Amaury Tréguer’s interest in photography began with an early morning training regime on the sands of Bondi. [ Article courtesy of Olympus ]
Every photographic journey begins in its own way. Some start with a hand me down camera from a doting parent, or after ending up as designated photographer on a gap year backpacking adventure overseas with friends. For MorningBondi.com’s Amaury Tréguer it started with an early morning training regime on the sands of Bondi back in 2011.
‘Every morning, I was waking up at 5.30am to train down the beach with a few friends,’ Amaury says. ‘I kept on being amazed by the sensational and ever-changing sunrises.’ So, he started taking pictures with his phone.
‘After a few months, I got hooked and started to move on from my phone to a compact camera and then quite rapidly I was taking a full-on SLR down the beach. I never intended to become a photographer but the passion grew organically and I’ve been taking photos for the last 10 years almost every day. So I guess I became one.’
Although he didn’t realise it at first, like his photography career, the idea of Morning Bondi also began with those early pictures. At first he was posting them to a photo album on his Facebook page, but he says, ‘After a few months, I decided to start a dedicated Facebook Page so that more people could enjoy the daily photos of sunrises. The Morning Bondi community has now grown a fair bit across various social platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, a newsletter and a website.’
Since being introduced to Olympus in 2017, Amaury has been a firm convert to the brand. ‘Olympus gear is perfectly suited for my Morning Bondi routine,’ he says. ‘I’m usually down at the beach from 6-7.30am, exercising, swimming, having coffees with friends and I’m taking photos all the time.
‘I need a light and compact, dust, sand and weatherproof interchangeable lens camera that I can easily carry around and which still delivers an amazing image resolution for printing purposes. And that’s pretty much what the OM-D E-M1 Mark II is all about.
‘Most days I shoot with the E-M1 Mark II and an M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO lens’, Amaury says, adding ‘When I shoot from the water, I use the same E-M1 Mark II body, but with the M.Zuiko Digital 45mm f/1.8 which fits perfectly in the Olympus PT-EP14 underwater case. I actually love the fact that Olympus is probably the only camera system that offers water-housing options as part of their range.’
You might think that taking pictures of the same beach every day would get to be a challenge, but while agreeing that it can indeed be demanding to sustain his inspiration when the skies turn grey and the southerly wind sweeps away all but the hardiest beachgoers, Amaury says, ‘ the beauty of Bondi is that there is never a dull moment.
If it’s not the sunrise that is spectacular, the surf might be big – or a completely flat ‘Lake Bondi’ – there might be whales cruising along the coast, dolphins jumping around, cockatoos going mad or simply people on their morning routine. I’m always amazed by the number of people that you see around 6am exercising, walking, surfing or swimming. One thing that I love about my Morning Bondi routine is that I’ve had a chance to meet so many people, the same early-birds, who like me can’t start their days without a stroll along the beach or a dip in the ocean.’
For the last couple of years Amaury has worked as Executive Director Social at an agency called Red Havas where he oversees a team of 18 social media specialists. Asked how he ranks the various social media platforms from the perspective of a photographer, he says ‘Your website should always be the core of your ecosystem. Nowadays, you should focus most of your efforts on platforms that you own – as opposed to ‘rented’ platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter that receive low organic reach and are subject to unpredictable algorithms. If I could dedicate more time to Morning Bondi, I would spend it writing blog articles and using social platforms and newsletters to drive traffic to it.’
Reluctant as he is to embrace the label ‘photographer’, when asked what advice he has for others starting their own journey in the medium, Amaury says that in his view there are two key keys to success: experience and consistency. ‘The more photos you take, the better they get. Thanks to hard work and dedication, I do feel like my photography has improved a lot over the years. When I scroll through some of my older photos, I sometimes think ‘why would I ever post that…’. But, Morning Bondi has been a fantastic journey so far and I’m hoping that there is a lot more to come.’