The first phase of an extensive upgrade to Mosman High School has recently been completed by Multiplex. I was commissioned to photograph the completion of this initial part of the project which extends along Military Road, between Avenue Road and Belmont Road, Mosman.
The build comprises of 16 new flexible learning spaces, new staff and administration facilities, new library, a beautiful new, extensive multipurpose gym/hall, a new canteen and a wonderful outdoor and rooftop play space.
This has to be state-of-the-art learning facilities and as I was traveling through the building with my camera I felt a bit of FOMO coming on as I was reminded of the not-so-state-of-the-art learning facilities I experienced, back in the day, at Horsham High School.
In a departure from the more traditional corporate headshot required for company portfolios, the architectural firm Hansen Yuncken has decided to approach this genre differently, aiming for a more relaxed and natural look during our recent photographic shoot of some of their Sydney team..
The idea has been to capture the individual subjects with various backgrounds and in informal poses, as opposed to having a standard plain background, with each portrait photographed from the same angle. Where conditions permitted, I used natural light as the main light source. The emphasis was on diversity, and a less contrived atmosphere and posture. Of course the mere fact that the subject is having a portrait photograph taken can work as a barrier … not everyone likes being put in front of a camera for that “close-up”. It is always the photographer’s challenge to make the experience as easy and relaxed as possible, to achieve a more natural image (in spite of the very “un-natural” situation). I think we succeeded with the task at hand.
On a recent job for Prime Constructions I organised drone photography to be shot at one of their sites. It is hard not to feel like you’re revisiting your childhood with such technology … you know, a bit like when dad and you made one of those remote controlled planes. Fortunately the drone is a bit easier to fly than the bungled attempts I remember trying to get the plane off the ground.
Prime is regarded as one of the leading building contractors in NSW. It was established in 1983 by Ron Masters and Phil de Gail. Paul Christopher and John Drake joined the company in 1988 and 1989 respectively and both became joint managing directors in 2010.
I also captured some images of a recently completed logistics centre by Prime Constructions at Homebush. While I was working until dusk, waiting for the light to become more seductive, it was a welcome surprise to find that there was a fast-food van next door with outdoor seating. Of course I couldn’t resist trying the “Little Weiner cuisine” in between shots.
Feature Point Constructions is a boutique construction and building company based in Melbourne, specialized in shop and office fit-outs and home renovations. Its hallmark is precision and quality finishes. The company is run by the well-presented and professional master tradesman, Ali Yucel (pictured above).
I spent the afternoon in Torquay, Victoria, photographing a home renovation that had recently been completed by Feature Point Constructions.
Torquay holds a special place in my heart as it was the “go to” holiday spot for my mother, aunty and us children. I have lots of fun memories of frolicking endlessly by the beach, long sunny days and loads of oysters and crayfish at the end of day in the hotel room.
I was impressed with the clean lines, rounded corners and beautiful finishes on this renovation. The following is a gallery of some of the shots.
Upcycling an existing 1970s office block paid off for the architects behind Sydney’s new Quay Quarter Towers, which won the World Building of the Year in late November 2022, the second major international award in less than a month. I photographed the project management team and the final stages of construction for Multiplex back in March 2021, when it was clear that the redesign would have a huge impact on the city skyline.
Designed by Danish architects 3XN with BVN architects in Sydney, Quay Quarter Towers was announced as the world building of the year at the annual world architecture festival in Lisbon, which attracted nearly 800 entries across a range of categories. The shortlist of 252 completed buildings included diverse projects, ranging from homes to museums around the world. The 206-metre-high building at 50 Bridge Street in Sydney’s CBD, which was developed by AMP Capital, also won the award for the world’s best new skyscraper.
The construction of Quay Quarter Towers retained two-thirds of the beams, columns and floor slabs and 95 per cent of the original core built for the AMP Society in the 1970s. Adapting the earlier skyscraper was a smart financial decision because repurposing a building rather than demolishing it to rebuild meant a faster return to market. It was also smarter for the planet because it saved more than 7 million kilograms of carbon. That’s equal to 35,000 flights from Sydney to Melbourne.
With international students again on the march towards higher education in Australia, student accommodation has become an essential part of the process of welcoming this incoming community.
Iglu Student Accommodation is a developer of purpose-built facilities intended for student-living. The company develops and manages residential properties for rental purposes close to university campuses, colleges, public transport, shopping, eating and entertainment facilities along with support services across Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. Iglu is a consortium owned by GIC (Government Investment Corporation of Singapore) and Macquarie Capital.
Recently Hansen Yuncken (construction) has been involved in the re-development of a site in Summer Hill in Sydney, for the latest addition to the Iglu line-up across Australia.
