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Posts tagged ‘Council Chambers’

The Year That Was 2013

This has been the biggest year of my blogging career and the most rewarding.  The year began after I had completed the blogging everyday for a year, and I had thought I would continue doing that, however, I haven’t posted every day this year, but pretty close.

I had around 8,400 followers at the start of the year and that has steadily climbed to over 20,000, which I am so happy about.  I have been getting lots of comments over recent days about how I inspire you, and I have to say that you all inspire me so much.  I know that I try a lot harder to get great images because I don’t want to disappoint you and every time I write I think about all of you and hope you like what I am writing or the photos I am showing you.  So to each and every one of you, thank you for this year, I am very grateful.

scmu-5hpm7446-13At the end of 2012 I was giving the opportunity to photograph some of the interiors of the Manchester Unity Building, which was mainly completed in the first few months of 2013.  It was the biggest job I had ever undertaken and was one which I have learned the most, on how to conduct myself, but also on learning new ways of doing photoshop.  I learned the difference between destructive editing and non-destructive editing.  It was a fantastic opportunity for me.

sccrits-3811

For the last few years my new year has always started with the Bay Crits and then onto lots of other cycling events.  In 2013 this was the only racing I photographed.  For personal reasons, and from a business point of view it was time to stop.  For me, in the end, it just wasn’t worth it.  It was hard work and no real rewards.

scchambers-5hpm7546-6Part of my dealings with the City of Melbourne lead me to be allowed to go and photograph the Council Chambers in the Melbourne Town Hall.  I worked on the photos for weeks as I showed them to you.  I really enjoyed this series of work.

LeanneCole-dca-5105-2As I said the other day working with Deaf Children Australia has been an incredible experience and one that I have really enjoyed.  I have been given some great opportunities here as well and to be able to go there and take photos of whatever I like, when I like, has been brilliant.  I would also like to thank them for all their help and for allowing me to go there.

Inverleigh

Inverleigh

Of course, as I have spoken over the weekend, one of the best things I started doing was my Weekend Wandering posts.  They were really good for me, because they made me get out there and take photos. I am sure I have spoken to you before about how I am a lazy person, well, for me the WWs made me get out.  I have been to places that I might not have visited if I didn’t need to get images to show you.

I think one of the things that I have found wonderful has been showing Melbourne to you, and my state of Victoria as well.  I have learned so much about my city because I wanted to get more images for you.  It has been great to see how many of you love the images of Melbourne, and even better to see how many people would love to come here and visit.

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Painting by Rick Amor, Niagra Galleries

I started my influencing me posts so I could show you the artists that have had an influence on me and my work.  Rick Amor, above, was the first of these.  These posts grew, and I started featuring other photographers from WordPress, though the title changed to Introductions.  I know people think I do a lot of work for these, but it isn’t as much as you would think.  I love seeing what people think of the artists I show and the responses have been wonderful.

leannecole-scsandra-3322-4For me one of the biggest changes has been the portraits.  I watched Brooke Shaden on creativeLIVE and my world changed.  I knew I wanted to do portraits, but I didn’t want to do the ones of people looking at the camera just smiling and being nice.  I wanted more, and through the workshop she did I started to see that I could do more.

LeanneCole-thea-montsalvat_1666Compositing is something else I’ve been experimenting with and through creativeLIVE I have been learning how to do that with Photoshop.  I think I have the artistic background to help make it work.  I understand light and how shadows work.  It is an exciting time for me.

LeanneCole-docklands-20131217-4854Finishing the year off with the biggest job I have ever had, photographing the Christmas Festival for the City of Melbourne, has been phenomenal.  Yet another fantastic opportunity.  I loved doing it and I hope they loved the images I got for them.

Writing for another blog has also been wonderful and I have really enjoyed that, and I have so appreciated the support that you have given me there in helping to make it successful.

scclasses-9834sepTeaching has been a rewarding experience too.  I started teaching in 2012, but this year I have done a lot more.  I have taught quite a few classes, and I am learning all the time how to be a better teacher.  It is great to help people learn how to take photos and to be better photographers.

I almost forgot to mention my gear, this year I got a new camera, the Nikon D800, I got two new lenses, the Nikon 50mm 1.8 and the Nikon 14-24mm 2.8.  I also got a new speedlight, the Nikon SB910.  Did I mention that Santa bought me a new tripod as well.  I have been a lucky girl, and I really do have to thank Nikon for all their help.

It has been an amazing year, and once again, thank you.  I am going to put some of my favourite work from the year in a gallery for you, I hope it isn’t too long.  I know some of it I will have shown in the last few days, but I hope you will indulge me.

Happy New Year, all the best in 2014.

Open House – Melbourne Town Hall

scchambers-5hpm7576-4In Melbourne this weekend is Open House.  It can be an opportunity to see inside some famous buildings.  Unfortunately, you normally have to get in early and a ballot is run for people to see inside many of the buildings.

One of my followers who also happens to be a guide at the Melbourne Town Hall has let me know that the Town Hall is open both days, so Saturday and Sunday and will be open from 10 to 4 and tour guides will be available to answer questions and tell you about the history of the building.  You are allowed to take photos as well.

