Tag Archives: steel

Hot photography…

While in Perth a couple of weeks ago, I had the dubious pleasure of being on the other side of the camera when I was photographed by Nic Ellis, a photojournalist with the West Australian newspaper. He had generously organised a foundry for me to shoot in for my long-term project, This Working Life and had also deemed my project newsworthy enough for the paper.

For a photojournalist, being photographed from time-to-time is probably good for the soul, a pin-prick to the balloon of our vanity and certainly good for understanding of what we often put our subjects through. Now I’ll do anything to help a fellow PJ get the picture they want, but I found this particular instance especially uncomfortable.

This was nothing to do with Nic. He is a sensitive and highly skilled shooter. It was more to do with the particular subject matter we were dealing with. It was hot in that foundry. After all they were melting steel. To get the particular effect he wanted meant placing me very close to several furnaces. The peculiarly pained expression on my face is just that: pain. I was waiting for my shirt to start smouldering and smoke to curl around my head.

Portrait by Nic Ellis © West Australian Newspapers 2011

Don’t get me wrong, Nic. I’m not complaining. It really was a great experience being photographed by you and it added to my fund of anecdotes from this trip to Western Australia. That foundry also provided be with some fine pictures for my project. Thank you, and I hope to return the favour when I come back in September. Maybe you could pose for me up to your neck in freezing water at an oyster farm, or something like that?

For the full story in the West Australian go here.


Filed under art, Australia, Australian, Autobiography, Digital photography, documentary photography, Photographer, Photography, Photojournalism, portraits, Rob Walls

Postcards from South Australia…

Gradually making my way west across South Australia, I’m now at the tip of the Eyre Peninsula, my stepping off point to cross the Nullarbor to Western Australia. The countryside is breathtakingly beautiful, but I find I’m still most attracted to the marks we make on the landscape. When it comes to heavy industry, I’m invariably torn between the damage it does and the energy and geometric beauty of its structures.

Horsedrawn tram, Victor Harbor to Granite Island © Rob Walls 2011

Graffitied water tanks near Port Augusta. Did Chloe marry Bill? © Rob Walls 2011

Whyalla's namesake, the ex-RAN corvette © Rob Walls 2011

Shop opposite the Whyalla Secondary School © Rob Walls 2011

Steelworks, early morning, from Hummock Hill, Whyalla © Rob Walls 2011


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