Let’s face it, summer has been hardly anything to write home about this year has it? It’s almost as if the universe has had some form of equation to keep balanced these last few weeks. It seemed to me that beautiful light events have been severely lacking. Perhaps this observation is merely due to the way I shoot and process. Perhaps not.
What I do know, is that during the last few weeks, as autumn drew her veil across the landscapes, something major has changed in the way I am viewing what’s around me. Or more to the point, what is presented to us all has just been noticeably made more visually stunning.
This lake scene is very familiar to me, one I see on a daily basis. I get lost in the layers, the subtle dance that the photons are making with the dust in the air. A stillness that I cannot ignore, it passes through everything that I am. As I stand feet firmly rooted to the ground, my gazing and capturing is laying the foundations for what I will have to work with later.
Arming oneself with a camera when we visit foreign climates is always a good idea. An easily accessible method to lose yourself, blending into the background of this intriguing new place. With only 19 hours in Hong Kong, some very trusty guides and friends, I was off. The search of the holy grail. Fingers crossed, there may be a few if I’m being honest with you.
I’d never stepped foot outside of an Asian airport before now. I’ve lived in places where many Asian cultures have been present, yet I’d never connected culture to place. To me, this is important. We cannot be who we be, if we do not have a solid connection to at least one place. Lose sight of this and I’d say you’re doomed. When learning about cultures other than my own, it’s so valuable to me to be able to experience, first hand the place where this Eastern culture hails from.
The market stalls blew my mind. The hustle and bustle, mind boggling. The architecture and building techniques, sublime. The spiritual connection in the every day, something I’ve never witnessed first hand before.
Entering the Man Mo Temple, it was easy to find the classics. You can tell why, they are quite simply stunning. Releasing so much pleasure and connection as the shutter depressed time and time again. Then, all of a sudden and by total surprise, here it is.
An open door bearing the message of telling me to go no further. Yet it’s open. A glimpse behind the scenes, the doorway into a more modern world so different to the one of the temple, yet one that held it tight in it’s modern embrace. Spirituality enclosed with the modern urban world. A juncture of preparation and celebration, initially in private, then brought to the wider audience with intention and message intact. Raring to go.
My practice demands that I shoot the same scenes over and over again. So in fact does my life. My day to day. The one that I have somehow crafted over the years to allow me to be able to snap some snaps on the way to work of scenes like this. I know how fortunate I am to have been given this chance to witness these vistas on the day to day.
I love the way the clouds hang over the back of the lake. The shape of the peninsula as viewed from town, it’s such an often seen yet under celebrated feature of the Wanaka Landscape. Yet it's placed between the weather and us. The last feature to be swallowed up by encroaching storms.
As the first snow of the season begins to fall, the change is apparent. It’s thick, then it’s thin. Most notably, it’s cold.
There is this crispness that lies in the air. The knowledge that it will soon be warm does little to comfort us. As we wait for the light to slide its way down the east facing slopes, the colours change. The blues play against the light magentas. The subtle features of the landscape lying way above start to make themselves known.
Even by the afternoon, this early season dusting may have left. The only trace is a slightly colder ground. One preparing itself for more. The grips of the season beginning to make themselves known. We prepare to sit back, make ourselves warm and commence winter activities.
Signed Limited Edition of 10
Printed on Ilford Gallerie Gold Fibre Silk
594mm x 420mm
Entrancing and mesmerisingly simple. Pines are part of a wider environmental issue here in Central, a source of warmth, shade and in this case a line of shape I imagine and study for familiarity whilst loosing awareness of reality. Emma and I have tree people on our property whose shape dictates their character. Trees hold time and knowledge of the place around them. They are ever changing and provide a gaze for us to stare at for a while.
From simple to exceedingly complex. The transition as the sun battles the low lying fog is unbelievable. They say give me an inch and I’ll take a mile. It’s almost as though on mornings like this the sun believes this to be its mantra.
The hillsides in the distance tell tales, just like they should do. The ever changing landscape, marked by man and natural events serving to record all that they see.
The horizon, the part of the scene which we wish to anchor ourselves to, it’s there but not quite. Will our eyes ever settle? Do we want them to? Journeying through yet another under appreciated portion of our land. How often to we look at our anchor points and stay fixed with them? Do we dare to move away into the detail?
Do were dare? Now isn’t that a fine question to ask ourself?
The march of the pink. Have you heard of it? I believe it to be a gift from the universe to us. A phenomenon with so much grace. Twice, each and everyday it makes itself known. Can we navigate ourselves to a place so we can see, slow down and embrace all that it brings and leaves behind?
Dreams are so important in my life. If I meditate during the day, then I will dream lucidly that evening. I believe it is the space in which my subconscious can almost communicate with my conscious, as accessed through deep meditation also.
I dream in colour, smells, sounds, the full shebang. Some mornings, or afternoons, and occasionally evenings, I wake having been on quite the adventure. Many of these dreams guide me and I also believe that there are guides waiting there for me as well, especially when they are most needed.
I’ve had conversations there that have continued on in the real world through other ways. I could almost think it’s spooky, but what’s the point, it is what it is, and what it is for me is what I observe. Just because I was asleep doesn’t make it any less valid. My dreams look like this photograph on a good day.
I often dream in textures.
I shot this, as I shoot many images like this, but it was only in processing that the true power of this image came through. The intention behind it all, opening myself up to allow my self to trust and believe in what is my dream space. Pushing the boundaries of what is possible and then extending the wonder of the universe into dimensions yet to be fully explored.
Central Otago has a whole life of its own. Deceptively high and cold with an undercurrent of toughness that just can’t be ignored. The golden tussock dances in the wind as the sunlight reflects off its blades. The land itself rolls and undulates for as far as the eyes can see, mesmerising you into thinking that the vastness continues forever more.
The skies appear to be as vast as the ground which lies beneath. As the moisture congregates, it takes a vast array of forms. Having travelled a fair distance from the Southern Alps, the fronts have been mished and mashed into something a far cry from which they began when they first discovered the land of the long white cloud.
Today, as on many other days, there is a moody gloom. Colouring and shaping the light with a creamy gleem. Even the hardiest of wilding pines struggle to take a strong hold in this empty place.