So if you are in Melbourne this weekend and would like to see inside the Melbourne Town Hall here is your chance.

Great opportunity for people who work all week, as you can’t see it normally on the weekends.

The Last Decision about Chambers Here

Actually it will be my last post that I am going to be doing on the Council Chambers of the City of Melbourne.  It seems like I have been doing these images for ages, but then again, it also seems ages since my last one.  It is always sad when you realise that there will be no more, which is probably why I have put off doing this one.

Eyes to the FrontI found this image quite hard to do.  It was easy to photograph, I just stood at the back and pointed the camera to the front of the room.  However, when I got it on the Eyes to the Front - Originalcomputer, I found it very confusing, I didn’t know where to look and I thought that people viewing it would find it the same.

I am going to include the original image so you can see what I am talking about.  For me the challenge was to direct your eye to where I wanted it to be.  The original is a nice record shot of the room, but I think the first image is more of an art image and is much better at directing you to see what I wanted, which is the chairs.

Someone said to me the other day, “your work is always so dark”, then she bought 4 postcards from me.  So I said, why do you want the postcards if you think my work is dark.  She replied that she didn’t say she didn’t like it, she was just stating that my work is dark.  I suppose that is very true.  It is quite dark, I like that, I don’t have a problem with it.

I have two more images for you, I just love these, they aren’t really important, but fun.

Ex-Lord-Mayor

A little sign on the back, just so you know who sits here.

ChairmanBoth these plaques on the back of each chair that sits out the front.  They are the chairs on either side of the Lord Mayor’s chair.  I thought they were too good not to take photos of them.

I was given an amazing opportunity to go and photograph the inside of the Council Chambers and I really want to say thanks to those that helped me.  I will send emails for that.  I find myself in the position now of, what happens next.  I don’t know what to photograph next.  I have a couple of ideas, but I need a new building.  If you have any ideas, please let me know.

I thought, as this is the last post on the Council Chambers, I thought I might put a gallery with all the images I have processed from that room.

I hate it when projects finish.  I added the images from today to the gallery as well so you can see them all in it.

Now off to find some inspiration somewhere else, in another building, I hope.  Remember if you would like to see the room for yourself, you can, the City of Melbourne run tours of the Melbourne Town Hall daily and for more information the link is here.

Taking Your Seat in the Chambers

It has been a while since I posted an image from the Council Chambers in the Melbourne Town Hall, but I hadn’t forgotten about them.  I still have more I want to show you, but while I was doing the other images I set them aside.  Seat in ChambersI am just going to start off by saying, that I do like this image.  I like the way the seats really stand out, and how plush they look.  I can also say they are very comfortable.  You can see a brass ring at the bottom of each one and if you pull that it brings the seat out further so you can relax into it.  Even the carvings on each seat are so ornate.  Every detail was considered.

I didn’t process as much of this image as I thought I might, I almost ignored the rest of the room and tried to make sure your focus would be on the leather seats and ornate carving.  I have also lightened it up more, as the room is quite dark.

I still have some more images to process from this room, but they are running out.  I really need to start looking for some new places to photograph.  I have some ideas, but I might need help, but more on that another time.

The posts for the weekend are prepared, and have been scheduled to publish, one a day, I hope.  You never really know with these things if they will work, but fingers crossed.  I need to pack and get ready now.  I am pretty excited about it.  I hope you are looking forward to the photos.  I also hope the leaves have started changing in Bright and Harrietville, they say it is spectacular.  Wish me luck.

Sitting Tall

Busy day busy week.  Had hoped to get more than one image done for you today, but stuff happened, and well, I only have one.

Chamber ChairsI chose this image because I liked how it highlighted the wood work in the chairs.  It is the best image I have to show you how wonderful those chairs are.  They are so ornate and I can imagine feeling so important sitting in them.

The middle one, the Lord Mayor’s chair is the one I spoke about last week, it is the oldest piece of furniture in the Melbourne Town Hall.  The carving is so intricate and so extraordinary.  It is worth going on the tour just to see the chair.

Next week I will show some more images from the room.  I will do the ones I had hoped to do today.

Order, Order in the House

Do they say that in Council Chambers?  I have no idea, but it seemed an appropriate title for the image I have for you today.

Three in a Row

I am sure I have shown you a similar photo to this a couple of weeks ago when I went on a tour of the Melbourne Town Hall.  I have been fortunate and was given the great honour of being allowed to go back and take photos of the Council Chambers.  I went on Tuesday and this is one of the shots that I got.  I love the three chairs that sit up straight and tall under the three windows in the arch.  The three chairs are separated from everyone else by the table and another table further down.  The chair on the left is for the Ex Lord Mayor, the middle chair, the most ornate one is for the Lord Mayor, the final one is for the Committee Chairman.

Three in a Row - HDR OriginalIt would be an amazing thing to be allowed to sit in that chair and call it yours.

When I went to take photos, I knew some that I wanted, and this was most definitely one.  I don’t know if the chairs stand out enough, but I find I can’t take my eyes off them.

