Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Let There Be Light

Photo copyright: DAVID McMAHON. Image ID: 139-7018

These stage lights had me mesmerised at a recent function. They went through various colour sequences, with several swift permutations and combinations that utilised every colour of the rainbow - and then some!

There was swirling fog all across the stage, being blown by fans in every direction. I studied the lights. Then I studied the fog. Then I studied the lights again. Then I studied the fog again. Of all the light sequences and colour combinations that continued to flash, I knew which one would look the most striking.

But the real challenge was not just to wait several minutes until I had the red main light and the three blue lights. The real challenge was to wait until that particular combination of lights appeared when the fog had just the right density.

(Bear in mind this is just a low-resolution image. If you want to see it full size, you can view it here on my Red Bubble site.)

I needed just enough fog across the stage to give me the density that would work best with the blue and right lights. Too much fog and the lights would have been blurred. Too little fog and the lights would not have had the right effect.

I'll leave it to you to judge ...

Monday, July 04, 2011

The King And I

 Image copyright: DAVID McMAHON. Image ID: 139-6914

One day Elvis was in the shop window - then he was gone. There's this beautiful white building in South Melbourne that is more than a century old. It has huge old-fashioned windows, a door that opens on the street corner, and a high turret at the apex of the V-shaped building.

It always catches my attention when I drive past this area, because it harks back to a different era and also because it is such a contrast to the other, more modern architecture that has sprung up around it. The building is now home to a place called The Costume Shop and about a week ago I noticed that one of the mannequins in the window was dressed like Elvis Presley.

I was determined to return to the area and take some shots of the figure. A couple of days later I made sure I had a few minutes up my sleeve. I parked down a side street, and walked over to the shop. To my disappointment, it hadn't opened for the day, but I decided to shoot some images from outside. Interestingly, this was not as easy as it might sound, because of the reflections in the window.

Eventually I managed to find an angle where I wasn't getting too many reflections- and trudged slowly back to my car, disappointed that I hadn't been able to get into the shop. But the next time I was in the area, a day or two later, Elvis was gone.

As a good friend of mine quipped, Elvis had well and truly left the building.

There were no clues as to his whereabouts. Not even a pair of scuffed blue suede shoes.