tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:/posts Thoughtfactory's image-text blog 2021-07-08T20:58:21Z Gary Sauer-Thompson tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1678004 2021-04-12T22:56:08Z 2021-04-13T02:01:04Z old tripods

I recently went on a field trip to Lorne and the Great Otway National Park in Victoria with the Melbourne based  large format photographers. Like the previous visit, it was a short trip - we ( Suzanne, myself and the standard poodles)  only spent  a few days staying at an Airbnb at Aireys Inlet.  Accommodation along the coast of the Great Ocean Road was extremely hard to find.  It appears that everybody is travelling around Australia with the national  borders closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Lorne itself was packed. There were people everywhere including  at Erskine Falls.   

I hit my physical  limits carrying my Gitzo aluminium tripod and Linhof 5x4 Technika IV up a series of steps  to  Swallow Cave at the top of the Sheoak waterfall. It was the tripod that did it: -- the Gitzo  is heavy and unwieldy and it hurt my neck and back when strung across my shoulders.  I really struggled.   It is the lightest tripod that I own, but I  had to take rests to ease the strain on my neck and back.    

Consequently, the next day when I walked along a  forest path from the Blanket Leaf Picnic Area to the Cora Lynn Cascades and back I knew I could not carry the  Gitzo aluminium tripod and Linhof 5x4 Technika IV; even though it  was just a couple of kilometres on a moderate grade walk to the Cascades.   

 I'm just going for a walk in the forest I told myself. I'm going to enjoy myself in the Otways.  To hell with lugging heavy gear.  I saw  this part of the creek on the way down to the Cascades. It  was  in a very dark corner, it was raining,  and so it was  a very low light situation. 

I just carried a Sony A7 R111 digital camera with me. It  works well handheld in low light. The Cascades themselves were nothing much so I photographed this section of the  creek on the way back to the picnic ground.  It was no longer raining.   

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1650185 2021-02-05T23:44:42Z 2021-02-09T07:00:57Z beyond social media?

 Hamish McKenzie, in  addressing the attention economy  on the Substack blog, refers back to the old (pre-social media) internet and blogging. This is internet history. That was then. We now live and work in the attention economy  with  its environment of perpetual digital distraction  where  companies  (eg., Facebook and Google) are targeting our attention to make money. Their business model is  the monetisation of attention to  passively consume through governing modes of participation  within the system. Facebook's  software has the capacity to  produce and instantiate modes of attention as well as to track and process  user data across the web. This is an infrastructure that  works invisibly in the background to shape forms of sociality.   

What has emerged is a techno-culture of perpetual distraction--all those pings, pop-ups, notifications  that cause us to be perpetually distracted.  Rather than democratising the public sphere, social media replaces it with a global Freudian id, in which everyone’s darkest impulses collide, and rational  debate becomes difficult.

So we need to critically think about the  role of Facebook's network of friends in our lives,  how it affects our mental capacities and predicts our future interests.   

So how might we critically engage? 

McKenzie  say that  Substack,  which  is an independent publishing platform  based on a subscription model,  is a place where writers are rewarded not for doing the things that capture attention but instead for doing the things that respect readers’ trust. Substack emerged as a digital publishing platform from a  frustration with:

"how the quality of discussion has been degraded on social media. We are dumber on social media than we are in real life. We are less forgiving, less willing to listen and understand, and more prone to dismiss and then torch our ideological opponents. That, after all, is how we earn internet points....the incentives that underpin today’s dominant internet media businesses have led to tribalism and groupthink ... With an ad-based business model you have to play for scale, which isn’t always conducive to good discourse. To make any meaningful money in such a model, media producers have to generate millions of ad impressions." 

He says that the old internet internet felt like a less hostile place then, and there were fewer heat-seeking algorithms that sought to transmute attention into gold. Substack, as a counter force to social media  he adds,   frequently references that blogging era,  and  it seeks to recapture some of what made it special.

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1634449 2021-01-01T06:36:55Z 2021-01-02T07:16:11Z GPS coordinates/innovation/future thinking

I have just realized that by using Latitude and Longitude through  Google Earth I am able to give  a far more  accurate way of identifying  the location of my photos,  than just saying 'the rocky coastline just west of Petrel Cove' in South Australia.  

