Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

New Zealand: Cathedral Cove trees and textures

with 42 comments

Probably the most visited bit of nature on New Zealand’s Coromandel Peninsula
is Cathedral Cove, where we spent several hours three years ago today.

Leaning out over the cliff in the first photograph are pōhutukawa treesMetrosideros excelsa.

Me being me, I was taken with all the appealing rock textures.

I took dozens of pictures, of which you’re seeing a few.

© 2020 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

March 7, 2020 at 4:51 AM

42 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. All beautiful and love the colours and hues.


    March 7, 2020 at 5:24 AM

  2. so many interesting and beautiful colors and textures here


    March 7, 2020 at 5:36 AM

    • I had a good time there, photographically, and we were fortunate to finish up not long before the rain came down.

      Steve Schwartzman

      March 7, 2020 at 7:30 AM

  3. I find the layers of texture and color quite fascinating. I wonder how trees manage to cling and survive the sometimes harsh elements on those cliffs?


    March 7, 2020 at 6:25 AM

  4. The final one is fascinating – like an illustration.


    March 7, 2020 at 6:49 AM

    • How interesting that you see it as an illustration. I don’t think that ever would have occurred to me.

      Steve Schwartzman

      March 7, 2020 at 7:35 AM

      • It would be a cryptic one, I agree, but as I look at it I seem to see echoes of all kinds of things – an elephant here, an alligator there, a hanging spider…I probably just need to stop drinking coffee for the day!


        March 7, 2020 at 7:38 AM

  5. It would be impossible to resist those rock textures, and they yielded some gorgeous photos as we see here.


    March 7, 2020 at 8:09 AM

    • Your word resist reminded me of Irving Berlin’s song from Annie Get Your Gun:

      My defenses are down,
      She’s broken my resistance,
      And I don’t know where I am.

      Actually I do know: I’m in Austin.

      Steve Schwartzman

      March 7, 2020 at 8:43 AM

      • Ah, Irving Berlin. Such a delight.


        March 8, 2020 at 10:16 AM

        • Yes, one of the 20th century’s great songwriters. I suspect most Americans under 30 have never heard of him.

          Steve Schwartzman

          March 8, 2020 at 10:30 AM

          • My family likes to watch Jeopardy (sigh). It isn’t that bad…I have noticed though that the categories are increasingly about entertainment, because the sweet young things haven’t got a clue about history, geography, culture, literature. They know their TV characters, though!


            March 8, 2020 at 10:53 AM

  6. Am I beginning to see things? The little creatures on the rock wall of your last photo are amazing, Steve.

    Peter Klopp

    March 7, 2020 at 8:10 AM

    • You and Susan (susurrus), above, saw plenty of little creatures. My pareidolia was asleep this time. The right center part of the last picture now reminds me of what Greece looks like on a map.

      Steve Schwartzman

      March 7, 2020 at 8:45 AM

  7. Beautiful colors, I was seeing some animal shapes, too, but wasn’t sure I should mention it. so I am happy to see in the comments, that others were thinking along the same lines.

    Robert Parker

    March 7, 2020 at 9:48 AM

  8. Sandstone? I see Japanese calligraphy in the last one. And I have not yet had a cup of coffee this morning.

    Michael Scandling

    March 7, 2020 at 10:42 AM

    • Not knowing what kind of rock it is, I searched and found a site that describes the “chalky white and pink limestone cliffs” there, so you were right. Japanese calligraphy strikes me as a reasonable thing to see in the last picture.

      Steve Schwartzman

      March 7, 2020 at 11:57 AM

  9. Beautiful colours and textures. Textures being the subject of my photo topics this month. Like others have mentioned the last one is intriguing. I see a group of dancers 🙂


    March 7, 2020 at 11:49 AM

  10. Love the textures and colors, Steve. I loved it here!

    Jane Lurie

    March 7, 2020 at 7:49 PM

  11. I love it, Steve, thank you! 🙂


    March 9, 2020 at 1:29 PM

  12. The last photo is my favorite. It’s a wonderful abstraction; every detail seems to fit with every other. It feels more like a sculpture than a painting, and it’s wholly delightful. It’s one of those that doesn’t look “like” anything else to me. It just is what it is.

    The post as a whole intrigued me because of its mention of the Coromandel Peninsula. One of my readers, from India, posted a poem on her blog written by Sarojini Naidu and titled “The Coromandel Fishers”. I wondered if there was a connection between the poem and the peninsula, and that’s when I found the information you also linked to: that the Coromandel Peninsula was named after HMS Coromandel, and that the ship itself was named for India’s Coromandel Coast. What a great connection.


    March 9, 2020 at 9:23 PM

    • That last formation turned out to have more life in it than I realized. Your statement that “It just is what it is” reminds me of the last line of Archibald MacLeash’s “Ars Poetica”: “A poem should not mean / But be.”

      European colonists did a lot to spread things around the world. Some foods that we think of as typical of a certain country actually originated elsewhere, like tomatoes in Italy, which came from North America. Names, too, got moved around, as you noted with Coromandel.

      Steve Schwartzman

      March 10, 2020 at 8:30 AM

  13. A great place to visit .. wonderful shots Steve ..


    March 13, 2020 at 2:29 PM

  14. Gorgeous pictures for a wonderful place to visit. Thanks for the pictures.

    Geri Lawhon

    June 2, 2020 at 1:57 PM

    • Sure thing. If you haven’t yet been to New Zealand, I hope you’ll get to go. We’ve gone twice.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 2, 2020 at 2:07 PM

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: