Friday, January 25, 2008

Smoke On The Water

Fire In The Sky

Photographs copyright: DAVID McMAHON


During a bushfire, the sky is always endowed with vivid colours. Last summer, when fires ringed Victoria, I took these shots from Princes Bridge here in Melbourne. There was a brooding sky that looked as if someone had dropped a can of Chrome Yellow paint all across its expanse.

As the sun rose through the heavy cloud and the thick smoke that choked the city, it seemed devoid of any recognisable shape. I shot half a dozen frames very quickly, moving from the St Kilda Road end of the bridge to the other side, near Flinders Street Station.

The timing was perfect because I was able to compose several shots of the dramatic sunrise against the tall trees that fringe the Alexandra Gardens. Then, when I was halfway across the bridge, I realised I could shoot a vertical frame to include the historic boatsheds and the glow of the sky reflected in the surface of the Yarra River.

47 comments:

Nessa said...

Startling.

ummmhello said...

That's a striking shot. I'm so jealous... you don't see anything like that in Chicago - not even in summer!

Kendra Field-Bennett said...

Amazing! Love the photos, just wish you lived closer to us so you could take some cool shots of the boys. I'm such an amateur!

Andrea said...

Great shot. Love the colors.

Misty Dawn said...

Absolutely gorgeous!

Hey David, I just found out one of my photos won honorable mention in a contest my college had. I just had to share the news with someone, and since you always inspire me, I decided you'd be the first to hear my news ;-) (And, yes, I'm 32 years old and in college - it's never too late, I guess)

bj said...

Oh, my...what an interesting blog you have here, David. I can hardly wait to look at the rest.
Thanks for stopping by my space..I do appreciate it and hope that you will come back soon.
Yes, our girls are gonna have the time of their lives tonight and I can hardly wait for them to get home tomorrow and hear all about it.
bj

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

Very nice photos, David! It's always interesting to me that the worse the atmospheric conditions, the more beautiful the sunrises and sunsets.

DesLily said...

hello David, I wanted to thank you for coming by my blog.. for a time, long ago, I used to chat with a very young man from Queenland, you are one of the few I've read from Australia..

gorgeous photo's!

Old Wom Tigley said...

Such stunning colours David... well captured.
This is my first Sky Watch as it is still 21.00 here in the UK, on Thursaday.. Sky Watch Thursday just dose not have the same ring about it.. :O)

Suldog said...

Well, David, anything with a Deep Purple lyric fragment used as a title is bound to draw me in! Nice shot.

dot said...

You always have the most beautiful sky pictures. I guess you just have a good eye, good camera, and lots of know how!

Julie said...

Stunning - effect of dust particles or what??

Caffeine Court said...

How beautiful! I have always wanted to visit Australia! It's so far away from New Jersey. Someday...

Tom & Icy said...

Huh? If they dropped paint that went up and colored the sky, it must have upsadaisyum in it.

mielikki said...

beautiful...

Stacey said...

Well done, that's all I can say, nothing else does it justice.

imac said...

Super shots David.


Have you captured the tree People like I have

Corey~living and loving said...

oooo you really make me wish I was there. I am not sure which I like better but the portrait just might lead by a margin for me. :) well done.

Lana Gramlich said...

Stunning!

Andrea said...

Thanks for the compliments on my blog. Love those photos of the sunrise! Absolutely gorgeous!! You are an amazing photographer!

Julie said...

Dave - Where's the Avalon link - I can't find it....and did you pick up that the War Veteran's bio I ghosted six years ago was found by BBC NI and parts of a docu based on it?

A contact of mine is working at getting it to pdf - first charitable print run sold out. I've done Duxford a few times, tho'not seen the new hangar - almost called in last week; we live on Biggin Hill flight path and get the Red Arrows occasionally. Family were involved at Blackburns, Brough, & aviation is one of a wide spread of interests....! Cheers.

lynn said...

Beautiful; the paint description is so apt.

Nap Warden said...

Great pictures...and clever, clever title!

Smells Like Theme Spirit...Why didn't I think of that?

Lee said...

Exquisitely gorgeous shots, David! I like the title too. Do you remember way back when Mount Saint Helen's became active again? I was younger then, but I remember that the media folk promised us some fantastic sunrises and sunsets for the next 6 months from the ash thrown into the air by her explosion. They were right, and so are you!

Cheers!

Autumn said...

Wonderful pictures David, however now I can't get that song out of my head!

Sandy Carlson said...

How is it disasters yield such beauty? Thanks for the narrative that accompanies this wonderful photo. As usual, I am in awe of your work.

pat houseworth said...

Seems every sunrise/sunset is like a set of fingerprints....no 2 are alike. Good Ones David!

Bubba's Sis said...

Beautiful pictures!!

Lilli & Nevada said...

Now that is very interesting and the yellow is perfect

leslie said...

Gorgeous shot! You are obviously a very talented photographer. I'm envious. :D

Am'n2deep said...

Gorgeous! I have never seen a sunset quite like that.

Paulie said...

Interesting. . . awhile back I took some photos of the sunset and they came out in the shape of yours and I figured they wee ruined. Glad I was wrong! The contrast in the photos is beautiful.

evlahos said...

excellent captures light and colors

Ida said...

Great captures!
The sky looks yellow.
I started out singing... ;) "Smoke on the water....."

ArneA said...

ABC = Amazing. Beautiful. Cannot do it better.

gaz said...

love the tone.

Marie said...

Your sky watch photos are amazing!

Anita said...

Amazing!

DarylE said...

Intense and involving, thank you

RuneE said...

Really professional work, David!

Once more, it makes me think about the likeness between pictures of subupi/sunsets and fires. And here you have both.

Well done!

Absolute Vanilla (& Atyllah) said...

Stunning images, David.

I recall the massive fires we had here in 2000/2001 - the entire mountain range burned and the colours were spectacular, especially when combined with the setting sun.

Dottie said...

Absolutely beautiful!

Sharon said...

Beautiful

Dan Mega said...

Wow, an amazing shot.

D... said...

Absolutely stunning.

Amrita said...

just like poetry

Kerri said...

Wow! This is lovely!