Peter’s Blog

I need to place on record my feeling that overwhelmingly throughout my life, my contact with my fellow men, women and children has been a total delight.
It is a recurring pleasure which I experience each day and is among the precious things which makes my life rewarding and worth living, not least because moments of the keenest enjoyment can as readily occur with a complete stranger as with family and friends.

 


 

A cherished dream, my book   One small place on earth …  discovering biodiversity where you are,   self-published in August 2019, has been long in the making. Jan Watson created its design template nine years ago. The idea of doing a book seems to have occurred during my stay with Clive Tempest, the website’s first architect, when I was visiting the UK in 2006. By the time Steve Guttormsen and I began sustained work on the book in 2017, much of which I had already written, the imperative was to create a hard copy version of a project whose content is otherwise entirely digital.

 

The ‘Film Diary’ entries are selected items from the diary I keep whenever I am filming. To check location references, click on ‘Tamborine Mountain’ on the top information bar then hit the ‘Tamborine Mountain’ button on the map.

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Other / 27.03.2008

Today Edward O Wilson, the inspirational conservationist and the first person to use the word ‘biodiversity’ in print, sent an email in reply to a letter I wrote him last week.

I wanted his reflection on my concern about the gap between the widespread use of the word ‘biodiversity’ in conversation and in the media and people’s understanding of its meaning. I suggested that the gap could best be bridged via a blue-chip natural history TV documentary series and expressed puzzlement at this apparent gap in the illustrious record of the genre.

In his generous reply Professor Wilson agreed with my premise and was very complimentary about my archive.

In my letter to him I had acknowledged an immeasurable debt of gratitude to him because, without the word ‘biodiversity’, my archive would be inconceivable.

I also sent a similar letter to Sir David Attenborough who graciously replied by post in beautiful handwriting. He did not refer to my point about the apparent gap in the record of natural history documentaries, but confirmed that my two contacts in the BBC’s Natural History Unit were the people best… Read Complete Text

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My Travels / 22.03.2008

Hilde de Bruijn, Head of Exhibitions at Smart Project Space in Amsterdam, replied to an email I sent her about the archive and the overseas trip I am planning for July/August. She has invited me to get in touch during my stay in Amsterdam. I want to explore the idea of a video installation derived from the archive and titled One Small Place on Earth, which we were developing for the Eden Project.

 

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Other / 20.03.2008

Steve has started editing The Beauty of Overlooked Things video series. The idea behind the series is to make the archive footage more accessible as art, given the inherent inaccessibility of the published archive.

The series will comprise five 6-8 minute videos. I emailed Christina to ask her if she would do all the graphics. Clive and I had previously discussed on the phone the idea of a book based on the archive and which could include the Beauty series of DVDs. We intend to work on the book during my UK stay in late July, early August.

 

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The Brisbane Line / 03.03.2008

My article Two Cheers for the Wired World has appeared on the Brisbane Line. It’s about some of the consequencies of the tsunami of email traffic which confronts people in demand, and their largely inadequate response, which means that not only are they likely to be discourteous in failing to reply but they risk deleting the ‘out of left field’ correspondence which is a spur to creative and intellectual life.

TWO CHEERS FOR THE WIRED WORLD

I consider the internet a wonder of our age, born of another wonder, the computer. As such, the internet appears to precisely reflect the tempo and manners of the times in technologically advanced societies. It has transformed the way in which people keep in touch with oneanother and the way in which they acquire information without supplanting the previous means through which they accomplished these tasks.

My experience of the wired world is relatively brief and my use of it unadventurous, extending to a website devoted to my video archive of Tamborine Mountain’s biodiversity, footage from the archive on Youtube and communicating via email. I am reluctant to transact financially on the net. Nor am… Read Complete Text

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Other / 28.02.2008

Steve has completed the initial edit of Supplements 1 & 2 of the archive, filmed in HDV. I now need to go over the footage and start the draft script.

The Supplements are very different to the published archive. They do not follow the seasons, but apart from some grouping of particular subjects, unfold chronologically in the order of filming. Also, the sequences tend to be longer because proportionally more of the footage is devoted to fauna. I plan to keep the narration to a minimum and rely more on generating a good soundtrack. We’ll see.

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Other / 12.02.2008

Christina has adjusted the running time of the recently introduced slideshow on the home page, thus completing the blog update which she and Clive began last October.

We have introduced Gallery pages 8 and 9 which contain frames from the HDV footage and were filmed in widescreen. We have a March deadline because the State Library are planning to do a recapture of the site for the National Web Archive. This was initially scheduled six weeks ago to mark the site’s second anniversary.