When you look at the seasons from a photography perspective (and you apply some pretty broad strokes), to me spring, with its awakening greens and flowers, is about vibrancy, summer, in all its heat, is about saturation, fall, with it’s long light, is about colour temperature, and winter, all stark and white, is about contrast. But this summer i had spring and winter in two consecutive weekends.
Now it’s winter in Australia but i didn’t have to travel quite so far; i drove to Belgium to dive Nemo 33, the world’s second deepest pool. I didn’t just shoot the Magritte-inspired thing there, i also played around a bit, and going over the material, i couldn’t make it work. I had trouble finding the tone, not just musically, but weird things happen to colours when you’re in a deep pool under artificial light. I knew i had some cool shots but i just didn’t know how to process them.
So i put it on the back burner and drove to Cornwall the next weekend. It had just been hit by a storm so the waters were still murky, but i really enjoyed the diving there, especially a place called ‘the crack of life’. Not only is that a very funny name, it is a really cool dive, right in between two big rocks which are overgrown by seaweeds. So there we were, surrounded by green murk and weeds, and of course Tom Waits’ “all the world is green” pops into my head. Sometimes it’s so easy, isn’t it? So that video kinda shot itself:
It was all spring, which got me thinking what season the Nemo video would be. I’d never done a black and white video before, but since i was having such trouble colour correcting the Nemo footage, i figured i’d check what it would look like in monochrome. And once i saw the results, a song formed with it, and the edit suddenly got a lot more manageable:
It is the warmest winter i’ve ever experienced, though, where you can be out in your speedos. But there’s something really delicious about experiencing free fall without a suit on: you can feel it all over your skin.
After quite a dark month, it is time to focus on something light. One of the lights in my life is Beans, my 8 month old viszla pup, who is as sunny a character as you’ll ever come across. When things get dark i play with her and life is a bit brighter. Obviously, i photograph her a lot too, which is a challenge. She’s lovely and everything, but also quite mad and bouncy, so she might be in a gorgeous position one second, but before i’ve even pointed the camera at her she’s either gone or looking ridiculous again. It’s rare to catch her like this:
Now as i’ve become a very serious photographer in my old age, i only use my serious cameras for this type of work. But Beans’ nature doesn’t exactly lend itself to serious cameras -as she tends to lick them. So i’ve had to get over my slightly pretentious ‘ew jpeg-shooting toy’ attitude and use my gopro. And as handicapped as a gopro might be as a camera (i got it to do video, for which it’s very good and extremely easy), when i decided to put it through some tricky paces, shooting in difficult light situations, it worked remarkably well. It metered well, it exposed well, it sort of just played along. And it is lick-proof. Something not to make light of.