Inman River walks

During the autumn of 2018 I made a number of afternoon poodlewalks with Maleko and Kayla along a couple of the walking trails by the Inman River. One of these trails was a walk around the small redgum loop trail by the river near Armstrong ( Ring Route ) Rd. I did this several times, including a few in the morning, before the trail became flooded. On the odd occasion on the redgum woodland loop walk I photographed with a film camera.

Another walk we sometimes did was the linear one along the floodplain on the eastern side of the river amongst that is populated by kangaroos. We would start from the old SA Water waste treatment plant on Canton Place and then make our way along the redgums on the floodplain to where the river passed the Victor Harbor cemetery. We would then slowly make our way back to the Forester in Canton Place as dusk started to fall:

Inman River floodplain

I meant to return to the floodplain area during the winter of 2018 when the river was flowing with a film camera and tripod, but I never did. I only ever scoped the floodplain as I found the floodplain difficult to photograph: just trees, a dry river bed, and leaves on the ground.

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.

Petrel Cove

It is now much quieter in the early mornings in late autumn at Petrel Cove on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula, than it was in the early autumn. People disappear from the coast on the autumn/winter cusp. . The southern coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula is associated with summer not winter. Winter is very quiet. People leave for the sunshine of Queensland.

During early autumn –ie., March–Petrel Cove, despite the loss of most of the sand, was regularly populated by fishermen, surfers and photographers in the early morning. The car park had usually had about 6-10 cars parked there, and a dozen or so people would be either milling around the car park watching the waves, on the beach, or in the water.

Petrel Cove

These days the sand has returned, but our 2011 Forester is the solitary car in the car park during the week. This does change on the weekend, as there a lots of people out walking along the Heritage Trail from 8am onwards.

returning to the Heysen Trail

In the last week or so I have returned to walking along the Waitpinga section of the Heysen Trail in the morning with Kayla and in the afternoon with Maleko. This section of the Heysen Trail is a narrow strip of scrub or bush that runs between two roads, and it is bounded by two grazing paddocks (cattle and sheep). The narrow strip is a corridor that is quite dense in parts.

The mornings and afternoons have been overcast with minimal wind, and this has allowed me to do some black and white film photography of tree subjects that I had photographed in colour a couple of years ago. I started the scoping here.

Whilst walking to and from the photo sites on both the morning and the afternoon poodlewalks I made some exploratory/scoping studies of different subject matter in the scrub/bush for some future film photography. This is an example:

branch, Heysen Trail

I would have walked past this branch on the edge of the path of the Heysen Trail many times without ever having seen it. I only saw it this time because Kayla went exploring in the undergrowth behind the branch. I quickly made a snap and moved on.

water flows

When I have been doing   the evening poodlewalks with Maleko  I’ve sometimes  included sitting  quietly on a rock to  watch the sea water  flowing amongst the coastal granite. Maleko either sits with me,  or  he looks for any golf balls buried amongst the rocks in the littoral zone.

Occasionally,  I    try and make a still photograph of a particular moment of the rapid movement of the  waves surging amongst  the rocks:

flowing sea, Dep’s Beach

The reason that  I don’t  bother to photograph the water, is that it  is usually difficult to make the composition,  and to get the lighting right.  The sea water moves so very quickly through and over the granite rocks–too quickly  for me  to  compose the picture whilst ensuring  that my feet don’t  become wet from a rogue wave. Continue reading “water flows”

recovered archives

I have been going through my old archives from a PC that died many years ago.  The images had  been backed up on Lacie hard disc which also  crashed,  and they were eventually recovered by a  tech specialist.   The 13,000 images are all jumbled up, there are many repetitions, others are jpegs,  whilst large numbers  are corrupted and so useless.

