Down the road

There are a few primo locations in Aotearoa #nz (primo = photo x sound x experiental) where despite it being 2023 or whatever, the internet is only viable ‘down the road’

An example, I spent the last four days staying in a bach in Motukiekie, which had no wifi but claimed there was a cell signal. Excuse me but 2 bars does not an internet connection make, so a few times a day I would drive ‘down the road’ until 2 bars turned into 4 and it was suddenly possible to access the 21st century.

But driving down the road to get Internet access is not the interesting part.
Bear with me.

Heres why I was in Motukiekie:

Unless you somehow become aware, 99% of people would never even notice Motukiekie. If you leave Greymouth driving North, or leave Punakaiki (with its awe inspiring blowholes) heading South, you will likely drive by Motukiekie without noticing because it is a road through a narrow landscape. Mountains on one side and native forest on the other side, abruptly leading to sheer cliffs into the sea.

But for some weird geological reasons, there exists a set of defiant rock islands, just off the coast of Motukiekie.

Access is difficult – more on that later. But viable access is also tidal and 100% weather based. No one stumbles across this location, without research and preparation.

The psychological aspect that I love most of this location, is that it evokes similar feelings as time spent with karesansui x zen dry gardens. As with many great works of art, they feel accidental but simultaneously 100% intentional. Like throwing the perfect dice in some game that hasn’t been invented yet.

Ngawi (home to many fur seals) and Haast are two similarly epic locations, where the landscapes are intense and the internet is down the road

But here is the interesting part: spending time in such places reveals things. Things you might not otherwise even notice. Habits. Patterns. Reflex actions.

Of course I had my laptop. And some decent JBL LSR25 self-powered monitors. ableton LIVE. Tenori On. 2020 beat monster.

I had plenty of jams – being the West Coast rainforests, it rained continuously for 24 hours and I stayed home & made loud sounds. And quiet ones.

But I kept catching myself launching Chrome bookmarks. “Just checking whats up…” my brain told itself, while knowing that 2 bars does not an Internet connection make.

Moral of the story:
I believe I am preparing to air gap my studio

Detritus 715



William Gibson: “The street finds its own uses for things.”


the street/S-CAT

3’20” omg! and 4’02



▶ A conversation about Ennio Morricone and Sergio Leone



▶ “It hisses for about 20 seconds.” – guess what they are talking about?



▶ pro!






▶ I saw the photo above, of a “marching machine” percussion sound effects instrument, and wondered what it sounded like…. But I had the scale wrong, they are larger than I imagined:



▶ lol: an open letter to 17 year old boys who just discovered the doors









1955 Twins

How do you like my new old camera(s)?

Both are Voigtländer Vito B 35mm film cameras made in 1955. No batteries, purely mechanical. And both seem to be in great condition, with the shutter firing as it should.

My motive for getting them is the ‘B’ part – these tiny cameras have Bulb mode, so once I get a cable release for them both, I will be deploying them at night for some very long exposures!

Kinda funny how these cameras cost less ($30 each) than a roll of developed film!
And will last longer than your latest iPhone.




Fujifilm TX2/XPAN2 with Ilford SFX200

With an ND10 filter this shot was a 60 second exposure,
but with SFX200 reciprocity it became a 5 minute exposure!
Funny how it looks kinda blown out/overexposed from so much wave action over 5 minutes
but the rocks etc still have details…

Same location as the dawn long exposure I shot with my 5D3 + 400mm lens




nuzic 242



▶ James Blake – If you can hear me



▶ Sampha – Only



PSA: watch your monitor level before playing this:

▶ Emptyset – ash





Detritus 714



▶ wow – fun glitches in your browser or phone!
touch: waves
interactive audiovisual app using web audio!!



G Town Church Sampling Project



▶ What an excellent initiative: PLAYBACK COMMUNITY
“Do you make music and wish you could hear it on a big sound system? Playback creates a space for music makers to hear their works on an amplified sound system in a supportive and educational setting. Many music makers don’t get the opportunity to hear how their sounds will translate in final environments such as clubs, cinemas, or under heavy amplification.”





▶ I deeply admire this approach & it has many parallels with my own evolution:
Why I don’t want to grow my freelance design studio into an agency



Recreating the THX Brown Note



famous photos & the cameras used to capture them



▶ how beautiful is this
(& how/why don’t synthfluncers try something more subtle than shouting at the camera!?!)



Maryanne Amacher Archive is now accessible at the library for the performing arts
via blank forms



▶ Rare, precious: hunting for ambergris in New Zealand



▶ xkcd: Circuit Symbols lol… “Two sheep… ”



▶ Why Mazda is purging touchscreens from its vehicles



▶ wow – Sidewalk Garden





▶ i love a book where one of the experiments involves licking a 9 volt battery!



▶ TIL the guy who invented the mouse also invented a chording keyset



▶ Yann Tiersen and QUINQUIS – Ninnog Short Film





Defender Sound Studio

I used to love playing Defender as a kid, for 20c a game at a “spacie parlour” – it was released in 1980, when I was 15 years old so still at high school… One of the best parts of the game were the great sounds, so check out this website:

choose a preset and hit play, but watch your monitor level as its loud & 8bit!

There is a great history of Defender & its sound at the same site

I love how harsh & aggressive the sounds are, in stark contrast to a lot of later games having higher resolution sound but the aesthetic veered more towards cute. I have close to zero interest in chiptune music. I think I had zoned out from gaming by the time the more cute games arrived, so chiptune has no nostalgia to me… Meanwhile I still want to hear the Defender hyperspace jump sound!!




First Day of Spring!

a dozen Tomato varieties, including low acid type
(which means use less/no sugar if making sauce etc)

and a dozen Chilli varieties!

Its funny – I definitely used to be a “no chilli thanks” person, who would always get a mild curry… But I saw this meme ages ago & I couldn’t stop thinking about it:

So I slowly started experimenting, first buying a range of hot sauces and then last year I grew 4 varieties of chilli, which did really well. They also survived the winter so I’ve put them in bigger containers & expect them to grow lots more this summer…

But the real proof came via ramen! I don’t eat much of the instant ramen but a while ago I started a weekly ritual of making ramen for lunch on a Sunday. And as I am making ramen from scratch, I tend to vary the recipe every time. Usually I slow cook pork overnight, and I quite like mushrooms in ramen – shitake or portobello. But I also started putting fresh chilli in too, and now ramen seems too tame without it! I love it when it feels like my lips are vibrating from the chilli.

So expect some progress photos!

This year I am growing:
Cayenne Long Thin – Sethas seeds
Jimmy Nardello Pepper – Sethas seeds
Cayenne Anmol F1 – Egmont seeds
Carolina Reaper – Egmont seeds
Bhut Chilli – babz_nz on TM
Serrano Chilli – babz_nz on TM
Mixed Chilli pack – babz_nz on TM
Chilli Shake – Mr Fothergills at Bunnings
Habanero Gaint Red – Mr Fothergills at Bunnings

Do you have a favourite chilli?