"Hindsight is always twenty-twenty. " Billy Wilder
"Hindsight is an exact science. " Guy Bellamy

28 June 2013

A Tall Rat’s View

I was very taken by Oliver Fluck’s 2011 “A Rat’s View” night-time New York image showing the Chrysler Building. This image is my inspired copy. I felt that Flinders Street Station might be the answer, but I’ll keep hunting for other suitable Melbourne landmarks and shorter rats!

Image © PeteM2020
Click on the image for a larger version.

23 June 2013


Tonight was the 2013 perigee full moon – got out a long lens and took these at about 17:45 and 21:00 (est) near Melbourne. Too cold for howling dogs tonight – even the frogs are quiet!

(Taken at 17:45)      Image © PeteM2020

(Taken at 21:00)       Image © PeteM2020

21 June 2013

Fog in the Yarra Valley

Image © PeteM2020
Click on the image for a larger version

It’s that time of the year again – cold, crisp mornings with frost and plenty of fog in the valley. This was a spectacle just too good to ignore, so using a long lens, I snapped a few frames and put together this panorama. 

18 June 2013

Panorama of Melbourne, Victoria

This panorama was stitched from 140 images. Lots of detail to explore - have fun!

For a full screen view of this and other large panoramas I have made - have a look at this web site: PeteM2020 Gigapans

13 June 2013

Edward Hopper

Image © PeteM2020
Last night I dug through all kinds of older photos and picked this one for the blog post. Found it in a folder named August 2011_HDR.  Spent a bit of time this morning in Photoshop fixing it up whilst listening to the radio.  Not quite sure what the program was all about, but the following Edward Hopper quote stuck in my mind:

“Great art is the outward expression of an inner life of the artist, and this inner life will result in his personal vision of the world….”

Then looking at the picture again, I got a bit thoughtful.  As a photographer, do you know why you create certain kinds of images? Why does it make you feel good to share them with others? 

07 June 2013

Railway Stations

Rick Amor is having an exhibition at the Castlemaine Art Gallery during June - great excuse for a country jaunt.
I enjoyed the gallery. The exhibition showcases how Amor composes his oil paintings. He produces sketches, prints and watercolours that are then used as guides for the final paintings. Fascinating to follow the process from concept to finished artwork.

Travelling by train off-peak is cheap, easy and very relaxing – even some grand old stations and fine stone bridges to admire whilst charging through the lush Victorian countryside.  
© PeteM2020
Image captured at Castlemaine Railway Station -  just as the rain set in!

04 June 2013

Photogravure with polymer plates

To my thinking, digital photography matched with photogravure is the perfect marriage between new and old art forms. With the advent of photosensitive polymer plates, the technique is now greatly simplified and quite safe.

Briefly, this is how I do it:
An image is converted to black and white in Photoshop. The file is then converted to an image-setter positive film – in my case, by a professional bureau.

The polymer plate is exposed twice with UV light – first through a stochastic screen and then through the image-setter film. The plate is then washed in warmish water, dried and then re-exposed to UV light to harden.

If all has gone to plan, the plate will look something like the one below  - but without the ink stains.

Image © PetreM2020

Next stage is traditional intaglio printing – ink up the plate, wipe off the excess and then through the etching press with suitable wet rag paper.  All sounds easy, doesn’t it…………….

Image © PeteM2020
If the gods are smiling the result can be quite remarkable – incredible detail and a wide tonal range. Despite the relatively course rag paper, have a look at the fine details in the enlarged section of the print.

Image © PeteM2020
So why all the bother when an inkjet print on rag paper may look similar? Intaglio printing, that’s why – there isn’t another way of getting that 3D look and tactile feel to a print!

02 June 2013

My hero - Jeffrey Smart

Image © PeteM2020

Can’t put my finger on why, but these days Jeffrey Smart’s paintings resonate with my perception of the landscape – seeing beauty in the mundane.

Found this scene mid afternoon in sunny Hobart (Tasmania).  I knew there was an image there, but couldn’t nail it down. Took a heap of pictures from various angles, but nothing seemed to work.

The odd car passed by, putting a bit of life into the scene, but I was too slow….. Fortunately, my muse came to the rescue, yelling from the street corner “car!!” “truck!!” or “cyclist!!” as they approached.  Capturing this truck, with the matching blue colour, made my day!