Monday, November 30, 2009

Sounds of Then

"Out on the patio we’d sit,
And the humidity we’d breathe,
We’d watch the lightning crack over canefields
Laugh and think, this is Australia."

Gangajang The Sound of Then 1985
Gangajang, a sweet marriage of the Angels and the Riptides - both superb Aussie bands in their own right. Music you could do the big surfari drive to. Music that captured the essence of this stinking hot, drought stricken, fly ridden, flood-prone, sunburnt, crazy wonderful beautiful land. In three minutes.
Those of a more technical bent might like to know that this is a shot of sugar cane fields being burnt as part of the harvesting process. Taken from the Maroochy River Cod Hole looking north-by-northwest.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Larkin x Dylan

"Yes, to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free
Silhouetted by the sea, circled by the circus sands
With all memory and fate driven deep beneath the waves
Let me forget about today until tomorrow"
Bob Dylan Mr Tambourine Man
My legend brother GfG on the old Joe Larkin via Nikonos V and flippers (fins). What a trek to carry that tanker to the furtherest Point. I almost drowned there shooting the boys on a big day when I got swatted by a bigger closeout set. When you're tumbling around underwater in a dark wild boiling ball of foam, bouncing off rocks, strapped to a metal camera that wants to knock you out, all you want in life is a lungful of air.

Mr Tambourine Man

Bobby Zimmerman Dylan belting out something like "Mr Tambourine Man" during the never ending Rolling Thunder Review era tour that strangely included Brinetopia. Note the huge fan behind him. None of your fancy air conditioned stadiums. This was at the local boxing hall. Now demolished. Home to inner city apartments and the ghosts of rock and roll.
Captured on good ole Kodachrome 64 but lacking the exposure latitude of modern emulsions or capture backs. I think the lens was a screwmount (yes) Vivitar 70 - 260 mm F4.5 with a x3 teleconverter.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Good Fin

You're floating around in the brine waiting to snare some action on camera when you think you see something like a fin out of the corner of your eye. For a brief moment or three your pulse is racing until the fin resurfaces in a beautiful dolhinesque glide. Maybe time to return to land.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

What happens on the road, stays on the road

We used to catch tadpoles together. We saw Neil Young last century - the first time he came here. I tried to teach him to surf at Lennox on a slippery twin fin. He let me shoot my first wedding - his and Jenny's. I learned how to play a few chords under his very patient instruction.

Somewhere along the road I shot this one of Tony and his band - a double exposure via the Nikon. (Is that the infamous Gibson Firebird bass?) It was so long ago, our adventures on the road are fairly dim, until I come across old classics like this and all of a sudden a trap door in my memory opens and I'm back in 1985. Happy Birthday Tony from  the Brine Team. Play hard. Play loud. Better manned than canned!

Line in the Brine

"you said you forgot to put your address on the last tide
and that the seas running off your eyes would never return"
from Apples With Human Skin by Nathan Shepherdson

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Gone, one shipwreck

Another installment in our ongoing "Gone" series of images of structures, ship wrecks and other stuff that are no longer around - the Cherry Venture, blown ashore north of Noosa during big seas, very big seas going by the size of the human at the bow. Futile attempts to refloat were followed by removal of the salvageable machinery and then left on the beach as a tourist attraction until the briney air rusted it to a point of becoming a public safety hazard. Now gone (except on celluloid)
Summer 1975

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Captain Logan's Californian Dream

Here are a couple of images for my MO Bro Team Captain Mr Logan, goofy footer from the western hills and organiser of MOvember fund raisers. A little wet run through the Huntington Pier and below a dry run in a big car through middle California.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Streets of San Francisco

I think this is the corner of Market and Post. Happy to be corrected. Just happy that we have jumped the digital divide to broadband!!!! Not that I'm going to stop shooting film - well Kodachrome maybe. But Kodak VPS160 definitely to continue.

