Thoughtfactory: Rhizomes

bark, trees, roads, bushland

dead leaves + photographic self-questioning

I have spent quite some  time walking  in  the local Waitpinga bushland this autumn.  I walked with Maya on the morning walk and with Maleko on the afternoon walk. Whilst being preoccupied with dipping my toes into making  walking art I noticed  the dead leaves hanging from the branches of the eucalypts as well as the bark. 

 I'd ignored them up to now as  I had been primarily focused on the bark with a 35mm film camera. The leaves were concealed -- merged into the background.  In the last couple of weeks of walking I started to look at the dead leaves as I walked past them. Their speckled brownness   stood out from  the background  world of green.  I started to  photograph them closeup.   

What emerged was  the  simple awareness of something present-at-hand in its sheer presence-at-hand. The seeing involved in the encounter with the present-at-hand gives precedence to the entity and it does so precisely because it detaches itself from the background context. The emergence of the dead leaves  into presence can be understood as an event of the un-concealment of the dead leaves  out of concealment. The photography discloses this coming into presence. 

landscape photography and narration

Like the Littoral Zone and poodlewalks this Rhizomes blog has been on the back burner since September,  even though I have been walking in the local bushland with Maya (in the morning) and Maleko (in the afternoon) and continuing to make photos whilst on the poodlewalks.  

There was even the occasional  photo session, such as this one, which was an early morning photo session on Boxing Day, 2023.  

It was an early morning photo session on Halls Creek Rd, which  is a minor link road that is part of the Heysen Trail in Waitpinga.  It has little traffic and so it is safe to both walk along with Maya and to stop to make photos.      

hanging bark #2/meditative seeing

The local bushland is becoming off limits in the afternoon due to the snakes coming out of their winter hibernation with  the warm spring weather. It is still okay to walk in the bushland  in the early morning before sunrise when it  is cold or wet from the heavy dew.  

I notice that this  Rhizomes blog was neglected during the autumn/winter period this year -- there is a gap between March and August. There is even greater neglect  with The Littoral Zone blog. I'm  sure this neglect  was the result of me struggling to put  the walking and the photography together as a process-based  photographic project. 

The photo below was made in early September 2023 whilst I was on a poodlewalk  in the late afternoon with Maleko:

Going back through the archives Rhizomes  and seeing what  I had photographed in the local bush during that March-August period I can see that an immersive style of walking was emerging: one that was reactive to what was occurring around me, rather than going into the bushland to photograph a  particular object in certain lighting conditions that had been pre-visualised.

hanging bark in b+w

This macro photo was made whilst I was on a hobbled walk in the local bushland. 

It was late in the afternoon. I have looked for this bark since, but I have never been able to find it. The winter winds would have prised it loose from the branch of the pink gum.  

an old pile of bark

This is what happens to old piles of bark in the bushland that have been lying on the ground for a year of more: 

The colours  fade, the bark slowly breaks up, then it starts to crumble.  

I came across the above  pile when I returned to walking in the bushland with Maya  after a long break over the summer.  I was  introducing Maya to the bushland. I recognised the pile  from a year ago. 

walking Depledge Rd #3: bark

This is another interpretation of  the hanging bark  along Depledge Rd in Waitpinga. 

 In contrast  to the early morning version that was uploaded  in this earlier post the above  version was made in the late afternoon. 

walking Depledge Rd #2: bark

This picture is a  follow up  to this post on walking along Depledge Rd in Waitpinga in May 2022. 

The above  picture was made on an early morning walk in late May 2022.  It is a close-up  interpretation  of this picture,  and it  was made with a 10 year old  digital camera. There  is a  b+w  interpretation made with a 60 year old film camera. 

The hanging bark along Depledge Rd no longer exists. The gale force winter winds tore it to shreds.  

on Depledge Rd

A photo of some roadside vegetation along Depledge Rd in Waitpinga in early May 2022. The photo was made in the early morning  on a poodlewalk,  just as the sun's rays  illuminated  the vegetation:

During May Kayla and I usually walked along this road prior to sunrise, then we go into the bushland  5 minutes or so after sunrise. We timed the walk so awe were by the tree when it was illuminated by the early morning light. 

hanging bark

I noticed this hanging bark whilst I was walking along Depledge Rd in Waitpinga on an early morning poodlewalk with Kayla. We have a routine  on this walk. We walk  along the road before sunrise,  then we return to the Forester  via  the bushland. We walk through the bushland is slow as I am  taking photos.  

The bark is on the roadside, hanging from a branch.  It is kind of  sculptural; a mobile if you like,  as it gentle  moves when there is an easterly wind blowing. I've  made a video of the movement. 

just a pile of bark

Lying beside one of the paths  through  the local Waitpinga bushland  is a pile of bark. It has been there a while. The pink gums (Eucalyptus fasciculosa)  are shredding their  bark and the pile keeps changing due to the  strong coastal winds.    Occasionally, when I am walking  by whilst on a poodlewalk,  I casually toss another piece of bark onto the pile, to see what happens. 

I often photograph the pile when I'm walking past on my way  to  a photo session elsewhere in the bushland. On the occasion of this photo being taken it had been raining  in the early hours of the  morning in early January (6/1/22) and the bark was quite wet. The colours were more intense and saturated than normal.  It was the colour that caught my eye.