Here are the first of our planned photographic courses. Watch this space for announcements about weekend workshops, landscape excursions and more!
Posts Tagged With: annalize mouton
On 11 March 2015 I was very fortunate to meet a great great granddaughter of both Sir Robert Stanford and the very well-known Rev Andrew Murray. Colleen Ballenden, who spent the night at The Kleine River’s Valey house, once the farmhouse of her great great grandfather, is the daughter of the late Eric Stanford, son of Harley Daly Maurice Stanford, grandson of Sir Robert Stanford. Colleen still lives on their family farm, Stanford Farm, between Haenertsburg and Magoebaskoof in Limpopo Province.
Harley was born in England on the 3rd of June 1869. He came to the Cape as a child with his parents, John Frederick and Fanny Elizabeth Stanford, but was educated at Dulwich College near London. He was a tax collector in the Pilansberg area and then Haenertsburg from 1911-1924. His nickname, Intabalen, meant “the one to be looked up to” because he was usually on horseback. He was also one of the first people to own a Buick.
“What have you been up to?” facebook asks. Kuiering. Now I know there is no such word in either English or Afrikaans, but the Afrikaans word “kuier” does not translate easily. The dictionary says, “visit” or “stroll”. But it is so much more than either visiting or strolling… Let me explain. In the village I met Jake Heese who said to me, “I want to show you something. This is Stanford… I left my house more than 2 hours ago, and all I have bought so far is this… And I haven’t even had my breakfast yet!” With that he opened his shopping bag and took out a bag of fresh baby spinach. Jake lives in the village, two blocks from the shops. “When I left my driveway, I first had a half hour’s chat with my neighbour Jenny ‘Metal’, then another hour’s chat to my other neighbours, Cath and Simon, then I met… and then… and now you.” And as we were talking Glenn and Willa from Cape Town walked past and I introduced them to Jake. They own a house almost “in the river” as Glenn said, on the floodplain or what used to be the vleilande (wetlands). Their status will shortly be changed from weekend visitors to fulltime residents. We talked about the weather, the rain patterns and the floods and the otters in the river, and the fish people used to catch in the river. One of my most memorable meals was a fish braai at Eric and Marlene Swart’s house in 1997. Eric braaied springer (also known as skipjack or tenpounder elsewhere) caught upstream near the lagoon! Oh, man, never had fish tasted so good! My mouth still waters… But sadly springers have grown quite scarce these days.
I then quickly rushed to the market where Calli was waiting with our bread, and there I met Jan and Sue from Baardskeerdersbos, an even smaller village ± 45 km from Stanford, and Peter Thomas of Stanford.
As I crossed the street to where my car was parked, I was stopped by Henriette Derby, another friend from Kleinmond, visiting friends in Stanford for the weekend. She introduced me to her friends, Charmaine Lacock’s mother, Nelly van de Poll, and Christine Schwarz also from Kleinmond. Charmaine and her mom, Nelly, recently moved to Stanford and from what I have heard they make the best coffee south of the “equator”. Christine bought one of my books and we had photos taken and what then transpired was so awesome we all ended up having to wipe away some tears! (I lifted these photos of them from their own facebook timelines!)
After big, warm hugs we each went our own way – I to have coffee with Lin Morris, Sarah and Matt at Graze Slow Food Café. More magic and awesomeness! An outing to the village sums up life in Stanford – it’s a life made up of “magic moments” which in the end makes the hard times so much more bearable. A place where you won’t survive by keeping up appearances and pretence. In the words of author Emma Kriel, “What I have come to know and appreciate about Stanford is that here you absolutely have to be yourself.” And as Matt said, just this morning, “That’s what I’m really good at – just being me.”
I also had to stop to take a photo of Ivan May, Jessica Phillips and friends on their way to the shops with babies in strollers and Ivan carrying a rather large cool box.
Only on my way home, two and a half hours since I left it, did I realize what I had written in Nelly’s book. In and between all the hugs and emotion, I wrote: “May you be blessed out of your feet”, in stead of socks! But maybe it’s not such a bad idea after all. May we all live a “winged life” here soaring high on the wings of Love and Life, Forgiveness and Kindness! And may there be many more kuiers for all of us here in this little place under the sun!
