and rapidly moving frontal band. I barely had time to get off a few shots before the rain became torrential, and I scuttled for cover.