It was Maurice Cantelon at art school who taught me an appreciation of form and decoration. Prior to his influence, I think I was rather more keen on futuristic design, of pulling down the old and tired and replacing it with the new. Maurice used to take his class out sketching around the inner-city suburb of Hawthorn. Here, there were many pre and early turn-of-the-century houses, from grand mansions to humble workers' cottages. All were a visual delight to the eyes with their fussy wedding cake wrought iron lace-work, and lovingly carved wooden verandah posts. Craft and workmanship in evidence everywhere.


Iron roofs, wide wooden verandahs, paint flaking in the sun. Much to delight the eye.





At the weekends I explored the Victorian countryside on my Vespa, taking photographs of old buildings in the townships I encounted, drinking in their wondrous decoration and the texture of their decay.


the 120 year old
'Castlemaine Mail' building

see an old shack



a Chinese headstone in the graveyard of a gold mining town


a hand hewn
timber woolshed

larger view



I then found myself back in the school's darkroom any opportunity I could get, playing with these images, and being particularly fascinated by the abstraction obtained when printing the negatives onto high contrast paper.

darkroom shenanigans


a corrugated iron shade struggles to keep the sun out of the window in a North facing wall of an old weatherboard farmhouse