Saturday, July 6



Tomorrow I go to Fiji. It's not really a holiday,
I'm not sure if I take holidays. It's primarily
a trip to see what new photos I can find,
I would be happy with just one, it's always like 
that for me.

What makes this trip different is that I am
taking an underwater camera and it will 
give me the chance to explore a whole new world.
I've never used one before.

Not that I should be too fixated on going underwater,
it is important to focus softly so to speak, there may 
be a new photo on dry land, staring me in the face
but unrecognised because I am so determined to head
for the beach.

In my planning I'm being careful.
I've booked accomodation for just the first two nights
 so that I can freely follow up any leads that might
come my way. I caught myself out a couple of days 
ago. I was telling a Fijian born Indian,
here in New Plymouth, that I wanted to circumnavigate
Viti Levu the main island while I was there. He looked at
me a little quizically and asked how long was I staying.
'A week' I answered.  He looked sceptical. 

Still I love my new underwater camera, not that apart
from testing it out in a rock pool nearby
when I had to summon up all my courage
in order to plunge it below the surface, I have not
used it since, apart from photographing some clocks in Whangarei. 
I want to make the best possible use of it
as a tool for helping me to find a new image,
one precious to me.

I've been studying the history of 
this genre and was recently introduced 
the work of Jean Painlevé 1902-1989, that's him
in the photo above.
The son of a mathematician and a politician,
whose mother died as a result of giving birth
to him, he became an important maker of 
science films, more than 200.
One, 14 minutes long, is called Les Amours de la Pieuvre
(The Love Life of the Octopus) I recommend it.

He knew many artists living in Paris at the time,  Man Ray, Andre Breton, 
and Alexander Calder for example.  In the 50's he filmed Calder 
performing his Circus.

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, July 2

Matisse Polynesia 1946

Matisse, Polynesia 1946

On Sunday I am going to Fiji for 
a week, I urgently need to refresh my energy.
Apart from circumnavigating Viti Levu,
the main island, I have no plans other than
taking up my new underwater camera
and swimming around in shallowish water.
I don't want to go outside the reefs
where the water is deep and dark.
The blackness below scares me. 

In 1930 Matisse spent time in Tahiti, 
he spent time underwater as well.
Seaweed became one of his motifs.

I don't know whether to call this influence or not
but I have taken photographs that remind me of 
his work.

Here is a link to a six minute 
film about Matisse and his final work.

Wednesday, June 26

Three Lions

In my photographic career I have
made 3 Lion photographs.

One quality they 
have in common is that none of the Lions
are real, that's not deliberate on my part
I promise. 

The top Lion is a new arrival
 in New Plymouth, up
against a mural and outside a 
hotel that opened 2 weeks
ago, a hotel called King & Queen, 

The middle Lion is glass
and living on a window ledge,
it's back facing west towards
the sunset, probably ten
years ago.

The earliest of these photos, the bottom one,
 is the Lion head against a brick wall. 
I had gone for a walk from my 
Copenhagen hotel 15 years ago
and come across some land with
a storage collection of statues like this.

Thursday, June 20

Kai Iwi Lakes

I've just returned from a photographic expedition to Northland.
As usual, no matter where I went I was always
looking for a new photo.

Actually, I'm like that even when I'm at home,
it doesn't seem to make any difference where I am.
I could be in the kitchen or even the bathroom.

The branchy photo above was taken at Kai Iwi Lakes, 
about 40 minutes north of Dargaville. The shrubs, probably
manuka, have been drowned by rising fresh water. 
Lakes are being formed by advancing sand hills, very like Bethels.

The Virginia Creeper below is from a wall in 
Clyde, Central Otago, about 4 years ago.
I've included it in this post because it
immediately reminded of the swamp
photo and I enjoy comparing.

Monday, May 27

White Swan

About three months ago
I bought this object in Eltham,
South Taranaki. 
I was immediately intrigued
by it.

After a couple of months
I turned it
around, suddenly realising
that the reverse side was 
just as interesting.

A little while later 
I also realised that its
shape reminded me of
another photo, one that
I had posted on my last post
way back on February 21st.

Thursday, February 21


The photo above I took last year, 
called Budda's Hand, one of the names
for this extraordinary citrus.

However, earlier this week, a visitor
remarked upon how reminiscent 
it was of Thea's Hand, a photo 
from 1997.

Thea's Hand was taken in Christchurch. Thea's
parent asked if I could take a photo of her
hands.  I agreed, finally deciding to use this 
marble background with her hand above

Surprisingly, I hadn't noticed this similarity,
or even thought about it.

Monday, January 21

Sabre & Socks

The lower photo I took today. I'm sorting
my socks, trying to match them up,
and make pairs.

The upper photo I took of a Napier Sabre
engine, 2000 horse power plus. This is
in a museum in Christchurch.

Thursday, December 20

Slaughter 1981

I am involved in a major project where I am 
going through all of my old negatives
to see if I have missed any images
that could be printed up, or, in some
cases to find negatives that
I knew, or rather hoped were
there, but have been lost for years.

I was very glad to come across the negative of Slaughter 1981,
taken at a time when I was in my early
days as a photographer. I think that I made,
one, maybe two prints mainly for my 
personal enjoyment. I don't know where
the prints are now.

It was taken on the same occasion
 that I took Farm Study. In fact
all of the sheep in Farm Study were
on their way to be killed.
The top photo shows one of them.

However, it would be remiss of me 
not to include another photo in this post, the colour one
below and called Carcass, taken a couple 
of years ago.

Needless to say this image has not
been one of my big sellers.

By the way, this sheep in not real.