“Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself”….George Bernard Shaw
If global warming continues and I fervently believe it will, we may have to rely more on the sea to produce our food. The above photograph was taken looking into a shallow rock pool at the plant life below. It would be good to know whether this plant life, which could be a renewable resource, is edible. No! I didn’t try it, I leave that sort of thing to the scientists or the guinea pigs.
As I was walking along the foreshore one day, the tide was coming in and there were a small number of fingerlings swimming. I photographed them and the above photo was the result. The fingerlings were opaque and not being a professional photographer as such, I have no idea how they represent in this photograph as a shade of purple and white.
The above photograph was taken of sea water rushing in and over a shallow crater in the rock I was standing on and I thought at the time that it made an interesting pattern.I should imagine that this pattern, as mixed as it is, would be extremely difficult to replicate in a painting. If nothing else, it makes a good talking point.
I’ve always been fascinated to see the result of light hitting water and the resultant picture it creates and if I was to come back in an hour’s time, the above picture would have changed dramatically, particularly if the weather changes. Perhaps that is why it is called a moment in time.
There is something very peaceful in sitting and watching the tide flow into the shoreline. Watching the play of colours on the surface and listening to the rippling of the water as it flows gently over the rocks.
This photograph is a good example of how you can turn something very simple into an abstract or decorative art piece simply by manipulating the colour. It is not necessary to capture a panorama to make a visual statement. Sometimes, simplicity speaks the loudest.
“But as they say about sharks, it’s not the ones you see that you have to worry about, it’s the ones you don’t see….
One morning recently, I received a phone call from my friend who said “Jimmy, grab your camera and come over here, I have a school of sharks feeding on bait fish just out the front.
Wow! what a sight, I used to kayak in these waters and never sighted a shark, I sometimes felt a bump on the bottom of my kayak, especially in the canals but nothing more. These were Bull sharks and they were swimming and hunting bait fish in knee high water. I was intrigued to watch how the pups (younger sharks) stayed up one end whilst the larger sharks acted like sheep/cattle dogs and herded the school of bait fish and drove them to the waiting hungry pups. They would then fan out and collect the bait fish that had escaped bringing them back together in a tight school before herding them back in the opposite direction to the waiting pups. This went on for more than an hour.
The Bull shark is not indigenous to Australia as a similar species can be found in Zambia and is known as “The Zambi”, also in Lake Nicaragua where it is known as the “Lake Nicaragua shark” and probably a lot of other places. It is quite unusual in that it has the ability to survive in brackish water and therefore can be found quite away upstream in rivers, e.g. in the United States, they have been known to have travelled up the Mississippi River some 1100 km from the ocean.
This shark is stocky in build and grows to a length of 3.4 m in coastal open water but considerably smaller in rivers and estuaries where they are recorded as growing to 2.25 m depending on sex. They have a bluntly rounded snout and small yellow eyes. Their colour ranges from pale to very dark grey with white underbelly.
The big question is…..Are they man-eaters? Well!….. they are extremely aggressive and can justifiably claim to be the world’s most dangerous shark and probably responsible for more deaths than they are credited for, particularly in shallow warm coastal waters, estuaries and rivers. As you can see in the above photographs, these shark are very close to the shore and in knee high water. The larger sharks would have been at least 2 m long. There appears to be a myth out there that sharks only feed at dawn and dusk. I can tell you that these sharks were filling their bellies around 11.30 in the morning, so I for one wouldn’t like to test that theory. On the positive side, there is a lot of water between sharks, so the chances of being attacked is quite minimal.
For more information you may like to follow up with:
“Everywhere is within walking distance if you have the time.”
A walk on the north side of town, from the Spit Bridge to Manly, Sydney, Australia
Every walk starts with just one tiny footprint. It’s where that footprint takes you that matters.
When I started this walk I wondered who had walked this area before. I don’t mean the manufactured walking trail but the entire area between the Spit Bridge and Manly. Bush walkers perhaps, convicts, early explorers? Actually, I was thinking of the Indigenous people of this land who hunted and gathered food here for thousands of years and we know that they were here and there were many of them. I wonder what they thought as they saw the first sailing vessels coming through the heads. The surprise and wonderment at the garments and uniforms of the first officers and sailors on landing.
Some of the harbour side beaches throw the most spectacular patterns in the water and you can see just how clean and clear the water is which brings me back to thinking about the aboriginal people who lived on these shores and what a life style they must have enjoyed with plentiful fresh water, native animals, birds and an abundance of fish and crustaceons to feast on, a temperate climate with lots of sunshine, life must have been very good.
The above view was our introduction to our walk and we couldn’t have wished for better weather and couldn’t wait to see what we had in front of us.
Our next location was Clortarf where we were greeted by this natural sculpture in sandstone.
Is the above view for real? Is it some mystical bottom dwelling sea creature from the bottom of Sydney Harbour that I have accidentally photographed? or is it an illusion produced by the water passing over a rather large submerged rock? You be the judge!
