disappearing trees of roath part 2

park closures have been more limited than i anticipated \o/ currently confined only to sections of roath mill gardens and waterloo gardens, where the trees had already been tagged with numbers. which leaves time for me to raise awareness of the works further north.

lo-res phone pic

i tagged about half a dozen of the trees-to-be-felled through roath brook gardens today. plan is to continue tagging though roath mill gardens and place notices at the gates…


choosing such a visible mark was deliberate; neither me nor my local friends had any awareness of the works, even though they affect our day-to-day lives. i weighed up the impact of  semi-permanently marking a condemned tree vs entirely-permanently removing the same tree. i want these trees to really be seen, more than anything.

i’ve used specialist forestry paint, that causes no harm to the trees, and applied the stencils in more- and less-obvious areas.  i don’t want to spoil anyone’s walk or view but at the same time i don’t want these trees to go down in a sea of silence. i haven’t tagged every tree-to-go, just some of those that would take a mark well. if i got one wrong i’m happy to scrub it off once the parks are re-opened 🙂

the trees are being felled for flood defence works. this interweaving of “human” and “natural” influence is the reason for making these works.

disappearing trees of roath

flood defence works on cardiff’s roath brook will entail extensive construction work and tree removal. as a reasonably local resident i was oblivious to these works until about 10 days ago.

disappearing trees of roath #69
disappearing trees of roath #69

roath’s many parks are a fantastic local amenity, the result of impressive victorian ambition and forward thinking. they stretch from the wild gardens in the north, past roath park lake, through the pleasure gardens and recreation ground, through roath mill and waterloo gardens to railways gardens in the south.

disappearing trees of roath #36
disappearing trees of roath #36 (mike’s tree)

as a regular walker, come rain or shine, i spend a lot of time in and around cardiff’s parks and will be sad to see the demise of some beautiful trees. i wanted to take their final portraits before the parks close to the public.

disappearing trees of roath #31
disappearing trees of roath #31

my timing hasn’t been the best – i imagined i had months rather than days. i hoped to draw public attention beyond the immediate area to the loss of these trees. as the parks close for good on monday i’ve had to telescope a month-long project into a couple of days.

disappearing trees of roath #65
disappearing trees of roath #65


change of perspective

some eerie pics from my first walk with an infra-red-converted nikon d40.

bought pre-converted from a european artist who works in i-r. i know the camera model well and it was offered at less than i’ve seen for conversion services alone.

there’s a certain amount of post processing going on here. some cameras allow a custom white-balance to be set, if i understand right that gives you immediate feedback on replay. this doesn’t – the images are *very* red and require white balance, levels and channel switching tweaks.

this type of photography runs the risk of being discounted as “just another photoshop filter” – or selective colour effects – but it’s actually recording a different spectrum of light to that visible with the naked eye.

digital camera sensors are particularly sensitive to infrared, and are made with a filter to block that light in preference to the visible spectrum. conversions remove this filter and replace it with one of a number of different alternative filters.

the camera was supplied with excellent advice on hard- and soft-ware settings and i enjoy the reveal of applying these filters step by step, suddenly realising a could-go-either-way image suddenly shines in i-r B)

i process every picture on the same settings – some come out noticeably blue throughout, while others have distracting orange tones. i have discretion like a darkroom processor printing an enlargement, in terms of which tones – warm or cool – that i choose for the finished picture. otherwise, images are as they come out of the camera.