An example of a recent photo:--Lat:-35.5932 Lon:138.5978

GPS coordinates have also helped me to find a section of granite rocks along the coast of Deep Creek Conservation Park that I've  wanted to walk and explore. I knew about them in a casual way,   but I could not  find their location  until I came   across a latitude reference to their location near Deep Creek Beach.  I was interested because I wanted to continue to explore the relationship between  photographic abstractions and  nature whilst avoiding  the genre of  the landscape. 

It will be a workout walking to and from the coast  carrying 5x4 equipment. As the walk is around  6 hours so it will become  part of  the training for the forthcoming camel trek from Blinman to Lake Frome  in South Australia in May. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1623850 2020-12-03T04:12:29Z 2020-12-03T06:04:16Z Archives: leaves, bark, light

This picture of  leaves, bark, and light is from the archives --late December 2018. The leaves and bark were  in the  local  reserve  just across the road  from my studio in Encounter Bay.  

This macro image was made with my  old mirrorless  Sony NEX-7 digital camera which had been outfitted with  a Voigtlander close up adapter and an old  35mm Leica M lens. The combination had only been put together a  few weeks earlier.  My fingers were crossed: would it work smoothly? Would it allow me to forget the tech and concentrate on making photos, just as I could with a Leica M  film camera?  

Though the Sony NEX-7  is very basic and old tech -- it is not full frame and it is not good in low light --- it still functions well within these limitations. This is one way to keep an old digital camera (circa 2011) going--as a second walk around camera to the camera that replaced it --a mirrorless Sony A7 R111, a  Novoflex adaptor and a 35mm  Leica M lens.   

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1611672 2020-11-03T01:10:08Z 2020-11-11T00:09:28Z seascapes

I have been using the few occasions when  I go up Rosetta Head on an early morning Sunday poodlewalk with Kayla to photograph seascapes. That is what you see: the southern ocean. 

I am discovering that my  emphasis is on the clouds rather than the sea: 

I have tried a different compositional approach  ---eg., one that is more evenly balanced between cloud and sea and neither dominate the other. 

However,  I find the latter  composition more bland and  boring. Boring, tired, done is my  immediate response. And they don't look like abstractions. But they promise possibilities. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1605516 2020-10-18T06:13:17Z 2020-11-05T23:59:31Z Edgelands-2

There is not much in the way  of an edgeland  in the landscape  around the coastal township of Victor Harbor.  The suburban edge of the town backs onto farming properties. It is a similar situation with the other townships in the southern Fleurieu Peninsula.  So it  is difficult to continue working on this long term project. 

However, the  old Victor Harbor Council's dump, which  has been closed down for some time,   has become an edgeland on the Waitpinga outskirts of the township. It is a home for rabbits and occasionally cattle wander through.  I have previously photographed here.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1589287 2020-09-01T00:08:47Z 2020-09-01T00:12:46Z experiments #2

The fuzzy experiments continue. This time it is Petrel Cove on a stormy afternoon: 

I was sitting in the car in the Petrel Cove car park waiting for the squall  to pass  before I went for an afternoon  poodlewalk with Maleko.  I was wondering if I could achieve layers and textures in the photo with everything out of focus.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1584772 2020-08-19T04:44:14Z 2020-08-21T06:11:36Z at Kapunda with Lavender Trail friends

As mentioned in this blog  post  in the Eye on the Mallee website  I spent several days in mid-August at Kapunda with Suzanne's Lavender Trail friends. Whilst they walked the trail  around the Kapunda region  in the mid-north each day  I photographed. I actually spend more time photographing in,  and around,  Kapunda than  I did in the South Australian mallee. Well,  I split my time between the two different regions. 

This picture is of the Anglican church in Kapunda. It was designed by Edmund Wright,  and built around 1857-8: 

Kapunda was a copper mining town in the mid-nineteenth century until  1879 and the revenue from copper  saved South Australia from bankruptcy. The railway from Gawler, which  was established in 1860 to  service the copper mining, was the the first extension of the line from Adelaide to Gawler.  The extension continued through Eudunda then across the Murray Mallee plains adjacent to what is now the Thiele Highway to Morgan on the River Murray to  capture the  up-stream paddle steamer trade.  
 
