Tag Archives: sydney

Special Message from IDAHO Sydney – PARTICIPATE!

The ‘Walk With Pride’ project has a special message to share from the IDAHO Sydney organization.

Hi -  Nick here from IDAHO Sydney in Australia with an invitation to participate in the 2011 STANDING TALL Catalogue we intend to put together for IDAHO 2011.

IDAHO is an acronym for International Day Against Homophobia – 17th of May world wide. Last year we created a catalogue titled ‘Break The Silence’ which included images from the exhibition and introductions form the living library books. This year we are not having a living library but I still think its important to represent and document the many different faces within our community. Its a great way to help people that feel isolated or are questioning their sexuality. They are not alone and they are not abnormal.

If you would like to participate all I need is one paragraph (100 to 150 words) from you which tells us about you. You can talk about anything you like. You could change someone’s life in one paragraph.

Also please tag your paragraph with your name, age and were you live (country). If you are not comfortable with using your name feel free to make one up. Also if you would like to extend the invitation to all your friends and family that would be great!

Together we can make a difference.

All the best

Nick Baldas – curator IDAHO Sydney

Photographing Sydney’s Mardi Gras – Part 1

(Travel Experiences of WWP Photographer ~ Charles Meacham)

I arrived back in Taipei from Sydney over two weeks ago, and the daze still hasn’t fully worn off.  I can still see, hear, and feel Mardi Gras.  I close my eyes and find myself back on Oxford Street in the middle of all that sound and color.  For me, the best part of being a photographer is coming up with an idea and then making that idea happen.  The experience of being exactly where you want to be, at the exact time you want to be there is an incredible feeling.  But as any photographer will tell you, not everyday is fun, and Sydney was no exception.

I arrived in Oz the day before one of Mardi Gras biggest events, Fair Day.  Over 70,000 people were expected to show up at Sydney’s Victoria Park, and I was looking forward to a day of shooting and getting to meet different members of the community that I had been in contact with via email.  But  that morning getting to Victoria Park was a bit of a hassle.  As I had written before, my hotel, which advertised being a LGBT and Mardi Gras supporter, knew nothing about the event or where it was being held.  Going out onto one of the main streets in Sydney, two taxi drivers swore they had never heard of Victoria Park, and that I must have the name wrong.  Finally, with the help of the police, I made my way there.  There was not a cloud in the sky, and the Aussie sun was out in full force.  Jet lagged and sunburnt, I found it hard to focus my attention and get into any kind of rhythm.  I took pictures, but not anywhere the number I had hoped.

Sydney Mardi Gras

Two days later, I came across a magazine article that talked about a right-wing christian protest held a few days before the main parade during a church service.  The event looked fairly large, so I checked some local maps, found the church, and prepared to go there to photograph the service.  Getting there was not as easy as I thought, as I was directed to board the wrong train and missed the whole thing.  For me this was 0/2 and you can really start getting down on yourself.  It cost a lot of money to get to OZ, and not to produce would be a pretty big blow to the project, and to my morale.

The next event was the actual parade, and the pressure was on.

Sydney’s Mardi Gras is by far the largest, most organized event that I have yet photographed for the WWP project, and having the opportunity to be a part of it all was a truly unforgettable  life experience.  There were press passes, press meetings, police barricades, lots and lots of other photographers, news channels, etc..etc.  The true enormity of it hits you as you look out at the huge crowds gathered.

Crowd at Sydney Mardi Gras

Let me just say, I felt much better about the trip after my experience photographing the parade and Harbour Day.  I’ll write more about these events soon, and check the WWP Flickr account for new photos from Sydney.

Pride Image of Sydney Mardi Gras

Sydney 2010!

Journal Entry: March 4, 2010 — Chad’s Back from Sydney

Completely exhausted, Chad returned from photographing Sydney’s Mardi Gras Activities on Tuesday (March 2).

He’d spent about a week there photographing different Mardi Gras events, including the main events of Parade Day and Harbour Day ’10.  On our main project website, we’ve upload the top pictures into a “Sydney Pride Gallery“.  Soon, we’ll be uploading some more to Flickr.

Pride kiss taken by Charles Meacham of the Walk with Pride Project at the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras

Chad will also be uploading a blog entry later in the week further describing his experiences photographing Mardi Gras.

Well here I am in Sydney.

Yeah, so I had the times a bit confused in Darwin, and here I am in Sydney.  The King’s Cross area is a lot like other backpacker havens, so getting settled in hasn’t been that much of an adjustment.  Sydney is of course a huge city and the idea that I am showing up to try to photograph so many events is a little overwhelming at times.  Tomorrow is Fair Day, which is one of the main events of Mardi Gras.  Tens of thousands are going to be showing up in Victoria Park, and I am hoping for some good photographs, but for now I have to fight the urge to sleep.  I look forward to meeting a lot of the community here, which has been so good in helping me try to get a grasp of what is to come.   Don’t sleep Chad, don’t sleep.

