Cold cameras and bleeding fingers

By Nick // Wednesday 3 Oct // 18:45:17 // 1 Comment

Morning broke. to bits of our video cameras laid out on the breakfast table, the scientists pushed aside their toast and got stuck in with cotton buds and alcohol. The afternoon before my camera had caught a wave as we landed the inflatable, then Matt’s camera had been the victim of an overflowing water system. Despite the concentrated efforts of our best camera surgeons, neither camera pulled through. The weather gets everywhere.

Every roll of the ship and change in gravity finds me mentally checking the various stowed cameras, tied cases and lashed lenses around the ship. Did I bring them in? Did I fix them to a new side, now that the ship’s rolling to port? I keep a set of cameras for use outside and a set inside; a cold camera will take over an hour to acclimatise to a warm cabin.

The cold narrates our days here, this afternoon we filmed Liam perform one of his songs sitting on the bow-sprit against a backdrop of snow-drifted mountains. Two takes in, Liam fingers were bleeding. Indoors we are flexible; trying to do the simplest things outside in this cold makes us realise how fragile we can be. Guitarists’ fingers become stiff and brittle.

As I pack up the cables, the fjord’s cold surface forms a glaze popping and crackling below, musing of freezing our ship fast. Around us cloud-capped mountains tower from the water’s edge, looking down on tiny people tending their bleeding fingers, cold flattened batteries and salt-shorted circuits.

We bring cameras, inks, charcoal and guitars to record and respond to this place and are trumped by the interventionist art of climate itself.

Tags: Nick Cobbing

1 Comment

  1. Alan W Friday 5 Oct, 2007 // 12:49:07

    Oh dear, Matt, I hope that you haven’t managed to kill the Z1.

    The crew will probably have noticed Matt becoming very subdued as he contemplates staying in Greenland as a very viable alternative to returning home!

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