This is a view across Sydney Harbour looking from Clontarf to South Head at the entrance to Sydney harbour. If you read my post on the walk from Watsons Bay to Bondi Beach, the land depicted in the above photograph is the subject of the article. I may be biased but I think it is quite spectacular. The ferry you can see in the photo, is heading to Manly from Circular Quay and it would be this ferry that you would catch to start the walk from Manly to The Spit.
As we passed through Balgowla Heights I was attracted to the beautiful native flora which goes to show you that there is more to this walk than awesome harbour views.
At the top of this photograph is North Head at the entrance to Sydney harbour. This headland used to be an army installation and out of bounds to the general public, but in recent times it has been turned into Sydney Harbour National Park and can be walked as an extension to the Spit to Manly walk.
When we reached this spot, I knew that we were nearing the end of our walk. Our destination, Manly, is a little to the right of centre in the above photo. It was an enjoyable walk, not too difficult with ample interesting coves and beaches at which to stop and admire the panoramic views of Sydney Harbour. We continued our walk to the ocean side through the pedestrian only Corso ( 5 mins,) where we had an ice cream before catching a ferry back to Circular Quay and a bus to Bondi Beach. All in all an awesome day out.
Distance: 10 km – one way
Walk time: 3-5 hrs. depending on fitness and how many stops you make on the way.
If you are planning on staying in Sydney and intend playing the tourist, I would suggest buying an Opal Card which will cover all public transp
“What is art monsieur, but nature concentrated”…..Honore de Balzac
Art to me is nature, design to me is art au natural. It is the randomness in the placement of colour and how it is applied. First nation artists tend to depict a similar concept whether by design or intuition, I’m not quite sure. I am not an artist in the true sense but my mind is receptive to design in nature and I try to capture it through photography wherever I travel.
The above collage, is of patterns in different forms of rock. I have found that the best patterns form in sandstone and granite. Some of these images have been captured on sandstone buildings, the Port of Adelaide in South Australia being one location, North Haven also in South Australia, another.
“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.”
Here we have two more patterns, from two separate locations but this time they are in the form of bark from a tree and can be described as art au natural, the same as the rocks in the collage, which are art au natural as well. The art of nature is all around us whether it be in the city or the country. It is there to be admired but sadly, people walk past it every day and fail to see it for what it is.
Become more aware of your surroundings and you will be amazed at what you will see.
This short story/history lesson relates to Bruny Island, located off the south eastern coast of Tasmania. This island is now a favourite tourist destination because of its unique natural beauty as well as being known for it’s diverse range of fresh food from both land and sea.
This story is significant, compelling and symbolic.
There is nothing significant about these two gum trees, except they witnessed the arrival of white men on this land. They did not protest but stored what they saw within their wood and it would still remain hidden today except for a painting of the trees made by a white man, one of the first white men to tread this land, the leading artist from H.M.S. Providence under the command of Captain Bligh which anchored off this point in 1792.
I have copied the script accompanying a photograph of the original painting so that it would be easier to read and give some authenticity to my story.
These trees were not standing tall, they were not significant in their beauty. What is significant is the history that these two trees have witnessed in the past, what they have endured through storm and tempest over the years, standing proud on a windswept coast, a witness to a significant period of Tasmania’s history. I thought at the time “if only we could tap this source of knowledge, how richer we would be”. I also found the experience of photographing the above scene profoundly emotional knowing that it had been painted over two hundred years ago and had changed little in that time, almost as if time had stood still.
The above scene is a photograph of the source of fresh water known as the “watering place” marked on the charts of Captain Tobias Furneaux,( Adventure 1773) and again on Captain James Cook’s charts (Resolution, 1777). It was also referred to as Resolution creek and Resolution River at different times.
At the beginning of this post I stated ” The story is significant, compelling and symbolic.” Readers will put their own interpretation on this statement, but to me it is significant, as it was the first time that white man had put foot on this island. The story may not be compelling to all readers but to those with an appetite for history it probably would be. It is a symbol of man’s need to discover new places, new species, in fact, anything new.
This is just another view of the same beach and shows just how clean and clear the water is, much the same as it was all those years ago.
If you ever get the opportunity to visit Bruny Island, take it, you won’t regret it.
Clouds come floating into my life no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add colour to my sunset sky.
Rabindranath Tagore, Stray Birds
This photograph was taken of the eastern sky at sunset. I just happened to be on my balcony and I had my phone with me. Even though the light was low I could see the artistic value in the muted colours. It could almost pass for a water colour!….What do you think?
I was so intrigued with these colours, that I googled the following question….”Why does the opposite sky turn pastel during a vivid sunset?” and I found this answer …..
“It is caused when large particles in the lower atmosphere tend to mute and muddy the colours because they absorb more light and scatter all the wavelengths more or less equally, so you don’t get that dramatic filtering effect”
Where I live, we tend to get some beautiful pastel ‘eastern sunsets’ but this is the first time I have encountered something like this.