I am trying out some new ways of doing my processing.  Some of it is the same, but how I do the blurring is different.  I don’t know if it works, but I actually like the way it is turning out.  I will continue to experiment.  The only real problem is that it now takes me so much longer to process the images.  This one took around 4 hours.  I was starting to think that I would never finish it.

I do enjoy that aspect of it though.  I have a lot of images from that day and you will, no doubt, get to see them over time.  I will also see if I can find you some of the history that goes with it as well.  I was told about a link, but I ran out of time.  There will be more images, so there is still time to give you the history.

It really is a most extraordinary room, so I hope you will enjoy other images.

Speaking of history, I was at the DCA building today, and the phone does not work anymore, well it is not connected.

WordAds

On the original blog I signed up for WordAds, as a lot of us do.  We do it thinking we will earn some extra money from our blogs and that is always good.  According to the terms and conditions people don’t have to click on the ads, it is done by impressions, so how many times the page is looked at. I assume that is what they mean.  Of course once you sign up, you find out that you won’t get any money until you have earned a $100 and therefore, you will have to continue it until you at least get that much, and they don’t care, because they get to put their ads on your blog.

IT IS SUCH A CROCK

Unless you are getting really really large numbers of hits then you may never be paid that $100.  Last month I had the largest number of hits ever on my blog, and in the 6 months I have had it, last month was almost the lowest amount they have paid me, well put in the account to pay me when I get to $100.  I am wondering if this is what they do.  How can it be so, it just does not make any sense.

At this rate I will never make that amount and they will win because they got to advertise on my blog for nothing.

PLEASE CLICK ON THE ADS, LET’S SEE IF IT MAKES A DIFFERENCE.

I have wondered if it does, as soon as I get to that $100 the ads will go.  I bet they pay me less and less each month so they never have to pay.

If you are thinking of doing WordAds, don’t bother, waste of time.  You won’t see the money from it.

Thunderstorms

We are in the middle of a massive thunderstorm here right now, it is so lovely.  I have muted everything just so I can listen to all the thunder.  Ah summer, I have missed this.

Visiting the Centre of Town

In yesterdays post I spoke about how I had been to the city to visit the Melbourne Town Hall.  You may remember some previous images I have shown you of the outside of the building just before Christmas.  It was the building that had the amazing light show on it.  I never realised that you could take a tour of the inside of the building.  So Klara and I went on one.  It was really amazing.  Such a beautiful building and obviously built during a time of great wealth in Melbourne, the gold rush era.

Council Chambers - 1Before we talk about the tour and the images, I need to explain, that the images aren’t great.  It is quite dark inside the rooms we visited.  I had to up the ISO as high as it would go, and that is probably one of the worse things about the D300s, the high ISOs give a lot of noise.  I couldn’t use a tripod, so I had to do what I could holding the camera, even with the highest ISO, I still had to have a wide aperture.  I am hoping that I will get to go back again and do some photos with a tripod.  I tried to get rid of as much noise as I could, but it is still there.  I was going to use Topaz DeNoise, but I see my trial has run out.  Might have to check out the one from Nik Software.

The image up there, as all the images today are, were taken in the Council Chambers Room.  A very opulent room where the council members of the City of Melbourne meet.  Three very important people sit in the three chairs above, the middle one being for the Lord Mayor of Melbourne.

Council Chambers - 2The rest sit in these seats.  It isn’t a large room, but then it is just for the local council.

The room is so beautiful.  The attention to detail was astounding.  It really is worth the tour just to see this room.  A room like this would never be built today.  The intricate carvings would cost so much money, and all the marble.  There are so many things to photograph in this room.  I really do think this is the room I would want to go back and photograph.

Council Chambers - 3This is taken from the back and looking to the Mayors chair.  You can see the trouble I had taking the photos.  HDR images would be a must here.  These are HDR images, but only with 3 images.  If I am allowed to go back, I hope to do more.

Mayor KlaraHere is my daughter Klara sitting in the Mayor’s Chair.  She didn’t take much convincing.  You can see some of the detail there that is on the chair.

I had a wonderful time on the tour.  It is a beautiful building and with a rich history.  Our tour guide was lovely and very knowledgeable.  Of course, there is a lot more to the building than what I have shown you here.  This is just from one room.  You also get to see the main hall, and if nothing is on you can go to the back and see all the organ pipes and see how the organ works.  We were shown the Melbourne Room where the Queen came for afternoon tea in 1954, and where the Beatles hung out when they came to Australia.  We went out onto the balcony and watched Swanston Street below.

One of the things that surprised me was how surprised they were that Klara and I wanted to do the tour.  Apparently they don’t get many people who live in Melbourne wanting to do it.  We both thought it was great.

If you would like to go on the tour, then check out the details below.

Contact details

03 9658 9658
townhalltour@melbourne.vic.gov.au
www.melbourne.vic.gov.au

Virtual Photography Field Trip

I have to get back to writing the Virtual Field Trip for my new client.  We have had various discussions about where to go and finally settled on a place in California.  I am as excited as she is about where she is going.  I convinced her to try photographing a subject she wasn’t sure about, I thought it was a great opportunity for her to learn how to do something new with me to help her. I have written most of it, time to go and do some more.

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