at Newland Head cliffs

Suzanne caught the zombie flu whilst she was walking on Kangaroo Island, and so I took Kayla and Maleko on yesterday’s afternoon walk. We walked along the Heysen Trail to Kings Beach, along the edge of the beach, over the top of Kings Head, and dropped down to a rocky outcrop at the base at the eastern end of the Newland Head cliffs.

It was a spring day: sunny, with no cloud cover and little wind. I was wanting to avoid the hot, dry blustery north-westerly wind that was on its way.

quartz, Newland Head cliffs

I haven’t been to this spot for ages. The last time I was there to photograph was several years ago, and I wanted to familiarise myself with the location. The last time I’d been there was in the early morning during the winter when the rocky outcrop was buffeted with wild waves, south westerly winds and passing showers.

It was much calmer yesterday as we walked around the site , but the rocks were very slippery underfoot. Not that it worried the four legged standard poodles. I remembered how I’d lost my footing the last time I was here, and tumbled over onto the rocks whilst trying to stop my Rolleiflex SL66 from falling onto the granite.

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a spring morning

The stormy weather has gone.

In its place are cool southerly winds, blue skies, calmer seas and lots of bright sunshine. The winter grasses are drying out, grass seeds are attaching themselves to the coats of the poodles as we walk along the cliff top path, and I have itchy eyes and a running nose from my allergies to grass seeds.

Mornings like this are now a memory:

waves, Depp’s Beach

Early morning scenes like this are momentary. They are there one minute gone the next. The light is constantly changing, as are the waves.They are impossible to photograph with a medium or large format camera on a tripod.

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Lichen

With Suzanne is away enjoying her walks and the wild flowers in the south west of Kangaroo Island I am taking the opportunity of walking Kayla and Maleko in both the morning and evening to start to return to some of old haunts along the coast that I haven’t visited for a couple of years. Have things changed along the coast? Do I see the rocks and sea differently now?

Yesterday we walked along the coastal cliff top path to Kings Beach. Instead of going along the beach and around to Kings Head, or over to the base of the Newland Cliffs, we made our way back along the coastal rocks in the direction of Rosetta Head.

lichen near Kings Beach

It is not possible to walk all the way along the coastal rocks from Kings Beach to Rosetta Head, even when the weather is fine and the tide is low.

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playtime

Suzanne has gone off to walk the Wilderness Trail on Kangaroo Island. She will be away for most of this week with her bush walking group.

While she is away Kayla, Maleko and I will have some fun, playing with light and shadows:

shadows, Rosetta Head

And I’ll try and do some local photography, start planning another Mallee Routes photo trip, read more about photobook making, continue to edit the essays for the Bowden Archives book and start getting the Adelaide Photography 1970-2000 book (with Moon Arrow Press) off the ground.
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Petrel Cove: stormy days

The glorious spring weather disappeared completley on the weekend just past. Since Sunday morning strong south-westerly winds and rain have pounded the southern Fleurieu Peninsula coast. The wind has been bitterly cold. Fortunately, it was no superstorm, as they experience with the Atlantic basin hurricanes. I cannot imagine what winds of 180 mph or higher would be like. The winds of category 5 hurricanes must be life threatening.

The local storm caused large waves to roll in from the southern ocean, and these have made it very difficult for us to walk around the coastal rocks on our poodle walks. We haven’t been able to go very far around the rocks at all.

waves, Petrel Cove

It has just been too dangerous for us to walk around the rocks as the huge waves were coupled with high tides. The seventh wave–a storm surge?–has generally been monstrous.

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still life

Suzanne returned home to Encounter Bay late today after finishing walking the Heysen Trail. It was a 3 year commitment. A major achievement. She is home for 3 days then she is off on Saturday to walk the new Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail for several days.

Whilst she was away I have been working on this photobook project: selecting images from the archives of the digital photos that I have made on the various coastal poodle walks over the last 4 years. I noted that the photos improved in the latter years.

I guess I was becoming more confident in the type of photos that I wanted to make–details of the coastal landscape. During that time I had lots of nagging doubts about the nature of the Fleurieuscapes project, and where I wanted it to go.

seaweed+quartz still life

My initial selection produced around 150 photos.So there is going to have to be a big cull. Or a volume 2. The next step after the cull is to have Atkins Photo Lab make 6×4 prints of the images and then sort them into a sequence. Once that is done I can then put them into a notebook with blank pages and ring binding to give me a dummy book which I can show people.

Rosetta Head in spring

Spring weather has arrived and the last few mornings have been sunny with minimal coastal wind. With Suzanne away in the Flinders Ranges finishing the last section of walking the Heysen Trail, my morning walks with Kayla and Maleko have been over and around Rosetta Head.

It has seen while since I have done this walk. Ari was no longer able to walk up, over, and down Rosetta Head. His last time was with Judith Crispin when she was staying with us in early 2017 to launch her Lumen Seed book at Atkins Photo Lab in Adelaide. The best that he could do after that was to slowly walk along the path on the western side of Rosetta Head.

Suzanne normally does this walk in the morning, and the poodles jumping up on the rocks at the top of Rosetta Head and surveying the lie of the land beneath is one of the rituals of their walks.

on Rosetta Head

The spring weather has meant that I no longer need to wear a coat when walking in the morning and I have been able to have my breakfast on the balcony in the sun. I have no doubt that the rains and gale force winds will return.
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