The Xmas holiday at Victor Harbor is now over. We return to Adelaide and the routines of work this afternoon. The two weeks have given me the space and the time to find my photographic stride, to explore some new ideas and to wait for the suitable weather conditions for photography.
We’ve never spent two weeks at a time in Victor Harbor—its always been either 2 days on the weekend or the 4 days over the Easterbreak. Those two weeks gave me time to find new photographic locations, namely roadside vegetation and the rocks and foreshore around from Kings Head.
The poodles and I meandered along the foreshore near Petrel Cove on our evening walk yesterday. I had the old Kodak Easyshare camera in my pocket and I used it to play around with a variety of closeups of the flora on the coast.
These are the kind of pictures that I cannot get with my film cameras as working from the tripod does not allow me to access the various knooks and crannies amongst the rocks. Yet some of the more interesting pictures can be found in the detail of the seashore.
It is too hot to take photos at the moment. It’s extremely bright, with full sun, no clouds, and the temperature is around 40 degrees. It’s summer beach weather for the crowds of holiday makers I guess. I’ve given up walking along the coast on the later afternoon or early evening walk –it’s just too hot.
The picture below was taken whilst the temperatures were a temperate 25 degrees and there was some cloud cover in the morning and afternoon:
During the high temperatures of the last few days we’ve been walking along the coastal backroads. They are dusty but the remnant bush vegetation provides some sort of shade for us from the heat of the late afternoon sun. I can put up with the dust for some shade.
Whilst Suzanne was walking the dogs along the cliff tops this morning I did a quick photoshoot with the 8×10 Cambo of the pier or causeway to Granite Island near Victor Harbor. As there was cloud cover with little wind it was an opportunity not to be missed.
I had an old and very basic Kodak Easyshare point and shoot digital camera with me to take a few digital snaps. It is 5 megapixels has a tendency to fire the flash at any opportunity and runs on a couple of AA batteries. A digital version of Kodak’s old box brownie?
The beaches at the foot of the cliffs west of Victor Harbor are mostly deserted outside of school holidays and public holidays so we can wander along them. When we are on a daily poodlewalk along the beaches around the cliffs west of Victor Harbor I’m usually looking out for interesting objects lying scattered on the beach. These are mostly seaweed, dead birds and shells.
Often I wonder what would these objects look like as a photograph.Sometimes I bring them back to Encounter Studio to do close ups. Other times I just photograph them on the beach and move on:
This particular one was constructed. I’d seen the crab on the walk up the beach in the late afternoon, then on the return, I wondered what it would look like sitting atop a cuttlefish bone.
I finally started scanning the 8×10 b+w pictures this afternoon, even though I have still to figure out how to use the Silverfast scanning software; or how to process the pictures in Photoshop.
The results are disappointing. Most of the negatives are way overexposed; some have light leaks; the old Schneider Symmar 210mm lens that I’m using cannot cover the extreme movements for architecture; whilst the Silver Efex Pro + Lightroom combination that I’ve been using is too crude for the subtle tones of an 8×10.
I’ve came down to Victor Harbor for a couple of days before I fly over to Melbourne to do some 8 x 10 black and white location photography. I haven’t done any for a while mainly because I’ve had no way to scan the negatives.
My Epson V700 can only scan 8×10 as a negative, and up to now I’ve had no way to invert it into a positive. So I’ve ordered Photoshop from B+H in New York, as this professional software enables me to invert the negative into a positive.
It was overcast and still today so I struggled down to the foreshore with the 8×10 gear (monorail camera in the right hand, the heavy duty Profi Linhof tripod with its centre post and heavy duty pan tilt head on my left shoulder, and the computer bag with the darkslides + darkcloth, lightmeter etc on my right shoulder). I was accompanied by the two standard poodles.
My aim was to take two photos of a particular rock. One photo was in portrait mode and the other in landscape mode. That was it. I struggled back to the car, unloaded my gear, and then took the poodles for a walk.
I’m down at Victor Harbor for several days. Family from Tasmania are staying and it is difficult to find the time to do photography. I did manage to do a 5×4 photograph of this image late yesterday afternoon with the over-engineered Linhof Technika IV and this rock study with the Sony point and shoot digitial earlier in the afternoon when I was walking with the dogs:
It’s a question of being selfish to make time for photography. Otherwise it doesn’t get done. The dogs were walked early in the afternoon so that I had the 4-5 pm time to myself. Then I picked up Suzanne from the bus and we went home and cooked dinner for the family.
Normally my photography is within the crisp focus big depth of field tradition and I usually avoid the out of focus smudgy lens look. This image happened because a wave crashed over the top of me whilst I was photography a rock, drenching me in the process.
I pulled the camera away but it still got wet the camera in the process.The tide was high and the seas were big that day.
Though I dried the camera body and the lens,the latter was still rather smudgy when I was taking some shots of flowing water. That kind of picture is the result. It’s a poetic approach to photography that emphasises subjectivity.