Week 7: Fill the frame

I have struggled to find the right subject again this week. The obvious are closeups of my cats and my children…honing in on the concentration as my boy plays his guitar or computer game…moving in on sleeping cats. But as the first photos went into the album on Facebook, they were nearly all animals’ or children’s faces. So, I decided to keep looking.

Here are my options:

1. Fill the frame with a Redwood from Whakarewarewa.

Looking up at tall sequioa trees.

2. Getting up close to the propeller on the aircraft I flew on down to Christchurch this week. I love how at certain speeds you get the impression that there are multiple blades when, in fact, there are not!

Close up shot out of the window of a plane. Looking at the propeller turning. It is raining.

3. I have a fascination with fungi. I spotted these mushrooms while I was out on a run in a favourite bush area close to home.

A white mushroom from above. Perfectly round.

4. The patterns that overlapping Nikau Palm leaves make is always an attraction for me. When the sun shines through, it adds another dimension.

Crisscross pattern of leaves from Nikau Palms with the sun shining through.

5. The same mushroom viewed from beneath. See how fascinating they are!? The patterns and colours vary so much.

Looking at a the brown yellow gills of a mushroom from below. It is in woodland which is out of focus.

6. Christchurch is changing. There has been a lot of development since the 2011 earthquake. But it is slow. I have watched the non-development of this building over the last few years. All around it is now new but this remains. The irony for me is the peeling paint and gradually decaying shutters, juxtaposed with the old advert for paint on the side of the building.

Looking up at the corner if a derelict building, shutters decaying, paint peeling. On the side wall is an advert for paint.

7. I saw these bright orange fungi just down the track and thought they would contrast well with the white. Difficult because I was shaking from running and fingers were slippery from sweat.

Week 6: Alternating Rhythm

I like the promise that this challenge suggests. Alternating rhythm of what? Sound, light, colour, motif? I have been, and still am, looking for possibilities. My initial thought was sound, and I wondered how I could convey sound in a photo. Then I was out at the weekend at the Banksy exhibition in Auckland. We went out for a late lunch afterwards and I chose to have a Rhubarb Rhoyale which came in a beautiful retro champagne glass – the light that refracted off the crystal appealed to me.

On Monday we wandered into town and went through “Riffraff” square in Hamilton. The whole place has been thoughtfully designed to evoke the theme of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, and late at night the lighting is stunning. A video would respond really well to the theme of alternating rhythm, but how do I express that as a still photo? I had a play with Snapseed and produced these images but they still don’t really hit the mark for this week’s challenge.

We have a glut of green beans. Too many for us to eat and so they have grown so big that they are all but inedible unless we boil them for so long that I am sure there are no longer any nutrients in them. Today we decided to pick them all, harvest the beans from inside and use them. They are like wee jewels, shiny pink and purple jewels, cushioned in their bright green pockets of safety. Alternating rhythms of colour. I collected them like treasure and took them into the garden. This is my ‘beanart’.

I am unsure yet what my final submission will be, but I have had fun thinking ad creating… still a few days to go, so I may yet be further inspired.


On an unscheduled visit to Te Papa, this installation hung croon the ceiling. It has promise…

Maybe it would be better rotated 90°?

Week 5: Wildcard, Photographer’s Choice

Whilst walking the Tongariro Crossing with the hordes at the weekend, we stopped for lunch on the rise overlooking this lake. We wondered if the water was sulphurous…it looked so inviting but nobody was swimming in it or even paddling or even sitting next to it. Maybe the extra climb on an already long walk was too much for people to contemplate? Or maybe they just weren’t curious enough? I pondered that if it were in the Lake District I would have been in it! Eventually, curiosity got the better of me and I scrambled down the hill to check it out.

Soft, soapy water, so definitely some sort of minerals, and tepid but not hot so probably just warmed by the sun and not geothermal.

I suddenly realised that the babble of voices that had been our constant companion had gone. Down here, it was quiet and still. A pair of small birds hopped over the rocks then one of them took wing over the water.