Simply Sublime

I know I’ve said in the past that I’m not a great fan of MONA but just lately I’ve been going up there a bit because I’ve signed up to study a unit in Art Theory at University of Tasmania (UTas).  I got up extra early to see an installation by American artist James Turrell called Amarna. There’s not a lot I can say about this work except that it is gob smackingly beautiful and very serene.

Here are a few stills.

MONA Dawn
Wim Delvoye’s Seventeenth Century Flemish Baroque style.Truck and James Turrell’s Amarna at dawn. MONA, Hobart, Tasmania.
Amarna At Dawn
Amarna At Dawn
Amarna At Dawn
James Turrell’s Amarna at dawn. MONA, Hobart, Tasmania.

Technical notes: the time-lapse sequence was made with a Sony ActionCam HDR AS20. The stills were shot using an Olympus OMD EM-10 with either an Olympus mZuiko 17mm f2.8 or an Olympus mZuiko 25mm f1.8 lens.

After Midnight

Night time at the old York drive in movie theatre. Canon EOS 5D with Canon EF20mm f/2.8 USM. Exposure 64.0 s at f/4.0 ISO 800.

Apologies to the late, great JJ Cale, who wrote the absolutely sublime song “After Midnight”, but I have been prowling around after dark with my camera and tripod. Every summer I do this because endless blue skies and fields of sun bleached wheat stubble do not make for very interesting photographs. Shooting at night can make the mundane look strangely beautiful and ethereal.

CBH Nocturne, York, Western Australia. Canon EOS 550D & Sigma 17-50mm f2.8 OS EX. Exposure; manual mode 30.0 s at f/4.0 ISO 3200.

Most of the time the images are straight, i.e. I just set the camera up on my tripod and make an exposure, like the two images above. Sometimes I like to play a little with light painting and flash to make something a little more out there.

In the wreckers yard at night. York, Western Australia. Canon EOS 5D, Canon EF24mm f/2.8 lens, Canon 550EX Speedlite and Canon 430EX Speedlite . Exposure: manual mode 30.0 s at f/2.8 ISO 400.

This image and the one below used flash with gels attached and fired by a set of el cheap “Poverty Wizards” I bought off of Ebay. I keep meaning to get a couple more old manual speedlites and some more wireless receivers to achieve more complicated lighting effects, but what usually happens is that summer ends and I stop going out at night and I quickly forget about it. Maybe this year.

Toxic Waste. Something’s happening in York’s drains!!! York Western Australia. Canon EOS5d with EF20mm f/2.8 USM lens, 430EX Speedlite, and 550EX Speedlite. Exposure 251.0 s at f/5.6 ISO 400.

What makes this fun is that it is experimental, you’re never completely sure how the image is going to turn out. Also with exposures knocking around 30 to 240 seconds it is a slow process and that makes it a more thoughtful exercise as it is not just a case of blazing away and hoping. I find because it can take up to twenty minutes making test exposures and then the final image I become  thoughtful about composition. It is not unusual to have been out for a couple of hours and only make four or five images.

As always clicking on an image will take you through to my online gallery.