It has been about five months since the last post on poodlewalks. Some explanation for the hiatus is mentioned here on The Littoral Zone. Posting on this website was also on the backburner due to the trip to Japan, which took place shortly after the last post in late September 2023. Roughly editing the photos that I made whilst in Japan pretty much preoccupied me for the rest of that year.
The last photos I made before I left for Japan in mid-October were those in the seascapes series on the early morning walks and in the evening ones in the magic hour.
The archive indicates that even though I was walking with the poodles and making photos in the Nov-Dec period after I’d returned from Japan, I didn’t re-connected to the next step of posting the images on the poodlewalks website.
My twice-a-day poodlewalks during the six weeks that Suzanne needed to wear her moonboot to help heal her broken fibula were hobbled ones. I was walking both standard poodles, but as I’d badly damaged my back early in that six weeks period I wasn’t able to walk very far. I could only shuffle along in those areas where the two poodles could run free and more or less look after themselves.
The photography was limited during this period. I just carried a digital camera and on many of the walks I wouldn’t even make a photo. Walking 2 poodles with a damaged back wasn’t conducive to photography.
This is one of the photos I did make whilst on a hobbled walk in part of the Rosetta Head Reserve. I would drive to Petrel Cove and then hobble my way around the reserve and through its scrubland in the early morning.
I would usually start this walk 30 minutes or so before sunrise when there was no one around. The walk would be in its final stages as the early morning sunlight flickered across the grasses in the reserve.
Another of the early morning walks involved driving to the carpark on the western side of Rosetta Head, then I’d slowly shuffling my way along its northern side until I reached the eastern end where I could look over Encounter Bay:
I would do this walk on those occasions when there was early morning cloud over the sea before sunrise. I would hope that there was nobody on the top of the Bluff viewing the sunrise, flying a drone or taking photos. I was able to hobble my way back to the car park on the western side of Rosetta Head, The clouds usually dissipated after sunrise, except when the rains swept in from the wast.
This update on making photos whilst walking with Maya along the coast starts to explore ways of augumenting the still photography. Large format art photography has been my way of creating an art work from these poodlewalks, which are embedded in a particular place.
Maya is now between 5-6 months old and she is quite comfortable walking for an hour or so with me along the coastal rocks on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. As we are on the cusp of winter in South Australia there is early morning cloud cover, the showers sweeping in from the south west are more frequent, and the coastal winds are much stronger.
Whilst I’ve been on these early morning walks I thought that it would be interesting to find a way to show what Maya is hearing, smelling and seeing whilst she is with me. I have no idea how to do this, but I started wondering how Augmented Reality (AR) could add to these kind of walks; or alternatively what could be added using generative AI for texts written by ChatGPT, or an image using Midjourney.
I quickly realized that generative AI is step too far for me as is that that version of AR with its overlay of digital data on top of the real world that is consumed through a camera-and-sensor-laden headset. There is little point in the latter as few people would have the required equipment that mediates the entire world through screens placed centimeters from users’ corneas that makes the whole world a screen.
However, there is a space for something along the lines of supplementing, augmenting, adjusting, or overlaying reality; such as supplementing the still photography is a video. A video offers sound and movement that would augment the frozen moment of the still photography. I need to do more video as I am not sure about podcasts or films, as is done with MAP‘s. Nor do I have the connections to collaborate with a writer like the SALT project which was commissioned by Art Walk Projects.
The development pressure on the coastline around Rosetta Head continues and it takes the form of marinas, cruise ships and building tourist accommodation on agricultural land. As expected these forms of development give rise to political tension and conflict between economic development, heritage and environmental protection. These are currently managed within a single planning rule book in which the policies reflect and align with the Government’s state planning policies that set out a framework for land use in South Australia.
Below is the text of the oral presentation that I gave to the Council Assessment Panel (CAP) of the Victor Harbor Council’s on Tuesday 9th May about the tourist development at Lot 2 Jagger Rd. The meeting’s agenda is here. Lot 2 is just west of Petrel Cove and it is the first paddock in the photo below. The other photos in this post are of the coastal rocks below Lot 2.
We were allowed 5 minutes to speak on the basis of our original written submissions and it was expected that new material would be presented, rather than just rehashing the written submission which had already been read by the expert panel members. I spoke to this text.
Thankyou for providing me with a space to speak to the Tirroki development application in the context of the SA Planning and Design Code. This is the cornerstone of South Australia’s current planning system and it ‘s structure provides us with a way to judge developments within specific public criteria.
The Tirroki development consists of 5 well designed self-contained accommodation units, service building and associated infrastructure. Max Pritchard’s architecture is good tourist design and it will enhance the built environment at Encounter Bay, some of which is second rate and shoddily built.
I will make two points with respect to this tourist development in a rural zone with its 11 overlays.
I have started to do a few early morning walks along the coast with Maya. As she is still just 11 weeks old we need to continue to avoid other dogs until she has her second round of injections at 12 weeks. So we start our morning walks before sunrise and are back at the Forester by around 7.30. We have been lucky as it is very quiet and there are few, if any, people walking along the coast around sunrise.
The early autumn mornings have been overcast with the cloud cover with the occasional light showers. It clears during the day and the late afternoons are characterised by blue skies, sunshine and light to medium coastal winds.
Maya, Whale Lookout, Waitpinga
We don’t walk that far from our starting point at the Kings Beach Whale lookout — not even to Dep’s Beach. Dep’s Beach like Petrel Cove, is still layered with dead baby carp from the River Murray, and as this is snack food for Maya we avoid the beaches, we stay on the clifftop path and find areas amongst the coastal vegetation for Maya to play around in.
