Weekly Photo Challenge: Liquid

Near The Water

I’ve always been drawn to places where there is water and I take a lot of photographs of bodies of water wherever I go.

I’ve always loved to be by the sea. As a child a trip to the seaside was an annual treat but even then it wasn’t just about amusements, paddling,  ice cream or donkeys on the beach. I liked to look at the sea. At the beach you can see the power of the waves  breaking against the shore.

We spent a month on a ship sailing to Australia from England and it fascinated me to watch the waves  and see the wake the ship left behind us. Fast forward fifty years and I find sitting in a deck chair looking at the water one of the best parts of a cruise holiday.

The ocean and the sky.

I live in Tasmania, it is a state that is blessed with many rivers and lakes. Occasionally nature plays tricks and there are floods or droughts but mostly they are a source of pleasure.  I feel calm when I’m by the water and I’m never bored because it is always different.  Some days the water could be as smooth as glass and you can see the reflections as clearly as in a mirror. Other days there are little ripples that make it sparkle and then there are the grey, wintry days when it looks cold and forbidding.

Huon River, first day of winter . 1 Jun 2008

Jeremiah Ryan at Port Huon
image Huon River at Huonville
The Huon River from the bridge at Huonville

I like the sight and the sound of fountains too. I find them very relaxing .

The fountain in Salamanca Square, Hobart
image fountain
The El Alamein Fountain in Kings Cross, Sydney
fountain, Botanical Gardens, Hobart
Close up of the French  Memorial fountain,  Botanical Gardens Hobart

Photo Challenge: A Face in the Crowd

via Photo Challenge: A Face in the Crowd

Create an image that represents being “a face in the crowd.” Explore silhouettes, shadows, orientation, and other ways to mask your subject. As you hide the defining characteristics of your model, notice which traits continue to stand out. Without facial expression, can you tell how someone is feeling? Without color, does your impression of that person change? If portraits aren’t your thing, get even more creative with your use of shadows, reflections, animals, and patterns to represent a sense of anonymity.

Explore the use of anonymity to express both that which is common to all of us and the uniqueness that stands out even when the most obvious parts of us are hidden. Just as all of us can oscillate between conformity and individualism, allow your photo to do the same.

I took the photos below at the Puffing Billy Railway near Melbourne, Victoria and decided that for this challenge I would convert them to black and white. I feel that they are timeless in a way. They are modern day pictures but the work of the train crew and the attraction of watching never changes.

The love of trains
Watching the action
Train crew and a boy
Rail fans

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: 2017 Favourites

Favourites

I could not possibly choose just one picture to represent 2017. I did take a lot that I liked even though I didn’t travel much this year. I’ve enjoyed taking pictures of flowers both in my garden and in parks.  I have been trying to learn to take better pictures of birds and of course my pets are frequently photographed.

I’ve also documented the changes that have been happening in my house during the past year. I have had a lot of work done outside and a lot of painting and decorating inside.

I turned sixty this year and continued to enjoy my doll collecting hobby and my love of steam engines and railways.  I was lucky enough to visit the Puffing Billy Railway near Melbourne in June. In the winter we had some snow in Geeveston and also a visit from the film crew of the ABC TV series “Rosehaven”.

Another thing I’ve greatly enjoyed is participating in Cee’s Photo Challenges, it has given me the chance to photograph things that I would not normally pay attention to and to have fun playing with editing software.

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Scale

The Big Hand From The Sky

I am fascinated by small-scale models, dolls houses, model railways, dioramas.  I love the precision of miniaturists who can create tiny household objects to the correct scale for their models. I think miniaturists are probably good at math. It is fun to try to photograph the scenery the way it would appear to the tiny occupants. Suppose they were living beings? How would we look to them? Giants? Maybe Gods whose enormous hands reach in to save them from calamity? Would there be a religion that worshipped the Big Hand From The Sky? Are there advocates for Free will for tiny people?

At the dolls’ house and miniature show

Weekly Photo Challenge: Bridge

via Photo Challenge: Bridge

The Tasman Bridge spans the Derwent and connects Hobart’s eastern and western shores. It was opened in 1964 and replaced an earlier floating bridge which could no longer cope with the volume of traffic it had to carry.

Australians will remember how on 5 January 1975 the bulk ore carrier “Lake Illawarra” collided with the bridge  taking down two piers and over a hundred metres of roadway.  Twelve people died in the tragedy, five were travelling in the four cars that plunged into the Derwent and seven were crew members on the Lake Illawarra. Others miraculously escaped as their cars teetered on the edge of the gap.

I did not live in Tasmania then but I remember seeing the pictures on the news. It was only when I moved here that I came to understand how much the tragedy affected everyone. Not just the loss of life but the loss of the bridge itself changed the lives of many people.  Most Hobart people over fifty could tell you where they were the night the bridge went down.

At that time the next closest bridge was at Bridgewater approximately 20km away. This meant that residents on the eastern shore of the river were largely cut off from the shops and services in the Hobart CBD on the other side of the river. People I’ve talked to about it told me that in some cases family members were forced to relocate to the other side of the river for work or school. In the short-term the transport problem was partially solved by a hastily arranged ferry service and later by the Bailey Bridge, a temporary structure which was used until the Tasman Bridge was finally reopened in October 1977.

One of the consequences of the disaster was that Hobart got a third bridge over the Derwent which was built between the Bridgewater and Tasman bridges, another was that the development of roads and services on the eastern shore became a priority.

The Lake Illawarra still lies in the deep waters of the Derwent over forty years later. If you look at the photos you will see that the distance between the piers on the eastern side of the bridge is different from those on the western side. This is the area where the disaster occurred.

 

Further Reading:

http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2008/04/28/2228948.htm

http://guides.naa.gov.au/records-about-tasmania/part2/chapter3/tasman-bridge-collapse.aspx

http://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/historic-monaro-out-from-under-wraps-for-anniversary-of-tasman-bridge-disaster/news-story/67a6e13d49e2e23187e687d776debcca

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Wanderlust or The Urge To Roam

via Photo Challenge: Wanderlust

wanderlust
ˈwɒndəlʌst/
noun
  1. a strong desire to travel.
    “a man consumed by wanderlust”

When I was a child I read “The Wind in the Willows” by Kenneth Grahame and I was particularly entranced by the chapter “Wayfarers All”. As I grew older I loved to hear my mother’s stories of visiting Egypt and India when her father was in the British Army. It gave me a taste for the excitement of travel even though at that age the furthest I had travelled from our home in Romford was Clacton on Sea.

Four weeks on a ship to Australia  in 1966 was my first big travel adventure and I hoped it would not be my last.

I could not get enough of travel books, guide books and maps and travelled to many places in my head long before I left Australia again. I am lucky as I did get to see some of the places and things I wanted to see, The Great Wall of China, Red Square, Irkutsk, Loch Ness, the Tallylyn Railway and Uluru are all standout memories.

Now that I am older I love my home more and would not want to be away from it for months on end but I haven’t given up hope of seeing more of Australia and the rest of the world. There are still days when I just want to pack a bag and go somewhere just for the joy of the journey.