Last weekend, the WA Social Photographers took to the streets of South Fremantle. It truly is an amazing place full of street art, cafes, restaurants and interesting buildings, all within walking distance to South Beach. We started at the beach and strolled towards South Terrace. It didn't take us long to be captivated by the murals.
Our first stop was the untitled mural by Artbydestroy, a surreal looking underwater scene. The mural demands attention with its bright colours, geometric shapes and strong lines. The footpath at the bottom of the mural looks like the reflection of the image in water. It is truly awesome.
At the opposite side of South Terrace is an even larger mural, East to West Design Fresco by Graeme Miles Richards. The mural is so large that it was impossible for me to fit it all in one photograph. I therefore decided to take multiple photographs.
The art looks three dimensional and the attention to detail is impressive. The more you look, the more you see. It is cleverly done. There are many sections, each focusing on a different cultural theme. For example, French, African, Asian and South American. All of those themes blend together very nicely and the composition works well as a whole.
Above: East to West Design Fresco by Graeme Miles Richards.
I was mesmerised by the mural and could have looked at it for hours. However, I knew it was time to move on when I had almost lost sight of the other photographers. Thankfully, they did notice that I was left behind and they waited for me.
We continued to wander along South Terrace, admiring the buildings and the diverse mix of cafes and restaurants. The delicious smell of foods emanating from the restaurants enhanced the experience. Art works outside some of the the buildings were just as seductive and cleverly placed. A stunning mural is Zebras by Anya Brock, outside the Ootong and Lincoln cafe. The design is attention grabbing with its strong use of contrast and lines.
The photographers walked for almost three hours and didn't get to all the murals. However, we decided to turn back towards South Beach. It's just as well that we did, because the sunset was spectacular.
Sunset at South Fremantle.
South Fremantle is well worth the visit. It really is a unique place with plenty of character. I had an enjoyable afternoon and will definitely be back to experience more.
On Sunday 6 March, the Western Australian Social Photographers embarked on an adventure to the Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe 2021. I could feel the wind tangling my hair as soon as I stepped out of the car. Fighting with the wind, I put my hat on and started walking towards our meeting spot at the famous Indiana Teahouse. Once we had all arrived, the photographers were faced with the difficult decision of where to begin. We decided to follow the seagulls, just like the wise men following the Star of Bethlehem.
Our seagull GPS turned into chaos when more and more seagulls kept appearing and disappearing. They were having a fun day interfering with our navigation and photobombing our shots. One seagull even pretended to be a sculpture and another headed straight for the Indiana Teahouse.
We cruised through the sandy plains like the ships of the desert, admiring the sculptures while dodging people and seagulls. At one point we said hello to a dog on a leash. I tried to take a photo and it nearly licked my camera. There must be something special about my camera because animals have tried to lick it on several occasions now. Maybe it’s just me.
From a distance, I saw a line of fellow travellers who were standing next to the guiding light of a seagull. Just like us, they seemed a bit disorientated with their bodies facing in different directions. I guess it confirms a flaw in the seagull GPS, because even the seagulls couldn't decide which direction to go.
Turning our heads in a different direction, we couldn't help but notice a very pretty structure with plenty of reflecting surfaces. The photographers decided to take a group ‘selfie’ shot through the mirrors. It felt like Christmas, because the sculpture was exquisitely decorated with enormous handprints and what looked like a generous slop of ice-cream. Aside from the group 'selfie,' I took my favourite photo of the day at the same sculpture. After that we continued our snapping until sunset, the time when camels go to bed, and when seagulls are replaced by real stars.
Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe is one of my favourite events in Perth and our outing was enjoyable. There is so much to experience and although we were snapping away for three hours, I didn’t get to see all of the sculptures. That’s probably because I got distracted by the seagulls and got carried away taking photographs. I plan to return over the next week to explore some more.
Three weeks ago a lonesome, masked photographer trudged through the streets as the rain poured down in Victoria Park. Upon his return, he told us about a mysterious mural, incorporating mask wearing figures. It raised a lot of questions among the photographers. Why are they wearing masks? Is the mask wearing related to COVID? After some investigation, we found out that the artwork was painted well before COVID, by a Mexican artist known as Saner. It sparked our interest in the murals of Victoria Park and we decided to follow in the lonesome man’s footsteps. Literally.
On Sunday, three weeks later, the formerly lonesome photographer transformed into The Pied Piper. The other photographers became the rats, prancing along the streets together. The fairy tale had a modern twist because instead of a pipe, he had a camera to lure us. Given that we're living in technologically advanced times, we had cameras too.
Just like rats, the photographers immediately headed towards the dingiest laneways and backs of buildings where the rubbish bins are stored. It was unfortunate that we didn’t have our COVID masks with us, they would have been very handy. Artist Saner was clearly onto something with his masked mural. Perhaps it was a prophecy. Maybe it was a reminder to wear masks when approaching the murals. At this point it's important to mention that the many murals in Victoria Park are located all over the town, not just near rubbish bins. The art works are impressive and definitely worth a visit.
Surprisingly, bin chickens were nowhere to be seen around the rubbish bins. Maybe the area was too scary for them. Perhaps they felt a bit intimidated by the mural that said, “Is this stupid bin chicken meant to look like me?” How dare they call bin chickens stupid! In the absence of bin chickens, we took a few photos and made them snappy before moving on.
The photographers frolicked joyfully through Albany Highway with their cameras, snap-snap-snapping away. We encountered a cheery man on a bicycle who rode past us and posed for a photograph. Unfortunately, I was not snappy enough and missed that photo opportunity. Not to worry though, he came back and posed for us again. That time I did get a shot of him.
We soon walked past a donut shop, Donut Worry, confirming that worrying is a waste of energy. Ironically, a police vehicle was parked in front of that shop. At one point, there was an ambulance there at the same time. In keeping with the theme, the shop next to Donut Worry is called Gosh.
Thankfully we didn’t waste our energy worrying because we needed it for our long walk. We trekked for a few kilometres in the extreme heat, just like camels in the Sahara Desert. By that point we’d moved on from being rats, although some photographers looked like drowned rats with their excessive perspiration. In the distance we saw what looked like an oasis. We walked towards the greenery which turned out to be Read Park.
When we reached the park, some of the photographers took a seat on a bench, next to the Victoria Park Community Garden. It was there that we finally encountered a bin chicken, walking awkwardly inside the garden. One of the photographers reminded me that bin chickens, otherwise known as Ibises, were considered sacred by the ancient Egyptians. It was certainly our lucky day. Seeing the bin chicken was a very grand finale to our awesome adventure and we left feeling very happy. After we said our goodbyes I trudged back to my car, just like the lonesome photographer a few weeks ago.
Victoria Park is a paradise for photographers with a good mix of old and new buildings, cafes, murals and people. It is also very multicultural. For example, we walked past some Chinese, Malaysian, Indian, Vietnamese and Japanese restaurants in close proximity of each other. It is interesting to note that many of those places confirm that Victoria Park is a worry-free zone. One of them is the Good Fortune Roast Duck House, which will bring you luck unless you are a duck. A particular restaurant that caught my attention is Cinnamon Vic Park, with it's very welcoming front door. Another place had Japanese bottles perfectly aligned, which can make some people worry-free. Finally, there is a place called Teamorrow, where the sun will come out. All that's missing is someone playing the classic song from Annie.
I thoroughly enjoyed my photography walk and I will definitely be back to explore more of Victoria Park.
Writer and Photographer
About my blog
An honest and often humorous recount of my photographic experiences. There is always a story, regardless of the photographs taken.