(Travel Experiences of WWP Photographer ~ Charles Meacham)

Project Update – Feb. 8, 2010

First off, we’d like to say thank you to Jason Dixon and Jeff McBride, members of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras team. They have both helped us in getting the permits and passes needed to photograph the events in Sydney.  We greatly appreciate their help, since Mardi Gras 2010 is just around the corner.

Unfortunately, while I won’t be able to go with Chad to Sydney, he will be arriving on Feb. 20 and staying for eight days.  The first main Mardi Gras event Chad will be photographing is Fair day on Feb. 21, held at Victoria Park, so keep an eye out for him if you plan to be there.

Also, thanks to everyone who has shown support for the *New* 2010 Pride Parade Calendar.  If you haven’t had the chance to take a look, it’s pretty fascinating as it includes video clips of pride parades from all over the world.

To help promote the site, we also welcome ad banner swaps on the site, so email us if you would like to exchange LGBT/pride-related link banners!

2010 Pride Parade Calendar by WWP

Gay Pride, Gay Shame – Fridae Article

While I personally respect the idea behind pride parades, there’s a lot of discussion even among activists concerning the overall benefits of holding annual pride marchers.  This weekend I stumbled across a well written article on Fridae.com , a news website “empowering gay asia”,  that further explores this topic.  It’s by Shinen Wong, a young man who grew up in Malaysia/Singapore before attending college in the US, then working in San Francisco, and now living in Sydney.

What are your thoughts?  Do you agree with his ideas?

gay pride, gay shame(To read more: http://www.fridae.com/newsfeatures/2009/02/27/2226.gay-pride-gay-shame)

Sydney Mardi Gras … in 3 minutes

Oooo – this is pretty cool! It’s a trippy 3 minute video byKeith Loutit showing last year’s Sydney Mardi Gras.

I’m not sure of the specifics, but the below equation on his website explains the basics…

Loutiit’s Mardi Gras Video: Video + Tilt-Shift + Time Lapse + Mardi Gras (in Australia)

Getting Ready for Sydney – Part 1

It’s a little over 2 months away, but the next city the WWP project is preparing to visit is Sydney, Australia.  The annual Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras parade has become a huge event, with over 10,000 participants and hundreds of thousands of onlookers expected to turn out this year for the celebration.  As it is such a well-attended (and organized) event, they require special passes and permits to photograph, which we are in the process of getting.  What’s particularly unique about Sydney’s parade is that it’s grown to become a mainstream event, and includes numerous LGBT representatives of community groups/organizations marching ‘out and proud’ – even the police force.

For today, I decided to look up some of the history concerning the parade …

The Roots:
Like the start of many other pride parades, the first Sydney march was organized to commemorate the Stonewall Riots.  The parade took place June 24th, 1978, with over 1,000 people turning out to protest against discrimination.  The crowd started marching down Oxford Street to Hyde Park, but the police broke up the demonstration arresting 53 persons.

In 1979, the Sydney pride march was again held, but fortunately this time incident free.  After several more successful runs, the parade was moved to February to better take advantage of Australia’s summer weather.  After this, the parade kept growing and growing.  The annual parade and accompanying events and activities that make up Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras, have become a well-accepted part of Sydney’s attractions, with international visitors especially arriving for the event.

I found online that there is a website dedicated to sharing Sydney’s ‘Pride History’.  They provide a chronology of important dates in Sydney’s LGBT history throughout the past decades, and even photos of the first march.  From that site I also found a link to the ‘Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives’ that shares even more old pride march posters, and loads of other records discussing the communities history.

For more, here’s the links:

10am Saturday 24 June 1978 Day of International Gay Solidarity—Photographer Sally Colechin

December Update

Greetings. It’s time for a quick update on the progressing we’re making with the WWP project and our upcoming plans for 2010.

First, Chad is *almost* done going through the photos from the Manila and Taipei pride marches, so expect to see all the images we have posted on Flickr by the end of next week.

In addition, Chad has with some convincing … er maybe pestering, hah, agreed to start posting a blog entry after each parade. He’ll be talking about the experience from a photographer’s perspective. This includes his process for photographing the marches, what he looks for, and why. As the project evolves with the more parades we attend, the aim is to show how each march really does have a life of its own, and the diversity – from the provocative and flamboyantly dressed to those more reserved and ordinary in their style. However, keep in mind the project has just begun, so expect to see a lot more variety concerning pride images and community subcultures as we continue.

We are also preparing for the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, almost 3 weeks of events stretching from Feb. 19 to March 7. There’s a huge variety of activities planned, including Fair day at the park which expects up to 70,000 attendees on Feb. 21, the Mardi Gras parade on Feb. 27 themed “Mardi Gras’ History of the World”, followed on Feb. 28 by Harbour day, an outdoor party opposite the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.

Please let us know if you’ve attended any of these events in the past, as we’d welcome any comments or advice to help us prepare – [email protected]. For the Sydney March we also plan to get a voice recorder and one of those mini-cams, so there should be an enhanced multimedia documentation of this parade.

Finally, we’d like to give a thank you to Toweleroad.com and JustOut which have posted links to our project on their website.

Happy New Year!

(Video of Mardi Gras 2009 produced by www.samesame.com.au)