Saturday, July 24, 2010

Favourite Photo - Bridge Work - Magdalene Street/Cambridge/UK (Thu 03 Sep 2009)

Magdalene Street Bridge Work - Cambridge/UK - Thu 3 Sep 2009 - (see picasa)

As mentioned earlier, I very much like the work of Jeffrey Smart. This is another photo that was inspired by his work.

We spent a day in Cambridge (UK) during our Europe 2009 Trip. Traveled by train for the day from London and had a really nice day exploring this historic university city. Was separated from the others for a while and was a little lost, but stumbled across this scene and still had time to capture this photo. Stood back a little and zoomed right in to effectively enlarge the background.

Enjoy the composition and colours (the reds, yellows, oranges, blues and whites) in this one. Also the white arrows on the blue signs work well and are definitely Smart inspired.

Finally, often a photo has something little to find and entertain. In this one I really like the bike (a signature element of the university city) which is elevated and chained to a post on the side wall of the middle of the Bridge (see upper left corner).

Monday, July 19, 2010

Favourite Photo: Col de Portet d'Aspet/France - Sep 2009 - Fabio Casartelli Memorial

Geoff and Joanne at Fabio Casartelli's Memorial - "we stumbled upon it by complete accident"Col de Portet d'Aspet - Wed 23 Sep 2009 [1] (picasa)

Just a photo of Joanne and I at a Memorial in the Pyrenees in South West France. Sometimes photos are just records and keepsakes of events and moments in our lives. This is just one of those photos. The photo has a nice little touch [1] with the Shadows on the Wing of the Memorial. Some background ..

Tonight's Stage of the the 2010 Edition of the Tour de France starts in Pamiers and finishes in Bagnères-de-Luchon. Along the way it will pass through St-Girons (near St-Lizier).

Last September, we travelled much of tonight's route, but in the reverse direction. Along the way we stumbled across a Memorial for Fabio Casartelli on the Col de Portet d'Aspet. He was an Italian Bike Rider who died in a crash near the Memorial in the 1995 Edition of the Tour de France. Fabio was a member of Lance Armstrong's Motorola Team.

There is a moving account of the impact Fabio's death had on Armstrong in his book, It's not about the Bike. I read the account to Jenny twice in Hospital last year. If you read the account here, you will see it has also had an impact on me through all that has happened and the path that allowed us to stumble across the Memorial (the book does not even mention where it is located - so it was a sheer fluke that we "stumbled across it" - I knew what it was as soon as I saw it - just from the description in the book). I hope to go back at some stage. Though for now, I will make sure I am awake tonight as the Tour passes the Memorial.

[1] I would like to think the two shadows on the “Wings” of the Memorial represent the spirit of Jenny and her life as a twin with Joanne. There we are, Joanne and I, counterpoised by the twin shadows of the Joanne and Jenny. Jenny overlooks us and is there with us, Always.

Stage 15 Route Map - 2010 Tour de France - Mon 19 Jul 2010

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Some Quotes

Geoff, Jenny and Joanne - St George Private Hospital - Chemotherapy Ward - 1520hrs Thu 19 Mar 2009

Just found these little quotes that had I saved (would just cut and paste into an email and send it to myself) in the period between Jenny's diagnosis of multiple liver tumors on Wed 11 Mar 2009, and her diagnosis of a 4cm brain tumor on Thu 11 Jun 2009 and resulting neurosurgery on Wed 17 Jun 2009. Interesting to see what resonated with my thoughts and feelings during that time. Here they are:

"Don't think of yourself as a statistic; think of yourself as an individual," - Tue 26 May 2009

"You can't let statistics get in the way of your recovery and progress." - Tue 26 May 2009

"it's not who you are, it's what you do" - Thu 28 May 2009

"Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you are happy then you will be successful" - Wed 03 Jun 2009

"You're constantly making choices, and your choices determine your experience" - Wed 03 Jun 2009

And a few months later ..

"Everybody has to die, You don't know how you're going to die. You don't know when you're going to die. It's strange to have that knowledge that this will do it. You don't get angry at it. You just live with it and keep going." - Thu 8 Oct 2009

Two days after the above photo was taken (during her first treatment on a new round of chemotherapy), Jenny would race in the DBNSW 2009 State Titles at Penrith where she stroked the Pacific Dragons Mixed B Boat. Some photos from that day are here.

The following week we would enjoy a lovely holiday in Cairns where we would celebrate Jenny and Joanne's Birtday.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Favourite Photos - Intersection - Singapore - Sep 2009

Intersection - Central Boulevard/Raffles Quay - Singapore - Mon 28 Sep 2009 (picasa)

As with most of my Favourite Photos, it just comes down to colour and composition. The yellow lines of the intersection come together to form an apparent big yellow arrow. Like the effect of the painted over lines.

Reminds me of a scene that Jeffrey Smart might paint (examples). I enjoy his work and have a few of his books which have provided much inspiration, particularly while travelling. It is fun to make a photo with good composition and colour, from nothing. Will put up a selection of my favourite Jeffrey Smart influenced photos with time.

Found a couple quotes I liked about Smart's work ..

Indeed, Smart's conception of what he does is thus - "My only concern is putting the right shapes in the right colours in the right places. It is always geometry." [..]

Smart's subject matter is very urban and in many ways, mundane and often bleak, but he treats it in such a way as to make it almost special, using colour and light to make the urban landscapes/objects themselves scapes to be admired for their honesty.

Screenshot - Google Images - Jeffrey Smart Paintings

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Favourite Photos - Donald & Tim Barker - Sydney - Oct 2005

Donald/Tim Barker - Sydney Life 2005 - Sydney Oct 2005

Tim Barker with his winning photo from the 2005 Sydney Life photography exhibition. This photo was taken while he was being intoduced by Sally Edwards (Curator, Sydney Life) during the Photographers presentation of their photos.

