walking Creswick

I was in Ballarat to see the 2015 Ballarat International Foto Biennale and for the opening of the Time exhibition, which was in the basement of the Lost Ones Gallery in Camp Street. I had a couple of photos in the exhibition.

Whilst in Ballarat I stayed in a cottage in Creswick. Even though none of the poodles were with me on this phototrip, I did the equivalent of an early morning poodlewalk around the town. I initially wandered along a small creek behind the town centre where people were walking their dogs:

trees, Creswick

trees, Creswick

Then I walked around the town looking at the old architecture in the soft, early morning light. Many of the public buildings are heritage.
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on the road to Ballarat

I was due to go on a photo trip that was to be tacked onto driving to Ballarat for the Atkins Artist’s ‘Time’ exhibition at the Ballarat International Foto Biennale 2015 early this Thursday morning. But the thermometer in the Mazda 626 stopped working yesterday thereby causing the engine to overheat, just as I started driving to Adelaide to take the film from the Canberra road trip to Atkins Photo Lab to be processed.

The car is now in the local garage waiting to be checked out, the road trip has been postponed and, at this stage.  It looks as if I will be driving the Subaru to Ballarat on Friday. Suzanne can then pick up the Mazda when it is ready, as she will have finished the Victor Harbor camp section of her 3 year Heysen Trail walk.

With some luck I will be able to take photos on the way back to Adelaide. It was to be a similar scenario to the Canberra trip—a photo trip centred around large format photography focused on silos, architecture around Creswick in Victoria and old garages in small country towns.

ruins, Peake

ruins, Peake

With some luck I will be able to take photos on the way back to Adelaide. It was to be a similar scenario to the Canberra trip—a photo trip centred around large format photography focused on silos, architecture around Creswick in Victoria and old garages in small country towns.
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road trips

Now that we are living Victor Harbor we have had to own two cars in order to do things. That means I have a photography car–a Mazda 606– which I can use for my photographic road trips.

This picture of Southern Cross Station in Melbourne was made on an earlier holiday trip with Suzanne and the poodles. We were staying with my sister at Safety Beach on the Mornington Peninsula, and I had gone into the city to do some photography.

Southern Cross Station

Southern Cross Station

This trip gave me the idea of returning to the photo road trip once we had got the two cars that would allow me to be able to do it. Now we have these I can get away. I recently did a trial run to Canberra via Hay last week and I was able to shoot some river gum roots for the Edgeland project that I’d seen whilst walking the poodles on an earlier trip to Canberra.
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off to Canberra

The Australian Abstractions exhibition at The Light Gallery has opened, the artist talk has been given, and work on the abstraction book with Moon Arrow Press has started. The artist talk addressed why the black and white part of the exhibition is a stand-in for the absent modernist black and white works of the 1950s and 1960s. It also addressed the claim by photographic historians that Australian photography does not have a tradition of abstractions and that Australian photographers are not interested in abstraction.

The preparatory work for my image in the ‘Time’ exhibition at the Lost Ones Gallery for the Ballarat International Foto Biennale 2015 will be done early this week. Then I’m off on a photo trip to Canberra on Thursday to continue working on the Edgelands project.

lichen+creeper

lichen+creeper

Meanwhile we continue to walk around the coast if the winter weather permits. It has been very stormy during July, and we have often walked around the town centre or the Heysen Trail to seek protection from the strong off shore winds. Continue reading

Australian abstractions exhibition

The Australian Abstractions exhibition at the Light Gallery in Adelaide opens at 3pm Sunday 25th July, and all are welcome to attend. Avril Thomas, the portrait painter and owner of the Magpie Springs gallery, will open the exhibition.

Most of the work in the exhibition has emerged out of poodle walk in that these are the representation of the forms and textures that I’m seeing on the walks and in the different lighting conditions.

bark + leaves

bark + leaves

The abstractions are linked to the 2012 photographic abstractions exhibition that was curated by the Monash Gallery of Art in Melbourne. Many of the images in this exhibition can be seen here.

All of my black and white images in Australian Abstractions are abstractions from nature. Unlike the abstractions of landscape from the air by Richard Woldendorp, my abstractions of both the bark of gum trees and the coastal granite cliffs are done with my feet firmly on the ground.It offers another way of thinking about ‘landscape’.
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in Melbourne: thinking about Flickr

It is argued that in contrast to the Kodak culture, where a small group of persons (friends and family) share oral stories around images with others, the digital new culture of the image on Flickr, the  photo-sharing site,  is one where a large-scaled conversation is shared with people that participants don’t know in real life.

Chiko Chip Shop

Chiko Chip Shop

That large-scaled conversation shared with people used to be the case with Flickr, but it is less so know. Flickr’s key strengths are seen as photo sharing and storage. Around 2005/2006  it  was the best online photo management and sharing application in the world.  There was the social sharing  which used to be quite active in a community sense because Flickr was a place where people who took  photography more seriously  went.

No longer. The impact of the mobile phone has meant  that people tick the ‘like’ button for an particular image, rather than comment or engage in a large scale conversation on other people’s photos. I used to engage in the conversations but with Yahoo’s recent (2013) revamp/redesign  of Flickr I more or less drop an image into my photo stream and run. The new style Flickr represents a “sea change” in its purpose. Continue reading

struggling with photography

I plug along trying to scope photos of the landscape whilst on our poodlewalks without making much progress in finding material that I would go back and re-photograph with a large format camera. I take snaps on the walk with a digital camera  and that’s about it. Sometimes I don’t even bother taking my digital camera with me.

roadside vegetation, Heysen Trail

roadside vegetation, Heysen Trail

I find a situation where light, form and landscape converge at a particular location  in space and time, but the result is banal. Uninteresting. Dull. Boring. Empty,  pretty pictures that don’t do anything much at all.

So where do I go from here? How do you bring the history of this landscape into this picture making? Power or politics? How do you move beyond pretty pictures–the pastoral? It can be done in words.

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