Friday, July 31, 2009

Puffy Cloud and Gum Tree Skywatch

I was at Graceville last weekend taking pictures of kids passing parcels, pulling ropes, eating doughnuts (see monday's post), blowing out candles and having all sorts of fun when my lens got distracted upward. Suddenly I was the only parent pointing their lens at the sky. I ended up moving away from the crowd, camera still attached to tilted face, so I could get a better view. There may have been sideways glances from other parents as I staggered into the road... Sometimes it's nice not to explain.

Gum Trees (aka Eucalyptus Trees) are all over Australia. DID YOU KNOW there are over 700 different species and most of them call Australia home? Don't ask me what this one is. Sing out if you know. Koala bears live in gum trees in this area although in the 4 years I've been here I've not seen one in the wild. Apparently we keep knocking down the trees to build housing estates.

But this is a Skywatch post so what about the sky? What caught my eye was the wispy high stuff and then the single big puff off cotton wool below moving gently in the breeze. Luckily I didn't collide with any passing cars.

More skies posted today on blogs around the world can be seen at Skywatch Friday.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Traffic Stopping Art (number 26)

At every set of traffic lights in Brisbane, you will see an original art-work painted by a resident. Any resident can submit a design. This one, on the corner of Elizabeth and Edward Streets is by Tom Campbell, who has a few dotted around town. Eventually, they are painted over with new designs.

See more by clicking the the TSBs label below.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Mount Nebo Trees

The little town of Mount Nebo is just beyond Brisbane's north-west boundary. It's altitude is 550 metres so it's much cooler than in the city. The surrounding forest goes between eucalypt and rainforest and is home to cockatoos, kookaburras, rosellas, budgerigars, king parrots, whip birds, bellbirds and many others. The sound with all these birds calling, echoing through the forest, is fantastic.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Doughnut Eating Competition, Graceville

Choose a doughnut that matches your height. Arms behind back. GET STUCK IN!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Winter Shadows

This one was taken by my 6 year old. Chip off the old block!

For more shady dealings, visit Shadow Shot Sunday.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Up 2 U

I thought I'd milk another picture from the Up 2 U bunch - a group of dancers I managed to catch practicing in South Bank recently. They're representing Australia next week at the World Hip-Hop Championships in Las Vegas next week and if they dance like they did at rehearsals, the judges are in for a treat.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Watching You Watching Me Watching The Sky

There have been some glorious blue skies over Brisbane this week. Yesterday we clocked 26 degrees celcius which isn't bad for the middle of winter.
This picture was taken next to the temporary footpath and bikepath that has been set up while the Kurilpa Bridge is being built. It's supposed to reflect other bikers coming along the path but I think, with that dodgy bit of plastic hanging down, the security camera is probably more noticable... so you can watch yourself and others being watched. And of course the lovely sky.

That building is Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art which is a fab place to be in or around. If you ever come to Brisbane, you should come here.

The weathermen say to make the most of the warm weather and that it's all downhill from here... It reminded me of home!

My forecast is: make the most of your Skywatch Friday as everything is looking up.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

GoMA Steps

The west face of Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art. The glass sparkles in the afternoon sun and the flat surfaces are a canvas for crisp shadows.
And that's me - hello!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lady In Red At GoMA

Brisbane's Gallery of Modern Art is very minimalist in design - lots of clean, straight lines in dark and neutral colours. The new trees that surround it provide an interesting contrast - especially with the long winter shadows... but it was the red coat that caught my eye. I wish it had been more in focus!

If you look at it, it looks a bit like she has no head...!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Rowers at Sunset

As the sun dips down behind Mount Coot-tha, bathing the evening in gold, 4 masochists get ordered about by someone in a tinny.

Monday, July 20, 2009

What Are You Looking At?

Australian magpies bear no relation to the northern hemisphere ones except that they are black and white. They are much bigger and have a very distinctive warble. I like their no-nonsense walk and the way they swoop down and pick up little lizards and insects from the ground, often without stopping.

During the breeding season in winter and spring, magpies get very territorial... and if they don't like the look of you, they go for you, swooping at your head and trying to peck at your face. According to statistics, you are more likely to get attacked if you are male, between 10 and 30 and riding a bike. So watch out!

Read more here (includes picture of postman being swooped).

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Clash Of The Icons

Here's the Nepalese Peace Pagoda at South Bank. The traditional hand-carved building was a gift from Nepal to Brisbane during Expo '88. I think it contrasts quite nicely with the new wheel of steel - especially in its lovely pink get-up!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Market Day

Local produce on display this morning at West End market. Mmmmm!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Sunrise From The Sunroom

It was a source of some confusion when I arrived in "the sunshine state". Sunrooms in all the traditional Queenslander houses. Why would you want a sunroom? It's bloody boiling!

I've been convinced however that these low-ceilinged rooms surrounded by windows are great for maximising the winter sun - and very eco-friendly. Unfortunately I don't live in a Queenslander house and don't have a sunroom but my friend Sandra does - and she took this picture of the sunrise last week from the comfort of it. Not a bad view to wake up to, eh?

For skies across the world in posts from blogs across the world, visit Skywatch Friday ...and have a fantastic weekend.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Blues Got The Maroons That's Why The Maroons Got The Blues

Roma Street, 7pm. A sea of maroon-clad rugby league fans marching towards Suncorp Stadium (or "Lang Park" as it is often still called) for State of Origin, Game 3 of 3. If you are a Queenslander and into sport, this is a very big deal.

