Ashley Sowter, Australia
made for the book: One Minute on Earth 2013
Background to the shot
In preparing for the one minute on earth project, I tried to envisage what the final photobook would look like. Beautiful pictures of this wonderful planet, from around the world at the same moment in time. I knew that the shoot time for my photo would be a night shot and I could think of no better place than the picturesque Sydney harbour, especially the iconic Harbour Bridge and Opera House.
I must confess, this was not the shot I had in mind. When I attended the test shoot a few weeks earlier, I framed a shot that showed the Harbour Bridge, the Sydney CBD, the opera house in the distance and in the foreground a puddle of water that held a vivid reflection of the bridge. I had expected to (and did) take this shot again on the night. I was even prepared to take in a bucket of water to the location if needed, so I could recreate that shot! As it turned out there was no need as it had rained most of the day.
As it was very possible that my "bridge and puddle" shot would not work due to tourists or car headlights spoiling the scene, I wanted some alternatives. I walked a few hundred metres down to Sydney’s Luna Park and, with puddles and reflections firmly in mind, took a shot of Sydney's Luna Park face, its matching reflection in a puddle and the Ferris wheel in the distance.
Turning and walking back towards my previously chosen location, I was presented with the scene you now see.
At this spot, some pavement repairs were under way, which included a long temporary barrier, for pedestrian safety. This had not been there a few weeks earlier. It offered a really nice leading line, coupled with shadow it cast and the harbour fence line. I positioned myself to capture the bridge’s expanse across the frame of my camera and set-up for a long exposure to flatten the water and get some sparkle from the city night lights. A Sydney Ferry was passing through at the time, which I felt added to the image. Life captured in one minute on earth in Sydney, Australia on a Saturday night at 11pm!
Credit for this scene must be given to the amazing architects that designed the scene you see before you
This shot depicts Sydney Harbour, including the Harbour bridge, the Opera house and the Sydney business district to the right. Directly behind me is Sydney’s Luna Park.
The Sydney Harbour Bridge, also affectionately known as the 'Coathanger', was opened on March 19th 1932, after six years of construction. Made of steel the bridge contains 6 million hand driven rivets and weighs 52,800 tonnes, 39,000 tonnes of which is in the arch! The Bridge has huge hinges to absorb the expansion caused by the hot Sydney sun. You will see them on either side of the bridge at the footings of the Pylons. The stone Pylons themselves actually do nothing structurally, they are purely aesthetic. The Sydney Harbour Bridge is the world's largest steel arch bridge, and, in its beautiful harbour location, has become a renowned international symbol of Australia.
The Sydney Opera House was opened in 1973, having been conceived and largely built by Danish architect Jørn Utzon. Contrary to its name, it houses multiple performance venues and styles. It is among the busiest performing arts centres in the world, hosting over 1,500 performances each year attended by some 1.2 million people.
The shot was taken, within the tolerance levels of the initiative, a few minutes before 23:00, April 6th, Sydney Australia.
Ashley Sowter, Forty something, IT Manager, Husband and father of two. That's two kids...not two wives.
also joined the Book with these photos:
Copyright : Ashley Sowter
Taken : April 6, 2013, 10:48 pm
Uploaded : 6 years ago
Category : Landscapes
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