Posts Tagged ‘Mardi Gras’

Day 33 of the project coincided with the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, and as it’s probably one of the most photographed events of the year I decided to take a different angle, concentrating on taking pictures of the photographers!


Day 27 – Mardi Gras!

So the Sydney Mardi Gras parade was on today and as I’m a bit tired (as you would if you had a few beers and then spent about 6 hours navigating from milk crate to milk crate amongst a 10-person deep crowd to take one of about 400 photos – i filled 2 memory cards!) I’m going to quote some poems instead of writing much today! It was a great event with the theme of the parade being History of the World, obviously encompassing gay history and the fact that when the first march was held in 1978 homosexuality was illegal in New South Wales and all the marchers were arrested.

It was a fantastic night and the highlight for me was just being there seeing the smiles on everyones faces, absolutely everyone I met was smiling! A party for half a million people as only Sydney can do! Anyway some poetry!

Sonnet 116 – William Shakesphere

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

Ode to a Grecian Urn – John Keats

O Attic shape!  Fair attitude! with brede
Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
With forest branches and the trodden weed;
Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought
As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral!
When old age shall this generation waste,
Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say’st,
“Beauty is truth, truth beauty,” – that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

Lastly I have all the 365 pictures on flickr in bigger size so its a bit easier to see photo montages like above! The address is

Day 17 – D.A.S.

The photo above is partially related to the visual communications lecture we had on Tuesday about how perception and reality aren’t always the same, it is rather apt for day 17!

By the way the first person to figure out what DAS stands for wins a prize! Now let me tell you about today!

Earlier on I thought I would look into what the procedures were for getting a photographers accreditation for the upcoming Mardi Gras parade. After a little bit of research I saw that the passes were relatively simple to apply for but they cost $150, a little outside my student budget! Anyway I decided to email the contact listed on the website to ask about any possible student discounts as I wanted take some pictures for my assignments, and as such there would be no financial gain involved in it for me, only added exposure for the event.

Well his reply back must be the quote of the day, if not the month! It was: “I’m afraid it’s not possible to waive the fee. The Parade route is a relatively dangerous place to shoot as well so we tend not to encourage student photography”

Ok fair enough about the fee, I was only chancing my luck anyhow, although my income as a student realistically means I can’t afford to apply, but “a relatively dangerous place” ???!!! Ah here! Now whether he thinks I’m actually twelve and is genuinely concerned for my safety, or believes I will neglect to see a flock of 7ft drag queens bearing down on me and will succumb to an unfortunate ‘death-via-stiletto’ or is mindful that in my youthful exuberance (I’m 27) I may press down on the shutter a little too enthusiastically and break a nail I just don’t know.

Would I be too cynical to suggest he is merely sprouting bulls#%t (excuse my language!) to hide the fact that, to a non-commercial photographer, these fees are utterly un-justifiable and not typical of similar events?

Lets look at it practically, the photographers don’t actually watch the parade and any photographer will know that if you really capture what is happening you don’t actually see it because the shutter opens and the view you had goes black. Secondly they actually add to the atmosphere with the constant firing of the flash guns, just imagine the impact of a parade without photographers and thirdly the cost involved in accommodating photographers is more than recooperated by the publicity the media generate, which in turn leads to sponsorship. 

I mean I will have an argument with anyone and can accept that people are entitled to their point of view, but please, don’t give me bulls#$t. Fourthly I have both attended and participated in the Mardi Gras parade over the last few years and can safely say that the ‘relative’  danger is far greater on the spectator side of the fence! As anyone who has ever had to battle a 10-person-deep crowd with elbows, beer and milk crates will certainly know!

Now don’t get me wrong, I hesitate to criticise any individual or organisation that undertakes the work involved in putting together an event of the magnitude or importance of the Sydney Mardi Gras, but I did email back and convey, respectfully, my views that they should change their student policy.