Friday, December 31, 2010

Full Circle

I was skimming through a beautiful coffee table book about Leroy Grannis this morning, marvelling at the iconic surfing images he snared in his analogue cameras when I chanced upon a monochrome of Malibu taken in 1965 and it reminded me of the scene at Moffatt's yesterday afternoon - wall to wall surfers on longboards except that this was 2010. Following on from the original redwood planks and early logs to one to two to three and four finned short boards and finless boards and air mats, we seem to have gone full circle with all sorts of templates (like Simmons', Lis', Greenough's and McTavish's) being dusted down and given modern twists in balsa, carbon fibre and volane. Full circle in music too with vinyl, tube amps and turntables back in the shops.
And so the year has gone full circle - we started with a summer and proceeded to run the cyclic gamut of good times and not-so-good times held together by fond memories, future dreams and present loved ones and as Lou Reed would say "a busload of faith". And now it ends on a sunny summer's day with peelers all round. Thank you to all the wonderful people who have shared a laugh, a wave, an anecdote or an insight with me in 2010. Let's keep the wave rollin' in 2011. Namaste

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Legend Ladies

Legend ladies - 6 times world champ Layne Beachley and Kathy Kohner aka Gidget, an old VW beatle and a VW Kombi in the Cooloola National Park north of Noosa.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Not Drowning, waving

Not drowning, waving were an Aussie band from analogue afternoons that have morphed into My Friend the Chocolate Cake - an eclectic composite of ambient, world, ballad and other musical forms. I like the name "not drowning, waving" and the way some surfers seem to wave as they ride.
I shot this old fig down by the river yesterday and in the monsoonal gloom it seemed to be waving and reminded me of that band. I like the way it has been flooded numerous times but hangs in there despite the passing of generations - not drowning, waving.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

(I'm) Stranded

Between Wooli and Weipa there's thousands of miles of road - much of it now underwater. Today's post is dedicated to all of those folk who are stranded on the road somewhere.

Cue music "Stranded" by Brisvegas legends The Saints who were punk before punk was born.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Tangled Up in Grey

Today we are still enveloped in the warm grey monsoonal wetness of La Nina as the first tropical cyclone of the season wanders over what was a parched countryside not so long ago. Everything is growing at exponential rates including our creeks and rivers.
Photo above via brine brother Dale

The forecast is for another five cyclones by the end of March 2011. Somewhere above us I know the sun is shining.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Wot Eva

At last count, there were about a dozen watercraft at Nana Brine's place - ranging from old skool logs to thrusters with glassed on fins. Quite a quiver for somebody who can't swim. But the craft that takes pride of place is a beautiful wooden replica of Captain James Cook's vessel of discovery the Endeavour, built by her late husband Hughie. Every Boxing Day we would sit together at midday to watch the beginning of the Sydney to Hobart yacht race on TV, with Hughie issuing all manner of nautical descriptions and tactical advice as hundreds of boats sailed out of the beautiful Sydney Harbour towards the treacherous waters of the Tasman Sea, past Shipstern's Bluff, into Storm Bay and on to Hobart. Today is no different, except that Hughie is with us in spirit. This blog is dedicated to the crew of the 52 foot carbon fibre yacht Wot Eva. These are all sailors with some sort of disability, but still hammering away hard at life. Sail hard and sail safe. 624 nautical miles to go.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Past = Present

Happy Christmas (War is Over)
"So this is Christmas 
And what have you done 
Another year over 
And a new one just begun" 
"And so this is Christmas 
I hope you have fun 
The near and the dear ones 
The old and the young" 
"A very merry Christmas 
And a happy New Year 
Let's hope it's a good one 
Without any fear "
"And so this is Christmas War is over 
For weak and for strong If you want it 
For rich and the poor ones War is over 
The world is so wrong Now"
"And so Happy Christmas War is over 
For black and for white If you want it 
For yellow and red ones War is over 
Let's stop all the fight Now"
"A very merry Christmas 
And a happy New Year 
Let's hope it's a good one 
Without any fear" 
 "And so this is Christmas War is over 

And what have we done If you want it 
Another year over War is over 
And a new one just begun Now" 

"And so Happy Christmas War is over 
I hope you have fun If you want it 
The near and the dear one War is over 
The old and the young Now" 

"A very merry Christmas 
And a happy New Year 
Let's hope it's a good one 
Without any fear" 

"War is over if you want it 
War is over now"
John Lennon 1971
"an eye for an eye
will leave us all blind"
Mahatma Gandhi

Friday, December 24, 2010

Making Do

I have just spent a fruitless 45 minutes sorting through a roll of shots from a recent excursion to the brine with the Nikonos and the tricky 80mm lens. Just when I'm ready to post a few shots, I discover that the friendly folk at the local C41 photo lab have put somebody else's images (I'm guessing birthday party/picnic) onto the CD they put with my prints. In the interests of privacy, I'm not posting their shots.

I could have spent the time pumping iron attempting to to get fit for the cyclone season that the met people keep warning us about.