We did it, and yes, I made it! After going to bed at 2:30am the previous night, I was up at 5:50am – even before the alarm went off! It was still almost dark when I left and drove through the quiet, sleeping village to pick Herman van Bon up for our photography-stroll through the village. We were both armed with our digital cameras, herman with his Sony A77VQ with a Sony DT 2.8/16-55 mm lens, mine is a Canon EOS 400 D with Canon 18-55 mm lens. No tripods. (You can read more about how this two-some came about, here: Two photographers on the prowl)
From seven until ten we were out “shooting early birds”! We had so much fun and laughed so much. We first went to Stanford South and what struck us both were how lively and full of people the streets were with men and women going to work, children off to school and dogs doing what dogs do (barking somewhat furiously at us at times). There were chickens scratching here and there on the street verges, cocks crowing, some fought. At the spaza-shop a cat was sitting on the corner of the street, while another one went inside the shop inspecting the goods.
Our next stop was the Willem Appel Dam, halfway back to the village. There we photographed reeds, trees and a reflection. There were some water fowl – cormorants, moorhens, ibises – and weavers and warblers in the reeds.
After a while we headed back into the centre of the village which by then had also “woken up”. People were out walking their dogs, riding their bicycles, doing their business. Our local green team were busy sweeping along the streets, and the normal gang of loiterers were outside the shops trying their luck with the shopppers. Our friend, Beatrice Pook, was up and offered us coffee.
This was NOT a competition. Both Herman and I did it for the joy of photography. It’s interesting to see the differences between the two of us in the way look at and interpret things. We hope that you would enjoy these photos as much as we enjoyed taking/making them.
Herman van Bon’s photos:
Annalize Mouton’s photos with some extras of Herman and “some early birds” thrown in:
Oh my, what have I gotten myself into this time?! On my way home from the post office today, I stopped for a chat with Herman van Bon, “originally Dutch and since 2000 living in South Africa and happily married to Yvonne de Wit”, who was out walking his dog. Herman and I have a couple of things in common: we’re both definitely not youngsters any more, we don’t colour our hair, we love photography and Stanford, dogs, cats, birds, plants and nature… We talked about my new blog, Portrait of a Village, and Herman who in his own words “like challenges especially the ones people advise me not even to think of it”, challenged me with, “When are we going out together on a photo shoot?” Before I could say evasively, as I did in the past, “Sometime”, Herman said, “No, let’s fix a time.” I was trapped and couldn’t chicken out this time. So the challenge has been set – next week Monday morning at 07h00 we’ll start prowling around the village with our cameras.
Now, the first thing you have to understand is that I am not an early-morning person at all – can’t be when you only go to bed in the wee hours of the mornin’. Secondly, you must see Herman’s resumé! He’s a big cannon in the world of photographers. I snooped around on his website, and this is what I found:
I am a landscape and art-photographer creating digital ‘imaginaries’. These imaginaries each consist of tens of layers with elements/textures of (landscape-, garden-, domestic-) photographs to which I always add 1 or more ‘mainframes’ thus creating a new conceptual image.
I was involved in 2 (group-)exhibitions in 2013 in New York and Paris. Some of my work (I only sell one print of each image!) is on permanent display in public spaces.
Before becoming a full time art-photographer I was a free-lance (photo-)journalist traveling the globe for a wide range of media…
So, Monday morning, when the sun is still shy and hiding its face, we’ll be out and about. How exactly we’ll go about this, will still be decided. Maybe you could come up with some ideas, and next time even more of the Stanford photographers, professional and amateur, would like to join us.
What Herman doesn’t know is that although I do not have his experience, I have been taught photography by one of South Africa’s best, my own husband, Maré! Whatever comes out of this, I can assure you, it is going to be great fun! Watch this space for the photos and the accompanying story.
Until Monday then. In the meantime, here are a couple of photos I took with my cellphone on my way home. Herman and I tried a selfie, but it didn’t really work, nevertheless, here it is.