Last night, I (with my family and 300,000 of my friends and neighbours) descended on Melbourne’s CBD for the inaugural White Night Melbourne event. It’s an all night party celebrating the arts running from 7pm Saturday to 7am Sunday. The organisers had hoped for 100,000 people so they must have been a little blown away with the final estimates.
From shortly after 7pm, people on foot took over the streets. The trams weren’t running. Cars had nowhere to go. People lined the streets from side to side. For us, with two young kids, the crowds were a little overwhelming. The performers and the art installations were a little hard to see. If you looked hard and watched the crowds, there were gems to be found like the performer pictured above. He was the voice half of a duo making some great music in Flinders Lane. How happy is this guy!
I don’t know if it’s going to be an annual event now, but we might have to leave the kids at home next time so we can be more mobile and stay out later.
What do you do when it’s low to mid-30s day after day after day? You go to the beach!
Our choice of beach this past weekend was Surf Beach on the south coast of Phillip Island – an easy 90 minute drive from Melbourne. We had a fantastic southerly coming in off the Southern Ocean that brought the temperature down just the right amount. There weren’t many people there and as you can see, the water was amazing! Shallow and warm – perfect for a family day at the beach.
This is one of the reasons I love Australia.
Bird Week? Well, that was the idea when I started it over one month ago now. And yet, I’m still only at bird #6. Good thing I didn’t call it ‘Bird Month’… I might have felt beholden to sharing 30 birds instead of just seven.
Today’s bird is quite clearly a pelican, an Australian Pelican to be precise. They breed over on Mud Island at the south end of Port Phillip Bay. When they get old enough and start exploring, they eventually make it over to Phillip Island and San Remo. Every day at noon, a local organisation feeds the pelicans. They often take in the injured ones and nurse them back to health.
Over time, the birds have become pretty good at figuring out when feeding happens and turn up in varying numbers as the morning gets on. This was about an hour before feeding time when the pelicans are just patiently milling about waiting for happy hour.
My searching for the identity of this bird has let me down so this one will have to remain unidentified, unless of course, you can help me out…
No post last night as I took the family to the new Cirque du Soleil show called Ovo. It was a bit irresponsible of me considering today was the kids’ first day back at school, but it seems the excitement plus the exhaustion (got to bed after midnight) appear to have balanced out and they enjoyed their first day back.
I hope you like birds because that’s what I’m going with this week. Today it’s this very colourful little Gouldian Finch.
I believe this young fella is a Common Myna. I found him (or her) and his sibling on our front walk as I was arriving home from work on Friday. They’re new borns not quite ready for flight. As they get used to their whole new world, they seem to have taken ownership of our front yard entirely. Anyone comes near, there’s a whole lot of squawking from the parents followed by swooping and grand attempts to lead us away. We’ve kept our distance – thank goodness for telephotos…
Here’s a variation on slow photography using a slow(ish) shutter speed, but with a moving subject. Using my variable ND filter, ISO 50, and f13 I was able to get this shot down to 1/5th of a second. By panning with the runner I was blurred her arms and legs keeping the body and head relatively steady. The bright sun reflecting off the bay provided a great opportunity to turn the runner into a near silhouette.
I tried longer exposures, but with the bright background, the runner’s arms and legs were largely lost in the light and almost didn’t register in the image. The notion of a head and torso hurtling down the beach didn’t really work with the image I was trying to create…