FUN AND photography are natural allies and this collection of pictures makes the most of the relationship. It begun as a project to document Sydney's well-established gay and lesbian Mardi Gras. It ended incorporating the wider range of events that are typical and take place in most cities. The collection covers twelve years between 1999 and 2010. That happens to coincide with the emergence of a radical new technology – digital photography. While the conventional approach to documenting festivals spotlights the main event – parades and stage performances – this photographer has chosen a much wider canvas. The pictures have been sectioned to focus on preparation, portraits of participants – both singly and in groups, short photo series, the tableaux of events, spectators and fringe activity. The intention is show something much bigger than just the content of event programs. Because the collection straddles two camera eras, the early photographs were all shot on black and white film. But gradually, digital colour takes a bigger share of the action and by the end of the period, has come to dominate. While all the events took place in Sydney, Australia – the large majority within 10 minutes’ walk of the photographer's studio – it is hard to believe such variety of people and cultures gathered in such a narrow geographic space. This is a record of the diversity of modern life. It is not about a place. It’s about people making the most of life.
“I have worked as a journalist and media consultant for most of my career. Although flirting briefly with aspects of professional photography, I decided on reflection, to reserve my photo energies for my own interests and work. “I took up photography in my late teens, in the late 1960s, working with 35mm SLR cameras. This was the same time the format began its domination of the photographic world. Since then I have maintained a permanent darkroom, working mostly in black & white. “In 2004, after watching the development of digital cameras for five years, I guessed the time was right to try the new medium. "What I have discovered since then has inspired me to share my experience with others who wish to challenge their visual potential through discovery in the new medium of digital photography. On the way there however, we will also reflect on the history and traditions of photography since its beginnings. “In my view photography, like all the arts, thrives in an envi