Here are some images of the funky environment that has been created for our new wave of tertiary students.
You may well ask….what is a “sod-turning”. I did. Well it is when a construction company starts work on a new project and the occasion is marked by a mound of dirt being turned ceremoniously with a shiny new shovel. This marks the beginning of the construction work on the site.
It is common to also include a smoking ceremony as a mark of respect to the traditional owners of the land with an Acknowledgement of Country. The smoking ceremony, according to the traditional owners, is a way of cleansing the area by smouldering native plants to create smoke which wards off any “bad” spirits and at the same time purifying the area both physically and spiritually. This is performed by an elder of the indigenous community. Today it was Aunty Gail. She was joined by Brandon and Jetsyn who were also part of the Gandangara Local Aboriginal Land Council.
Hansen Yuncken (construction), One Five One (developer) and Chemcorp (client) celebrated the start of their new warehouse project at Prestons in NSW in mid-July. Their brand new warehouse will be completed by February 2023 and Chemcorp will have a state-of-the-art facility. The project involves construction of two new warehouses, with over 22,000m², designed to achieve a 5 Star Green Star rating.
The team at Hansen Yuncken is about to start work on a new project at Trinity Grammar in Summer Hill, Sydney. To mark the occasion it is customary to stage a ceremony where the first “sod” is turned on the site of the construction.
Happily on this occasion the grown-ups had some welcome help from a few younger “construction workers” in long-fitting hi-vis and spacious hard-hats. Perhaps the new cadets of the future.
A number of my clients are in the construction business and occasionally I am asked to go on-site and produce images that can be used for marketing purposes. One such occasion arose recently at one of Hansen and Yuncken’s building sites at Meadowbank TAFE. I was commissioned to capture a series of images of their staff, on site and at work, that could be used for marketing purposes such as tenders.
Unless there is a concise brief, in which the client requests specific shots, my general approach is to go on-site and to work in an impromptu but professional way. It is not always necessary to direct the subjects when setting up the shot. I prefer to wait for the right moment and then step in to take the photograph. Besides, it’s not as if my subjects are paid fashion models. They are usually the employees of the company, photographed by me as they go about their normal day-to-day duties.
I enjoy this type of photography, since it allows me to step into the universe of construction and to see how a large-scale operation works from a human point of view.
I recently photographed studio portraits as corporate profiles for the team at Prime Constructions. For the occasion, a studio set-up was temporarily installed at the company’s Artarmon offices, as pictured. Sometimes as a photographer, the key is to be mobile.
Prime chose a standard grey background with a slight gradient for the portraits. The subject was seated, to create a corporate mood that was relaxed and open. The images are all shot in a landscape orientation, rather than portrait. This choice was made based on the proposed layout of these profiles on the Prime Constructions website. The main lighting is high key with not too much contrast on the face, and I added a hair-light to separate the sitter from the background.
In 1983, Ron Masters & Phil de Gail established Prime Constructions, now regarded as one of the leading building contractors in New South Wales. Paul Christopher joined Prime in 1988 as a cadet and John Drake commenced as a general foreman in 1989. Having prospered and developed within the increasingly expanding company, John and Paul became directors and shareholders in 2000. In 2010, they became joint managing directors.
Prime’s services include new construction, refurbishment and fit-out for projects up to $80m, offering innovative construction solutions and undertaking industrial, commercial, retail and institutional projects. Over the past several years, I have photographed many building sites overseen by Prime, documenting each stage from the earliest preliminary phases to completion. With a proven record of successful project delivery for over 35 years, Prime is one of my long-standing architectural clients.
Three years ago, when I first photographed the site of the Inner Sydney High School on the corner of Cleveland and Chalmers Streets in Surry Hills, it was a series of traditional brick classrooms built in the late 1800’s. Now thanks to the design by FJMT Studio and the high tech building efforts of Hansen Yuncken, it is a magnificent contemporary campus amid heritage architecture, and an example of a new direction in public education.
Apart from the classrooms, the school features an enviable array of facilities including media rooms, fully-equipped kitchens, science labs, woodworking rooms, a sky-high basketball court, library, lecture halls, assembly areas and loads of cool spaces to hang out and be educated.
The Mushroom Group has recently updated its Sydney headquarters, a hub for the best musical talent this country has to offer. As Australia’s largest independent music and entertainment group, its history is unrivalled. Although the recent death of legendary founder Michael Gudinski was untimely, he had the opportunity to see the renovations almost complete.
