Sunday, May 18, 2014

Painting With Light - Glen Davis. 15th - 18th May

Welcome to my newest blog.

At last, the 'Shoebox' has hit the 'wallaby'.
I was invited by Frank and Glenda to go on a long weekend camp to Glen Davis in the Capertee Valley with some of their painter (artist) friends and partners. Frank and Glenda were going to be there from Wednesday to Monday with others being there varying from  2 to 5 days, I went Thursday to Sunday. I have been to Glen Davis on several occasions, tree planting but mainly bird-watching, but this was the first time camping.
 As they say in the all depends on the light............and the light was, at times, outstanding. In the morning and afternoons the cliffs were ablaze with sunlight and along with the only sounds being the caroling of magpies and pied butcher birds the place was, as Frank said, good for the soul. I can't draw/sketch/paint for quids, but to watch these fellows, with some deft placement of oil/water paints, turn a piece of canvas/paper into something almost alive was magical for me...........hope I get asked again.

So, how did the 'shoebox' experience go. Sleeping on a queen-sized inner-spring mattress and being able to stand up and get dressed with a roof over your head was 100 times better than sleeping in the back of a car. The ironing-board table worked a treat, the lights were great and I was even able to hang my shirts on a coat-hanger (something I don't always do even when I'm home). I've added some modifications to the trailer to make things easier to get out and not to move around as much, it's all nice and snug now.

Click on photos to enlarge.

More photos, taken on another tangent, during the weekend can be seen on another blog of mine: Rust, Relics & Ruins. (click on)

No longer a virgin. The 'shoebox' finally gets to go away.

 The following morning I go with Frank as he looks for a suitable landscape to paint.

Frank setting up his easel.

Tony and Frank seeing the same subject differently..................

................while I go for a walk and take photos.

Thanks to Google for stitching this panorama together.

The first strokes are the hardest.

And I go for another walk.

It doesn't take Tony long to get paint to canvas.

I start to notice the trees.

This is the only flower I photographed for 'Flora Friday'.

Surrounded by the wonders of World Heritage listed wilderness, the Capertee valley is the world’s second largest canyon. Capertee is 1 kilometre longer than the Grand Canyon, but not quite as deep..

A vision splendid.

Back at the campsite Laurie is working on his piece.

Set up for the first time.

Not quite as luxurious as some.

After lunch I venture off on my own.

The remains of a deserted cottage beside the road to Coorongooba camping area in the Wollemi National Park. 

All that is left of the Glen Davis Shale Oil Refinery. Oil shale was mined and refined at Glen Davis from 1938 to 1952.

Entrance to the old Glenn Davis mine shaft.

Entrance to the old Glenn Davis mine shaft.

Buildings around the mine site.

Vines take hold of what's left.

What was once a busy place is now eerie quiet.

Below the mine site the remain of the oil refinery can be viewed.

Like an octopus, the vines seem to be sucking the life out of what's left of a building.

I'm now down in the refinery.

The mine is out of site over the hill at the base of the cliffs.

Stone to brick.

Like cannons sticking out of an old 'man-o-war' sailing ship.


Colouful destruction.

I didn't linger long here.

A smiling wall.

A shadow of its former self.

A old building become a new cliff top.

Grey Kangaroo at Coorongooba camping area, Wollemi National Park.

Red-necked Wallaby.

Grey Kangaroos and Red-necked Wallabies at the Coorongooba camping area.

Swamp Wallaby.

Cattle in the setting sun.
Why are cows so photogenic?

Nice evening light.

Going home for dinner.

No need to travel to Uluru.

Cattle hanging on tight to the ceiling of their burrow as the sun sets.

One day ends................

..............and another begins.

Mist adds another dimension.

Warwick Fuller catches the mood in oils.

Warwick Fuller and Digger.

How others may see it.

The plan is to spend the morning taking photos.

With the sun behind me.....................

..................and in front.
 Then the camera says 'change the batteries', these are the new batteries and I have no more. Oh well, I had better go bird-watching.

Wedge-tailed Eagle.
(I''ll just use the camera for special photos until the go completely flat).

I can't resist a 'gate' photo.

And this colour was too hard to pass up.

Mightn't get this reflection again.
(photo enhanced)

Brown Falcon.
Too close to not take a photo.

Don't always get a fox, sitting in the shade of a small tree, watching you.
By now I realize that the batteries weren't flat and what had happened was the batteries had now warmed up
from the 5C  earlier in the morning. (talking around the fire that night it was found that the same thing had
happened to two other cameras in the morning)

Genoelan Rd  follows a low ridge and you are able to obtain different views of the Valley.

View from Genoelan Rd.

View from Genoelan Rd.

Back at Glen Davis.

Seen better days.

No power, no water.

Discussing the morning efforts while Barb cooks up a mean curry.

I thought I heard someone say this was one of Ron's first painting 'in the field'.

A figure of concentration.

Ralph working with water-colours.

Buster and Crystal, or is it Crystal and Buster, have eyes for something more edible.

Frank close to town at the Capertee River crossing.

The mist has well and truly gone by midday.

I spent a weekend planting trees here many years ago with the Cumberland Bird Observers Club. 

It was great afternoon for taking photos with the sun just at the right angle and some nice cloud cover.

Trees, both dead and alive were irresistible.

This fox wasn't going hungry tonight.

Between the trees a rainbow can be seen. The rainbow was visible in the western sky until the sun set.

Fields of gold.

The rainbow now looks like the setting sun.

The rainbow can still be seen in the left corner.

It was like having 2 setting suns, rainbow still glowing on the left.

The rainbow was still glowing as the sun disappears.

The Taliban were fairly active in the area.

Story time.

Those who stoked the fire did a great job.

Digger had a hard day.

The sky was pretty ordinary this morning.

Some grasses had escaped the paddock and were teasing those who hadn't.

Tree On A Ridge.

Oh good, a gate.

The sun trying to make an appearance.

Some of the friendly neighbours.

A long walk to the letter-box at number 9.

Derelict house.

Black-fronted Dotterel.

Getting rid of the evidence.

Frank making  most of the opportunity.

Barbara Wire.

It took me ages to get them in a straight line.

"good for the soul"

He was upset because someone had taken his music.

Now he's really taken it to heart. Must get cold at night.

Shopping in town isn't what it use to be.

Tony's picked a good (?) spot to paint.

The main street was pretty busy for a Sunday.

Memories of yesterday.

The 'flying horse' won't keep you mobil(e) these days.

Happier days at the ice-sundae shop.

The shoebox heads home after a truly great weekend.


  1. Well well! What those guys do with paint you do with words and camera Bill. Great photos and comments. Just the sort of thing we'd like to do when we get our camper.

    1. Glad you like photos and comments, the location and those at the camp made it an enjoyable weekend. Looking forward to you getting your camper.