Saturday, 16 August 2014

Here Comes The Sun And I Say, It's Alright

I'm so not a morning person. The times I've had to drag myself out of bed for a dawn or pre-dawn shoot have not started out pretty. 

Christmas morning at Pottsville, 2013
Well, I didn't start out pretty. The morning is always pretty. No matter where in the world you see it.

Pre-dawn light on the Puna coast, Big Island of Hawaii, 31st October 2013
Diana at dawn, shot on film March 2003
These are times when you hire an assistant and their only job is to drip feed you coffee and keep you awake. The results of getting up to see Dawn's crack are usually spectacularly worth it however. 

Bird's ringing in the dawn, 2012
Sunrise on the Puna coast, Big Island of Hawaii, 31st October 2013
You can see I don't generally wander too far from the water. I'm sure I covered that in a previous blog!

Sunrise coming into LAX from Brisbane, 20th July 2012 (image by Danny)
Sunrise over Diamond Head, Oahu, Hawaii, 20th October 2013
The sunrise is nature's fresh miracle show she puts on daily for those of us who get up. Even if no one gets up she puts the show on anyway. I guess that is my most loved thing about mornings.

Shot on film March 2003
Dawn of the Supermoon, 6th May 2012
Shot on film early 2001. My brother Simon poses obligingly with the sunrise reflecting in his sunglasses.
I've blogged the next shot before, but now I'd like to tell you the story behind the image. In the year two thousand  my father passed away, leaving a hole in our family that would take a long time to heal over. For a while the three of us spun directionless, trying to fill his shoes without realising it simply couldn’t be done and we still had big shoes of our own so we should get on with putting one foot in front of the other. I still miss Dad, and this next image reminds me acutely of that time in my family’s life when we took up the slack of his passing and all of us, in our own ways, grew a little bit older and heavier of heart. This photo of my mother was shot on film with my first SLR camera, a Pentax Mz5 that was a gift from my brother. Dad would rise every day before dawn in an unbreakable ritual and walk the dogs down to the beach. He did this for many years, and after he died my mother took up the task to provide some normality for the dogs and also in some way to introduce a new normality for herself.

Diana walking the dogs on Pottsville Beach in early 2001 (film)
In May of twenty twelve my husband and I travelled down to Pottsville Beach to shoot the Supermoon. As part of our photo fest we got up early to catch the sunrise. It wasn’t until I processed the images that I had a prickly moment of deja vu, realising just how similar was this dawn to the one more than a decade before where I captured Mum walking on the beach. 

Dawn of the Supermoon on Pottsville Beach, 6th May 2012
In those more than four thousand days so much changed for myself and my family, both good and bad. Through it all the world kept turning (even though there were plenty of times we thought it might stop), and standing right there in that beautiful moment I could see nothing had really changed at all.

When Mum told us she was sick I felt my whole world tilt on its axis, just for a moment. As I've blogged about before I came back to the beach to catch the sunrise on Mum's 70th birthday in November for a few reasons, not the least of which was to get my bearings again and remind myself once more that no matter what happens to me or anyone else the world actually WILL keep on turning.

The sadness before dawn, November 2013

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