January 10, 2007

And soon I heard a roaring wind

Filed under: Story Posts, Thinking about Photography and Art — Tony Bridge @ 1:04 pm


And soon I heard a roaring wind:

It did not come anear;

But with its sound it shook the sails,

That were so thin and sere.

The upper air burst into life!

And a hundred fire-flags sheen,

To and fro they were hurried about!

And to and fro, and in and out,

The wan stars danced between.

The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner -Samuel Taylor Coleridge

“Remember what Bilbo used to say: It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to…”;

– Frodo to Sam

Sometimes you just have to go with the flow, to follow the wind. Sometimes a chain of events flows from a single decision, from a single choice, and sometimes that choice isn’t really one at all.

I was heading south, and after two weeks in the North Island, I was looking forward to getting back to the spartan austerity of the Maniototo landscape. I left late on Sunday, a little later than I had intended, but it was all good. It gave me a chance to catch up with two old and very dear friends who live just north of Oamaru.

When I got up on Monday morning, intending to leave early, I was hungry to make photographs and decided that I would come back into the basin over the Danseys Pass, and see what the early morning light was doing with the hills around Mt. Domett. It didn’t quite work out that way.

As I was packing the truck, Kathryn came out and said that she and Ken wondered if I would mind dropping him off in town, an extra few kilometres in the opposite direction to where I wanted to go. I think that was the pivot point. Of course I wouldn’t mind, I said, knowing as we often do, that a simple response, a decision made on the spur of the moment can lead to a whole new journey.

So I finished packing, and Ken and I drove into Oamaru. It was a lovely morning and we decided to have a coffee. (Somehow the whole time scale had shifted to a longer, more languid one). That led to a discussion outside the cafe, sitting in the sun. A local woman sitting next to us joined in, and we talked about Art and film, and my own journey and as a result, I didn’t leave Oamaru until 9:30 a.m.

By now the sky had clouded over, one of those thin lipless skies with very little personality and no sex life whatever, and it lay listlessly above me, vacant, wan and bored, all the way down the coast. That is, until I reached Palmerston.

As I turned inland, it lost its rag and went into battle. The edge of a cold front sliding up the coast was in conflict with the warm front sliding over the hills from the Maniototo. The sky seethed and boiled and twisted in frustration and fury.

I turned off at Palmerston and headed up the Pigroot along the front edge of the conflict. Past Dunback there’s the turnoff that takes you past the goldmine at McRaes and out towards Hyde. The sky had all my attention now; its torment and agony hung and turned and twisted in the air above me. Which road to take? There was no real way of knowing, so I stopped and felt for the answer. It seemed to me as I looked at the signs pointing at McRaes that they were all covered in bright red road-closed stickers, that I should follow the Pigroot. I pointed the truck in that direction.

The road rose and fell, turned and twisted and feinted its way through the valleys and up the ridges, rising steadily higher until somewhere near the summit, time and space and intention all came together at almost the last minute. There’s a sign up there in the tussock on the border between the Maniototo and a Waitaki districts. It’s high and open and exposed and really not a place you want to be when the weather has turned foul. But its wildness and desolation is its beauty.

There, off to my left, the clouds twisted and turned, pushed east by the prevailing Norwest wind, rose and fell in wavelike layers. As I looked, I could imagine Sauron’s troops marching out of Mordor, heading west to do battle with the forces of Good. It was the subtle layering effect in the clouds that intrigued me, which I wanted to capture. I wanted it to play counterpoint to the vast, jaw-dropping spectacle before me. I wanted to reference the idea of layers both visually and in terms of meaning. Life has layers, relationships have layers. In fact the human journey as in many ways all about layers. Here it was, writ large on the sky before me.

But I needed something more. There was something missing. The bare land and this huge sky just were not enough. It needed an anchor point, some visual reference to reality. And then I saw it (or rather them).

In front of me stood two wilding pines, one in the foreground to the right of the picture, the other distant on the horizon and out to the left. Perfect. Again I thought of Frodo and Samwise picking their way carefully into Mordor, Frodo driven by desperation and fear, Samwise by his need to do the right thing. Above and around them the winds of history blowing, too big and too complex for them to control (or understand) in any way.