Nice Drop of Brine

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mould x Mission

What happens when you open one of those yellow plastic lids off a box of Kodachrome 35mm transparencies after your place has been flooded? Well you might discover that the colour dyes have taken  a hiding and mould has moved in. Don't try this at home. At least this old Spanish mission in California still looks nice and in a Black and White olde worlde kinda way. So glad I scanned it before it's rendered useless by the mould.
Winter 1978

I used to skate

Thirty years of technology and the skateboard venues are slicker and the moves are trickier, but there's still ball bearings and polyurethane wheels rolling kids down fresh smooth black tar roads and alleys. Home made deck above I built using a composite of perspex (clear acrylic) and a few layers of fibre glass over home made drawings. From the first roll of Kodachrome I ever shot in my Dad's rangefinder camera.
Spring 1975

Friday, November 20, 2009

Happy Birthday Clough Man

Happy birthday to Clough Man, the fishing teacher who taught me how to drive a 4x4 on the Teewah beach and showed me dingoes and sharks on Fraser Island. Thanks mate.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Surfing Preacher

Here's a couple of shots of down south that my brine brother Dean sent - one of him cradling some sort of retro rocket and a spot that used to be a point break but is now a sand bank. A really long sandbank.
Deano, the goofy footing, surfing Kiwi/Aussie preacher was the first to donate to my MOVEMBER team. Thanks Champ.

One for Ashlin

One for my Indian pod buddy, Ashlin. An early attempt to blend Fratellini's bohemian restaurant elements with traditional Indian designs as part of a series of postcards -  a happy accident rather than careful planning. Originally shot in digital colour and manipulated using my little electric darkroom in a box.
Spring 2009

2 x 2

I love the early mornings in winter, the crispiness, the way the weak light skims over the earth and the sea. I like sharing waves and beauty.
Winter 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Holga x Jacaranda

I have this little plastic fantastic camera that cost less than $100 AU. No light meter. No auto focus. No glass. Just plastic and a metal spring to open the shutter. It sweeps light onto film, in a fairly erratic and unpredictable manner. Like life - unpredictable  but often full of pleasant surprises.
Spring 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009


Caught a few tiny but slidey ones yesterday
on Mr Dain's Seahorse.
Thanks to my blood brother GfG
for the camera work.
Spring 2009

Friday, November 13, 2009

Nigel x Jonno's

My brine brother Nigel during a lull on a very busy Sunday arvo in between sets at Jonno's. Nigel is the epitome of the "smorgasboarder", competently ripping on long, short, one, two and three finned craft as demonstrated in his finalist placing at this years Wrecks & Relics comp.
Added bonus: I love the guy styling on the dribble in the background and the tree line that looks like a fin or maybe a breaking wave.
Summer 2009

Goin up the country

"I'm going up the country, babe don't you wanna go
I'm going to some place where I've never been before
I'm going, I'm going where the water tastes like wine"

Canned Heat Going Up the Country 1968

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Governor's Reef

While mere mortals slaved away - before we got annual holidays - the Governor of Brinetopia had a summer beach house overlooking this reef. So we always called it Governor's. My Dad pointed him out one day on the beach when I was a kid. For somebody with so much power and a beach house overlooking this, he didn't look too stoked.
Winter 2009

Summertime = Slidetime

Chronologically, we get two summers every year. One in Jan/Feb and anothery in December. Time to put away that spring suit and get the rashie, the hat and the sunscreen ready. How's the massive amount of air under the front of this board?
Summer 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Lest We Forget

November 11 is Remembrance Day 
here in the land of milk and honey 
and brine.
Here's to all the soldiers, flyers and sailors 
(like my late Dad below) 
who put their lives on the line 
so we can be free to cruise the waves 
whenever we like, 
with whomever we want, 
riding whatever we wish. 

BRINETIMES blog is moving - maybe - to another part of cyberspace. One where the limitations of dial up internet connections are unknown. Where analogue film scans can rub shoulders with YouTube Super8 movies of the Sunshine Coast. Well that's the plan. Have no idea if it will work or what the impact on this happy little blog-o-brine will mean.
To all our visitors, friends, followers and those who left encouraging comments I'd like to say many thanks. I have only scraped the first layer of The Vault of Brine so expect to see more old stuff and more new stuff (especially all those brilliant surfers I have shot and yet to post). The show must go on.

