Agricultural landscapes

As mentioned in this post on my Encounter Studio blog I have started to explore the back country roads and the agricultural landscape in and around Waitpinga whilst on our afternoon poodlewalks. The Fleurieuscapes project needs to include the rural landscape in order to have some balance to the coastal images in the littoral zone. Most of the space of the Fleurieu Peninsula is an agricultural landscape consisting of dairy farms, grazing land for sheep and cattle, and the rapidly expanding vineyards.

I do struggle with photographing this subject matter, and most of what I see and then scope with a digital camera on our poodlewalks is boring and uninteresting, especially when I look at the digital files on the iMac’s computer screen. I am finding it to be a depressing and disheartening process.

One exception is this picture of pink gum, with a farm shed, silo and water tank along Pitkin Rd in Waitpinga that I came across on an exploratory afternoon poodlewalk with Kayla and Maleko:

Pitkin Rd, Waitpinga

This scoping picture was made in the autumn, when I first started to consciously explore the back country roads in Waitpinga. This picture of a dry, agricultural landscape works much better for me in black and white. The initial colour image looks too pretty and touristy–the photos would be what you would see in a feature in the glossy Fleurieu Living Magazine.

cruising along

Most of the early morning walks these late autumn days are with Ari and Kayla and are are in and around the Victor Harbor Beach area or along the Hayborough beach. It’s easy. There are few people around, there is very little junk food, dead birds or decaying fish, the wind is low and the sun rises onto the beaches at sunrise.

Kayla, Granite Island causeway
Kayla, Granite Island causeway

There is not much photography taking place on these walks. Only a few pictures of the ongoing version of the sand dunes around Hayborough, but this does not effect any of the holiday homes as they are on the cliffs above the beach, and there is a railway line between the beach and the base of the cliffs.
Continue reading “cruising along”

finally, the rains come

The last walk just before the end of the heat wave was difficult. Everything was hot and dusty. Walking was an effort for all of us.

Reflections, King William St
Reflections, King William St

The heatwave conditions in Adelaide finally broke on Thursday. It has been raining pretty much non-stop for the last couple of days. It eased late Friday afternoon and it was possible to walk the city in comfort.

wandering Franklin St

I made this picture whilst we were wandering our way to see the Jeffrey Smart exhibition at the Samstag Gallery. We were to meet up with Suzanne and then look over the exhibition.

It took Ari and myself a couple of hours to get there, as we more or less strolled up and down all the little streets and alleyways between Sturt St and the gallery on North Terrace. There was so much to check out.

Franklin St. Adelaide

I was trying to think through a different approach to photographing the city to the bird’s eye view from the top floor of carparks. I was experimenting as we slowly weaved our way in and out of this part of the city, but I didn’t come up with much.

being-there

After having a look at an exhibition at the A.P Bond Gallery in Stepney I wandered around a bit taking a few photos. It highlighted to me that the intrinsic qualities of the picture was less important than the act of naming it as a work of art and getting the legitimating institutions–museums, galleries, collectors, historians of art etc —to accept the picture as art. What still haunts the art institution is Duchamp naming readymades such as a bottle rack or urinal as a work of art that should be in an art gallery.

Otto, Anne St, Stepney, Adelaide

I’m not sure where that leaves photography once both the copy theory of representation and an aesthetic canon of conventional forms has been rejected. Are photos functioning to re-enchant the world? They are becoming a sort of magic realism, fetishes or animated objects? A memento mori—ie., a mark of the inevitable passing of time?

funky Melbourne

The Melbourne trip is coming to an end. Suzanne leaves for Adelaide today, and I fly out early tomorrow afternoon. The few days have gone real quick.

This picture is from Thursday when I visited Smith St, Fitzroy. It’s a little cafe near Johnston Street where I had a quick lunch before meeting up with Stuart Murdoch at the Centre of Contemporary Photography:

cafe, Smith St, Melbourne

Whilst at the CCP I glanced through an old issue of UN. magazine, which featured the work of Eliza Hutchinson who was exhibiting some work in Gallery 3.

on a carpark rooftop

I’m back to exploring Adelaide skylines from the rooftop of carparks for future large format shoots. Ari was quite happy tagging along on his afternoon poodlewalk on this one –ie., riding in lifts and hanging out on the rooftops.

Ari, carpark

There is a bit of a construction boom taking place in the CBD—an urban renewal now that the money is beginning to flow to the developers from the banks. The views that existed before I left for Tasmania have changed. What were buildings that were having their foundations laid before I left now rise above the Pitt Street carpark roof.

poodlewalks in Adelaide’s CBD

I’ve decided to change my work flow for colour film photography.The old work flow wasn’t really working for me.

Instead of building up six to nine months work and then having it processed at a professional laboratory in one hit, I’ve decided to have the 35mm and 6×6 film processed on the day of the shoot. I can drop it off to Photoco’s one hour minilab in the Central Market on the way back from the shoot. The sheet film can be processed at the professional lab—Atkins Technicolour.

My reason is that it is cheaper, more convenient and I can quickly assess what I’m doing in terms of feedback. I did a dummy run on Friday to see how things would turn out:

carwash, Adelaide

I’m happy with the result. It works for me:

at Victor Harbor

I’ve come down to Victor Harbor for a day or so to continue with the 8×10 large format seaside architectural photography series. I plan to photograph this heritage building tomorrow, weather permitting:

Esplanade, Victor Harbor

In the meantime I’m watching a live stream of the judging of the Epson Australian Institute of Professional Photography’s (AIPP) South Australian Professional Print Awards at the Orange Lane Studio in Norwood.

The commercial architectural shots in this competition are nothing like what I’m doing. Mine are very rough and ready compared to the smooth and carefully calibrated celebration of the architect’s work that the commercial photographers do for their clients. They go for the wow factor, but they do seem unreal in their perfection–almost iconic — compared to mine.