This morning for some weird and strange reason I was thinking about world time zones as I published this image. For example, at the time of publishing it was 6:00am, on Wednesday 6th December in New Zealand. However, if you are San Francisco it would have been 9:00 am on Tuesday 5th December. How do I know this? Well, I looked it up on a World Clock! In New York it was 12:00 noon on Tuesday, in Dublin it was 5:00pm and in Moscow it was 8:00pm. In Beijing, China it was 1:00 am on Wednesday 6th December, in Tokyo it was 2:00 am, in Port Moresby it was 3:00 am and in Melbourne it was 4:00am.
So, hello, good morning, good afternoon, good evening or good night depending on where you are.
It feels a long time since I spent time going walkabout in the bush. I’m not sure why that is. Having no real photographic home, or location to stick to, I think at some point I simply arrived in town and started wandering the city streets from place to place and never stopped. So, the other day, feeling the need for a change in surroundings I headed into the bush.
Well, it’s fair to say that on this occasion I hadn’t really been staying in one spot for very long until the sun dropped below the horizon. Not being able to settle in one spot, the scene of a low skyline with the silhouette of the hills in the distance formed in front of me. It was then that I found a place to stop for a moment.
With a bit of time to spare and not having to be in any specific place for the time being, I went wandering. If you haven’t spent time idly wandering and aimlessly strolling through a city, then I strongly suggest you do. There’s nothing like letting your soul be carefree for a while and your thoughts drift where they may.
I was going for an aimless stroll, drifting from place to place in central Dunedin with no real purpose when I came across the Carnegie Centre on Moray Place. Noticing a door was open, I wandered inside for a look before spotting an arrow on the floor pointing down the stairs that seemed to be made of masking tape. Taking it as a beacon of light that needed to be followed, I headed down the stairs before finding my way into a sunlit courtyard. Not knowing if I was now officially trespassing or not, I decided it was probably best that I retraced my steps and beg forgiveness if questioned.
About 20 kilometres north of Dunedin, State Highway 1 crosses over a hilly area known as The Kilmog. At the top of The Kilmog is a cemetery called Merton cemetery which among other things is a great place to catch a sunrise.
Eventually I made my way to a nearby car parking building. Which, I must admit, are really interesting places if you’re looking for some creative inspiration or mental stimulation. They provide all sorts of views across the tops of buildings, from all kinds of angles. You can also find some fun textures and lines if that’s what you’re looking for.
I went wandering through centre Dunedin not looking for anything in particular. While I was in the process of looking for some mental stimulation I came across an escalator close to the central Library. I spent the next few minutes riding it in both directions trying to decide where to go next when the escalator itself became of interest.
I called in to St Paul’s Cathedral in central Dunedin for a bit of a look around and a little creative inspiration. It so happened that the next day they were holding a concert in the Cathedral and while I was there they were holding an open practice. One lady who was playing the piano was very good while the man that followed her seemed to need a little more practice. Having said that, if you consider the fact that I can’t play the piano at all, they were both actually very delightful to listen to.
Yesterday I spent just on 7 hours at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin. I was covering the WXV 1 matches that were being played in Dunedin this weekend as part of the women’s international rugby calendar. On Friday night, England beat Canada 45 to 12 while on Saturday afternoon New Zealand scored a 70 to 7 win over Wales before the weekend finished with Australia winning 29 – 20 over France. On Saturday, they had all sorts of entertainment playing both before, during and after the matches including this DJ who played an extended set before each match. It was kinda cool as it was something different from the usual Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond or Welcome To The Jungle by Guns and Roses which tend to get over played a bit.
One of the things you come to expect during Spring in New Zealand, particularly in the lower half of the South Island, is that the weather can be somewhat changeable. Take the last seven days for example. There was heavy rain, then several days of overcast conditions before a few cloudless days with temperatures reaching into the 20’s before the week ends with snow in a few days time.
The Taieri River at Outram Glen is one of the popular spots in the Dunedin area. About 23 kilometres from Dunedin, Outram Glen is a popular picnic and swimming area following the Taieri River. It also has numerous walking tracks, one of which leads all the way to Lee Stream, a distance of around 8.5 kilometres. The track is made up of an easy walking track and then a more difficult tramping track.
Since there was more than just a touch of spring in the air, I went in search of signs of new blossoms in the central city. So, with a mind for fresh, bright, clean and warm colours I walked along Moray Place, turned onto Stuart Street and arrived in the Octagon. It was there that I spied the fresh bright colours of the flower beds that surrounded the streets, framed by the lovely pink undertones coming from the nearby Cherry Blossom Trees.