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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1581279 2020-08-05T10:25:41Z 2020-08-05T10:25:42Z fuzzy seascapes

I ventured up Rosetta Head one cloudy morning recently  --the 3rd of August. I decided  not to carry my film cameras  from the Petrel Cove carpark as I did not know what an out of focus pre-sunrise grey seascape would look like photographically.  

This is the first experiment. I was  looking east over Encounter Bay towards Goolwa and the Coorong whilst I was making  my way to the top of  Rosetta Head:   

Kayla had gone ahead to join Maleko and Suzanne, who was doing her exercises. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1579432 2020-07-31T04:59:12Z 2020-08-01T03:06:48Z experiments: fuzzy abstracts?

I have been tentatively experimenting with an abstract approach to photography in low light situations. as a break from working on the newsletter and the Walking/photography exhibition at Encounters Gallery.   

The low light scenario happens at   the end of the poodlewalks with Maleko when we are   returning   to the car along the coastal path at  dusk. When start to return when it  is too dark to photograph amongst the coastal rocks. However, there is  still light and colour  in the sky over the southern ocean so I can hand hold the digital camera (a  Sony A7 R111) to make a photo.  

A recent  example of the experiment:

It's an experiment because this kind of subject just doesn't work as an abstract when everything is in focus--I've  made several attempts and it looks ugly.   I've also tried  it with the lens wide open and the foreground of the subject  in focus--but it  is a nothing  kind of image.  Nor does it work when there are small pockets of clouds in the sky over the sea. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1576524 2020-07-24T01:28:12Z 2020-07-31T01:01:43Z low light photography

The 3  pictures in this post  were made whilst  I was on my way to make some supplementary photos for the upcoming Walking /Photography exhibition  at Encounters Gallery for the SALA Festival in South Australia. The Festival starts  in August, 2020.  

The pictures, which  were  made with the Sony A7 R111,   indicate that one  of the advantages of digital technology over the older film technology is digital's  low light capability.  The pictures were made 30 minutes before sunrise, which was at 7.23 am that morning.  The camera  was handheld with the 35mm Leica lens wide open.  This kind of low light photography would only be possible using film if the camera was on a tripod and the  exposure was long.  The latter is a studied style of photography,  not  the  spontaneous one in low light  made possible by digital technology.  I find this low light capability important  as I am often walking before sunrise. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1571861 2020-07-11T10:36:26Z 2020-07-31T02:55:37Z photo session at Kings Head

A behind the camera photo of a  small photo session at Kings Head on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia, which  shows how my photography  incorporates poodlewalks.  The standard poodles are my companions. We walk together to a location and they stay with me when I take time out from the walk to photograph. Then we walk back to the car. On this occasion it was Maleko who was my companion. 

It's dead simple medium format photography using a   "workhorse" Rolleiflex SL66 film camera:--a simple and stripped back film camera from the 1970s.  There are no  technological features to set up  or any  AI.  It's just composition, light and exposure all done 'in camera'.  This allows me to reconnect to the process of slowly making a photo, as well as also requiring me to  decide upon the outcome before the shutter button is pressed.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1564466 2020-06-25T02:17:51Z 2020-07-09T00:46:02Z photography as placemaking

The picture below is of  a  large format photo session at Pitkin Rd in Waitpinga on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia engaging with the materiality of the  land: fields, trees, creeks, roads, bridges, signs, rural life of this particular place. It is of a patch of countryside  that emerges from a sense of an intimate relationship to a particular ‘patch of land’.  It is more than space---which is an empty  area or a homogenous,  geometrical space. 

 It is true that representations of  landscape has been  unfashionable  as the recent  photographic  emphasis is on the metropolitan urban where most people live. Landscape is conventionally seen as a  anachronistic genre, part of a old, privileged tradition ‘overthrown’ by Modernism and now of little or no relevance in our overwhelmingly urban, more or less progressive, global culture.  It is seen as the mundane representation of a “mere place”;  an inferior sort of environment that is of little or  no interest.    

The above  picture  is photography as placemaking. An example.   In my  case it is part of the  retreat  from globalisation, given that the second great wave of globalization that started in the 1980s is now over with the  emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic.  

