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«Karoo Parenthesis»

A special four-part photo-illustrated story of a dash from Cape Town to the Karoo. Two nights spent near Stellenbosch at Babylonstoren and two nights on a desolate Karoo farm. 

Karoo Parenthesis, Part 1 – Return to Babylonstoren

Having spent a few days in Constantia, we leave Cape Town on August 16. Our road trips have unfortunately shrunk in scope and hunger, starved by my worsening lack of time. From the full-fleshed, epic adventures they once were, they have mummified into short, frantic dashes to the end of a relatively short but surprisingly elastic escape […]

Karoo Parenthesis, Part 2 – Weltevrede Fig Farm

But a small speck of harsh dwelling thinly spread over a few acres of dry Karoo space and theater to mostly survival, Prince Albert sits stoically in the shadow of the Swartberg range, isolated and remote. I would postulate that one does not end up in the small town by accident as it is defended by steep and treacherous […]

Karoo Parenthesis, Part 2b – The Mansion Pano

Taken from the deck at Fonteinskop, this is the result of eighty separate exposures, combined into a single panorama through Exposure Fusion, my new HDR replacement, and PTGui Pro, and some Photoshop tweaking of the nadir and zenith. I normally try and take out all signs of the photographer, for instance removing the tripod when […]

Karoo Parenthesis, Part 3 – Two Passes

After an eerily silent night, the end of the road equating to absolutely no traffic or human noise in an already deserted space, I get up early and, remembering that we have routinely forgotten the plunger for our stove-top espresso maker, I use the conveniently supplied replacement and prepare our traditional breakfast of coffee and rusks. Granted the luxury […]

Karoo Parenthesis, Part 4 – A Giraffe in the Night

After a dramatically convoluted sunset, light streaking through mountaintops to paint Tolkienesque landscapes, our second night in the silent Karoo is much darker, clouds obscuring what had been an extraordinary moonshine the night before. While I had walked around outside as in daylight by the simple shine of a skyful of stars and full moon, when the time comes to […]

Addendum to the Karoo Parenthesis – Aerial Shots

This will be the closing Karoo Parenthesis, the images having mostly been shot on our two-hour-long first leg of the return flight from Cape Town after the Karoo trip last August. Strangely, South African Airways flies its largest planes on the short haul to Johannesburg, and while the same aircraft sometimes simply refuels and actually […]