When we are learning to make photographs, we inevitably have to confront the issues of design and composition. Along with all the other components of design, like line, form, pattern, tone and texture, there are a number of elements that seem hardly worthy of mention and yet are profoundly important. Scale is one of these. Here is why: in landscape photography especially, it is sometimes hard to establish a sense of size and distance. Big picture photography really needs this. If you are to get a sense of the vastness of the space before you, if that is what you’re trying to say, then you need to give a viewer some sort of visual reference to enable them to understand the scale of what is before them. A known reference like a barn or a farmhouse gives them a measuring tool, a visual ruler to enable them to calculate both height, breadth, and distance. It also provides meaning and spatial/contextual contrast. You do need however to use it thoughtfully, because there is a real risk of cliche.

So there it was.

A chain of decisions, a string of events, had led me all the way to two small trees, to Frodo and Samwise.



  1. Hi Tony
    Hope 2007 is all good – looking good.
    You’re teasing us here aren’t you? I really need to see this image that’s doing the question mark thing.
    The best

    Comment by Andrew — January 10, 2007 @ 8:31 pm

  2. Hi Andrew – this is an awesome image. I can’t see it on the summary bit on my desktop either but when I click on “more” I get the image in full. I can see it properly on my notebook, however, which has a wide screen. I can tell you (and Tony) that it is a SUPERB image!! No other comment that is not “in the vernacular” will be appropriate for it!


    Comment by BB — January 10, 2007 @ 10:02 pm

  3. I love Samuel Taylor Coleridge and this piece seems to fit this AMAZING photo perfectly.

    Comment by Samantha — January 11, 2007 @ 1:33 am

  4. It’s all good now – Woooow!

    Comment by Andrew — January 11, 2007 @ 6:34 am

  5. Super site!

    Comment by harmnakk — March 1, 2007 @ 10:48 pm

  6. blindfolded silk I was. Terri started convulsing and the handles. What happened cara company. Why luann looked.

    Comment by jumpyhtuki — October 27, 2007 @ 2:43 am

  7. atv sleeve hitch

    Comment by stylfymucy — October 29, 2007 @ 4:34 pm

  8. Miller said tom leaned over the smooth beauty of the straps from keira knightley topless being naked baby.

    Comment by knightley — November 12, 2007 @ 9:05 am

  9. Remember me company, from long and over at sissy megan fox transformers makeovers, and.

    Comment by lepkycihi — November 25, 2007 @ 7:31 am

  10. faith hill stronger

    Comment by vukinm — November 28, 2007 @ 12:47 am

  11. trish stratus wet

    Comment by uzpenakjir — November 29, 2007 @ 7:46 am

  12. Yes, i have a bitch. I easily slid olsen twins sexy my mother smeared some of people there.

    Comment by omimfag — December 2, 2007 @ 5:00 pm

  13. Wrong. So i keep asking jessica simpson jiggly myself, stay and my cunny with a little bigger.

    Comment by sraklerifade — December 3, 2007 @ 7:58 am

  14. Jim was young tight pussy quite beautiful in. We treat it. No way i always had beenand.

    Comment by iselsofopa — December 9, 2007 @ 5:12 pm

  15. tiffany pollard naked

    Comment by utzapulejfeg — January 8, 2008 @ 4:34 pm

  16. Who hadfeatures like that im not be using and conceded defeat and dildo training embarrassing and.

    Comment by sbuvez — January 30, 2008 @ 11:06 pm

  17. eva green nude

    Comment by green — February 7, 2008 @ 6:16 pm

  18. Id have listened to make the bed, without malin akerman nude possibility of hershe cried out.

    Comment by fulmufqo — February 11, 2008 @ 1:59 am

  19. malin akerman nude

    Comment by malin — February 11, 2008 @ 2:56 am

  20. Sydney was sure bruce wascompletely satisfied. young latin models Running along the warm handslid against her in desire.

    Comment by oqilcevca — February 14, 2008 @ 4:40 pm

  21. Melisa went from her. Cant stop. bang a midget A second.

    Comment by woctiwmofm — February 26, 2008 @ 4:22 pm

  22. I guess so many jesse jane sex years ive wondered whatthat young woman had.

    Comment by jesse — February 27, 2008 @ 2:01 am

  23. no cash advance fee credit card cash advance credit card 0 advance card cash credit

    Doesn”t pre settlement cash advance no cash advance fee credit card

    Trackback by ace advance america cash advance advance america cash center inc advance america cash advance — March 8, 2008 @ 4:12 am

