black + white, coastal, Encounter Studio, studio


December 30, 2017

Although I have a rudimentary studio set up at Encounter Studio (with  a 8×10 Sinar P,  a  table and window light)   most of the still life images that I do of the subject matter around the coastal neighbourhood at Victor Harbor are in open air settings. The method of working is simple. The locations and subject matter are selected whilst I am on the morning or evening poodle walks,  I take  some scoping photos with the digital camera (an old  Sony NEX-7)  and,  if they work,  I come back and reshoot them with a film camera.

This kind of  studio work is a break from my  topographic  approach to photography that I do for the Mallee Routes project.    This is  an early example, probably one of the first  images made in an open air,  coastal studio:

bottle + shells, Petrel Cove

The bottle  had been washed on  Dep’s Beach, which is west of Petrel Cove,  and I carried it back to Petrel Cove on the return leg of the poodlewalk. I  set it up amongst some rocks, and made some digital pictures.   I then hid the bottle  amongst some rocks so that people wouldn’t find it and the  high tide wouldn’t carry it back to sea.

I looked at the digital images on my computer screen, and returned the next morning with a medium format film camera (Rolleiflex SL66) for a photo session in the open air studio,     I played around putting the bottle amongst  various parts of the rocks at Petrel Cove  and doing both  colour and black and white versions.  This is another black and white version.

I did try bringing  bits and pieces that I found on the beach back to the studio to photograph, but I lacked the granite backdrop and settings. As it  was not possible to bring the granite to the  studio  I started thinking in terms of a “pop-up” style  open air studio.


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