The assumptions of this photography as placemaking approach is that place is a social product and that photography fixes the gaze and pins it down.  The gaze works within the limits of both the moment that is photographed and the spatial limits of the frame. The photographic frame restricts the gaze. The photograph is limited by the perspective of the camera  and the subject is forced to subject their look to the gaze of the camera. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1556960 2020-06-10T09:26:24Z 2020-06-20T01:16:35Z a coastal landscape

This scoping image of a landscape  was for a future 5x4 photoshoot, and it  was made on a recent late afternoon poodlewalk during the Covid-19 lockdown in South Australia. The lens on the handheld digital camera  is pointing  towards Kings Head  on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula

Landscape here refers to the practice of visual representation of space. Photography doesn't just situate landscape in a physical context,  it also situates ourselves in it. The framing, focus and depth of field  of the camera identify our position as the  viewing subject. When we "see " a landscape we situate ourselves in it.  

The idea behind this coastal landscape  photo was to use this  particular  perspective  to  show the edge or relationship between wilderness of the southern ocean and what is traditionally  called a human altered landscape--in this landscape the agricultural land and its buildings. The privatised land comes down to the edge of the coast. The  public spaces are  the coastal rocks and a narrow path between the fence of the agricultural land and the  edge of the cliffs. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1547481 2020-05-21T00:52:26Z 2020-05-24T06:10:36Z During the Covid-19 lockdown: Encounter Bay

During these  days of the Covid-19 lockdown I often see solitary  figures  walking along the  Encounter Bay beach before sunrise. People are  out and about walking from about an hour before sunrise, which in late autumn is  around 7am Central Australian time.  

These early morning walkers  do keep to the social distancing measures when they meet others during what is known as the “recovery period”--the  easing of the lockdown measures. these are  now being  coded as a "snap back" to economic growth with a publicly subsidised gas-led recovery.    Business-as-usual. 

 This concern with ensuring social distancing  is in contrast  to  many in the local shopping centres during the day who act as if the pandemic  is all over,  and that life is now back to normal. They assume that  because the infections are going down, then the pandemic  is over. They do not act as if there is a possibility of  a second wave coming due to increasing community transmission of the virus from the easing of the lockdown restrictions to 'get the economy moving' and people back in work. It appears that people's resolve to keep to social distancing outside the home is weakening.

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1540555 2020-05-06T05:30:28Z 2020-05-09T07:28:31Z Photography during the lockdown

The Mallee Routes project is on hold during  the public health lockdown to stop the spread of  the Covid-19 virus amongst the Australia population. The  public health social restrictions  during lockdown  require  that we can only travel within our postcode for exercise.  There may be some lifting of restrictions in a week or so by the federal and state governments,  as the former is anxious to get the economy moving.  

So I have started to explore photographing the period of lockdown, self-isolation and social distancing;  as distinct from continuing to make various types of locally based  photos during the lockdown; or making film photos  for an online exhibition of film photos made during the lockdown  being organized by  the Friends of Photography Group (FOPG). Photographing the period of lockdown is  about our  experiences of lockdown.  This is a unique time  and photography can, and should be,  a part of pausing  and reflecting  upon our relationship with our surroundings.

The exploration is experimental in that there has been a  shift away from a conventional documentary approach. This  means that  I am    stepping outside my comfort zone. I have been thinking about photographing  in a more controlled way by working wth people in a set up situation in specific locations.  As I do not have a treasure trove or storehouse of props to use  in these situations,  my  approach  will need  to be very  simple.    

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1536056 2020-04-27T00:55:39Z 2020-04-29T02:46:24Z connections

The  b+w  picture below is of roadside vegetation in Waitpinga on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula. It  is from the archives,  and  it was made with a large format camera--a 1950's  Super Cambo 8x10 monorail. 

I used this  picture of the local landscape as my contribution to the online print viewing/sharing of the Melbourne based Friends of Photography Group (FOPG). I've linked up  with FOPG due to my isolation  as a large format photographer in Adelaide.  There are very few people doing this kind of slow photography in Adelaide, and I have little connection to, or empathy with,  the few that  are.  I decided to  share some of my photos I've made  of the local landscape in  Encounter Bay/Waitpinga  with FOPG,  since  most of the photography the members of  FOPG do  is orientated towards the genre of  landscape.    