I was commissioned by Prime Projects to plot the initial phase of the refurbishment with the intention to complete a more detailed portfolio of the building when the fit-out is fully operational and the art collection has been installed.
The Mushroom Group continues to be at the forefront of Australian music, producing iconic collaborations which in the past have included “Living in the 70’s” by Skyhooks, “True Colours” by Split Enz, such signings as Hunters & Collectors and Machinations and under Mushroom Records label, the who’s who of Australian rock and pop – The Angels, Jimmy Barnes, Nelly Furtado, Renee Geyer, Kate Ceberano, Kylie Minogue, Yothu Yindi…and the list goes on.
Multiplex decided to update their banner imagery using photographs taken at their soon-to-be completed construction site at the skyscraper on the corner of Bridge and Phillip Streets in Sydney.
I took photographs of various employees from different fields of construction, be it engineering or project management. Throughout the building, from the street level to the 40th floor, I photographed the Multiplex crew in their lofty work environment.
Meadowbank TAFE is expanding. Hansen Yuncken are responsible for the construction of the new facilities and at the start of the building project a smoking ceremony was performed in accordance with Aboriginal customs, respecting the traditional owners of the land, the Walumedigal people of the Eora Nation.
Hansen Yuncken executives participated in the ceremony together with representatives of TAFE, the architects, local politicians and others. I managed to capture of few shots of various employees at the site office.
I have been tracing and documenting the progress of the new 11-story building over the past two years. I recently photographed the completed school building complex by Hansen Yuncken Pty Ltd. It incorporates the refurbished heritage-listed buildings which were part of the former Cleveland Street High School, with the towering expanses of the new structures. Throughout the final shoot, I kept asking myself why I wasn’t able to go to a school like this when I was young.
The features are amazing. The kids even have their own cappuccino machine, in what I presume is the “Home Science” area of this innovative school. A cappuccino machine!
There are air-lifted basketball courts, high-rise dining and lounge areas, state-of-the-art facilities in all the learning spaces and “to-die-for” views in every direction, especially overlooking Prince Alfred Park and the skyscrapers on the city skyline.
Have a look at the video the Education Department has made…click here:
The Liverpool Health and Academic Precinct is a $740 million redevelopment of Liverpool Hospital and a new education and research hub. The redevelopment will provide Liverpool Hospital with expanded clinical services, public spaces and car parking, integrated with research and teaching.
I shot part of an initial phase of construction for Multiplex (the contractor on this phase), which features a temporary teaching centre for medical students and staff. Multiplex is also delivering a number of other projects, including a new kitchen facility, reconfiguration of several buildings and a car park.
Nowadays people need places to store things, especially if you are living in a small inner-city apartment. I have seen more and more storage facilities popping up in the city, sometimes in the most extraordinary places.
Xenia Constructions has built one such place … a new Storage King facility in Minchinbury, constructed as a state-of-the art warehouse in smart blue and white.
Near the Alexandria entrance to the newly opened M8 tunnel a dynamic new industrial landscape of warehouses and offices is emerging. Prime Projects (NSW) Pty Limited have just completed the repurposing and repositioning of an existing industrial asset for Goodman in Alexandria.
The development and construction project by Leffler Simes Architects with consulting engineers Triaxial and Sparks + Partners, includes the new facade and fit-out to 3 showrooms, new service infrastructure and service upgrades to the warehouse portion, as well as internal walls.
134 Euston Road, Alexandria by Prime Projects Pty Ltd
What to do with an abandoned building, collecting dust, graffiti and shattered glass. Prime Constructions turned a run-down eye-sore in Pymble into a modern, highly functional office building with all the mod-cons.
I was given the unusual opportunity to photograph the project as a “before and after” record of how urban spaces can be reclaimed and repurposed.
The decision has been to respect as much of the original, high quality graffiti as possible especially in the lower ground floors and car park. In this way the past is featured as part of the present.
Tigerpak office and warehouse, Marsden Park (for The Prime Group)
SCT Warehouse, Minchinbury (for The Prime Group)
Charter Hall warehouse and offices, Prestons (for The Prime Group)
Prior to the offices of the NSW Department of Health being occupied in their new premise at St Leonards I photographed the interiors and exteriors of the multi-storey, purpose built facility, designed by BVN Architects and constructed by Multiplex, consolidating 10 NSW Health agencies into one location.
Improving collaboration between NSW Health agencies, the relocating health entities include the Ministry of Health, Agency for Clinical Innovation, Bureau of Health Information, the Clinical Excellence Commission, the Health Education and Training Institute, Cancer Institute NSW, NSW Health Pathology, Health Infrastructure, eHealth NSW and HealthShare NSW.