Incase you were wondering... the other team, the Blues of New South Wales, won last night's game 28-16 but Queensland won the previous two so remain winners on a best-of-3 basis. I stayed up especially to watch it for this post despite my nonchalance, my warm bed and a good book calling me - how dedicated am I?

Get a real taste of Lang Park and the State of Origin through the eyes of a fellow Brisbane blogger, the foto fanatic.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

5 Things You Get In Brizzy:

1. Single storey houses - brick.
2. Old Queenslander houses made from wood.
3. Hills Hoists (rotary washing lines with adjustable height).
4. Hills/Views.
5. Palm Trees.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Pink Wheel

Brisbane's observation wheel is getting the pink treatment this week as part of Think Pink Week, raising money for cancer sufferers and their families. I think it looks fab!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Vegas, Here We Come!

I was walking past the Suncorp Piazza when I came across this amazing group of dancers practicing their stuff. They were really giving it all they had - the energy was electric. It turns out they are "Up 2 U", an urban dance crew who have recently become Australian Champions and now they're off to Las Vegas to take on the world in the World Hip Hop Championships at the end of this month.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

It's The Anthill Mob!

You're looking at a piece of art called "Anthill" by Russell L Solomon who lives here in Brisbane. He was in Western Australia and came across an anthill with a slice taken out of it so he went and had a look and he could see all the tunnels and inner workings of it... He came up with this. It's little wire ant sculptures threaded into a painted canvas.

And it's mine, now!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Strike A Pose

Brisbane Square is quite a striking place. There's the library building (pictured with the scaffolding-y bit up the side), the Treasury Casino building, funky restaurants and cafes, the new Wednesday farmers' market and these gigantic metal balls made from welded vegetable steamers. (hmmm. I'll do a post about them sometime soon) I took this picture about 11 or 12 days ago as part of my 100 Strangers project. Ali was standing on top of one of the balls, posing for his friends. It didn't occur to me to ask him how he got up and I had walked away before he got down but while he was up there, he looked very comfortable. He must be a dab hand at Pilates.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Peach Melba Skywatch

Sunday's sunset in Brisbane. It was one of those moments where my fella was doing the dishes and staring idly out of the window.. then he must have snapped out of his daydream as he noticed the sky and he was suddenly calling me. I was scrambling out the door trying to cram my feet into my shoes and shoving the battery that had been charging into the camera, hair all over the place and clothes completely disheveled. All this was of course of minor importance. My mind was set on getting to the corner so I could look west with an uninterrupted view and when I finally did, I was not disappointed. The colours were stunning in their saturation and their luminosity.

Check more fab skies out at Skywatch Friday and have a colourful and luminous weekend!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

How Did My Garden Grow?

You may or may not know that I just got back from 5 weeks back in Europe. While I was away, my bougainvillea, after 3 years of slowly growing up a shady wall, hit the top, found the sun and flowered. My Brisbanite friends tell me I am mad to cultivate such a thorny aggressive beast but I just love them.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The Finishing Touches

When I took this photo last week, riding along in the Citycat, the sun was glaring so much that I didn't notice the figures in the picture. I'm happy they just about made it in, giving it a sense of perspective. What you are looking at is a detail from the new pedestrian Kurilpa Bridge about 2oo metres from yesterday's post. It's due to open next month linking West End with the city.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Missing Link

The slow but steady concrete growth of the Hale Street Link (4-lane car bridge) continues ominously across the river... boo! hiss!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Pandemonium at Paniyiri

The kids' Zorba dance soon became a free-for-all and once the pace of the music picked up... well there were people going in every direction, it was hilarious.
What's that big shiny thing behind the laughing lady? Xena, the big shiny Greek dancing warrior princess...or at least the back of her head. There was also a big shiny dancing Hercules.
It was like being in the middle of a Greek-themed "It's A Knockout".

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Everybody Zorba!

Yesterday and today see Musgrave Park in South Brisbane transform into the home of the long- awaited Paniyiri, Brisbane's Greek festival. More honey-puffs, moussaka, souvlaki and Mythos that you can throw a plate at. And to work off all that food and drink? Mass Zorba dancing! Hurray!
They eventually made an inner circle for the poor kids!

I'm taking part in Shadow Shot Sunday today, an initiative by fellow Brisbane blogger, Hey Harriet. Check out other shadows posted on her blog today here.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Wrapped In Cotton Wool

This is the last one in my sky series taken on Wednesday morning. For a playground in a park by the river at 11am on the third day of school holidays, it was eerily quiet.

Maybe it was because it was a chilly 18 degrees celcius (65f). If you live here long enough, you start thinking of it as staying-in-and-keeping-toasty weather. Brrrr!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Skywatch Friday: Celestial Cellulite

I really dig these Aussie skies. It's great to be back!

For other less crudely titled skies visit Skywatch Friday.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Can't Wait For Skywatch!

This was the view that greeted me as I left my house yesterday morning. Isn't it amazing? It was endless and really dramatic. Another one tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Brisbane's Big Draw

I was wandering around Queen Street today and outside one of the banks they have tacked up these big sheets of paper with people on hand with red and black pens. People were busy drawing and writing all over it. It turns out Brisbane City Council are running a program of activities called Big City Draw as a way of bringing people together through drawing and music (now that I think of it, I could hear some music). The initiative is part of Brisbane's 150th birthday celebrations which are going on throughout 2009. The activities also include colouring in magic carpets, designing the tree you would be and decorating totem poles with your own designed leaves and hearts. If you fancy expressing yourself, it goes from 11am-2pm daily until July 9th on Queen Street Mall.
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