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The Lighting Council of Australia commissioned me to document the recent visit of Ed Husic MP to the Signify head office in Mascot. The Shadow Minister for Industry and Innovation, Husic is also the first Muslim to be elected to Federal Parliament.
There was a short presentation of the latest innovations and future projects for urban lighting by Signify, formerly Phillips Lighting, as well a general tour of the facility.
During the visit to the manufacturing division of Signify, the Shadow Minister met one of his constituents, a fellow Bosnian, and they happily recognised each other. The two of them are pictured below.
One calm Friday morning in January, I walked onto a retro set which had been constructed at Sydney Props Specialists in Marrickville. I love this place. It’s like walking through the door of a “dressing cupboard” into a magical universe in a parallel dimension.
Vanity Fair and Courtney Act were putting the final touches to their make-up, as they were getting ready for their close-ups. I quickly set about constructing the lighting rig on the set so we could commence shooting. Playing the roles inspired by two friends in a 1980s chat show, Vanity and Courtney posed on the two main sets … one a “high-tech” office reception area with a huge desk-top computer and antiquated Eighties technology, and the other a pastel pink bedroom scene reminiscent of a Barbie boudoir.
These images are being used by NOVA Entertainment to promote their upcoming podcast by Vanity Fair and Courtney Act entitled “Brenda, Call Me” beginning on February 11. Here’s the promo blurb….
Drag sisters in crime, Courtney Act and Vanity have a new podcast: Brenda, Call Me! Friends for over twenty years, they’ve gone through it all together. Catch up with them each week as they let it all hang out discussing everything and nothing. It’s the Seinfeld of podcasts. Coming soon.
I have been photographing the legendary Bob Downe for many years now and I feel that I must comment on the fact that for some reason Bob never seems to age. See for yourself in the images from my latest shoot with this iconic stage, cabaret, theatre and television personality. Like many of his ilk, Bob never gives away his ageless grooming secrets, although in a recent post he did mention that he “sleeps in a rubber mould”. However, I suspect he was pulling our proverbial leg.
Bob was wearing some of the magnificent creations of Maude Boate. Maude is one of the true originals of Australian drag, as well as an incredibly talented designer and dress-maker. Maude’s trademarked polystyrene wigs were adapted for the movie and stage-play, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.
Bob’s good friend and confidant, Mark Trevorrow feels that Bob should be at Madame Tussauds. In his sequinned leisure suits, sometimes he almost looks like he is. (Incidentally Mark Trevorrow is performing on March 4 at Claire’s Kitchen at Le Salonin Oxford St, Darlinghurst). Others have described Bob as “naturally fabulous”, and “ageing like indestructible Tupperware”. All I can say is that I always have loads of laughs with Bob on every photo shoot in my studio. He’s a real pro and he makes my job so much easier, despite the highly flammable fabrics.
It was a joy to photograph Samantha – performer, business strategist and motivational speaker – who is forever on the move. She is a great communicator with a vivacious energy and we had a fun afternoon shooting new imagery for her branding and corporate profile.
As Samantha says, “If you haven’t noticed, I’ve stopped listening to the ‘experts’ that tell you to only have one business. I happen to love and excel at being a multi passionate entrepreneur.” To find out more about Samantha visit her website here.
It’s uplifting to see how clever businesses are able to find fresh ways to survive in the current climate, and to reward their loyal customers.
Le Coq, a well-loved restaurant in Darling Road not far from my studio in Rozelle, boasts a menu focussed on traditional French poultry dishes. Together with David Poirier, the owner of Le Coq, I recently set up a photo-shoot as a way to celebrate their regular clients at a time when business is beginning to return to normal. Inspired by Leonardo’s Last Supper, I created a series of iconic portraits of various local people from Rozelle and Balmain seated at a long dining table. The new series is called The First Supper. These culinary portraits will soon be hanging on the walls of Le Coq.
The Sydney Morning Herald published a short story in its Short black good food guide on June 20, 2020.
Rather than photographing the parade, this year at Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, I photographed the spectators gathered at Taylors Square, the hub of the procession.
