Hindmarsh River mouth

This is a favourite area  in Victor Harbor for the poodles, Suzanne  and myself. It is the estuary of the Hindmarsh River near Hayborough, and it includes a board walk through the melaleucas,  a lagoon and the beach itself.  The latter is very popular.

The afternoon in winter is the best  for photography  here. The river is flowing,  the western sun  lightens up the estuary and the colours are quite intense once the sun has gone behind the hills.  

pink gum

This pink gum  is on the side of the road to the Council Rubbish dump.  I noticed it one day when I was walking  along the road with the  poodles. It was probably the first time that I'd started to look the roadside vegetation as a photographer.

The shape intrigued me so I took a quick snap. I've returned a couple of times to photograph the tree with different cameras and in different conditions. It is significant  moment for me because I  then started to look more closely at the roadside vegetation on the back roads. 

three rocks

The South Australian  modernist painter thst I have the greatest affinity to is Dorrit Black. She used the unique forms of the  Fleurieu Peninsula landscape  as the basis for  her modernist works, such as Coast Road (1942) and Cliffs at Second Valley (1949). The latter is not online.

The pallette in Black's   work of the 1940s is sombre, the approach is cubist, the forms sculptural, and there is a gesture towards the sublime.

on location

This the photographer on location  in the early morning. The rock being photographed is this one.

I'd come across the rock form  when I started exploring the cliffs east of Kings Beach on an evening walk with the  poodles. I took some snaps and  they looked okay on the computer screen.   So I returned with my film cameras.

It was a struggle to get the gear down the cliff face early in the morning.   The  Linhof Tripod is heavy and bulky and difficult to carry. But  it  comes into its own in situations like this, as it is very  flexible and sturdy.

My interest in the rocks was form and light. Modernist abstraction in photography made sense-----it is abstracting from the  forms in nature. This abstraction of the forms of the landscape  has nothing to do with romantic subjectivity or transcendentalism.  

I don't see many Australian photographers  or painters doing this sort of work.

white roses

Old Victor Harbor  prior to the sea change phenomenon was notable for its large and glorious gardens. New Victor Harbor is more about small blocks,  McMansions,  panoramic views and no trees.

 

I pass by this garden each time I walk the poodles down to the beach. It is just down the road from the studio and the white roses are extravagant in the spring. They are in open shade and I cannot resist photographing them.

Agtet

Agtet is a standard poodle. This is his favourite beach. It is  between Petrel Cove and Kings Beach. It used to be fairly isolated. 

It is now part of the Heysen Trail and the Victor Harbor Council has put a lot of money into building an all weather track along the cliff tops. The beach has now beccome quite popular in the summer months.

Esplanade, Victor Harbor

One of the characteristics  of Victor Harbor is the deeply felt concern to protect  its cultural heritage. At its most extreme this takes the form of protecting the old against the new and opposing all development.

On the other hand, there is a lot of gorgeous beach side residential architeture that needs to be protected from being pulled down by developers to build McMansions or a dreary block of units that signify  architecture by numbers.

This is an example of what should be protected. It signifies old, gracious  Victor Habor. The leisurely,  monied world of yesteryear. 

near Kings Beach

This is a picture that was taken between Petrel Cove and Kings Head in the early morning using a Rolleiflex SL66  and Ilford PanF Plus 50 --a slow black and white film.

The location  is difficult to access as  it involves climbing down the cliffs via waterfall.  So the camera gear needed to be as lightweight as possible.  I did lug the Cambo 5x7 monorail down there on a latter occasion.

The picture has been posted in my Flickr stream and it was processed in Silver Efex Pro software using a gold toning filter.

The Heysen Trail  starts from Petrel Cove and wanders along the cliff tops. We walk  the section from  Rosetta Head to Kings Head  with the standard poodles when were are in Victor Harbor. It's a lovely walk.

at Petrel Cove

Welcome to the blog of Encounter Studios, which is situated in Victor Harbor  South Australia. This weblog  willl be updated occassionally as I live in Adelaide  and weekend in Victor Harbor. I will only post when I'm in Victor Harbor.

I've started the blog to basically talk about, and share,  my attempts to set up a film based digital studio whose primary focus is to photograph my local neighbourhood--specifically Victor Harbor and, more generally,  the Fleurieu Peninsula.  

Since the early years of colonial settlement the south coast of Adelaide--the Fleurieu Peninsula-- has been frequented by artist--primarily painters. It is a beautiful part of South Australia and still underrated. Landscape painting still dominates the visual representation of this region.

I use a variety of cameras--mostly film cameras  because of historical reasons---and I'm working on a book of the region. I've also started a gallery  of pictures.