Saturday, November 13, 2010

Things That Go Squish

One of the wonderful things about Australia is the extremes of weather that we can be sometimes be subjected to and this year our Spring is continuing this wonderful tradition. A tradition that was immortalised in verse by Dorothea Mackellar - in her poem 'My Country' with a stanza that is transcribed into every Australians soul 

I love a sunburnt country, 

A land of sweeping plains

Of ragged mountain ranges
Of droughts and flooding rains.
I love her far horizons 
I love her jewel sea,
Her beauty and her terror
The wide brown land for me!

Last Spring was so dry on the Australian east coast we were hearing of houses cracking as the clay based soil under the houses dried up so much, due to the lack of moisture, it was causing the houses to shift on their foundations and the repairs were costing owners many thousands of dollars in remedial work to fix the cracked walls.

This Spring we are blessed as persistent showers continue to soak the ground, filling the dams and watering the gardens. However, as much as the wet weather is appreciated it does kind of make outdoor activities problematic, activities such as photography.

One of my big problems during these rain events is keeping the equipment dry and out of the wet weather. This means every shot has to be planned and executed, no 'point & shoot' in persistent rain. One of the advantages is consistent (if low) light levels, which negate shadows on the subject and funnily enough, reduces the use of the flash.

Newcastle itself,  is a city that prides itself on it's beach culture, with a central business district that is within a ten minute walk of some of Australia's best surf beaches and a wonderful dining culture along the harbour foreshore, the city does tend to recede into its shell during periods of continual wet weather. People tend to hustle along, avoiding the rain and not stroll along soaking up the wonderful views that are usually afforded by the harbour and beaches.

Even so, it was during one of our recent wet weather events, on a lazy Sunday afternoon, that I grabbed my good friend, the Sanyo S1275 camera and took a sodden stroll through our wonderful city and quite enjoyed the isolation that was afforded to me. Only the hardy and the foolish were to be seen on our beautiful city streets

Sometimes it is worth taking the camera out on days that are challenging, however, I must admit, the best part of the day was getting out of the rain and having a wonderful hot cup of coffee before heading home.   

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