The one that got away...

Galia Alena Photography

Just a little fun- here is the fake polly of the polly that got away, shot out of the camera into the breeze and over the edge of the cliff. To retrieve would have meant risking life and limb to climb over the safety barracked and down the ravine to rescue the photo, oh the photo. I was very tempted, weighing up the risk/benefit ratio whilst scanning the passing crowds in search of a limber rock climber to come to my rescue. Guess I will never know how that shot turned out, what magic developed, but I like to imagine stories of what happened to it. Perhaps a big gust came a long and whisked it out to sea where it land on a passing yacht off on a global adventure. Perhaps a mammoth current took it all the way across the Tasman to New Zealand where it washed up on the shore at the feet of a lone walker looking for magic treasures. Perhaps a romantic gesture was made at twilight when a brave lover climbed down to retrieve it as a gift for his new love. Perhaps the rain washed it down and somebody doing a good deed by picking up my litter noticed its beauty and took it home and put it in a frame where it still hangs just across the road from me.
I guess I'll never know. What I do know is that taking polaroids is a risky business (in more ways than I care to list) and often is a two man job, one to shoot and one to catch.



Sleep washed away by
  the crashing waves.
Dreams linger in the translucent light
between moon and sun
the day unveils itself gently
  Light softly lifts the shadow realm.

Golden curlews lash the shore
  laced with pure white foam.
Mistress waits below the trees
 advanced guard shines seductively ahead
As butterflies hurry by
Dreams to kiss one last time.

The Eternal Seduction of Life

Flowers have spoken to me more than I can tell in written words.  They are the hieroglyphics of angels, loved by all men for the beauty of their character, though few can decipher even fragments of their meaning ~Lydia M. Child

Let us dance in the sun,
wearing wild flowers in our hair...
~Susan Polis Shutz

Polaroid Week

    Well its polaroid week and my polly is down for the count sadly and I am desperately seeking (new) Polly. But that is not going to stop me playing so I’m taking this opportunity to pull a few images out of the vault and to reflect on the magic of polaroids and photography.
    I often wonder about the fascination with polaroids. Some say it the “instantness” of them, but for me after years of film, waiting for it to be developed and then shooting with a big chunky camera that was too big and too heavy to take anywhere but on a shoot, and shooting in raw, which still needs “developing” even though it is digital, I am enjoying the “instantness” of shooting with “baby”, my little canon that gives me the flexibility of shooting  everything in both raw and jpeg and is small enough to keep chucked in my handbag at all times- that’s instant.
    No, a polaroids magic lies in its alchemy. When I was first starting out in photography, I loved playing with the chemistry of the medium- cross processing, polaroid transfers and lifts, fresson prints, gum-bichromate, solarising type 55 in homage to Manray, pulling of feats of chemical magic that allowed room for accidents- a window for magic to sneak into an otherwise technical art form. Playing with polaroid again brings back that element of magic, using film which is beyond its used by date and has warped in sometimes unpredictable ways, using cameras that are old and flawed. It reminds me of the days when despite how careful and experienced you were, there was always doubt about what lay on the film until it came out of the darkroom or back from the lab. Watching an image slowly appear on a piece of polaroid film is a bit like that- waiting to see what sort of magic is there.