Sunday, October 31, 2010

Verse and worse

Have you ever watched a conger
Grow an inch as it gets stronger?
It's all about the speed it feels
As it shows a clean pair of eels

How I met the First Lady of NYC

Photographs copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: NYC1July-0070)

As regular readers of this blog are aware, I do not posts shots of myself, but I simply HAD to make an exception in this case. I had told my good friend Daryl that we would be in New York City in late June-early July this year and truth be told, meeting her face-to-face for the first time was very special.

It was only after we returned home to Melbourne that I realised Daryl had very kindly posted a shot of us here.

We were all so touched that she actually took the time to leave work mid-morning to meet the entire Authorblog family in Times Square. And when I rocked up (a minute late) she was already deep in conversation with Mrs Authorblog. I suspect that the DNM (deep and meaningful) had something to do with retail therapy, but I cannot speculate further, so can you stop twisting my arm now.

At the time, I had stopped blogging to concentrate on my novels, and Daryl and I briefly touched on the possibility that I might resurrect this blog one day. I also apologised for my uncharacteristic four-day stubble - but the woman who long ago christened me "Den Mom" said she would overlook it, only this once!

By the way, if you want to enter a title-writing contest for an unusual image I recently posted, just click here - or even just look at some of the witty titles that visitors have already posted.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Verse and worse

There's no time for vanity
At the Rally To Restore Sanity
So show that you care - support Stewart and Colbert
With minutes to spare, you just have to be there

Hello, is it me you're looking for?

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: Malaysia2010-3437)

As soon as I saw the word emblazoned in white on this public phone booth in central Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in January this year, I thought of the Lionel Richie hit song, Hello.

This was very close to our hotel and I shot this image just after we had checked in, dropped our bags off and headed out to explore a city we hadn't seen in more than six months. In order to get this shot, I had to wait to get a clear field of vision on a busy footpath.

We saw more phone booths around the city, all in the same distinctive colour scheme - but none of them with the paint so fresh. I've seen some pretty interesting public phones around the world, but this one was up there with the best of them, for sure.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Verse and worse

Nintendo and its boss have been plagued by their loss
And the shareholders themselves are exceedingly cross
They'll run past the steeple
As they sing: ``Wii the people''.

The day's last patch of colour

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID:124-6437)

You know how you sometimes get a lucky shot? This was the perfect example. I shot this back in March this year. I was on a freeway, driving south into gathering darkness. I had hills in front of me, cloaked in the black velvet of warm night. But my rear view mirror? Ah, that was a different matter altogether ....

I could see a rapidly diminishing patch of sky behind me, reflected in my mirror, with a range of vivid colours. But I was certainly not going to pull off the freeway just to take a shot or two.

When I eventually came to my exit, the patch of colours had shrunk to a tiny area above the distant horizon. On the expanse of the exit ramp, in little or no traffic, I finally pulled over with plenty of space to spare. How lucky was I: instead of my normal 18-125mm lens, my camera had a 70-300mm lens fitted, so I didn't have to carry out a quick swap.

This was shot at the full extent of the 300mm lens - and yes, the telephone pole actually gave the frame a bit of character as I shot into the distance.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Verse and worse

Yes, you might shiver
At Brandywine River
But if you want more
Head for Arkansas

Steel yourself

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: Sydney2010-6640)

This was shot beneath one of the world's great landmarks, but can you guess which one it is? I was captivated not just by the graceful street lamp but by the many geometrical silhouettes I could see here - squares, rectangles, circles, triangles and arcs.

No, it's not the Eiffel Tower. No, it ain't the Golden Gate Bridge. I shot this on home soil. Any ideas? OK - I'll reveal this was shot in New South Wales. If you said I was standing underneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge, then you are absolutely right!

I shot this on the Easter weekend this year. We were with close friends at the open-air weekend market at The Rocks, the historic harbourside area, when I decided to walk underneath the bridge to see if I could perhaps conjure up a "different" view of the much-photographed Australian icon.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Verse and worse

Yes, Kanye West, you would know best
And your diamond implants are no passing jest
I reckon you've started a dentistry trend
Now that your gnashers are a girl's best friend

Must be tanks-giving day

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON. (Image ID: USA2010-2July-1163)

I shot this late on a summer evening in New York City this year. We were with a friend in the area known as Little Italy, sampling the food and taking in the sights. Shortly after a meal, we emerged to wander down the vibrant streets, soaking up the pre-Fourth of July atmosphere when I noticed these silhouettes against the late-evening sky.

The rooftop water tanks really "made" this image for me. Earlier that day, a tour guide had explained to us how crucial they had been in the city's early history, especially in terms of fire-fighting regulations.

The strong silhouettes worked so well against that sulphuric sky. All I had to do was stand in the middle of a street to take the shot!

PS: If you enjoy writing clever titles, do try your hand at a simple contest here.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Verse and worse

Will we soon see a colour Nook?
Will Barnes & Noble take a second look?
Or will they launch a brand-new Cranny?
That I can purchase for my granny

Mei the force be with you

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: India4 083)

This sight stopped me in my tracks, not just because of the misplaced capital Y, nor the intriguing "only for ladies" stipulation. It wasn't even the fact that the beauty parlour sign was in three languages. It was, I guess, just the combination of colours and the two contrasting entrances.