Just like the symmetry, and the fact that photographer's facial expression and apparent mood, seems to match that of his subject, who overlooks him.

Donald, Sydney, Australia - Winner Sydney Life Photographic Prize 2005 -

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

2010 Ord River Marathon - The Pilgrimage

Joanne and I paddled the 2010 Ord River Marathon on Sun 13 Jun 2010. Michelle asked me to write a little story about our experience, and it was published today in the Dragons Abreast Australia July 2010 Issue of In the Loop (pdf). Here it is ..

The Pilgrimage - In the Loop - July 2010 - Page 1 (read/picasa)

The above photo of Jenny is from our May 2001 Trip down the Ord River on the "Triple J" Tour Boat.

Also, in the same issue of In the Loop, a great story from the Mackay Paddlers of their 2010 Ord River Marathon experience ..

Another Perspective - In the Loop - July 2010 - Page 2 (read/picasa)

Friday, July 2, 2010

Favourite Photos - Erskineville/Sydney June 2004 - Trees and Shadow

Trees and Shadow - Erskineville - Wed 16 Jun 2004 (picasa)

Just a very simple photo I like. Pass here each work day as I walk up Swanston Street to Erskineville Railway Station. In winter, when the trees lose their leaves, they project interesting shadows onto the wall of this Terrace House. The trees are now much bigger and the shadows produced are not quite the same. Have taken many shots of this wall over the years, but I have not been able to get a better shot than this first photo.

Have seen many interesting photos that play with shadows. A tribute article (9 Niv 2002) by Robert McFarlane for the late Ingeborg Tyssen helped me to start looking out for shadows. A quote from the article I liked was:

'Whenever possible I carry a loaded camera ... I react without too much thought. Rarely do I wait for a situation to resolve itself. Nor do I direct or provoke people. The important aspects are composition, texture and light.'

A nice way to look a photography and when I look at my own photographic evolution, I guess I have unknowingly tried to look for at least the same three points - 'composition, texture and light'.

Shortly after Ingeborg Tyssen death in 2002, the Art Gallery of NSW arranged a Memorial Exhibition of some her work. I was really impressed by the simplicity and effectiveness of many of her photos. Indeed, for the most part, it was about 'composition, texture and light'. I also have a copy of her book - Ingeborg Tyssen: Sydney photographs.

The following was one photo, I really enjoyed and was a great 'play' on the use of a shadow ..

Tree#55 (1983) from Tree Series (Ingeborg Tyssen)

Another photo reveals the framing trick employed ..

Tuscon/Arizona - 1982 - see here (Ingeborg Tyssen)

I can't really remember, but I expect these simple shadow photos, helped me to see many shadow photos that I have taken over the years. One humble attempt in 2007 follows:

Tree Shadow - Wilson Street/Newtown - Jul 2007(picasa)

Liked the positioning of the shadow of the tree trunk across the path segment - beautifully aligned for a random photo. Also the top of a real tree apparently growing out of a shadow and the position of the air vent. Nothing great, but I was happy and entered it in the 2007 Sydney Life photo competiion which closed a few days later (of course to no avail :-).

A few more random shadow related photos that I could easily find just now, follow:

Pyrmont Bridge - Darling Harbour/Sydney - Thu 31 Jul 2003 (picasa)

Tree Shadow - Perisher Valley - Tue 6 Jan 2004 (picasa)

Pole Shadows - Wellington/NZ - Tue 5 Nov 2002 (picasa)

Shadow (and Silohuette?) - Circular Quay/Sydney - 8 Dec 2002 (picasa)

I think one thing that has helped me think more about shadows in photography, is the strong Australian sunlight. I have found when travelling in the UK and Europe, the sun does not seem to shine as much and when it does it is not particularly strong, and the shadows don't seem to be as prevelant. In Australia, shadows are hard to avoid, so you need to work with the stronger Australian light or you just avoid taking photos at these times.

In writing this, I have just thought of photos that employ the use of the Silohuette. Will write something about this at a later stage as I have also employed the use of silohuette's in many of my photos over the years and is another aspect of photography I enjoy.

Lastly, a little Shadow Excercise I read about recently (in Paulo Coelho's 'The Pilmgrimage'). Often it is fun when walking around to look at a shadows and try and work out what it is that created the shadow. Most of the time it is reasonably obvious (as in these photos), but sometimes it can be difficult to work it out. Have fun ..

Thursday, July 1, 2010

30 June 2010 - Jenny's Anniversary

Jo and I would like to thank everyone for last nights little ceremony under the Anzac Bridge as we finished our dragon boat training session. It was a complete surprise and we were very touched - in fact a little overwhelmed.

We also thank you for your support, words, cards and the beautiful necklace that was made for Jo, which she is wearing today.

Anniversaries are times to celebrate, reflect, and to reaffirm your values and goals. Today is a day we do this with Jenny in our thoughts and heart. She inspires and guides us from above.

Thanks again.

Love .. Geoff and Jo x-x

Jo - St George Private Hospital - Wed 30 Jun 2010 (picasa)

Anzac Bridge - Wed 30 Jun 2010 (picasa)

Jo, Jenny and Geoff - Flowers from PD's - St George Private Hospital - Wed 12 Mar 2008 (picasa)

Jenny and Geoff - Cape Leveque Sunset - Wed 09 May 2001 - (picasa)

Jo and Jenny - Chamiox - Sep 2005 - (picasa)

Jenny - Coffs Harbour Xmas 2006 - Mon 25 Dec 2006 (picasa)

St George Private Hospital ICU Waiting Area - 9:16am Wed 30 Jun 2010 - (picasa)

Jenny - Lord Howe Island/Mt Gower - Oct 2001 (picasa)