a photowalk with Heather Petty

We–Kayla, Maleko and myself–went for a photowalk with Heather Petty on Saturday afternoon–the last day of September. The photowalk was our poodlewalk, as the emphasis was on taking photos rather than walking the poodles. The sun was out, there was some cloud cover, and though a cold south-westerly wind was blowing across the coast, it was pleasant conditions for photography. We did not see the white belly sea eagle, dolphins or seals.

seaweed+quartz

I carried some seaweed around with me whilst we were walking amongst the rocks towards Dep’s Beach from where we had parked the Subaru Forester at Kings Beach Rd. We moved slowly as I was placing the seaweed amongst different rocks. I was able to take a number of photos.

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swirling seas

The spring weather has been its usual turbulent normal along the southern Fleurieu Peninsula coast of South Australia. Cold south-westerlies and showers one day, sunshine, shorts and t-shirt the following day, then back to cold, overcast weather the next. My afternoon walks amongst the coastal rocks with Kayla and Maleko are a welcome and enjoyable break from sitting in front of the computer during the day working on the text for the Adelaide Photography 1970-2000 book.

I have been taking advantage of these coastal walks to look out for, and find, some safe location amongst the rock formations so that I can explore different ways of making abstracts of the swirling sea:

sea abstract

These sea abstracts are a break from the usual rock and quartz abstracts that I usually do when photographing the present on these walks. This should become writing the present as well.

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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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