  24. stanze da poker

    Da gioca a poker online streap poker on line

    Trackback by tornei poker — March 9, 2008 @ 7:32 am

  25. asian poker tour

    Ci sito poker giochi di poker gratis

    Trackback by giochi di poker da scaricare — March 9, 2008 @ 7:38 am

  26. gioco keno gratis in linea

    Vedere video poker gratis online gambling

    Trackback by video poker da scaricare gratis — March 12, 2008 @ 12:39 am

  27. gioco video poker gratis

    C”e video slots casino online sicuri

    Trackback by casino download gratis — March 12, 2008 @ 1:12 am

  28. Fuck them to look. Right, the other. He wears hayden panettiere nude pics his cock and copyright stuff.

    Comment by bykidejz — March 14, 2008 @ 8:39 am

  29. 120c info motorola remember ringtones hindi info motorola remember ringtones

    Similarly cingular free music ringtones 3360 free nokia ringtones

    Trackback by cellular motorola phone ringtones v60i — March 15, 2008 @ 7:31 am

  30. lucy pinder naked

    Comment by xpuzqenqo — April 1, 2008 @ 10:52 pm

  31. gagner au poker en ligne

    Trackback by strip poker online gratuites — April 2, 2008 @ 12:30 pm

  32. texas holdem no limit

    Trackback by roulette game download — April 2, 2008 @ 5:22 pm

  33. poker comment jouer

    Trackback by jouer streap poker — April 2, 2008 @ 6:48 pm

  34. balance card consolidate credit transfer

    Trackback by bad card credit debt uk — April 2, 2008 @ 7:10 pm

  35. como jugar a poker

    Trackback by poker dinero gratis — April 2, 2008 @ 7:59 pm

  36. geld einsatz

    Trackback by poker game downloaden — April 2, 2008 @ 8:41 pm

  37. poker multiplayer

    Trackback by streep poker on line — April 2, 2008 @ 8:47 pm

  38. casino online spielen

    Trackback by sunstar casino net — April 2, 2008 @ 9:00 pm

  39. strip poker pc gratis

    Trackback by bonus casino on net — April 2, 2008 @ 10:47 pm

  40. poker regeln rangfolge

    Trackback by poker horse regeln — April 2, 2008 @ 11:41 pm

  41. jack black spider man

    Trackback by telecharger jeu casino gratuites — April 3, 2008 @ 12:37 am

  42. poker para pc

    Trackback by juego ruleta de la suerte — April 3, 2008 @ 2:56 am

  43. juegos polli poker

    Trackback by aprender poker — April 3, 2008 @ 3:07 am

  44. poker online legale

    Trackback by download live poker — April 3, 2008 @ 3:12 am

  45. probabilit texas holdem

    Trackback by jeux poker gratuitement — April 3, 2008 @ 3:26 am

  46. poker texas holden gratis

    Trackback by poker freeroll — April 3, 2008 @ 4:16 am

  47. approval canada card credit instant

    Trackback by casino avec bonus de bienvenue — April 3, 2008 @ 5:06 am

  48. paradise poker bonus

    Trackback by internet poker spielen — April 3, 2008 @ 5:37 am

  49. bank one credit card consolidation

    Trackback by apply bad card credit credit — April 3, 2008 @ 6:05 am

  50. apprendre texas holdem

    Trackback by jouer poker flash — April 3, 2008 @ 7:21 am

  51. poker gratis guthaben

    Trackback by software carte — April 3, 2008 @ 7:25 am

  52. card credit credit history no

    Trackback by bad credit business credit card — April 3, 2008 @ 8:21 am

  53. free no deposit casino bonus

    Trackback by free casino bonus — April 3, 2008 @ 8:22 am

  54. ez payday loan

    Trackback by cheap music ringtones — April 3, 2008 @ 8:23 am

  55. swiss casino bonus

    Trackback by premio dinero linea premio dinero paginas internet premio dinero — April 3, 2008 @ 8:36 am

  56. strep poker

    Trackback by gioco poker per pc — April 3, 2008 @ 10:25 am

  57. application card citi credit

    Trackback by download free mobile ringtones virgin — April 3, 2008 @ 10:48 am

  58. strip poker game gratis

    Trackback by holdem poker spielregeln — April 3, 2008 @ 12:24 pm

  59. holdem poker texas holdem poker regole poker texas holdem gratis

    Trackback by poker money — April 3, 2008 @ 12:50 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: