Friday, 10 July 2009

Harbour Islands - Cockatoo (1 of 9)

The setting sun lights up the city. Taken from Cockatoo Island, facing East with the setting sun at my back.

There are 9 islands in Sydney Harbour, although one is now permanently joined to the mainland. To the East of the Harbour Bridge there are:
Shark Island
Clarke Ksland
Garden Island, and
Fort Dennison
To the West of the Harbour Bridge there are:
Goat Island
Cockatoo Island
Rodd Island
Snapper Island, and
Spectacle Island.
I dont think the hoi poloi is allowed to visit all of them, so it will take some ingenuity to get you photographs. Let's see what I can do ... Prior to this project, I have visited Cockatoo Island twice, Fort Denison twice, Shark Island for my daughter's wedding and Goat Island.


Historical overview
1839 - 1850 : A prison houses convicts withdrawn from Norfolk Island
1850 - 1870 : Prisoners build the Fitzroy Dock to service Royal Navy ships.
1870 - 1880 : Prisoners move to Darlinghurst Gaol and the island becomes a reformatory (no kidding!)
1900 - 2001 : Becomes the Commonwealth Naval Dockyard
2001 - now : The Sydney Harbour Federation Trust restores the island and opens it to the public.


The island has two distinct precints: the lower island which is where the ship-building occured; and, the plateau which is where the reformatory and the administration and draftsmen worked. Both areas are engrossing for a photographer: I will be out there many more times. The detail is superb. And now that it is an officially sanctioned "arts precinct" there will always be an incentive.

It is a great site. Get out there ...

A 15 minute ferry return to the city costs a bit over $5

Below, the winter sun sets behind the ridge on the northern shore of the harbour over the suburbs of Woolwich and Hunters Hill. By now the wind is whipping the waves and the slight winter sun has disappeared leaving hardy day trippers freezing their body parts on the pier waiting for the ferry that will return them to Circular Quay.

23 comments:

Gail's Man said...

Great selection of photos from just one of the islands. Love the rusted crane.

The book I mentioned is called 'Sydney, Then And Now'. It's by Glenn Russell. Printed by Wildcat Press, Sydney. No publication date, but the ISBN is 0949892025. It originally cost $24.95, but I got it at a jumble sale for about a buck.

Julie said...

Thanks for the details, GM. I will track in down in a remainder bin along King St in Newtown!

J Bar said...

Brilliant Sydney skyline at sunset. Really like all the other shots from Cockatoo Island. This is another place I've never visited.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

James said...

I love the pictures and very interesting info, I didn't know that there are 9 islands in Sydney harbor. Oops I mean harbour. ;-)

brattcat said...

I love all the details here, from the names of the islands to the machine works to the timeline, but that first shot, well, Julie, that's simply arresting.

DelBoy said...

All that rust! Bet you're in your element!

Julie said...

Totally in my element: rust, mould, moss, bird poop ... just a total delight of a place to wander. And there are tunnels ... and sandstone rocks jutting out with prisoner scratchings like 1867 ... you can hire one of the Overseer cottages for the weekend now ... and even camp on the western shore ... great restoration job ... kept the heart of the place alive.

Ann said...

I'm amazed at what you manage to see, where on earth was that metal wheel and what look like toilet stalls. Didn't see them at all. Pardon me for saying so but I don't think the shot of the metal ladder was worth the trouble you went to to get it :). Must start putting some of my Cockatoo shots up soon.

Ann said...

PS. Did you see in today's Herald (Metro) that there's a big comedy festival being held at Cockatoo the 2nd (I think) weekend in October. Really good to see it being used.

Julie said...

I did contort myself didn't I ... but that is what detail is often about. And yes it is a disconcerting shot to look at.

As for the toilet stalls and the large wheel ... I have been out there twice your realise? The toilet stalls are up on the plateau and the big wheel is very close to the Unsworth exhibition: in that same large engineering building.

French Sydneysider said...

The colours in the first shot are fantastic!! Great collages too.

Will need to add Cocktaoo Island to my Places to visit list..

AB said...

The first shot of the glinting sun is just perfect.

I am glad to see you have found yourself a mission.

Greg said...

I do like that top photo of the city with the colour of the light and clouds!

Joan Elizabeth said...

I love the way you take me to places I haven't been ... don't think I've visted any of the islands. The light in the top shot is gorgeous and the industrial detail of the others magic because they have been put together with such care. Ever since you have begun posting about Cockatoo Island I've been putting it on my must visit list.

Fiona said...

Egads, I love these shots! Especially the run-down industrial ones after the Historical Overview. Must explore more next time I'm down (and have time!).

Lois said...

Amazing pictures Julie, especially that first one with the sun setting! I didn't even know there were islands in the harbour. I learned quite a bit from your post and am looking forward to more.

BlossomFlowerGirl said...

That is a beautiful photo. What a magnificent sunset. The outlines are so clear. Some day I wish I could take phjotos like that.
Cheers.

Martina said...

I am with all the others about the first photo, :-).
And I love the cable/rope pic ... yeah, rust, mold, bricks, stones ... ;-)

Sean said...

I like the first one... the last one bothers me a little. I imagine the horizon was skewed for effect, however was there more to it?

Julie said...

Thank you Friends for your generous comments. Of the images in the post my very favourite is the rope/hook closely followed by the empty toilet stalls: immense sadness in them. The first shot took me about 30 minutes and maybe 50 shots to capture!

Sean: nothing sinister to the slant. I dont see the horizon as sacrosanct. I put it down to freezing my bits off!!

cara said...

I love the colours and textures of the middle photos... the rust and stone and wood.

I am constantly amazed by the volume of stuff you manage to get done and the enthusiasm and creativity with which you do it.

Inspirational as always!

Jilly said...

That first photo is stunning. Love the sun on the city. A keeper. So many to love here. I adore the one with the rope too.

JM said...

The orange colour and sun reflections are simply gorgeous! Also love the details on the next set.