I embraced the importance of an event where people from all different walks of life come together to celebrate a sense of community with joy and pride. It’s more than political. It not only reinforces the idea we are all in this together it provides an opportunity to shed the hum-drum and throw your hands in the air without shame.
The following crowd images are a quick selection of some of my favorites….
Well another week has passed! And boy, did it pass quickly. I am now on the home stretch with only little more than a week to go.
The teaching classes have been fantastic, with the kids moving well in terms of their understanding of photography and their willingness to take risks and find out what they can do.
We plan to have a small exhibition at the end of the week and invite all the parents into the centre for a bit of a look and some nibbles. That’s going to put a bit of pressure on the interpreter. LOL.
When we’re not in the class situation our time is spent traveling around to the various galleries and exhibitions that are on in Shanghai at the moment. The art scene here seems very vibrant and relatively open. I have seen some brilliant work here by various artists and marvel at the relative freedom these guys have to pursue their work. Firstly, they seem to take enormous risks in terms of what they are willing to pursue….many of them change style and subject as they would change their clothes, allowing themselves the freedom to pursue new ideas without considering how the market will respond. I like this approach. You may say that these Chinese artists have less of a free voice, with censorship present on every level of Chinese society……however, I seem to think this small barrier to absolute freedom of speech is surmounted easily and confidently by the artists who’s work I have seen, by innuendo, satire and irony. The censorship merely forces the artists to become more creative and subtle in the way they approach the subject or comment they wish to make….the comment is still made! Secondly, with China’s amazing industrial might, the artists here have access to materials and labour that may have been prohibitive to other artists elsewhere. They can also not limited by scale.
There I am, right up there with camera in hand! Finally, got the thrill of shooting Courtney Act (Global Ambassador for Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras) perched on the highest sail of the Opera House. Amazing experience! With limited time and tight technical restrictions you were more concentrated on getting the shot than taking in the remarkable view. However, it will be something I’ll remember for a long time to come. Courtney was the consummate professional and, as always, a joy to work with. Thanks to everyone involved in making the shoot happen, particularly the amazing staff at the Opera House for pulling all stops out to facilitate the shoot.
I had the best start to the morning, this morning.
I had to be at the stage door of the Opera House at 6.30am. Myself and a couple of comrades prepared ourselves for an exceptional climb. We were to view the location of a proposed shoot.
After weaving our bodies through the internal structure of one of the sails and along it’s spine, we squeezed through the last trapdoor to ascend upon the highest sail of the Opera House. As you climb out, the view almost takes your breath away.
It took a couple of minutes for the realisation that, “I’m on top of the sail of the Opera house…..outside!”, to sink in. How fabulous!!
Here’s a shot (below). I can’t wait for the shoot date!
Had a ball working with Decoda and Rhys and Jeremy on their up and coming extravaganza at ARQ, The New Trinity Show. It was fun to see Decoda schlepped in cases of all kinds of possible accessories! You can never have enough, hey! Happy to say we got some great shots out of the exercise.
Norrie is deservedly in the news, and I’m happy to see my portrait of Norrie May-Welby picked up by the Guardian newspaper, appearing on the home page of the Australian version of the Guardian’s web site. This portrait also made it as a finalist in the 2011 National Portrait Prize at the National Portrait Gallery, Canberra.
A warm invitation to all to attend the opening of an exhibition of my work along side an extremely interesting exhibition of 10 contemporary Chinese Multi Media Artist, taking place in St Leonards on Saturday 22 February, 2014 from 3-6pm. See invite below for details…….(double click on the attachments to zoom in)
I had the pleasure of shooting for George Jreige recently. Loved the seductive range of tailored jackets and sexy, stylish t-shirts. High quality detailing and beautiful fabrics are a hallmark of Georges work. George is entering the fashion arena with a strong sense of style and quality after graduating in Fashion Design and working in the fashion industry. I wish him all the best. It was a joy working with the make-up artist, Sahra Bull, the fabulous model, Johnny Simon and my trusty assistant, Saverio Marfia. I will post some of the finished shots of our efforts when they are released.