I am on the fringe  of FOPG due to living in Adelaide. It's not practical  for me  to attend their face-to-face print viewing sessions in Melbourne, but I  did plan to go their field trip to Apollo Bay and the Otway Ranges in April. Unfortunately,  that field trip was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  I plan to submit a photo of the  Waitpinga  landscape from those that  I have been making during the lockdown to their upcoming online exhibition.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1533317 2020-04-20T03:13:06Z 2020-04-27T00:48:06Z Reading: rethinking mimesis

I am currently using my stay at home time during the Covid-19 pandemic to do some reading. At the moment I am  working through  the Adorno on Mimesis in Aesthetic Theory article by Amresh Sinha at the School of Visual Arts in New York,  plus  other texts in relation to  this subject matter that I have come across whilst writing this blog post.   The photos of the sculpture trail on Granite Island in this post link back  to this earlier post. This reading is research  for an essay for the third road-trip section  of the  Bowden Archive and Other Marginalia book that I am currently working on. 

The essay is a defence  of realism  at a time when the anti-naturalist cast of much modern aesthetics (eg., modernism and postmodernism) was the dominant aesthetic in the art institution.  Since the Bowden photos are part of  a realistic aesthetic I have been looking for a way around the modernist/postmodernist  reduction  of realism to a  simple copy, reflection  or mirroring of reality,  and the subsequent dismissal of realism as an outmoded, obsolete  aesthetic. A realist aesthetic also underpins photographs of nature in its different forms which have also been sidelined by the art institution. 

Mimesis in relation to art or aesthetics  is  a difficult concept to grasp as well as being an  elusive one. It is a concept that I have struggled to understand with respect to expression in modern art. Traditionally ( ie., in Plato's Republic)  mimesis has been used to describe the relation between an original object and a representation that attempts to imitate that original,  and in doing so  produces a kind of pseudo-reality--a mirage (a counterfeit reality) that  may deceive.   I understood  that mimesis  refers to a  “cognitivist” account of art  that was coupled to  classical ideals of truth-telling, which in modernity had been replaced  by romantic concerns with self-expression and originality, which  underpinned  the American style formalist modernism celebrated by the Museum of Modern Art in the 1970s-1990s.     

What I have grasped so far is that the root of mimesis is imitation (of nature as object) and artistic representation,  and that it refers to a tactile experience of the world.   Aristotle rejects  the Platonic conception of mimetic transparency,  and in his Poetics  mimesis is held to be a fundamental expression of our human experience  within the world. Aristotle links it to children’s mimetic behavior (make-believe or play-acting) and to animals. Mimesis is a natural human propensity toward imaginative enactment of hypothetical realities, with a concomitant pleasure in learning and understanding  from mimetic activity. 

Rather than being imitation in the sense of a copy,  mimesis has a productive dimension (poiesis).The  notion of mimesis interpreted as poiesis—as a world-creating activity, opens up  the possibilities of the real within the imaginary. Mimesis is a way of doin,- a bringing forth of actions, a bringing to light, bring forth a creative action that is unified within itself.  Images, poetically arranged, generate and open up a sense or experience of a world. Moreover, it  is in poetic structures, not in their authors, that Aristotle locates the cognitive value of poetry, whilst his concept of mimesis, in the Poetics and elsewhere, entails the interlocking functioning of three elements— pleasure, understanding, and emotion.

 
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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1526060 2020-04-01T06:46:35Z 2021-07-08T20:58:21Z ambling on the Kepler Track

When I was recently in NZ on a photo trip and a holiday I spent a day walking along the Kepler Track whilst Suzanne went on a day trip to Doubtful Sound. We were staying at an Air BnB at Lake Manapouri overlooking the Waiau River. I wanted to spend a day ambling along  the Kepler Track just taking photos,  in contrast to my usual urban drifting; or taking the odd  quick snap whilst walking quickly and purposefully to reach  a specific destination by a certain time. 

