Dusky and Doubtful Sounds, both poetically named by Captain Cook in 1770. Now largely national park and an isolated, brooding, cold, misty, rainy place; impenetrable native forest, sheer drops and drowned glacial valleys; empty of people but not of giant sandflies, stray imported moose, missing tourists, extinct moas, choppers chasing deer, and legends of failed settlements, shipwrecks, hermits, sealers/whalers and other fishing people.

3 of us went bush for 10 days there in the mid-70s – couldn’t conceive of that now for all sorts of reasons (lack of fridges…) but planning 2 x 3-4 days tramps there next year – the Kepler and the Hollyford (again).

Would like to say I sketched these images in situ back then – but that didn’t happen. Both are oils, the main one is a Colin McCahon-inspired piece which I like for its simplicity, but no-one else seems to. The second image is more popular – people like the movement in the waterfall and the colours in the cliffs and rocks (not sure the photo captures that very well?). The weak point for me is the trees – I’ll deal to them when I’m in the zone on something else.

Happy New Year!

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