digital suite

I have just had the  backup technology for Encounter Studio's digital suite updated.   I've been forced into it, as  I  needed to replace  an old,  dysfunctional data storage device---a  Lacie Quadra (500 gigabit)--- with a NetGear  Nas Raid (2TB) storage device with its  mirroring disc.  It will take around 12 hours to back up my photos.

It's  a prosumer --home-based or small business--data storage device  rather than an industrial or professional photography one. Though it is a network solution to data storage,   it does not have the capacity to keep  adding or replacing the  hard discs,  or to automatically backup to a remote location. That will be the next upgrade I guess.

I'm very paranoid about backing up my photographs and data  storage these days,  as  I have experienced  hard disc failures in my computers and  my  Apple and Lacie data storage devices die in the last year.

The next step  is to  back up the data storage devices  with  a portable hard disc  using the hard discs that we have been aale to  salvage from the  now useless Lacie Quadra. These portable hard discs can then be stored on the library shelf at Victor Harbor,  or in another place for safekeeping.

In the meantime I've been  figuring out how to continue with my  table top  photography  using  the  Sinar 8x10, a standard lens  (Schneider Symmar 360mm f5.6), natural light and black and white sheet film. I wanted to avoid the expense of buying an extension rail or a telephoto lens. 

 

roadside grasses

 I've been laid low with a torn ligament in my lower back and that ends the planned 8x10 photography for this weekend. So  I've been going through some of the roadside pictures on the computer that I took  last year during the summer.

One area   that I started in the roadside series was the summer grasses:

I'd just seen some of James Cant's  sunny and dry South Australian landscapes, and more specificially, his close-up images of local grasses and brush. These were highly textured, almost calligraphic, paintings. 

I had a quick look at my summer grasses  photography before, just after I'd scanned them,  but I didn't like the series  at all. I thought the idea was misguided. So I forgot about  them.

It's winter  now and everything looks different. So I can see the pictures I took then  at more of a distance.

reconnecting

I've just returned to Encounter Studio in Victor Harbor, South Australia today after a month's phototrip in Tasmania. Suzanne is in Paris,  I'm looking after Ari, and the digitial suite has a new modem. The old one died during an electrical storm whilst we were in Tasmania.

I've linked up with an Adelaide-based  Art Photographers Facebook group that is quite lively and free wheeling and I've ordered a new digital camera to replace the old Sony  that was stolen in Melbourne last November. 

I've been  trying to reconnect with the  work that I was doing in Victor Harbor before the Tasmanian phototrip. To my dismay I've lost any sense of what I was working on or trying to do.  So I looked at the negatives that I had scanned just before I left for Tasmania:

I have to face it. I'm not sure that I had a particular project with the Victor Harbor book.  What was I trying to do with it I asked myself? I didn't have an answer. So what was I doing then? There has been a workflow but I've just been been taking snaps around several themes.

So where do I go from here?

black and white

I've slowly returned to working in black and white and, in doing so, moving away from rock abstractions  to the scrub.  

It is easy to do when I'm using the  Rolleiflex SL66.  I can shoot in colour the scene in then switch to black and white  by  just changing the film back. It's slow black and white film--Ilford   PanF Plus 50 ---- that I use, as this camera is always used on a tripod.

The exposures are around generally 1-5 seconds as I take pictures in the early morning or just before  dusk  in the summer months. I was lucky this day as it stayed overcast for a couple of hours. So I raced back to the studio  and returned with the 8x10 Cambo monorail.  

I've always struggled with taking pictures of the Australian woodland, scrub or the bush. It is so messy and chaotic.  Then I saw Lee Friedlander's  pictures  of trees   from his flowers and trees series and saw how it could be done.

Here is an early attempt done just before  Xmas when I was down at Victor Harbor with Lariane  Foneseca,   a friend of Suzanne's who is a wonderful photographer. The melaleucas were on Rosetta Head, or The Bluff as the locals call it.

I   exposed a couple of  8x10 picture of these trees but I've yet to send the negatives to Blanco Negro  in Sydney to be processed. I'm inclined to return and do some pictures that are  closer up. 

erosion

It has been a couple of  months since I posted on the Encounter Studio's blog. Even though I'd been working on the Victor  Harbor book over the Xmas break I'd more or less forgotten about this blog. I only remembered it when I was  setting up the book's  gallery this morning.  

This is an picture  taken last year and it depicts erosion along the side of the Ring Road. I made a number of studies of this subject as I was attracted by both the shapes and the  colours.  

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.