On my previous visits to New Zealand I didn't have the camera equipment to make photographs when I was walking in the forest without using a tripod. I travel overseas without a tripod,  and so  all the photography on these photo trips had to be hand held.  Though the film in  my film cameras  was good enough to photograph hand held  in urban areas,  the dynamic range of film was too limited to allow me  to photograph  hand held in the deep shadows of a beech forest. 

The  Sony digital camera  --a Sony a7 R111---that I had  for  this  trip did have the capacity to enable me to photograph hand held in low light. I was working from experience here and here. So the technological  problem had been solved. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1513673 2020-02-26T03:35:26Z 2020-04-03T05:22:22Z digital limits

By accident I  discovered  the limits of the dynamic range on my Sony A7 R111 digital camera  whilst I was on a recent  landscape photo session in Waitpinga in South Australia  late this summer (mid-February).   

Even though I was photographing in the early morning light,  the camera could not cope with the dynamic range between the deep  shadows at the base of the cliffs and the highlights of the sun in the clouds. Using Lightroom 6  I was able to recover the detail at the base of the cliffs in post processing, but not in the highlights. 

An example: 

The pictures  that I made when I was at the foot of the cliffs that morning were similar, only the highlights were even more burnt out. I did not realize this had happened  until I uploaded the digital files onto the computer's hard disc  and looked at the images on the computer screen. I eventually deleted these. I  had to admit  to being  somewhat surprised. Taken back actually. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1510014 2020-02-16T03:29:57Z 2020-02-17T01:17:21Z Between Two Rivers walk

This picture of a summer holiday fun fair was made whilst I was on an early morning poodlewalk with Kayla on Australia Day. The Australia day weekend  marks the end of the summer school holidays. 

 The Girder Family Amusements  are a  regular feature of the summer holidays at Victor Harbor. We usually pass  their site when we are walking along Esplanade Beach and past the Granite Island causeway. Girder  Amusements are squeezed in  on a small reserve near the causeway.
 
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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1500792 2020-01-19T23:32:51Z 2020-01-21T07:12:21Z photography and social media

Though  I currently use Facebook and Twitter to spread the word of what I’m doing with my photography I have realised that I have been cutting back on being engaged in social media. My growing dissatisfaction with social media is  one part of the deep background  changes that are currently happening in the  culture of  photography. 

I post regularly on  Facebook (here and here)  and Twitter  (here). It's  basically drop and run.  I only comment now and again  on posts by friends,  or in a couple of groups where there  is still a minimal sense of online community.  I then leave social media alone.  My reason  is that I don't really like Facebook and  its algorithms, and I detest, if not loathe,  its business model approach to the way it collects, stores, or analyzes its users’ data. Facebook is an advertising business that tracks people first and foremost; it is a Big Tech company that aims to become the operating system of our lives.

This  kind of negative reaction to social media is  probably quite common.  Joel Colberg, for instance,  has an interesting post on  what is happening in photography and social media. His argument  is  that  social media has  had a  destructive impact on the public sphere of online photography.  I agree with him  and so  I suspect would many other artists.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1499198 2020-01-14T22:23:36Z 2020-01-19T23:50:34Z the art market

In this post, the Canberra based  art historian  Sasha Grishin outlines the changes  in the art world. Restricting himself to the primary art market Grishin  says that  this market  was a traditional part of the traditional infrastructure for selling art, but now it is  failing to do this. 

Grishin  says that: 

"The traditional structure for selling art in Australia is through a commercial art gallery that picks up fresh talent, and then through the auspices of a newspaper art critic who promotes it to an art buying audience...[However]... In the 21st century, this 19th-century system of marketing and promoting contemporary art is seriously breaking down and the number of commercial art galleries in Australia has roughly halved over the past couple of decades."

He adds that patron visitation rates are poor and, outside exhibition openings many galleries report minimal visitors a day. People complain that they are time-poor and are more likely to visit a gallery online, than participate in the dying ritual of the weekly art gallery crawl. Online sales have not been seriously explored. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1491004 2019-12-19T23:49:31Z 2019-12-22T04:24:37Z fragments of light abstractions

Even though my leg is still infected  and I need to continue with the course of  antibiotics,  I am able to move around a little more freely now that the stitches have been taken out and the skin healed. 