I often wander past this line of sculptors by Regan Gentry called ‘Harbour mouth molars’. Installed in 2010 on the shoreline of Dunedin’s Kitchener Street park, they were inspired by the University of Otago’s dental school and Otago Peninsula’s volcanic origins. The sculptures combine the ideas of painfully emerging teeth and new landforms thrust up by volcanoes. Personally, I think they’re wonderful, however I know others who feel differently. I like to think of them representing wisdom, but that’s just me.
If there’s one thing to be discovered about a theatre it’s that they have all sorts of interesting doors, stairwells, passageways and nooks and crannies. They really are fascinating places to explore. Eventually, when you think you’ve got the whole place worked out you’ll discover a mysterious new corridor that leads to a section of the theatre that you never knew existed. I can’t understate how compelling an empty 1600 seat theatre is when you’re exploring it for the first time.
The Sutton railway station was once a busy wee place as locals came and went from the Strath Taieri area to Dunedin. These days, still visible inside the small, disused station, etched into the timber are the names of locals that date back nearly to the turn of the century. Some of them include the initials of soldiers from the area who served in the First World War, among them are the initials of A.C Peat.
At the age of 21, Arthur Charles Peat left Sutton in late 1914 and was enlisted for ‘The Great War’ as a member of the Otago Infantry Battalion on the 13th December 1914. On board the vessel the HMS Tahiti, his journey from Sutton took him firstly to Egypt where in early April he wrote to his brother Jack. In his letter he wrote about spending three days on the Red Sea before getting sight of the Suez canal. He wrote about saluting other ships as they passed, about buying fruit off the locals and disembarking to a train to head through the canal. He went on to write about meeting some of his mates once they were in camp and how they went into Cairo to have a look at the sites, commenting that he had only seen the pyramids from a distance. Wanting to ensure his letter went out on that day’s mail, he ended by promising to write all the news and tell all about the sights next time.
Arthur and the Otago Infantry Battalion were then shipped out to Gallipoli as part of the Gallipoli campaign. At Chunuk Bair on 7 August, 1915 Arthur Charles Peat was killed in action.-
I’ve had this building sitting in the back of my mind as a subject I’d like to do something with for a while. However, every time I’ve been past the light has been wrong or the outside has been blocked by cars, buses, trucks and utes. Fortunately, recently I discovered the whole area all but empty which gave me lots of time to work out exactly what I wanted to do.
This is another image about the passing of time, the pace of life and the passing of thought. It’s about a moment’s reflection and a projection towards the future. I’ve always found dusk and the end of the day a very contemplative period.
The Otago Peninsula is starting to have a growing fascination for me and its wondrous landscape. It really is a diverse place. On the peninsula the weather is constantly changing which can prove challenging. It also provides a terrific element for subject matter.
The corner of Water and Vogel Street is set in heart of Dunedin’s Warehouse Precinct. There you’ll find Vogel House which during the 1980s and 1990’s was used as a music venue for bands that were part of the Dunedin Sound. It was a popular rehearsal venue for musicians that included the popular group, The Chills who recorded their single Doledrums there in 1984.
On Sunday evening I was planning to walk to the beach in the early evening. I had a spot on the rocks all picked out and I was in the middle of getting my gear ready, when the weather turned. A southerly blew in from the south bringing with it thunder, lightning, heavy rain and strong wind gusts. It really was an intense front of weather and I was really glad I was caught in the middle of it. Instead, I processed this image of the lovely stained glass window at St Paul’s Cathedral here in Dunedin.
It’s that wonderful time of year when the morning sun is starting to have a tiny bit more heat in it as it rises over the Dunedin Hills along the Peninsula. With the changing of seasons from Winter to Spring, the early morning sun when accompanied by clear, cloudless mornings creates a lovely dawn glow as it strikes the front of the various buildings around the city centre.
The other morning I managed to catch the last of the early morning sun hitting St Joseph’s Cathedral before it disappeared behind a large bank of cloud.
Dunedin has some magical spots on the coast to catch the sunset. There’s an endless supply of locations to catch the suns last rays of the day. This spot is not far from my house where on a night like this you can see the sunset along the coast with the city lights in the distance.
… from a Small City. My daily musings from Ōtepoti to get you inspired. Read the blog, view the photos, embrace the creativity.
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