Weekly Photography Challenge: Twisted

“Not straight, not so straight” – twisted, in fact. Sticks, and the flames that consume them, cannot keep a straight line.

Bonfires are a regular event here, signalling the end of summer and fire restrictions. It’s also the end of Alex’s tired old thrifted chair – and a sobering reminder of the flammability of foam upholstery!

I made some candle lanterns using glass jars and twisted wire, to add atmosphere and light up the path to the paddock. This one has a hanger made with a found, twisted piece of heavy wire. The marbles around the tea light candle keep it centred and avoid overheating the glass. The jar lid can be popped on when the lantern isn’t in use, to keep the rain out.

Weekly Photography Challenge: Elemental


Nature photographers will be in their element this week, with the Elemental theme inviting images of Earth, Air, Fire and Water – maybe all at once!

Mine are mainly fire – my youngest son’s birthday is in late April, when fire restrictions are generally lifted. By then, we have a pile of fallen branches and other flammable rubbish piled up ready. No bonfire is complete without an effigy of some sort, and making a ghastly guy is now part of the ritual. There always seems to be an old, unwanted item of furniture for the pile, too – one less thing in landfill, and a sobering illustration of how quickly synthetic materials burn.

It’s also an incredible photo opportunity, yielding a series of dramatic images.

Weekly Photography Challenge: Motion

Another week, another Photography Challenge – and this time the theme is “Motion”, the aim being to capture an image of something or someone on the move.IMG_4478 (Large)

This shot wasn’t meant to be of a kangaroo in motion, but he decided at the last moment that he didn’t like the look of me after all…

On Saturday, we celebrated my youngest son’s 24th birthday with the launching of a ‘space capsule’ via helium filled balloons, followed by a bonfire which included the remains of some old, unusable furniture. I couldn’t resist a shot of Alex, his mate and his Dad trooping down to the paddock with their balloons ready for take-off. They attached a message to the capsule – a la message-in-a-bottle – in hopes that someone will find it and and let them know.

After the fierce and fast-moving grass fire that narrowly missed our township (thanks to firefighters on land and in the air) in January, we are particularly keen to clean up potential fuel from around the garden now that we can safely burn it.A fire in action is always a compelling photo opportunity, but seeing a soggy old mattress blazing fiercely is a sobering reminder to be careful of flame in the home…

Weekly Photography Challenge: New

The first Weekly Photography Challenge theme for the new year is — “new”. I was at a bit  of a loss with this one – what new thing could I photograph, what do I want to do this year that’s new – and nothing was really calling to me. But I went for a walk this morning to photograph some of the aftermath of the big grass fire that just missed our little town on Jan 2, and I’ve picked out 10 of those to show you…The new water level in the school dam, the new roadside, stripped of everything but trees and ash and unburnable litter, the cemetery, blackened in places and a view of Mt William made new by the frame of a burnt, fallen tree.

This is how we began the new year, but we really don’t want more of it, thanks very much! Here is one of the helicopters over our house on Jan 2 – that was new, too. We have never seen so many aircraft over Moyston, never want to again, but are extremely grateful for their work in fighting the fire.helicopter

Weekly Photography Challenge: Warmth II

Further to yesterday’s post – not only did the temperature reach 40C, but a grassfire started somewhere north of town, a traveled rapidly in the heat and windy conditions. We spent several anxious hours on watch for embers, but luckily for us, we mainly saw helicopters and planes that were fighting the fire along with the ground crews. ‘Warmth’ indeed.

In the third photo, you can see a column of smoke (which we later found out was from burning tyres on someones property), and one of the helicopters on it’s way to fetch more water.

Friday Poem: Poem

That’s not much of a poem title, I’m afraid, but that’s what I called it, and it will have to do…a moon with sparks

For you I have no indifference
For you I would tear out the stars
And cast down the sea.
For you I would know everything
And then forget it
Because there is nothing
more than you.

You are burning in the stars
And awash in the sea
No mere torches will find you
But I have found you
Hidden in the stillness
Of my heart.

a moon with sparks 2

We had a bonfire last night, hence the photos of sparks rising to the moon. I took a lot of pictures (one of the great advantages of digital!) because flames are just as compelling for us as any cave-person ancestor. This one of my son feeding the fire and seemingly becoming part of it may well be my favourite – and not something I could have predicted or planned…alex on fire