Thinking about work…

Painters at work, Melville Street, Hobart

Painters at work, Melville Street, Hobart

I’ve been thinking about the subject of work at lot lately. Some would say I prefer to think about it rather than perform it. But it occurred to me there are still many jobs that can’t be computerised. These two painters painting the window frames of this old Georgian store in Melville Street Hobart this morning,  can probably feel comfortable in the knowledge that their jobs are unlikely to be overtaken by the digital revolution, any time in the near future.

Camera: Canon Powershot G11

A POSTSCRIPT: driving past the day after, I see that the beautiful remnants of the words “Furnishing Warehouse” have now been sanded off the timber facade. Sad! But they still  live on in this photo.


Filed under Australian, Digital photography, Photographer, Photography, Photojournalism, Rob Walls, Tasmania

16 responses to “Thinking about work…

  1. lol,yeah painters shouldnt worry about getting fired,not unless they spill a bucket of pait on the boss 🙂
    what kind of job were you thinking about?
    Also,I am also a person of words and little action,i think it’s in our nature 🙂

    • Thanks for visiting my blog, talikatzman…and taking the time to comment.

      My vocation has for almost fifty years been photographer. I was thinking about work in the specific, more in the sense of starting taking pictures in 2010. Also about the photographic documentation of work in that it is an occupation to which the majority devote at least half their waking hours, sometimes more; I was thinking about the changing nature of work; how people adapt; and how I mightattempt to record that in this century. A self-imposed project.

  2. Nice shot, Rob. Love the symmetry and the fact that it is b/w. And the fact that there is enough of the lettering on the facade to make out the words that attest to the building’s former use.
    I read your article on Tas Times about new puritanism in the arts – must say I agree with you wholeheartedly on that issue.

    As I slip slowly into the older age-group, I find my ‘work’ becomes more and more about producing what I need for today, this week, this month, this year……….growing stuff to eat, making things we need and doing what needs to be done to insulate us as far as possible from an uncertain future (producing electricity, collecting water etc). Simplifying. Of course, almost a lifetime of being a wage-slave gives one the wherewithall to afford the luxury of being able to do it.

  3. Thank you Susan…I have always tried to bring a thoughtfulness to the way I work. “Slipping into the older age group” too, I find my priorities and pre-occupations much the same as yours…though having only been a wage-slave for four of the last 50 years, it is probably a little more difficult…ut that was the choice I made.

    Watching the creeping prohibition on what and when I am “allowed” to photograph angers me and I find I am compelled to speak out. I’ve said it before: if words are the warp of the fabric of our society, photographs are the weft. Restrict either and our history becomes threadbare.

  4. I love your analogy……carrying it a bit further, what would be the tenterhooks? (You know, those devices weavers used to keep the edges of the woven fabric straight).

  5. Accurate and truthful observation by writers and photographers?

  6. One with harness, one without…..perhaps young reflexes will enable a leap for the rope, should the feet be not so nimble on the treads??.
    Keep snappin’ Rob….it’s a life 🙂

    Your project…..go for it….original and a hoot!!!

    How’s the post production in the digital world treating you?

  7. I noticed that at the time of shooting, Dave…but didn’t want to make OHHS observations:-)

    As for digital workflow: I enjoy it more than the darkroom…or waiting for film to come back from the lab.

    • Lol….

      I imagine it was always somewhat of a lucky dip to see if your images came the way you wanted them….digital…..its purely amazing…always something new, something unique to create.

      Keep up the fine work 😉

  8. Thank you Dave…it was ever a lucky dip…even more so with film, I think. And I am content to never shoot it again. Digital photography has provided me with renewed pictorial vigour and momentum.

    • Your honesty brings a smile, and a slight chuckle, as my eyes open and focus on the screen.

      I had the odd film camera….nothing fancy, and there was excited anticipation, as I waited for development, then copious disappointment as the results came in.

      Digital can be the same, but the answers are virtually instant and there is time to try again…..change the settings….add light etc.

      Then at home is when the fun begins…..

      I’m glad you have found new energy with this medium, although I must say your work done with equipment ,that by modern standards is fairly basic, is extraordinary.

      I hope the world continues to shine on you.



  9. 5.50am! I admire your ability to function at that hour…though admit I am given to switching on a laptop (bed-top) at that time of the morning.

    As a pro I was often a fairly prolific user of Polaroid, Dave. In fact with the New Guinea portraits, I had to insist on it, pointing out to Polaroid that while shooting transparency film, my subjects knew the brand and expected an instant print…and arguing with large men carrying sharp pointed sticks designed to inflict injury and even death on prevaricating photographers, about the relative merits of Polaroid transparency film and print film was a dangerous exercise. But that’s another story…

  10. Hey Rob….tardy reply from me …sorry….

    Another world…another time…sounds like a rippa yarn…perhaps it’s in the book??? 🙂

  11. Nice one Rob.

    Had a quick read….pics are awesome….will scour the additional pics later….I’m writing some stuff….as you do at 4am on what appears thus far, to be a sunny morning……Dave 🙂

  12. Thanks Dave…6am for me and grey overcast here now. But am off to cruise the Whitsunday Islands for a few days tomorrow, so things look bright.

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