Or even catching a few waves myself. But as an old friend who lived through the Great Depression of the 1920's would say, "sometimes you have to improvise". And besides it's the last working day of the year, so why stress?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Dog Day Afternoon

If we were in the northern hemisphere we would be calling these dog days, when Sirius the dog star rises at dawn in conjunction with summer. According to legend, the Romans sacrificed a brown dog at the beginning of the Dog Days to appease the rage of Sirius, believing that the star was the cause of the hot, sultry weather - evil times "when the seas boiled, wine turned sour, Quinto raged in anger, dogs grew mad, and all creatures became languid, causing to man burning fevers, hysterics, and phrensies" according to Brady’s Clavis Calendarium, 1813.
So it seemed fitting that this would be a dog day afternoon, doing the surf check as another thunder storm rolled down from the mountains.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Bandit's Koan

another work dream 
round shiney thing went all dark
yesterday's eclipse

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Portents of swell

The summer sun is out, but it's cold. My throat feels like Santa's elves have taken to it with an angle grinder. There are strange portents in the southern skies. The sun is in declination, at it's highest point, like a surfer doing an off the lip manoeuver. The moon is full. Tides are high and the waves almost flat. This morning we had a total lunar eclipse. This configuration of sun and moon hasn't occurred since 1638. I'm calling this early as portents of an epic cyclone swell on the sub-tropical east coast of Oz.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Calling it

This is the type of surf we usually get in summer when we get crazy rain and overcast days. But some are calling it the flattest they have ever seen it.
Always good for shooting monochrome.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Hangin Tight (the Platform)

No matter whether you are flying free
Or hanging tight
No matter what the weather 
and the waves are doing.
Have a fantastic weekend.
"surfing takes up a lot of
the caloric expenditure in my brain"
Quote of the week and
Bloggoland shout out 
to the absurdly laughing crew

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Electrical Storm

My old grandmother was raised in the bush but never outgrew her fear of electrical storms. She would have  hid from last night's ripper, which was really three or four separate storms complete with light show and hail. Summer is in the house. This pic in between storms, trying not to be a lightning conductor.

"Lookin' out at the lightnin
Hear the thunder above the fields
Gettin' closer each moment
And I know how you feel
Well you better believe it
But I couldn't leave anyway
Watchin' this electrical storm"
excerpt from Electrical Storm by Ed Kuepper 1985
Today's bloggoland shout out goes to local artist Neil Degney, currently exhibiting Chronokinesis at the Queensland Centre for Photography until January 2011.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Snap, Crackle and Bop

Reaquainting myself with the tune "Beasley Street" - spoken word angst of hip post-punk poet John Cooper-Clark, who I shot on film with a lens I should have kept. There are more images somewhere in the Brinecave. His Mancurian eloquence captured the social disintegration of the British north during the Thatcher era in. (Think early Joy Division, or even Pink Floyd Animals)
Eyes dead as viscous fish
Look around for laughs
If I could have just one wish
I would be a photograph
on a permanent Monday morning
Get lost or fall asleep
When the yellow cats are yawning
Around the back of Beasley Street "

from the album Snap, Crackle and Bop 1980

The song is the antithesis of the sunny joy of rolling around the brine on a board in the sun, but an occasional listen reminds me just how good life is in Brinetopia. Today's shout out goes to all those dedicated volunteers doing their bit for their sick, thirsty, hungry and socially marginalised brothers and sisters. A couple of groups spring to mind:
Doctors Without Borders, Oxfam, WaterAid. I love my whales and dolphins, but I love my fellow humans more.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Today's bloggo shout out goes to the site FiN - Fotos in Noosa, run by Keith Hamblin. Keith features fresh imagery from the Noosa end of the Sunshine Coast here in Oz. BIG thanks Keith for all your hard yakka. FiN site is here.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Beavers and brine

photo care of City of Beavercreek, Ohio
This week I'm getting into the Christmas spirit of sharing by talking up the talent that is out there in bloggoland. And because it's so tropical and stinking hot and flooding wet here in the monsoon latitudes, I thought that I would start with a shout out to the good folk of Beavercreek, Ohio, USA.
Apparently at this time of the year, it's so freezing cold in their land that they pour brine onto their roads to stop snow and ice bonding to the surface. Mad. More here. Meanwhile we are breaking out the sunscreen and the warm water wax.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Beach Cricket

Heading north this weekend for the Nana Brine Invitational Surfoff and Beach Cricket event. Calorie laden. Hot. Humid and happy times. Hope you all have an excellent weekend. Summer is here!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Road Rage

A crowd of fellow wage slaves and I were crossing a busy inner city intersection last night after a long day working for The Man when some demented demon came crashing through the throng parting it like Moses and the fleeing Israelites. For a moment, I didn't know whether to jump left, right, go forward or back and ended up blocking his way. So he and his fancy black car came to a stop and proceeded to hurl abuse at me using language unfit for a blog such as this. Luckily I kept walking - maybe he was a hitman running late for an assignment. So today's entry is dedicated to impatient drivers around the world.
Tip One     Manage your time - you won't have to speed.
Tip Two    The red light means you have to stop.
Tip Three   The green walking man light means pedestrians will be crossing the road.

Follow the tips and calm commuting will prevail in the Festive Season