Over the last month we have had a few new visitors to the skies of the Manawatu. Six Republic of Singapore Air Force F-16D's (the dual seat version of the F16). Considering I had only seen an F16 in the flesh for the first time at the beginning of the year (at the air show), to have 6 based here for a month has been quite a treat.
Spring is not all fine days and blue skies, the storms and rain are part of the mix as well. But the warmer days and water bring growth to the gardens and trees which in turn brings more food for the insects and birds. On rainy days like today, the bird song fills the backyard as they search for nectar, insects and anything else edible.
Not everything is easy, we each have our own challenges, the things we find difficult and limiting. The photo above for instance is of Foxton beach, which is a wide flat beach, so flat and wide for fact it is considered a road and even has speed signs along its length. Why do I include this beach in a post about struggles, because most landscape images need some kind of foreground interest to draw the viewer in, and this beach has no rocks, structures or any of the other obvious options. You have to work hard, be creative and think outside the box. Bits of driftwood, people or in this case the ripples that form as the water is sucked back over the very very gradual slope of the beach into the Tasman sea. But these challenges have both positive and negatives. Because if the obvious options like rocks and jetty's are missing from the images, the images that are created will also look different to the majority of other images as well .
The power of nature can be truly amazing. I am not sure what caused this natural formation but the violence of its construction is quite apparent. The first thing that grabbed me eye, was how the larger rocks were laying on the smaller ones in the pile. Then the thought struck me, it appeared as if the larger rocks on top had smashed the smaller rocks underneath. A metaphor if you like of the destructive power of the environment it is in.
In the last few years, with the increasing range of very dark neutral density filters, there has been a tendency for seascapes to look misty and calm. They capture that feeling of peace, that many of us feel when we take a stroll along a windswept beach. But in a storm the beach can be a dangerous place, with huge waves surging in, crashing onto the beach only to be pulled back by the next wave. Every year people get into trouble, caught out by its power and its ability to surprise.
I wanted to make an image that captured the more menacing side of stormy beaches. With a front surging in to the coast and the waves growing in strength and size, it looked perfect. The turmoil in the clouds above, promising that this was just the start.