After returning home from the  5 day sojourn in the Flinders Medical Centre I have  limited myself to walking  down Solway Crescent to the Encounter Bay  boat ramp. At  sunrise the boat ramp is  a hive of activity now that the channel has been dredged. Some  boats are already returning at 6am--presumably they have dashed out to check their cray (rock lobster) pots, whilst others are going out for a days recreational fishing with their friends.  

I have limited myself to photographing the head and tail lights of the parked 4 wheel drives,  then I sit at a table for a while watching the boats come and go in the morning sun before returning home for breakfast before I begin to edit  this post.  In the late afternoon I repeat the  walk. Since this  walk is not long enough  to exercise  the poodles Suzanne has been walking them  in the morning and the afternoon.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1488815 2019-12-13T23:40:08Z 2019-12-14T23:10:23Z at Flinders Medical Centre

I spent 5 days in a ward 4GS at  the Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) last week, due to the skin graft on my  leg becoming infected,  whilst  I was preparing for the Mallee Routes exhibition at the Murray Bridge Regional Gallery.  I ended up at the emergency department of the Victor Harbor Hospital on the  Sunday of the exhibition open, then went to FMC early on the Monday morning. I left FMC late on Friday afternoon. 

Though I was on an intravenous antibiotic drip  for the infection every six hours for the 5 days I was ward 4GS  I was allowed to make short walks  outside the ward in-between the 6 hours.  

The  short walks meant that I  mostly  explored the area  around the coffee shop such as  Theo's or the cafe in the Centre for Innovation in Cancer.   I would usually wander around this area  after  treating  myself  to a cup of coffee;  or after dinner at 5pm. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1481042 2019-11-22T23:33:34Z 2019-11-28T01:14:35Z Adelaide Art Photographers 1970-2000

Finally. 

This limited edition book----the background is  here---- goes to the printers (Openbook Howden) on Monday,  25th November.  The three  people who have worked on this book throughout  2019 ---Adam and Michal Dutkiewicz and myself-- made the final corrections to the preview copy on Friday  at Dulwich in Adelaide.  Hopefully, Openbook Howden  will be able to print the book by mid-December, just in  time for  Xmas It's official  launch will be at an exhibition at the RSASA in March 2020. 

It has been a major effort to recover some of  the art photography in Adelaide from this period,  to  then organise  the diversity of this work  into an art history book that looks and feels good in the hand,  and to write an essay on the aesthetics of medium specific modernism and its postmodern negation. It is an about an  art photography during the 1970-2000 period that was made in a provincial region outside the Euro-American centres, as well as  the major Australian cultural centres in Melbourne and Sydney--it's a critical regionalism, if you like,   structured around the the classic dichotomy between centre and periphery.    

This is a partial art historical text  with critical intent, and it is the second volume in the Moon Arrow Press photography  series, the first being  the Abstract Photography one that was published in 2017.  Both books help to give a sense that there was an  autonomous art photography tradition in Adelaide in the late twentieth century, as well as to give some indication of its regional breadth and depth prior to the internationalisation of Australian art after 2000. What emerged after 2000 was an unthinking acceptance that whatever appeared in the top-end galleries and auction houses in the major western (Euro-American) metropolitan cultural centres represented contemporary art. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1475366 2019-11-09T02:42:28Z 2019-11-10T01:47:43Z Edgelands 1

I have just realised that I have been quietly picking up an old project----namely,  Edgelands--whilst I have been haphazardly photographing for the Fleurieuscapes project. I hadn't realised that I had been making photographs of drosscapes, as I just did  the photos in passing, and then forgot about them. They sat in the archives until I revisited the site on a  recent poodlewalk.  Then I remembered making the photos. 

'Edgelands' refers to  those non-descript spaces that lie  between the urban and the rural. They are  an ill-defined, constantly changing boundary that separates the city from the countryside. These transitional zones and disregarded spaces can be found anywhere that urban development meets open land. 

The environmentalist Marion Shoard called these spaces “edgelands”  and adding a description of these kind of spaces:

The edgelands are the debatable space where city and countryside fray into one another. They comprise jittery, jumbled, broken ground: brownfield sites and utilities infrastructure, crackling substations and pallet depots, transit hubs and sewage farms, scrub forests and sluggish canals, allotments and retail parks, slackened regulatory frameworks and guerilla ecologies. 

