Petrel Cove: am

This was made  on an early morning poodlewalk as Kayla and I  set out for an open air  photoshoot,  then a walk along the rocks along the coast.  It was made in the warm  weather  just before before the cold, windy  wet conditions set in.

People were out and about in the sub tropical weather: surfing, fishing, sun baking, playing. I had some photos of saltt ponds amongst the granite rocks lined up, then the weather changed and everyone disappeared. 

on location: Petrel Cove

It took me three  attempts  over three days to photograph this rock pool at Petrel Cove:

My  historical baby Linhof camera--an old   Linhof Technika 70 --- had a mechanical problem  on the first morning as the locking mechanism wouldn't lock  the downturned folding camera bed so I could not focus;  the second morning it was raining; the third morning things finally came together. 

digital b+w photography

It is rare for me to convert my digital photos into black and white. I nearly always use medium format film  for my black and white  photography of the details along both the coast and the landscape of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia. I avoid the grandiose or the panorama.

However, as  I have no b+w film  at the moment,  and the spare film back for the Rolleiflex SL66 that I used  to use for  my b+w  broke when I was in Queenstown earlier this year and cannot be repaired, I  have done  a quick conversion of  a  digital colour image  into black and white using  Adobe's Lightroom.

I dislike the way that Lightroom converts colour digital files into black and white files.  The  tonal richness disappears and the image becomes rather drab and flat. There is no punch to them.  

So, like many others, I've been  using the Nik Silver Efex Pro 2 plugin software to process my digital black and white images in Lightroom.  I was happy with what I was using,  and I didn't bother  looking for alternative software  because I rarely  converted my digital photos into black and white. Digital black and white photography  didn't really appeal. 

This is  just a small step into the world of digital black and white photography. Though  I  will eventually buy more black and white film  to  use with the  Linhof Technika 70,   the new iMac (currently running the  High Sierra O/S)  is forcing me  to  think in terms of upgrading my  Sony NEX-7 digital camera to a full frame mirrorless one,  and updating my Adobe post processing software.  

salt ponds

One coastal subject matter that I had started to explore was the dried salt ponds among the rocks along the coast west of Petrel Cove. I had started to scope them with a digital camera. Then I saw the photograph of salt ponds  by Christopher Houghton made with a 5x4 camera and decided to photography the ones I'd seen  in black and white. 

I quickly found them to be very ephemeral--there in the morning, gone in the afternoon. So I spent several days on the various poodle walks looking for permanent saltponds  in different locations along the coast. I found a couple and I was ready to go back with a medium format camera. 

Then the rains cam after Xmas.   It rained  for several days and the permanent salt ponds that I had discovered were washed away.  A week has passed,  and though I have been back every day,  the salt ponds have  yet to return. 

Petrel Cove: am

This seascape is Petrel Cove in the early morning. It is part of the Fleurieuscapes  project that I have been working on  since we shifted to living at Victor Harbor. 

The picture  was made when I  had returned to  the car after a  poodle walk  along Deps Beach with Ari and Kayla. I was taken by the softness and the quality of the light. 

The sea is a big part of the southern Fleurieu Peninsula ---playing on the beach, fishing, surfing etc-- and I struggle to find  a way to photograph  it. How do you do it? It's a slow working it out and hoping that an opening will eventuate. The opening would be  a photograph that's a doorway that is photographically interesting.

The classic seaside/beach photography project is  Joel Meyerowitz's  1979 book Cape Light: a book of  colour photographs of the seaside resort of Provincetown, Cape Cod and its soft natural light  made in the summer of 1976 with an 8x10. It is  considered a classic work of colour photography and the  8 x 10  camera meant  that his  stance  towards  summer cottages and ice cream shops  was both one of patience and meditative.  The images are  in and around his house in Cape Cod and  the mood is one of languid, forever-long summer days. These are not really colorised or pumped up. 

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.

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.