Melbourne’s Changing Face

powerlines in a field in Braybrook, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Powerlines aplenty
2019-01-15 16:48:42 !/250 @ f11 200 ISO
A pit or quarry, now filled in Braybrook, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
A pit or quarry, now filled
2019-01-15 16:52:12 1/160 @ f11 200 ISO
Powerlines and freeway and other infrastructure facing southwest the freeway on the background, in Braybrook, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Facing southwest the freeway in the background
2019-01-15 17:08:06 1/250 @ f11 200 ISO
Under this pile of rocks used to be a quarry, Braybrook, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Under this pile of rocks used to be a quarry
2019-01-15 17:21:53 1/100 @ f11 200 ISO
A mixture of abandoned and working industry Braybrook, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
A mixture of abandoned and working industry
2019-01-15 17:26:05 1/125 @fii 200 ISO

Melbourne is in the throes of a heat wave this week. This makes picture making difficult to the point of unbearable. Luckily for me the weather eased off Tuesday afternoon. So I headed out to a spot that had been lingering in the back of my mind for some time.

I used to drive up and down the Westgate freeway daily. I rarely do now and the changes going on there are massive. A tunnel is being built and scheduled for opening in 2022. Improvements include widening of the freeway with related infrastructure. I focused my attention near the exit from the freeway. This is where to my delight I managed to find a new location that I had not realised existed. I exposed approximately 3 rolls of film and some colour film too. I also made almost 100 pictures on my Canon G9X MkII and my iPhone as well.

The light was actually perfect for photography. Australian summer light is usually harsh with little or no cloud cover. Today was an exception and I made the most of it. The black and white film will be processed shortly. The above 5 pictures I hope gives a sense of what the location looks like. I will return over the coming years to map the changes.

Long Form Project Research

North Melbourne and West Melbourne are inner suburbs north of the CBD. They have been changing rapidly since we moved to the west in late 2000. There is currently a major infrastructure project being undertaken. It will irrevocably change the appearance atmosphere and function of the suburb. I recently visited there with this in mind and as part of an ongoing collaborative project with Gary. I learned several things. Some of these point to the history of the suburb, in particular its 20th century industrial past, others to where there may be big physical changes.

I used my time to make some digital pictures that will help me chart the changes as they occur and build on the existing collaboration with Gary. They will also enable me when I return with film cameras to make good choices in composition, and lighting.

Lauren Street & Barwise Street West Melbourne
Lauren Street & Barwise Street West Melbourne

Lauren Street & Barwise Street West Melbourne
Lauren Street & Barwise Street West Melbourne

Corner Queensbury and Laurens Streets West Melbourne
Corner Queensbury and Laurens Streets West Melbourne, late one afternoon in October

Corner Queensbury and Laurens Streets West Melbourne
Corner Queensbury and Laurens Streets West Melbourne, one morning in October

Laurens street West Melbourne, facing north
Laurens street West Melbourne, facing north

Laurens street West Melbourne, facing north from Footscray Road
Laurens street West Melbourne, facing north from Footscray Road

A decorative hoarding on the West Melbourne Station site
A decorative hoarding on the West Melbourne Station site

Rapid Changes

The Old Huntsman Building visible after the tree removal
The Old Huntsman Building from Somerville Road

Until recently this image would not have been possible. The Huntsman site has been closed for at least 9 years now, and the front was obscured by trees.

There are major infrastructure works going on in and around Sunshine that will continue on for several years. I presume that the removal of the trees in and around this site for part of these infrastructure projects.

As these do not fall within my pc 3020 Tumblr boundaries I may or may not add them to that Tumblr project. Given that these pictures were made early in spring in the morning means the backlit sky was not too much of problem but in summer I would need to arrive here before the sun rose or as it set in the west. It was a bleak and brisk spring morning this day.

A row of trees used to shell the interior of this site
A row of trees used to shield the interior of this site

Some trees remain, but for how long?
Some trees remain, but for how long?

Serviceton [Wordless Wednesday]

_MG_5317 - Version 2

 

Well it’s hotter ‘n blazes and all the long faces
there’ll be no oasis for a dry local grazier
there’ll be no refreshment for a thirsty jackaroo
from melbourne to adelaide on the overlander
with newfangled buffet cars and faster locomotives
the train stopped in serviceton
less and less often
There’s nothing sadder than a town with no cheer
vic rail decided the canteen was no longer necessary there
no spirits, no bilgewater and 80 dry locals
and the high noon sun beats a hundred and four
there’s a hummingbird
trapped in a closed down shoe store
This tiny victorian rhubarb
kept the watering hole open for sixty five years
now it’s boilin’ in a miserable march 21st
wrapped the hills in a blanket
of patterson’s curse
the train smokes down the xylophone
there’ll be no stopping here
all ya can be is thirsty in a town with no cheer
No bourbon, no branchwater
though the townspeople here
fought her vic rail decree tooth and nail
now it’s boilin’ in a miserable march 21 st
wrapped the hills in a blanket
of patterson’s curse
the train smokes down the xylophone
there’ll be no stopping here
all ya can be is thirsty in a town with no cheer