Story Archive

eSwag-43

SWAGMAN IN SEARCH OF A CONCEPT

Posted on October 2, 2013 by
Raymond
on the road at
Sydney

 

In the Seventies we called them 'concept' videos. Rock bands took their latest song to someone with a camera who had been recently anointed as the next cool thing. They also had to be really good at "concepts" which, after a couple of joints, was the only thing anyone could be good at.

When presented with the song the video maker was seen to go into a trance-like state that was either the result of circulation being cut due to the inconceivably tight stretch jeans or to the birth pains associated with the new concept being, well, conceived. The song's lyrics were maneuvered like an ocean liner into some amazing visual space. Everyone awaited the vessel that would steer them to stardom. Then came the much anticipated:

I've got it!

Wow that was quick. Amazing! He really is the next new thing and he is working on our video. The concept was usually so ridiculous that it was easily confused for brilliance. 

 

unknown concept video victim

 

Anyway, as much as it pains me to say it, I am need of a concept. Not for a song but for a journey. 

On February 1, Tommie and I will head out from Sydney on 300 day circumnavigation of Australia, arriving back on November 23, 2014. We won't slavishly hug the coastline but rather make sorties inland where and when a story or a photo demands it. We will move in an anti- clockwise direction. Certain guidelines will be set. Broome will be approached from Darwin. While we won't avoid the heat we will minimise it.

The progression will be slow, painstakingly so at times. You know when you accidentally kicked over a flat rock as a kid and there was a teaming universe of bugs and wriggly things, usually white, squirming in the harsh light. That's what we will be doing. Not squirming in the harsh light but looking at what is accidentally unearthed, stopping in places where no one stops, or at least not for longer that it takes to say "pin or sign". 

We will camp in places that have no name, off lonely roads, maybe for a week or so, and record the world that exists unbidden and unknown. We will search for stories and make weekly videos. 

 

Tommie in front of Big Foot 

Our mode of transport is THE SWAGMOBILE, my old Toyota Coaster bus transformed into a portable studio. A 'tardis', where daily photos and written stories will be created such that by the end of the circumnavigation a photographic journal will be published.

BUT WHAT TO CALL IT?

I am usually no stranger to the glib one liner. Indeed they can often fill my entire conversation but for the moment I am stuck. I need something to simply express the idea of a slow exploration of this incredible continent, inch by inch, day by day, character by character and image by image. 

The title needs to become a compelling title for the book. The best I have come up with to this point is:

AUSTRALIA - INCH BY INCH

THE CONTINENTAL DRIFT 

AUSTRALIA BY 356

Over to you. Get the stretch jeans out, smoke a big spliff and come up with a 'concept'.  There will be a wonderful photographic book at journey's end for the adopted concept. 

cheers 

Raymond

PS - THIS BLOG RESULTED IN IAN CAMPBELL'S SUGGESTION BEING ACCEPTED - THE GREAT AUSTRALIAN CRAWL IS BORN

PSS. You would be mad not to join the journey at http://www.electronicswagman.com.au/newsletter/

 

 

Comments
Post Comment
Ian Campbell
Reply
G'day Raymond "The Great Australian Crawl"comes to mind . No neurones were harmed in the making of this concept. Cheers Ian
Raymond
Reply
Thats going to he hard to beat but there were a lot of neurones harmed in the making of this reply. 
Peter Wallace
Reply
Hi Raymond What!! You're going traveling in Australia. What next! Good luck old mate. Sorry couldn't get the tight jeans on so this will have to do. How about 'Big Foot Down Under' - could attract some international interest. Cheers Peter
Raymond
Reply
Hey Peter. You should join me for a stretch. I like it - BIG FOOT DOWN UNDER. The blokes are clearly so much better at "concepts" huh! 
Peter Wallace
Reply
Would love to join you Raymond, but this may get me banned - 'The Year of Living Swagishly', 'The Way it WOZ', 'Girt by Raymond'. Sorry.
Cheryl
Reply
'Australian Cog Wheels In Time.' By 'Cog' I mean the wheels inside of a clock. I was thinking that as you journey, you will be entering timeless places, places back in time and places rushing into the future. Thank you for all of the beautiful pictures and amusing stories. Thank you, Tommie, also. You have allowed a Yank to get to know your country better.
Raymond
Reply
Thats great Cheryl. I particularly like cog wheels. Glad yo enjoy our journey. Its about to get a lot more interesting.
Peg Fisher
Reply
Coast to Coaster - The Roads Less Traveled
Raymond
Reply
Excellent Peg. Toyota would love it. 
patricia lang
Reply
A journey around the edges, a man his dog & bigfoot
Raymond
Reply
Hi Patricia. Good to see the Yanks making strong suggestions. I like the word "edge". Hadn't thought of that.
patricia lang
Reply
Here's another: Travels around the edge of Oz
patricia lang
Reply
Travels & travails from top end to bottom end with the Swagman, Tom & Bigfoot
Cisco
Reply
Hi mate. CircumOz came to mind. Good to see you hitting the road again, might be able to arrange some time off to meet up somewhere. Give Tommie a pat for me.
Raymond
Reply
Hey Cisco. We will head off on Jan 1. Definitely hook up then. Maybe have a SWAG ROUNDUP somewhere in WA but I'll see you on the way through for sure since I'll be staying at your place and eating your food. if thats OK of course.
lee bruce
Reply
Tommie,Big Foot and the Intimate Immensities Tour. The philosopher Bachelard used this phrase in his book The Poetics of Space. I have always taken it to me that even when connect to the smallest space,the smallest bug,the tiniest flick of dust in light, we at one and the same time intimate but with the larger imnensities of existence. You will be look at both the intimate and the immense with tommy. sorry my spelling of the plural of the word appalling.of course you could be the big foot too as in your walks and seeing the bigger picture.
Raymond
Reply
Hi Lee - I like Intimate Immensities very much. It resonates with the idea of the worlds that exist beneath an upturned rock. Perhaps I could use that as a subtitle. Just back from a friends house who thought Conversations should be in the title as well as continent.
Danielle Herckens
Reply
thinking of Tommie, joining you where ever you go...'Paws on Australian ground'
Raymond
Reply
Thanks Danielle. Psaws might be a good inclusion.
Melvyn Parkes
Reply
Hi Raymond, hope all goes to plan for your trip. How about, Around Australia in 365 days with Raymond and Tommie in Bigfoot.
Raymond
Reply
Hi Melvyn. I remember the old Around the World in 365 Days. Jles Verne I think.
christine whelan
Reply
ziggerzaggerswagger ziggy zaggy waggy swaggin` zig zag swag waggin tales..  
Raymond
Reply
Thats one of my favourite words - zig zagger. Its alsp how to plan to travel. Might be good in the subtitle. Thanks Christine
Hilde Bosmans
Reply
Hi Raymond, we had a tv program over here.They knocked on peoples doors all over Belgium. It was very interesting. People told about there hobby's there interest.And there lives. It was very nice to see. Sometimes we laughed,sometimes we cried. This program was called Man Bijt Hond: in English its called Man bites dog. Not so good idea to take that name (plagiarism). Maybe...Kris Kros Back and Forth Through Australia.
Raymond
Reply
Exellent ideas Hilde. Thats the trend with travel now, finding a theme to accompany the journey. Australian Criss Cross is an idea. Thanks Hilde.
Julia
Reply
Do you need a reason? How about "The Edge of Reason - a circumnatigation of Australia
Raymond
Reply
Hi Julia. I like the edge idea. Not sure if is of reason .. or darkness for that matter. 
christine
Reply
bushy tails ,zig zag swag wagon.