Currently the early morning poodlewalks are very restricted as I am walking Maya, our new female standard silver pup who has replaced Kayla. This week the walks are on the small beach in front of Whalers Convention Centre and restaurant then on the selected beaches along the foreshore along Jetty Rd that runs along the foot of the eastern side of Rosetta Head.
Making portraits of Maya at 9 weeks is difficult, as she is constantly moving and only stays still for a few seconds. Video would probably be a more appropriate medium to use.
Given the general decline of the rural sector seaside or coastal towns depend on domestic tourism to survive. In the process of encouraging tourism, seachange retirees and regional growth they are in danger of damaging, if not destroying, the very natural attractions that made them so attractive to people in the first place.
Victor Harbor on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula of South Australia is a classic example . Tourism has replaced the dairy and grazing farms in terms of economic importance. The city council has invested substantial funds to rebrand the town from being a run down and decaying service centre for the the agricultural industry to a tourist town. The rebranding involved giving the town centre a design facelift. The town has become more attractive but its economy is low-wage work such as retail and hairdressing that exist to serve local residents. A high tech hub of innovation and creativity it is not.
The Victor Harbor Council has not publicly responded to the community feedback re the Bluff Master Plan, but the plan does not include the privately owned farmland west of the Rosetta Head reserve. Under SA’s new planning system Victor Harbor is part of the Greater Adelaide Planning Regionand it is unclear whether the Victor Harbor Council will assess the proposed development or whether the planning authority is Planning SA and the state government.
The picture above is from January 2022 and it was made from Rosetta Head (Kongkengguwar) on an early summer morning. It looks west across Petrel Cove down along the coastline to Kings Beach and Kings Head. The Waitpinga Cliffs are in the background. It is a fantastic coastline that needs to be cared for as the farmland is sold. Massive and ugly development would destroy it.
The area just west of the Petrel Cove car park and the green belt in the above picture is earmarked for a proposed tourist property development by Tirroki Pty Ltd consisting of 5 self-contained accommodation units (4 single and 1 double unit with carports) and service building/s on the current farmland. It runs east/west from Jagger Road to the Heritage Trail with access from Jagger Rd.
In the last month or so I have avoided most of the poodlewalks that Kayla and I regularly did together in the early morning. I have avoided the local Waitpinga bushland completely as the memories are too painful. Currently, on my morning walks, I am only walking in places that Kayla and I would rarely explore.
I did walk along the Victor Harbor beach towards Bridge Point and the mouth of the Hindmarsh River with Suzanne and Maleko last Friday morning (2nd December). Surprisingly, the mouth of the Hindmarsh River was open and there was still a strong flow out to the sea.
Victor Harbor beach
Suzanne would regularly do this walk with Kayla and her friend from Goolwa — Jane and Scally, her standard poodle. Jane was sick that Friday so I filled in. The Friday walk concludes with coffee and banana bread at Qahwa at 8am.
An icy cold snap with lots of rain and bitterly south westerly winds hit the southern Fleurieu Peninsula of South Australia in late May/early June. It has been extremely cold when the sun has gone missing, with the cold snap lasting a fortnight or more. Though there have been the occasional days with sunshine, the rain and cold winds usually return the next morning. Consequently, walking with poodles is walking in the bracing wind and the rain:–rain walks.
The daily poodlewalks in early June included walking Rosetta Head ( Kongkengguwar ) in Victor Harbor so that I could photograph the sky, rain, sea and light. These photographs have usually been seascapes (as distinct from coastal), though I sometimes I have been photographing the clouds themselves.
rain, Encounter Bay
We have been walking Rosetta Head in the early morning before sunrise, as the weather has usually cleared by the late afternoon, with this occasion on the last day of May being a notable exception. The walking and photography in low pre-sunrise light works well with a hand held digital camera.
It is much more difficult with the large format camera and tripod, especially when it is a 5×7 monorail. Much more organization and planning is required, as I need to check out both the cloud cover and the direction of the wind to see if it is worthwhile carrying the camera equipment up Rosetta Head. If it is, then it is a slow walk and climb.
I have been going through my 2013 digital archives as we are planning a trip to Kangaroo Island in the autumn of 2022. I wanted to have a look at the photographs from the 2013 visit to the island. I I haven’t looked at these digital photos for nigh on seven years. I am in archival mode the moment, due to working on The Bowden Archives and Industrial Modernity book through 2021.
We –Suzanne , myself and Ari– stayed at American River in both January and November of that year. I recall that the easterlies in November blew non-stop and that some of the roads were still un-passable from the winter and spring rains. We spent a lot of time walking along the walking trail on the lagoon’s foreshore.
Ari, American River
2013 was just after I’d made the switch to digital technology in a serious way. I’d acquired a compact digital Sony NEX-7 with its APS-C sensor, which I was using with an old 35mm Leica M lens. I was attracted by the promise of good image quality in a small, highly portable camera, with the ability to adapt almost any lens to fit.
My thinking was that this kind of camera would be the digital equivalent of 35mm rangefinder film photography, even though I knew that it was only a full-frame is sensor size that would be the same as old 35mm film. The technological simplicity of the Sony was equivalent to that of a Leica rangefinder, and so the emphasis was on the purity of the vision: the camera was the extension of the eye.
water abstract #1
The shift to full frame digital came about 5 years latter. Embracing Sony’s digital technology was a no brainer, as I had the Leica lens from a film Leica M4. The latter’s body had gone missing whilst the range finder mechanism was being repaired, so the lens was sitting unused in a cupboard. Sony’s E-mount technology meant that I could use the lens with a Novoflex adaptor.
The Sony NEX-7 replaced the Leica M4-P film camera as my walk around, everyday camera. Digital was more versatile and it was cheaper to use. I continued to use film for medium and large format photography. Digital was definitely the future. The Leica M4-P and 35m colour film became a niche.