Wednesday, 8 August 2012

A Photo Safari - Hamilton, NSW, Australia


Our car was in for a service and I had an hour or two to kill.  I could sit at some sidewalk cafe with a  cappuccino and watch the world walk by or, I could take the camera and get busy.  Of course I took the bloody camera; what self respecting photography phreak wouldn't?

One of the first places of call was the beautiful Wesley Uniting Church in Beaumont Street.  Lovely architecture complete with steeple, the church was built in 1928.  Around the back of the church I found a picturesque portal under the shade of some trees.  It reminded me of the doors one might find in an English Castle.

Next I found a building that, originally, I had thought was an old theatre on the corner of Tudor and Milton Streets.  It appeared that it may have been adapted to be used as a cinema in later years.  It is abandoned and is deteriorating badly, covered in pigeon feathers and pooh.  It has the year 1888 posted above its entry.  My investigations revealed that it was originally called The Mechanics Institute.  It was built for educational purposes when the mining industry was starting to boom in the Newcastle area, and there was a shortage of engineers and mechanics to take up positions in the industry.  In 1952 it was converted to a club premises and was known as Anzac House, possibly the forerunner of the late Hamilton Returned Services League whose abandoned clubhouse stands next door.

The architecture of the building appeared vaguely familiar and, it turns out that the architect of the building, Frederick Menkens, was also the architect who designed the lovely Baptist Tabernacle Church in Laman Street Newcastle.  

After there, I wandered onto Beaumont Street.  Beaumont Street is a wonderful street full of cafes' & restaurants and the footpaths are awash with al fresco dining tables.  There is a great vibrancy to that street and you walk, wonderful smells of food and coffee inviting you to sit and eat.  

I only had 1 disappointment for the day.  I had this great photo of a local resident, squatting on his haunches outside a shopfront.  He was rolling his cigarette and had a schooner of beer at his feet.  It was 8.30am.  I took a photo using my 55-250 zoom but alas, the shot was blurred.  I have had the devil of a job getting used to using this zoom due to movement blur.  I have the IS turned on but after today I think I have found the problem.  I usually shoot in AV mode and this sometimes tends to calculate a slow shutter speed which is not good when zooming hand held shots.  I just have to remember to change modes and use a faster shutter speed that will not pick up any shake.  At least that is the theory!

Anyway, hope that you enjoy these.  I was hoping to get more of the street photo variety but the car was ready earlier than expected and my time was cut short.

Hope you are all well

 Jordy