This is one rescued image from along the coast west of Petrel Cove, and it was made around 2008 when Suzanne and I were coming down to Encounter Bay for the weekends. We  were living in Adelaide’s CBD then, and  we were both working full time.

lichen + granite

My reason for returning to these archives is to see the  images that I have made around the River Murray since 2008.  I wanted to see the relevance  of these archival images for the proposed Our Waters  project with Lars Heldmann.   Continue reading “recovered archives”

Spring has arrived

The  noticeably warmer days during  this last week in August suggest that spring is  arriving.  The sun  now rises before 6.45am and it sets just before 6pm. It is also warmer  and have started going on the early morning and late afternoon poodlewalks without a coat.   I am also  now able to enjoy breakfast on the balcony in the early morning sun.  I am sure that the wet weather weather will soon return.

Surprisingly,  my poodlewalk photography   during  the  cusp of spring/winter in 2018,  when the light becomes special,   is becoming  darker:

granite, am

The reason is not  just the low light capabilities of the Sony digital camera. I spend a lot of time being in the  coastal space  of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula,  but  as  I am isolated  in Adelaide with this kind of photography,   I have  been searching to find   what other artists representing coastal Australia in their work  have been doing.   I notice that some  work in the dark mode with their explorations of   impending storm clouds towering over the land or the wild stormy seas.

The dark mode appeals, and   I have started looking at  group exhibitions to  find a visual  affinity with the ways that some  artists have approached   representing the  ocean, waves,  rocks and sky. Continue reading “Spring has arrived”

squalls

During the winter of 2018 the southern coast of  the Fleurieu Peninsula has  been battered by king tides squalls and gusty, cold  northwesterly winds  off and on for a couple of weeks at a time.  It is off and on because in -between  these intense,  northerly winds we have the winter’s standard south westerly winds bringing  rain in from  Western Australia.

rain + sun, Waitpinga

The rain eventually clears after a couple of days,  we have a fine day,  then we are back to the gusty northerlies again. Sometimes these changes in the weather  can be quite  atmospheric.

On the days of rain it is a matter of trying to  go on the poodlewalks inbetween the passing showers,  and then  hoping that we don’t get caught in a squall out in the open.  Often we see a lone surfer, and on other days there are groups of people standing on the cliffs look out to sea, presumably whale watching.  Continue reading “squalls”

King-tides

The recent king-tides along the coast of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula  made it difficult for us  to walk  amongst the coastal rocks  both in the early morning and the late afternoon on  many occasions. We stayed on the clifftop heritage trail and looked down on the wild seas crashing over the rocks  we would usually walk amongst.

Kayla and  I  were able to venture  to walk along the  littoral zone one morning between my return from  photographing in Melbourne  for the SALA exhibition   and before I left to go on the  photocamp at Balranald  for the Mallee Routes project.

quartz+granite, am

It was one of those infrequent lovely winter mornings— cloud,  sunshine  and very  little wind–that allowed time for wander around, look at  how things had changed due to the king tides and  to do some photography.    Continue reading “King-tides”

at Kuitpo Forest Reserve

We usually visit the  Kuitpo Forest Reserve for the afternoon  poodlewalk when we are on our return journey  to Encounter Bay after  the poodles have spent the day at  the  Mt Barker dog groomers. These  occasions are once every six weeks–poodles are high maintenance— and we when we are walking in the forest we routinely avoid walking in  the pinus radiata  plantation areas .

We prefer   to  wander  within the small sparse areas of eucalyptus in the forest reserve:

Kuitpo Forest

All goes smoothly on the walk, if we  avoid the campers, the campsite foreplaces   and the various kangaroos in this part of Kuitpo Forest.

I usually walk around with a digital camera. The light in the forest after  4pm during the winter is often too low  to be able to use  hand held film cameras:

Kuitpo Forest

And during summer months  the light at 4pm is very bright and contrasty. The gates are closed around 4pm during the fire season  to prevent any camping.

So winter is the time for photography Kuitpo Forest Reserve as the sun in the late afternoon is low enough to gently lighten up the trees.