I decided to start photographing seascapes when the early morning poodle walks in Victor Harbor incorporated walking up and over Rosetta Head to Petrel Cove. Seascapes as distinct from photos of clouds or of light itself in that the sea becomes more central.
I started photographing with colour film (both medium and large format cameras), but the seascapes looked too picturesque, and rather touristy. Cliched, even when there was heavy cloud cover:
I was after something more ordinary and abstract, rather than beautiful, picturesque or iconic. So I started to use b+w film.
Whilst walking along the coast of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia this year I have been exploring how to photograph the fleeting character or the ephemerality of light in the early morning. These are photos of light, as distinct from photos of clouds or of seascapes, are a modest walking art project.
Unlike many of the photographers in the book I didn’t see light as a metaphor. What I was seeing on my poodlewalks were the fleeting moments of light at Encounter Bay. Fleeting in the sense that the interplay of light and dark just before and after sunrise was brief: it would often last less than 5 minutes as the clouds evaporated and the darkness disappeared with the rays of the early morning sun.
Winter on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula was wet and stormy with high tides on the coast, making it difficult to access the coastal rocks and to photograph along the littoral zone and continue making abstractions. During July walking the poodles was limited to walking along the paths on top of the coastal cliffs between Petrel Cove and Kings Beach.
This image of seaweed lying on the rocks was made in early June when the tide was low enough to walk in the littoral zone in June. It was during July that we experienced the very high tides.
The photo was made just after we’d returned from the camel trek from Blinman to Lake Frome. I recall it being a joy to walk by the sea after 14 days in the arid Northern Flinders Ranges. Water there was scarce: the creeks were dry and there was just the odd water hole.
South Australia was been battered by a violent storm from the south west during the last three days– from Thursday to Saturday. We experienced gale force winds, solid rain, high tides and surging seas along the coast of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula.
Our usual morning and evening poodlewalks were curtailed due to the water cutting off access to parts of the littoral zone. So I could not photograph the water flows. It was also too dangerous to venture around the rocks to Petrel Cove to do some macro due to the huge waves. Continue reading “stormy days”
The rocky outcrop is near the foot of the Waitpinga Cliffs, and it is not possible to continue walking much further around the bottom of the cliffs. The Coastal Cliff walking trail from Waitpinga Beach to Kings Beach is along the top of the Waitpinga cliffs. Continue reading “at Kings-Head and beyond”
Occasionally, I try and make a still photograph of a particular moment of the rapid movement of the waves surging amongst the rocks:
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”
Many of the coastal morning poodlewalks with Kayla incorporate the return walk along the coastal rocks to the car park via Petrel-Cove. Incorporating Petrel Cove is more frequent in the early spring, due to my allergy to the rye grass growing along the side of the coastal path. It irritates my eyes and causes sneezing fits.
Occasionally there is a photographer on the beach or a surfer but more often than not, the only other person in Petrel Cove at that time of the morning is the odd fishing man:
Often it seem as if the fishing men standing on the edge of the sea with their lines are meditating in nature, and are not overly concerned if they don’t catch any fish. I can understand that as I often just sit on the rocks and watch the action of the waves. Continue reading “at Petrel-Cove”