"Are we there yet?"

Monday, November 9, 2009


5x4" Weather

Howling south easterly winds. Rain squalls. Overcast. Choppy. Cold. Rippy. Sharky.
Perfect weather for busting out ancient analogue contraptions and catching the soft light on big sheets of film.
Winter 1985

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Colin's Cosmik Cutback

"God is playing marbles
With his planets and his stars
Creating havoc through my life
Through his influence on Mars
That's why I'm stumbling down the highway
On my boots of steel
I should be rolling down the skyway
On my cosmic wheels"
Donovan Leitch Cosmic Wheels 1973

A tip of the hat to the surf movies of the early 70's that always had a segment with crazy outlandish colours like this, usually in Slo Mo. Unless you had an optical printer or were a legend colour film processor you just couldn't repeat the style at home. (Some would say just as well.) Now we have Photoshop and a little electric box on the kitchen table and volia, instant cosmic. Colin, nice cuttie, mate. Hope you don't mind the Kosmic Debris as Zappa would say.
Summer 2008

Friday, November 6, 2009

Larkin x Wurtulla

My blood brother G f G sans leggie on the old Joe Larkin tanker slicing into a meaty peak at Wurtulla. You'd be lucky to see three other surfers on longboards back then on the Sunny Coast - some of the Alex crew maybe out on the Bluff and Billy(?) Machin down Caloundra way. Sadly the board is in need of a serious makeover. Any takers?
Autumn 1983

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Gaston X Clubbies

Gaston, driving off the bottom into a nice crispy barrel out the front of the surf club.
Winter 2007

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Life of Brian

So you think your're a long term local? Meet Brian. He lives on the Noosa River in between the burger joint with the Elvis out front and the Solace surf shop. He's been there for 40 years. Brought the cactus behind him in from Cuba. It's a rare one. The flowers are awesome and Brian is a top bloke. He let us use his cactus garden for a fashion shoot a month ago.
This is a collaboration between me and Corey Wilkie and Brian - a collaboration between the seemingly opposites of film and digital, hi tech and low tech, youth and old age.  Say gidday and have a listen to Brian's yarns about Noosa before the Big Money moved in. Thanks Champ.
Winter 2009

Single Fin Surfari

Not long after the MV Cherry Venture ran aground on Teewah Beach north of Noosa. The top boards were Jim Pollard fluid foils - an early version of the channel bottom. No idea who owned the 4x4. Somebody's Dad. This was way back. When I had my second film camera - a Fujica ST801. It was black. I thought that made me a pro. Ha! I love the kid on the mini bike in the background.
What I remember most from this day was the huge sand mining trucks that would come hurtling along the beach at low tide full of the heavy black sand used in aerospace metals and the water. It's the clearest water I have ever surfed in. It was a stinking hot day and you could hardly tell the shape of the  small waves.
The boat wreck and the mining have gone but the waves still roll in.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Shameless Plug

The posts have been pretty thin lately because I'm still laid up with some sort of virus bug thing.
I don't do plugs for stuff (apart from charities I like), but had to plug the upcoming Switchfoot book edited by Andrew Crockett.
It's a tome by surfing standards - 368 pages, 1000+ images, 90 contributers - the other side of surfing, usually neglected by corporate media. Many of the images were captured in little analogue boxes using analogue film and manual focus lenses - hard to believe such a contraption existed?
And somewhere in there you'll find 2 pages of my work including the Huntington Beach Pier shot below. I'm honoured and stoked at the same time. Oh and I'm sure there's a few chaps in the book who'd meet the requirements for MOvember (plug, plug). Check out the preview at the following URL:

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Remembering to Movember

Look closely at these two 70's surfers and you'll note that they are both natural footers - one cranking a backhand bottom turn at Huntington Pier and one jamming on a 12 string. Look a lot closer and you'll notice they're sporting a "mo" or moustache.
This month is MOvember in Brineland and many blokes like myself and Goofyfoot Stephen will be adopting the 70's look and growing the "mo" to raise money for prostate cancer research and depression - two largely taboo subjects among the male surfing community. So get with the "mo" and raise some dough or donate on line.