This image I made in Flinders Lane in Melbourne yesterday deserves an explanation (apart from the fact it looked terrible in black and white, hence the colour version).
I was hurriedly walking to the other side of Melbourne’s CBD for an appointment at Olympic Park Sports Medicine and went partway via Flinders Lane. Yesterday was a perfect Autumn day in Melbourne with flawless blue sky and a gentle breeze. The narrow Flinders lane falls into deep shadows in various sections from the newer high-rise office blocks that line this narrow thoroughfare.
I walked past a row of motorbikes parked on the footpath and was suddenly struck by this amazing ‘spotlight’ on a motorbike side mirror. After stepping back a pace or two, I lined up the shot which reflected the architectural detail of an old restored building on the other side of the street catching a beam of bright sunlight (which reflected the clear blue sky in its windows).
lt was like a blue spotlight in a semi-dark room and reminded me of the most amazing details in our cities if we walk slowly and have an observant eye. None of the other motorbike side mirrors had the same effect. They were all dark.
It must have been one of those ‘right time, right place’ moments. I guess you’d have to actually be there to appreciate this unique well-lit snapshot 🙂
Yesterday, I caught a bus, and then tram, over to an inner suburb I haven’t been to in many, many years. I don’t know why (as it is renowned for its Street Art and one of Melbourne’s vibrant entertaining areas – very Bohemian in fact – great for artists, and………..photographers).
Superb weather and blue skies but I was overdressed and got so hot that I made it a pretty short walk (compared to my usual long stroll). I spoke to one of the young local street artists taking a break in the shade of a building (opposite to the one he was working on). He suggested I go to Rose Street, Fitzroy to see some great Street Art (which was some blocks away, a bit of a long walk for me in the heat of the bright sun). But I made it.
Many shops were closed for the Christmas/New Year break, but there were many others, (including bars and restaurants), open.
Brunswick Street is one of the main streets in the area and has changed (or should I say revitalised) into a lively stretch of old (about mid to late 1800s) terraced shops, hotels and eateries with a sort of …………. Grungy, Quirky style that is irresistible to someone like me with an interest in history, cafe society and camera in hand.
I love the peeling paint and multi-layered posters curling up on some of the walls – quite a highlight of the exterior façade of many of the buildings.
I’ll go back another day and make some more photos for you. My 50mm f1.4 prime lens was fabulous in this area, but in the narrow lanes I had to resort to my ‘wonky’ unreliable 18-200mm lens because I couldn’t get far enough back to capture the whole length of the murals I saw.
Wish the 3rd image had been sharper, but you know how it is – you get an idea of people & trams moving and somehow you inadvertently move the camera at the same time people are moving. Some more practice at focusing on the stationary subjects (while other people and tram are moving might be helpful).
I’m sure you get the idea of the series though. I’ll try again when the nights are warmer in the summer and it’s not so cold waiting for a tram to go home. This series was made in mid-April – Autumn in Melbourne.
(from the Archives – January 2013)
The Geelong metropolitan area is the second most populated area in my state of Victoria and the largest non-capital city. Located 75 kilometres (47 mi) south-west of the state capital, Melbourne. Geelong was named in 1827, with the name derived from the local Wathaurong Aboriginal name for the region, Jillong, thought to mean “land” or “cliffs.
The location was once considered as a possible site for the capital city, but they ended up choosing Melbourne. For those interested in trivia, Melbourne has just been named the ‘Most livable City in the World‘ for the fourth year running. I’m not surprised as the lifestyle and multicultural aspect is certainly one which I love.
I wish food didn’t cost so much though. After doing my weekly shopping yesterday, I’m surprised it hasn’t been named as the Most Expensive Food Capital (of the World).
Amazing light down at St Kilda late this afternoon.
St Kilda beach and pier are the closest beach side suburb to my home via public transport.
Shooting into the sun created mainly silhouettes as I headed back to the tram stop to go home at around 4.45pm. The images below are the last few I made before I crossed the highway to the tram stop. Most of the 235 images I made over an hour and a half were deliberately under-exposed as the bright sun turned the upper skyline completely white. I only had a 50mm f1.4 lens with me as I’ve been trying to wean myself off using a telephoto lens 99% of the time.
I might go back tomorrow with my 18-200mm telephoto lens as the calm, wind-free conditions are forecast for the next 3 days and I’d like to try again using the lens I’m more used to. It’ll be the best winter weather we’ve had in Melbourne for weeks. (note: I’m not sure that my B & W images look as effective on this new PhotoBlog of mine. Especially the 5th image down in this series which has a white sky. I think they looked better on my old blog which had a black background and clearly framed the images – don’t know what others think).
Having been stuck at home with a winter virus all week, I was feeling a little desperate for some exercise and fresh air yesterday, so I rugged up with woolly scarf, gloves and coat and ventured into the city centre for a walk around Chinatown and the surrounding streets for an hour or so. (It was a little too windy and cold for Beach or Botanic Gardens for me, especially as I haven’t got rid of this lingering cough). The city centre was crowded as usual, but Chinatown in Little Burke Street was quiet and relatively pedestrian-free (in comparison).
Can’t say there was anything spectacular to photograph, so this series could be classed in the Mundane & Ordinary category, perhaps.
This afternoon’s rain will herald the start of a week of very chilly days and inclement weather, so I might have to scour the archives for some images to share.
Melbourne’s winter is relatively mild – even on a rainy day. But the ferocious winds can make the rain in my inner city location downright unpleasant. I always used to say that the street next to my local corner shops (opposite the Botanic Gardens south-eastern entrance), is like a wind tunnel and HAS to be the most blustery in Melbourne. This means ordinary rain can fly under even the sturdiest of umbrellas and soak you through (that is if the wind doesn’t blow you over and turn your umbrella inside out). I really don’t remember these vicious winds being present in my childhood.
The weather forecast also predicts snow in Victoria’s Alps in the coming week, so at least the skiers will be happy.