Imaging the other side of the wire

I’ve reached a new place in my photographic learning. Shots that I was really happy with just a few months ago now seem a bit meh. Sometimes I need to re-shoot. Sometimes, I just want to play with the images in editing tools.

Yesterday I posted a double-exposure image composed of two photos I took at the same time and place.


Early morning on the Waitemata Harbour at Hobsonville Boat Club. Su Leslie 2018


Razor-wire fence and seagull in flight. Su Leslie 2018

I quite like both shots, but there is something about that razor-wire fence that disturbs me every time I see it. Behind the fence is a yacht club. Members store little boats in the club compound, so I guess the fence is to keep their property safe.

I can’t help thinking though, of the millions of people around the world who are currently held behind razor wire; in prisons, detention centres, Gaza.


In my everyday life, I’m outside the wire. But I wonder how small a shift in the political wind would be required to change that.

39 thoughts on “Imaging the other side of the wire

  1. And a brave thought. This is something we are not facing up to as the elites of our so-called democracies become increasingly protectionist of their assets. Something rotten in the state of Denmark.I share your reaction to the razor wire, Su.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. The state of affairs can so quickly change, look at Germany under Hitler. I heard on the tv tonight you have a caretaker in office while your leader takes maternity leave. Winston looked like the cat that had caught the canary!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Su, I’ve been having the same thoughts lately about how life as we know it could change easily with the current state of politics. The blatantly inhumane things that are being done in the name of protectionism and outright racism is frightening.

    Liked by 2 people

    • The bright spot in all of this is just how many people feel like this. If we all stand up and say “no”, I sincerely hope we can effect change. But the politics of “divide and conquer” are extremely powerful and effective, and we have a tough fight ahead.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Great photo, and yes I can understand your thinking. I am getting bored with my own basic photography and need to rethink what I want to do with my blogs.

    The razor wire brought to mind for me the number of ordinary people who live behind such fences in South Africa. Electronic gates, razor wire, guards on the gates, guns in the cars and homes. And they consider this life to be ‘normal’.

    I look forward to more experimentation from you. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank Jude. I’m wondering how to move forward with my blog too. My poor family history blog has been largely ignored lately, and this one has strayed so far from my original intention I need a review.
      I know I’d hate to live under the sort of circumstances considered normal in SA. A friend gave up a really good academic position in Durban to come home to NZ because he couldn’t handle it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree Anabel. I was reading an article (New Statesman I think) this morning about how the SNP government is NOT following this trend, but providing a model for inclusion and openness.


      • Exactly! But we are hampered at every turn because immigration policy is not devolved. A few social security matters have recently been devolved and the Scottish govt is trying to build a new system from the bottom up ie consulting those who use the system. I have so many regrets about 2014 and fear we might never get another chance. It doesn’t matter what Scotland votes at the moment.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I imagine lots of Scots now wish the referendum had turned out differently. My pre-independence cousin in Glasgow posts a lot of political stuff on social media, so that where I have to get my news. Outside Scotland, you would never know the SNP exists and seems to be doing an amazing job — despite everything ☹️


          • Not enough minds, changing, I don’t know what it will take! Problem is almost the entire media never deviates from “SNP-bad”. For example, this week the govt won a case against Ineos who wanted to force them to accept fracking. If all you read was the Herald headline you would thing they had lost! Not strictly untrue but worded so negatively to give the wrong impression that it cannot have been an accident.

            Liked by 1 person

          • I take a little comfort in my son and his friends who seem to realise that mainstream media is the mouthpiece of elites. I’m not entirely convinced about the quality of the news sources they do read, but at least they don’t have the uncritical acceptance of “if it’s in the paper it must be true” that drives me crazy about my parents. 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Beautiful shots and I never see a meh photo from you, Su.
    Very sad but accurately reflective thought about the barbed wire and our political climate. I’m in agreement with you, for sure.


  6. Pingback: Imaging the other side of the wire | Wobbly Warrior’s Blog – seachranaidhe1

  7. Both shots are terrific! And the juxtaposition of the bird and the fence does indeed have a powerful effect. Just two days ago I was sitting in the bus behind a man, a refugee, who was holding tight to his documents, his application to be granted a longer stay here in Germany. It was such a strong image, I can´t get it out of my head. When he left the bus, I saw him clenching the papers, walking back to the barracks that have been erected on a former airfield. I could have made pictures and he wouldn’t even have noticed it, I think, but somehow it would have felt like intruding into his privacy and I couldn’t bring myself to do it.

    Liked by 1 person

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