Last week I went out on a photo expedition, determined to get some good shots of a block of larch about 70km south of Nelson. They are looking great right now in their late autumn colours, but I’m running out of time to catch them. So I planned the day quite carefully, using the “Photographers’ Ephemeris” to check out the sunrise and sunlight angles at various times of the day. The larches look their best in late afternoon light, but there was a good chance of some early morning mists creating other opportunities. And so it proved, along the Buller River near Kawatiri:
I’ve just spent a few days with some visitors from Sweden, a “Group Study Exchange” team sponsored by Rotary International. You can read about them in their blog here. For me was a great opportunity to brush up my Swedish language skills.
Two of the team were keen photographers so we left a few hours earlier than the rest of the team for the drive from Nelson to Murchison. We drove in a giant “S”, via Tapawera and St Arnauds. The weather had cleared up somewhat after heavy rain the day before, so the trip yielded some interesting images.
On Wednesday I had to drive over from Nelson to Pelorus Bridge, to pick up some Swedish visitors at noon. I decided that there was a chance of some good images, so travelled over early, arriving at dawn! Conditions were not what I was expecting: a thick mist shrouded everything so there was no early light to work with. I did get some rather atmospheric shots, though. The Pelorus River is an “incised river”, having carved its way down through the rocks (and a favourite amongst trout fishermen).
Our household has gradually come back to normal after a period of high stress: my wife was on the local organising committee for a national annual conference, for the NZ Association of Psychotherapists. My role was that of support person and unofficial photographer.
One of the highlights was a guest speaker by the name of Michael Leunig. He has been described as Australia’s best loved cartoonist and social commentator, a modern day renaissance man and one of Australia’s 200 “living treasures”. By pushing my camera through the throng of his fans, I managed to capture some nice moments. One of the conference delegates (a jeweller as well) had prepared a beautiful little brooch featuring a couple of his characters. Michael appeared touched by its presentation.
More images here, along with coverage of the official powhiri (welcome ceremony):
March 21 is observed around the world as the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. It recalls killing of 69 black protestors at Sharpeville in South Africa in 1960. Here in Nelson our observance took the form of a celebration of our multicultural community, “Race Unity Day“.
The children were having a great time:
But not just the children. If you read on you’ll find a selection of images from the day:
An isolated, beautiful spot on the West Coast, Karamea has its own special microclimate. It’s located on the western edge of the Kahurangi National Park, near the beginning (or end) of the Heaphy Track (one of the great walks of New Zealand). A short walk up the nearby Oparara river takes you to a large limestone arch. The river is brown due to a high concentration of natural organic compounds in the water (tannins etc). Here are some pictures.
First a bush robin that came to see what I was up to: