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

24 April 2012

Saprophytic Confabulations

Image © PeteM2020

Mushrooming was a part of my childhood’s annual autumn ritual; foraging being integral to the genetic makeup of most Scandinavians and East Europeans. For a few brief weeks, the fungi were eagerly sought, hunted and consumed in large quantities. 

Despite the purported magical properties and olfactory delights of those musky smelling specimens, they never fired off any of my culinary or poetic synapses. For me the memories are instead of fire in the belly and the painful production of large quantities of methane and related gasses. Darwin may have had an explanation for this anomaly!

18 April 2012


Image © PeteM2020
Whilst rummaging through the undergrowth (see previous blog entry) I found this beauty - a Dandelion seed head.  Photographed up close and personal it reveals some fascinating structures – mix in some Photoshop trickery and quite a surreal image is the result.

16 April 2012

Petals and sepals

Backlit petals have a certain magical quality – but you most often have to lie on the ground to catch it!  Worth the effort though. 

Image © PeteM2020
Whilst working on the image in PS, I was uncertain of how much to retain of the striations on the sepals. But, heck, it’s a flower picture after all, so some reality has to be retained – or does it?  

29 March 2012

Office Fodder "R" Us

Played about in Photoshop and After Effects making my contribution to the "Dandenong Nocturnal - Car Park" project. I didn't spend any time on sound effects, as I believe there won't be any speakers at the projection venue. Here is my first attempt:-

28 March 2012


Photogravure - a possible perfect meeting of digital photography and traditional intaglio printmaking. Is this the medium I have been looking for? Inspired by the prints made by Karl Blossfeldt (1865–1932), a botanist and photographer in turn-of-the-century Berlin, I have in mind a small edition of “Botanicals”.

Blossfeldt devoted his entire photographic output to plant parts: twig ends, seedpods, tendrils, leaf buds, etc. This was the beginning of macro photography - showing the world that the unfamiliar shapes from the messy vegetal world are in fact startling, elegant architectural forms.

Image © PeteM 2020

16 February 2012


I admire people that can draw – be it a simple expressive sketch or a complex life-like rendering. I freely admit it’s a skill I haven’t mastered.

But, I was rather encouraged reading about Henri Cartier-Bresson describing his 35mm Leica camera as his “small instant sketch pad” – brilliant, I’m with him!

When I spotted this staircase in downtown Wan Chai (HK) I was instantly drawn to its clean graphic lines. It took a bit of work in Photoshop to create the image I had in mind, but after a few different versions, here it is!

Image © PeteM 2020

30 January 2012

Henri Cartier-Bresson

Image © PeteM2020

As I came across these trees on a bitterly cold morning in Paris, my mind instantly went back to some memorable images by celebrated French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908 -2004). Although he was an avid fan of his 35mm Leica, some of his landscape photography was done with a 4x5 large format camera – I composed and cropped my image to reflect that format.

I also took a photograph of this scene without the person in the background - it’s a different picture all together. Not at all pleasing - funny how such a small detail can make such a huge difference. (Click on the image for a larger version)

29 January 2012


I often find inspiration from looking through the myriad of images at Magnum Photo’s web site. My latest exploration was the B&W work of Elliot Erwitt (1928 - ), a long-standing  Magnum Photo contributor.

Erwitt is credited with having coined the phrase: “A photograph should tell a story” and his images of dogs do just that. To have a look at some of his marvellous work – click here.

B&W photography is having a revival, and I’m enjoying it.

Bird Market, Paris                Image © PeteM2020

15 January 2012


Hong Kong                    Image © PeteM2020
As I took this picture, my mind went briefly back to the 60’s and the Op-Art period.  That was the time of hippies, flower power, uncomfortable furniture and soft drugs. 

Victor Vasarely is usually described as the father of the genre with the other main players being Bridget Riley, Larry Poons and Richard Anuszkiewicz.  Op-Art’s best year was 1965 which saw a definitive exhibition, ‘The Responsive Eye’, at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Initially, most of the works were in stark black and white, but as the style matured, colour became an integral part of the art form. Repetition, pattern and chromatic tension became Op-Art’s stylistic hallmark.

I was at the time quite taken by all this. Looking today on the Internet at those early works, I feel they look somehow a little sterile and dated. However, I am not going to let that spoil some wonderful memories from my misspent youth.