This was shot in southern Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) during a brief visit to India in October 2006. If you've read either of my novels, you'll know that India features strongly in my writing - after all, that is where I was born and educated.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Verse and worse

The girl from Tamburn Creek
Kisses cowboys on the cheek
But the girl from Ipanema
Once had a dislocated femur

Join the dots

Photograph copyright: DAVD McMAHON (Image ID: 93-1924)

I've had an interesting (and very fulfilling) landmark today. This simple image of miniature didgeridoos, shot inside a duty-free shop at Melbourne's Tullamarine Airport in November 2008, has just become my first image on Red Bubble to cross the milestone of a thousand views.

The image on display here is a low-res version of the original, but if you want to see it full size, in high resolution, just click here and if you so desire you can even click the "view larger" option when you're there.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Can you solve this mystery?

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON. (Image ID:125-7620)

Just a simple shot, of a common object. It's something I like doing. No tricks, no sleight of hand. No magic wand, no smoke or mirrors. But can you identify what I've displayed here?

You can have as many guesses as you want, in the comments section. If no one solves it in 24 hours, I'll reveal the answer on this post. But if you're curious and you really MUST know what it is, then just click on this image of mine for the solution!

(AS PROMISED, HERE IS THE ANSWER, 24 hours after posting the image. This depicts a row of Nintendo 64 game cartridges!)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Verse and worse

Farmer Giles
Wears old-fashioned styles
But Admiral Carter
Is a knight of the garter

You've gotta be conning me

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: Sydney2010-6461)

This shot of a submarine's conning tower and radar scanner was not shot at sea. It was shot inland, in the Australian Outback!

Trust me, there really is a full-size submarine in the parkland (yes, you DID read that right) in the tiny New South Wales town of Holbrook.

I shot this during the Easter long weekend this year and when I posted it a few days later on my Red Bubble site, I was not prepared for the reaction it attracted. The shot received almost 500 hits in a couple of hours.

Incidentally, if you fancy your title-writing skills and your sense of humour, you might like to try a fun contest I just posted here.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Verse and worse

Wailed Angus McSquare:
``It just isn’t fair
That this hole in the ground
Is perfectly round''

Icarus is alive and well in NYC

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON. (Image ID:USA2010-29June-8848)

It was our first day in Manhattan in June this year - and as usual I was lagging a few metres behind the rest of the family when a chorus went up from the Authorbloglets. They were calling for my attention, above the joyous hubbub and throng that is Times Square.

I heard the call - and saw what they were pointing to. I had to run to get a clear shot of this pedicab operator in traffic. It was a decent sprint - especially when you consider I had to weave through the crowd, but at least I was able to get this tight shot as a result.

I only had time for one other, of the pedicab driver in the entire context of Times Square, before he went past me and I was able to shoot the rear view of his wings.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Verse and worse

If you feel that the ₤
Has failed to astound
Consider the scholar
Who lost bets on the $

Crop circles never looked this bright

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON. (Image ID: 125-7639)

Just a simple shot of a set of watercolours. I meant to shoot this before they had been opened and used, but I obviously waited too long! However, at this point I realised that the real beauty in this everyday image was the fact that the paintbox had actually been used and therefore had acquired more "character". Do you agree?

Bear in mind, this is a low-resolution version of the original. If you want to see the hi-res version, just click here and you'll even have the option of clicking on the "View larger" tab.

AND HERE'S A BONUS: If you want to enter a fun title-writing contest for an offbeat image of mine, just click here. Be creative, have fun - and pass the word around!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Verse and worse

On the sun-drenched beaches of Cocos Keeling
Sir Ron proposed marriage (while his butler was kneeling)
The lady, delirious, asked, “Is this ‘Survivor’?’’
And they had to use smelling salts, just to revive ’er.

Who needs a GPS here?

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON. (Image ID:9177)

It's not the North face of Everest. That's for sure. It's not shot outside Oliver North's home. That's for sure, too. But here's the challenge - can you guess where I was standing when I shot this image?

I'd be delighted to see your guesses in the comments - but if you want me to reveal the answer, all you have to do is click here. Hope you have fun!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Verse and worse

Have you ever seen a pigeon
With X-ray vision?
Have you ever seen a ptarmigan
That can set its own alarm again?

Yes, we can see a pattern developing

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: USA2010-29June-8822)

I actually took this shot while I was travelling on an escalator. Look carefully in the bottom right-hand corner and you'll see the silhouette of the escalator rail.

But can you guess where this was shot? OK, I'll reveal the location. It was taken inside Toys R Us in Manhattan in late June this year. I just happened to look up. Noticed the neon patterns on the wall. Grabbed my camera. Took three shots and this one had a slight edge over the others.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tangerine Dawn

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON. Image ID: 130-6103

This was shot five weeks ago, before sunrise on 13 September, in the first fortnight of our spring. These are plane trees, and because they were still bare, I knew they'd look great against nearby roof lines.

This is just a low-res version of the image, but if you want to view the high-res shot, just click here.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Verse and worse

Marty McFly
Was ever so spry
He went back to the future
Wearing slate-grey and fuchsia

Friday, October 15, 2010

Time to brush away the cobwebs

Photograph copyright: DAVID McMAHON (Image ID: 129-5894)

It's like going back to a familiar, much-loved old house. You're delighted to be back, because of all the wonderful memories. You savour the moment of return. But as you push open the creaking door, you kind of hold your breath, because you wonder if your old friends will recognise you.

Yes, I'm stepping back into BlogLand after more than a year. Why? Because I enjoy it. Life is so simple, when you think about it. It's good to be back. No, I'm wrong. It's GREAT to be back.