Twice in the last six months I’ve had occasion to revisit Christchurch, a city that was badly torn apart by the major earthquakes that started in September 2010. Because of work commitments, I initially visited a great deal in the two years immediately following the major earthquakes. And sadly the smoothing out of buckled streets, the clearing away of endless mounds of rubble, and the repair and/or reconstruction of damaged buildings seemed to be taking an inordinate amount of time. But on these last two visits, it seems that the rebuilding of the city is at last turning a corner – lots still to do, but much has been accomplished, and some of that redoubtable old Canterbury style is once again clearly in evidence. Continue reading
A day trip to Blue Lake
In an earlier post, I described the first two days of a six-day trip that we did in the Nelson Lakes National Park – the Travers Sabine circuit. An outbreak of wet weather had reduced options for photography with the spectacular high peaks of the Travers Range mostly obscured by low cloud. However, after two fairly hard days making our way over the Travers Saddle to the West Sabine Hut, we had an easier day planned with a day trip up to Blue Lake, a spectacular glacial lake in a high basin in the west branch of the Sabine River. After rain through much of the night, we woke to heavy cloud hanging in the valley, but set out in the hope that conditions might improve.
Although I’ve now had my Sony A7R for nearly two months, this last weekend provided one of the best opportunities that I’ve had to to give it an extended try out in field conditions. We stayed the weekend at Bowentown, a small township on the Bay of Plenty coast, just south of Waihi Beach, spending several hours walking along the coast in front of the camp-ground, and then north of Waihi Beach along the track to Orokawa and Homunga Bays. The weather was scratchy, with strong winds, grey overcast and some rain, but it was great to be out with an opportunity to see what this camera could do.
The last six months have been a bit of a write off on the blog front, but hopefully that’s about to change – four days ago on October 1st I started a new adventure, leaving my position as a scientist with NZ’s Department of Conservation and finishing up a 42 year stint in various government-funded science roles. Quite a world of opportunity lies ahead. As I write this its my first Sunday night since I was eighteen on which there has been no requirement to front up at work in the morning – and that feels quite liberating!
I’ve also been making some quiet changes on the camera front. Back in August I assembled an exhibition of prints for the main foyer at the Department of Conservation’s main office in Wellington. It has a fantastic display space that I had eyed up for some time, and with my departure approaching fast, and encouraged both by family and a couple of fellow photographers at DOC, I took the plunge. Continue reading