On the Water

Little Huia


Little Huia


Little Huia


Little Huia


Little Huia


Little Huia


Little Huia

A particularly spectral sunset, those red horizontal lines look like audio spectrum analysis… Went for a drive around some of Manuakau Harbour in a little boat, the tide had just turned & while there was quite a current flowing into the harbour in some places the water looked very glassy… shot with Canon s95 in waterproof case, 16 December 2013


Had two great screenings last night, of ten short pieces of my work-in-progress from the Artists Residency in Little Huia – thanks to everyone who came, and especially for the Q&A. It is SO great to be in the presence of curious minds! Photo below is from the first piece, where I asked the audience to wear blindfolds and listen, with their ears only…

Little Huia

Last week Justin Gregory from National Radio came & visited to record an interview, which was broadcast yesterday – if you’d like to hear my ramblings beautifully edited into something coherent, have a listen here (stream or download)

One of the questions last night was, where from here?

My plan is to continue developing the projects I have been working on, and eventually arrive at a DVD/BluRay/download comprising my work from both residencies – Little Huia, New Zealand and Shodoshima, Japan. And once thats ready, in a month or two, I suspect there will be another set of screenings. One side effect of the screening was that its made me start to think about the idea of live cinema, in spaces not normally used for projection, & potentially with live sound & score…. but time will tell!

Anyway heartfelt thanks for everyone who made the screening possible!
Oceania were great providing screen, projector & sound system

But especially thanks to Michelle Edge for the tireless support for myself & my residency, but more importantly for the Artists Residency program itself. Applications have opened for the 2014 residency, and the two locations (Moonlight Bach in Scandrett and Tawharanui Bach) are as fantastic as my location at Barr Cottage in Little Huia. So have a deep think, grab a copy of the PDF application forms & apply – these last four months with the two residencies have been the best experience for me, ever. I will write more about it in next week or so, reflecting on the short & long term benefits of an Artists Residency, but in the meantime go read about the 2014 residency opportunity here

Detritus 279

> “Being called unoriginal douchebags in public? They already know that, and it pays handsomely, thank you.” – interesting discussion on inspiration versus theft


> Sonic shuffle – the app/album


> great film advice by Roger Deakins


> great live version of Aphex Twins Flim by The Bad Plus (youtube link, embedding disabled)


> I love this tune: KIll J – Phoenix (Galimatias Remix) – it is #sublime & a free download



> Manga that can be played by a music box!


> Great doco on Kickstarter about legendary session musos The Wrecking Crew – thanks for tip Gary, definitely worth supporting – the documentary is finished they just need funds to clear music rights. They have some seriously amazing rewards lined up too!


> these cardboard headphones by sound artist Zimoun made me smile


> The perfect MIDI gadget for anyone who plays drums by slapping their legs


> Sounds from space



> check out Cyclique, a light and sound installation composed of a matrix of 256 balloons inflated with helium and equipped with LED lights!


Birds of NZ App

Little Huia

Auckland University Press has just released its first app, based on the popular photographic guide Birds of New Zealand by Paul Scofield and Brent Stephenson. Birdwatchers can personalise the app with their own observations, building their own list of bird sightings. The ‘Bird Compare’ feature also allows them to compare two birds on the same screen (including recordings of variant bird calls) and Smart Search functionality supports bird identification by bird type, size, colour, physical features and habitat and can displayinformation on a region by region basis.

‘When traveling and on the road, the app is fantastic to quickly refer to,’ says Brent Stephenson, photographer for Birds of New Zealand. ‘It has all the text, photos, and distribution maps from the book, but probably the most useful feature in the field will be the audio clips now included.’

Author Paul Scofield says, ‘This will increase the opportunity for members of the general public to make remarkable findings, such as the recent instance that brought the reclassification of the thought-to-be-extinct, South Island kokako.’

If anyone thinks they have spotted something rare or unusual, they can report their discovery to the Records Appraisal Committee of the Ornithological Society of New Zealand, which independently verifies sightings of rare birds from New Zealand.

So stop wasting your time with Angry Birds, and go get Birds of New Zealand!

Infra Red

Little Huia

This is frame 0005 from a 7,200 shot infra red timelapse I captured yesterday, for the Ruru sequence from The BirdSong Preludes. My old mod’d 40D is unstoppable!

Relatedly when I was up at Whatipu last weekend shooting that sunset time-lapse, on the way down the hill I came very close to a Ruru/Morepork – it was maybe 2m away from me, and of course flew away as soon as I went to set up my camera but I am 99% sure its wings weren’t silent – I heard or felt infra sound, a very deep, low frequency thrum as it took off… quite beautiful!


Little Huia

Little Huia last night, shot with 5DmkIII and 100-400 F4.5-5.6 lens

Signal Hill

Little Huia

Had a great shoot last night! The weather was looking dodgy but the forecast said no rain & thankfully it was right. I lugged my gear up the top of Signal Hill at Whatipu and set a timelapse running – this is four hours and 1,509 photos later…

Little Huia

Little Huia

Little Huia

Paratutai Island

Little Huia

Little Huia

I so love the colour shift as the sun sets – for about half an hour either side of actual sunset, witnessing the continuous gradient of changing light is about as close to religion as I get: four hours on top of a hill, watching colour drain from the sky & the stars slowly revealing themselves….

When was the last time you watched the sun set? And where?

Little Huia

Lens Addict

I know I’ve made the comparison between lenses and microphones many time before, but I at last have access to a lens that can focus to the degree that my Telinga can!

Little Huia

If you have ever held a Canon 5D you’ll appreciate they are quite a chunky camera – if its in your camera bag you feel its weight, but it looks like a toy hanging off the back of this lens: its a Canon 400mm F2.8, the newer version of which is US$11k on bhphoto!

Little Huia

And no I don’t own it! But sincere thanks to Topic Rentals for enabling me – check their site for great lens and camera gear rentals

First thing I did was head up to the same spot that I have recorded a Tui twice before – there is a tree that if you wait long enough he returns to… And sure enough after about 15 minutes of shooting/recording and getting nothing much, he flew in, I stealthly reframed & focused & I shot some beautiful close up video of him singing! Stayed there for another hour and only got one more shot of him… Planning, patience and perseverance…

Detritus 278


> Jan 4th 2014, cicada?



> making music with a moebius strip?



> Resonance in your body? Eyeballs 20-90Hz, Spinal column 10-12 Hz etc…


> interesting analysis of the stereotype of video games being male dominated


> Sounds from dangerous places



> love these fragmented sculptures



> funny isn’t it, that despite all the ux researchers & people making a living from supposedly making apps better suited to our use, that these two VERY human features are only found in two apps (afaik… there may be others)

- When you are listening to music & hit stop, the app does not create a digital cut to zero. It eases out, doing a quick fade to silence. Lets face it, going from X volume to zero is ugly, and the louder X is the more ugly the hard cut becomes… Well done Vox for implementing this feature. (I have nostaglic memories of this from mixing on a fully analogue film dub stage – the mixer hitting stop and hearing analogue multitrack tape gorgeously pitch bend to a stop…)

- If I stop watching a video before its finished, why does the app not remember where I got up to & if I later restart watching that same video give me the option to start from the beginning or from where I left off? Well done Kindle app and Vox both have this option available.