Walking Isn’t ‘Just Walking’…

During Summer in Sydney, Australia, it is always best to walk early. We are expecting another day of 38C/100F temperatures.

Today, I set off a bit later than usual, at 7.00am. It was 17C/63F when I commenced.

As mentioned in previous blogs, I really enjoy walking, not only from the fitness perspective, but also because I get a lot of ideas whilst walking e.g. today, in a 42 minute walk, I came up 8 ideas for articles for this blog, all jotted down via the Google Keep app. Sometimes I get business ideas, or ideas for images, poems and paintings. If they are not recorded by some means, they will be lost…

Sometimes on a walk, I will listen to the sounds of nature, other times a playlist or a podcast, depending on how I feel.

Today, I chose to listen to a podcast by Charlie O’Shields called ’Sketching Stuff.’ I have been following Charlie’s site, ‘Doodlewash’ for some time but only recently started listening to his podcast.

I would encourage you to listen to the podcast if you are in any way interested in getting into Art or indeed, have already started.

Today, I listened to episode #10 and it was informative, inspirational and entertaining. I will be listening to it again over the weekend. (See link below.)

To finish off the walk, I chose a Classical music playlist as it suited my mood.

Sometimes, I will snap some images with my iPhone on my rounds. I took some today but they will come to light in a different article as I seemed to be shooting a theme today. I also have a DSLR, however, if I took that with me, the walk would double or triple in time!

So you see, walking for me isn’t ‘just walking’… it’s also a way of feeding my creativity!

Written by David Johnson
12 January 2019

Ingleburn Photography Club

Last month, I had the pleasure of judging the images at Ingleburn Photography Club.

Ingleburn Photography Club is located SW of Sydney, nestled between Liverpool and Campbelltown and was formed on March 12, 2015.

Meetings are held at:

Ingleburn R.S.L. Club, 70 Chester Road, Ingleburn
3rd Thursday of each month (excepting December) at 7.15pm for a 7.30pm start.

They have approx. 30 members and unlike some photographic clubs/societies, they have opted for digital images only.

I had been to the club once before to judge and upon being invited again, I eagerly awaited receiving the images from the President, John Alessi. I was pleased to receive the 61 entries for an Open Competition.

The first two images below are two of the images that received Merits on the night. The third image was judged by me as the Image of the Night. Congratulations to all those who received an award.

As with my last visit, I was impressed by the members’ professional approach to their images; the varied subject matter and the skill with which they communicate with their Art. They are also eager to share their skills with newer members and go on some very interesting field trips as well.

A great club doesn’t only exist because of the images they produce. Having been a member of two clubs/photo societies for a total of 30 years, it is the camaraderie of the members of the organisation that can make or break a club.

If you are looking for a club that is prepared to help those who are new to photography; whose members are willing to push their own creative boundaries and who are a great bunch of people to be around, pop in for a visit.

Visitors are always welcome! Contact the Club via the Facebook link below.

Written by David Johnson
3 November 2018

https://www.facebook.com/groups/256950174960524/

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Photo Inspiration – Southern Highlands Photographic Society!

Back in 2004, I was one of 9 founding members for what became known as the Southern Highlands Photographic Society Inc. SHPS (as it has become affectionately known as) continues to be a thriving Photographic Society at East Bowral in the Southern Highlands region in NSW, Australia. Currently, they have approx. 50 members.

I moved further away in 2013 and in 2016 sadly relinquished my membership due to an inability to get to any meetings due to business and other reasons.

Last weekend, we ventured down to Bowral to see (not only the Tulip Time Festival) but SHPS’ Annual Tulip Time Photographic Exhibition which is held in the Old Bowral Town Hall, Bowral. It was finishing that day.

Put simply, the Exhibition, in terms of quality gets better and better each year. There was a stunning array of subject-matter and treatments in the 3 sections, Monochrome, Colour Print and Projected Digital. There were 120 images on display.

One of the great things about the Exhibition was that 83 of the images were mounted prints in frames. In these days of imagery, where most of what we see is on the Internet, it was so refreshing to see images hanging on a wall.

I can see SHPS being around for many, many years to come. There is such a wealth of photographic and artistic experience there and it is certainly a place where one can be inspired and educated to improve their Art and Craft.

If you are looking for a progressive Photographic Society to visit and/or join, may I wholeheartedly recommend visiting SHPS.

Please visit the website below for more information on SHPS, including their newsletter, ‘On Photography’, Galleries and Programme details.

Southern Highlands Photographic Society – Dedicated To The Art Of Photography

Venue: East Bowral Community Centre, East Bowral
Days: 3rd & 5th Tuesday each month
Time: 7.30pm
Website: www.shps.org.au

Written by David Johnson
6 October 2018

Cacti and Succulents – A Love That Blossomed!

It suddenly occurred to me this weekend whilst visiting the Succulent Garden at the Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens again, that I had never written any articles on this Blog in relation to my interests in Succulents.

My interest in Succulents blossomed out of a gift from my Aunt Beryl when I was 14, back in 1977. It was a Euphorbia, which sadly passed on some time ago, not being as hardy as Aunt Beryl who is still going at 92 years of age.

From then on, Succulents were around in one form or another at home. I started to group them together in large, flat pots when I was in my late teens and imagined one day of having a sprawling Cacti and Succulent Garden.

It would be a good time to point out that Cacti are Succulents, but not all Succulents are Cacti – but that is another article for another time. I particular favour Cacti but love all Succulents.

When I married in 1997, we bought a property that was 5,609 square metres (1 1/4 acres) about 100km (62 miles)  South West of Sydney, Australia.

I ended up with a 35 square metre (42 square yard) Cacti & Succulent Garden with up to 120 plants in it. It was a labour of love to construct and I tinkered with it over the 16 years we lived there.

Currently, I have approx. 80-100 plants which are currently in pots, where we currently reside. When we buy our next place, I feel sure that David’s Cacti and Succulent Garden 2.0 will become a reality and I am surely looking forward to that!

Written by David Johnson
16 September 2018

Wollondilly Arts Group Inc Revisted

A little over 5 years ago, I was a member of Wollondilly Arts Group Inc. I moved away from the area but not far enough away that I couldn’t have stayed a member. Life sometimes happens, however, and at the time I had to let my membership lapse due to other commitments.
WAG started in 2004 and they are a creative group of Amateur and Professional Artists who get together on a monthly basis to create, share ideas and generally help and inspire each other in their artistic journeys.
There are a mixture of mediums being worked by WAG members e.g. Acrylic, Oil and Watercolour, Drawing, Paper-Making, Textile, Drawing, Sketching, Photography to name some.
Yesterday, I went back for the long-awaited visit to the monthly Creative Workshop I used to enjoy going to so much and wasn’t disappointed.
Although our artistic journeys are of an individual nature, many benefits can be gained from regularly mixing with other artists, and this is what I believe I have been missing out on over the past 5 years.
I have been slowly increasing the amount of time allocated to drawing and painting over those years but have been feeling something was missing.
Yesterday proved to me how much I need to be a member of WAG again. They are a friendly bunch of down-to-Earth creatives who are there to share their thoughts, tips and encourage each other.
In just being there I felt inspired. It also felt like I had come ‘home.’
In the next 2-3 years, we do intend to move back into the area/further away from Sydney as well.
I am excited to be rejoining Wollondilly Arts Group Inc and look forward to the many years of friendship, encouragement and inspiration that lie ahead.

 

Written by David Johnson
15 July 2018