staying or going?

Suzanne and I are currently in the process deciding whether we will stay in Victor Harbor or move back into the south-east corner of the city of Adelaide. The latter is the more capital expensive option (an architecturally designed extension to a cottage) whilst living on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula coast at Victor Harbor means that we are much more isolated. We are currently swinging between staying and going at the moment. There are advantages and disadvantages to both options.

One disadvantage for me in living at Victor Harbor is the limited opportunities that it offers for urban photography–ie., the flâneur, the casual wanderer, observer and reporter of street-life in the modern city. This kind of work now requires either day trips to Adelaide, major trips to Melbourne or road trips. Consequently, my daily photographs made on the morning and afternoon poodlewalks are nature orientated. I do feel constrained by this.

seaweed still life

seaweed still life

Hence the idea of quickly constructing the image as a still life whilst on the walks, since it is not really possible to bring the seaweed and rocks back to the studio to photograph.

I’m no longer a city-based photographer who goes out into the country to review and re-present what could be seen for an urban audience.

cuttlefish + rocks

Exploring the still life approach to what I find on the beach whilst on the poodlewalks doesn’t ease my feeling of being photographically constrained to the point where I give up taking photos. This situation then gives rise to a feeling that borders on frustration.

What this probably means is that the way that I do photography whilst I am living in Victor Harbor is starting to change. It means that I cannot do what I did when I lived at Sturt St in the CBD–being the casual wanderer and photographer in the city. The place that I live in is the coast and so my photography becomes landscape orientated. It’s about looking and framing a particular place to which I belong.

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