 Shoard usefully  defined these edgeland spaces as “the interfacial interzone between urban and rural”. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1475014 2019-11-08T00:18:43Z 2019-11-08T03:22:09Z Sculpture Encounters Granite Island

I recently walked around the  sculpture park at  Granite Island, which is just  off the coast from the seaside township of  Victor Harbor.  The  sculpture park is entitled Sculpture Encounters Granite Island,   and it is organised by  the Sculpture by the Sea people.   It is still not that popular with the locals  who prefer  representational sculptures of seals, birds, whales etc.  However, Victor Harbor is slowly becoming a bit more culturally sophisticated   as it moves away from the cultural conservatism of the early 20th century. 

The walk was on a public holiday in October,  and my walking Granite Island along with the day tourists was  a break from walking  along the back country roads. I was having a bit of time off  from working on the aesthetic essay for the Adelaide Art Photographers  1970-2000 boo, which is to  be published by Adam Dutkiewicz at  Moon Arrow Press  in November 2019. 

October 7th was an overcast day with occasional sunshine. Rain was threatening. This is Peter Lundberg's  bronze sculpture entitled Adam and Eve:

This bronze sculpture  looks good  situated amongst the lichen covered rocks and  low   sparse vegetation  on  Granite Island,  with the sky and sea as its  backdrop.  It fits with the ruggedness of the environment. 

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1454049 2019-09-11T02:14:01Z 2019-09-13T03:28:58Z a note on photographing at Mt Arapiles

I recently spent  a weekend photographing at Mt Arapiles with a group of  large  format, film based  landscape   photographers from Melbourne, who come together under  the  Friends of  Photography Group (FoFG).  I  hadn't meet any of the group previously,  and I didn't know much  about who they were prior to this weekend. Since  few of them have their own websites I knew very little about their photography,  apart from what I'd seen on the insightful  and informative  View Camera Australia blog.    

 I don't consider myself  a wilderness photographer,  and unlike the FOPG photographers,  I do not  develop my (colour)  negatives or make fine prints from my  b+w  negatives in a  wet darkroom.  I did, however,  want to link up with some other large format photographers in Australia   who were both serious about their craft  and whose  landscape photography was  location based. FoFG's excursion to the Mt Arapiles-Tooan State Park  was my opportunity,  since  it was closer to Adelaide  than some of FoFG's  favourite  locations  in eastern Victoria. 

There were about 14 of the FoFG who made it to the Mt Arapiles weekend.  Like myself,  several of them camped at the Centenary Park campground,  amongst the various groups of the dedicated and serious rock climbers.   The group was open, supportive, knowledgeable  and generous. I was impressed by a  couple  of the FoFG  using 11 x 14 cameras (both field and pinhole)  as I  struggle to  handle an 8x10.  

 I guess that some of the photography that I  make  along the coast of the  southern Fleurieu Peninsula  would fall within the landscape photography category--eg., the photographs of  the rocks, trees and coastline that emerge from my  various poodlewalks.  So I do have a foot in this kind of landscape photography,  without considering it to be within the tradition of  wilderness  photography.   

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Gary Sauer-Thompson
tag:solway.posthaven.com,2013:Post/1449654 2019-08-29T07:44:55Z 2019-09-01T01:45:54Z near Palmer, eastern Mt Lofty Ranges

As mentioned in this  post on the Mallee Routes blog my stay at  the 5 day camp at Tanunda with the Lavender Trail walking friends allowed me to travel across, and photograph in,   the eastern Mt Lofty Ranges, the Murraylands and the Murray Mallee. 

The  image below was made on the Randall Rd (B35)  in the Mt Lofty Ranges  near Palmer in the eastern Mt Lofty Ranges.   I was making  my way down the Ranges  to the Murraylands  to  photograph around  the small towns of Cambrai and Sedan,  which  were connected by a railway line in the early 20th century.   

The  drive through the eastern Mt Lofty Ranges  was reconnecting with my past. I had been here before in the 1980s. I do recall jumping the  fences  then.  Even though I had a bit of a wander around I couldn't find the  specific areas that I'd photographed in.  Too much has changed in the 30-35 or so years.  

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Gary Sauer-Thompson