at Kings Beach

Dusk on Saturday was the ideal time to take photos with the 5×7 Cambo monorail of the coastline of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. It was very still, very warm, and there were amazing colours. It was magic time. For some reason I was exploring the rocks around Kings Beach with the poodles with my point and shoot Sony. I returned home around 7pm–just when I should have been using the large format camera.

The weather on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula changed the next morning:–the strong south westerly winds made impossible to photograph along the coast with a large format camera.

rocks, Kings Beach

As I mentioned in my earlier post on Kangaroo Island my shift back to large format was a result of the poor quality of the pictures I achieved with digital on the Kaangaroo Island shoot.

Over the next couple of years I shot only in raw, shifted to Apple computers, acquired Lightroom, started using medium format cameras more extensively–I bought a Rolleiflex 6006 system. I then picked up my old large format cameras rather than spend $15,000 to $30,000 on a medium format digital camera.

Kangaroo Island–2007

We are at Victor Harbor for the long weekend along with heaps of other people who are having fun. It is definitely early autumn on the Fleurieu Peninsula, for though the days are hot, the early morning air is crisp and the nights are cool.

I have been going through my digital archive, looking at the pictures that were initially taken with the digital point and shoot around 2007 on a trip we did to Kangaroo Island in autumn 2007:

dead tree

I’ve never really looked at the pictures closely. They had the date digitally stamped all over them and they were not shot as jpeg’s and not in raw. I didn’t really know what I was doing then. A friend set the camera up for me–the menu looked looked far too complicated after a using a Lecia rangefinder — and I could not understand the ‘how to’ booklet. Everything on the camera was set on automatic.

drinkwalk

One of the more noticeable aspects of urban life in the inner city of Adelaide is the number people staggering around the streets after having too much to drink. I notice them more than usual because the poodles are very aware of them –the behaviour of drinks is unpredictable because they stagger.

drinkwalk

The drunks are often the homeless older men, aborigines who spend the day in the parklands, and young men staggering around the streets after boozing all night in the nightclub strip. The latter are the most violent and are often aggressive. They are to be avoided because the poodles will attack them if they get too close.

rust belt chic

One of the areas for poodle walks is Port Adelaide. The Port has fallen on hard times and has become a site of rustbelt. Despite the signs of urban renewal it has an industrial scruffy look, that is a long way from the sunbelt cities (eg., Brisbane) with their gleaming condo towers, bistros and boutiques that are so trendy because they signify vibrant urban environments full of young people.

cacti, Port Adelaide

The rustbelt has become chic. There is is certain fascination with places that have fallen on hard times–rust is chic as it were. Especially amongst photographers, who often see themselves in photographing urban decay in terms of exploring the edgelands in the Ballardian tradition.

autumn

Autumn arrived in Adelaide today.

Yesterday was a horror day. The temperature was around 35 degrees with a strong north wind blowing dust everywhere. It was the last day of the ten day or so spell of hot weather. During the night the rain started to fall lightly, and today we have had a steady, soaking rain all day.

white rose

There have only been odd moments when there was a break in the rain. I took advantage of one break around lunchtime to do some shopping at the Central Market, then we used another around 6 pm to do a poodle walk in Veale Gardens.

community garden

There is a community garden in the Adelaide parklands that is run by the Walyo Yerta Community Garden Group in association with the Gilles Street Primary School and the Adelaide South West Community Centre.

It was established in March 2010 and is situated behind Veale Gardens. It forms part of our afternoon daily walks in the parklands. More often than not we pass it on our way to the more open and dog free spaces of the south western parklands.

cabbage

I’ve taken a number of snaps of the garden in passing —of the winter vegetables and the sunflowers.

Wirra Wirra

Halfway between Adelaide and Victor Harbor on the coast lies McLaren Vale, one of South Australia’s premier wine wine districts. We often stop there to visit a winery, have lunch, pick up some native plants from the local nursery or walk with the poodles.

Wirra Wirra winery

It is a high tourist region and we generally avoid the wine and dine weekends where you go from winery to winery drinking wine and eating food. I have done little photography in this region because our visits are so very short.

Hong Kong Grocery

As I mentioned in the previous post I rarely work in the street photography tradition. I don’t have the skills and it is difficult to do this kind of photography whilst walking the poodles. On the rare occasions that I do so I generally hang out around Chinatown.

Gouger Street

Chinatown is very small in Adelaide, but it has been given a new lease of life with the flow of international students into Adelaide. Suddenly, this area has come alive with people going about their daily business.

urbanscape

One of my great frustrations on the poodle walks is the lack of accessible locations that give a view of the limited urban skyline in Adelaide. With the roofs of the corporate and public buildings are closed off with security in the lobby. That pretty much leaves the car parks.

one way

Though these are accessible most have fences around the edges to prevent people from jumping off them and committing suicide. Those with fences and with open rooftops are few and far between and of these, few have interesting urban views.

I’m not a street photographer working in the classical tradition—such as Sean O’Brien or Jonathan van Smit or Rui Palha on Flickr—as I just do not have those skills.

two pillows

One of the oft visited weekend locations for our poodles walks when we are in Adelaide is the Young Street Car Park. There are more and more car parks being built in the CBD at a time when the state government’s public policy is aimed at allowing for greater use of public transport, more walking and cycling in the CBD.

However, they are not prepared to roll back the car. The car rules our cities. It chokes them–it’s what town planners called congestion. Inside the spaces designed to park cars in the CBD we find waste:

two pillows

We visit the Young Street Car Park less now because it is being extended, and the upper story has been closed off by the builders. My reason for exploring the car park is because it opens a little door on the underside of the city that sees itself as the Athens of the South–an enlightened city.