Review Guest Speaker – Mario Mirable

Mario is photographer with a passion for capturing urban landscapes and unique streets – particularly in the city of Melbourne.

Mario’s early dabble into photography began in the 80’s with a purchase of a SLR camera and the creation of a temporary darkroom – however this was short-lived as he was waiting for the next big thing to arrive – digital!

Seduced back into photography with the launch of digital and purchasing his first DLSR camera – a Canon – Mario quickly became hooked on how easy it was to create striking images with digital.   

Moving onto an Olympus DLSR and joining the Caulfield Camera Club (where he is still a member today) after a local contest, Mario was encouraged to go out and explore the streets in a contemporary way.  He still uses an Olympus today, with no flash.

Visit MIRALIGHT IMAGING  to view some of Mario’s fabulous images.

A View of the Street

Walking us through the different styles of street photography – commencing with Joseph Nicephone Niepce – the 1st metal plate photo as we know it and Louis Daguerre who produced one of the first “people photos” in Paris and then moving onto the works of other notable photographers such as Henri Cartier-Bresson -a French humanist photographer. Then to Jill Freedman’s brash and punchy style and Jeff Mermelstein’s humourist style – this set the scene for how to capture moments of daily life – the essence of street photography.
Mario’s style is not just all about the street – he captures moments in time either out in wide open spaces or indoors – creating interesting observations of the human existence.

Some highlights of his presentation included:

Exploring things as they happen:

  • Images of working baristas and waiters – capturing Melbourne’s obsession with coffee!
  • Light patterns and shadows
  • Being there for protests in the city – capturing all the confrontation
  • Looking for interesting faces – such as a dancer in the streets during NAIDOC week.

Exploring the urban environment for patterns and opportunities:

  • The interesting angles of the Tennis Australia Building
  • RMIT Design Hub building – varying light patches
  • Docklands – different shapes and colours observed when looking down and looking up or the interesting reflections of the Century or NAB buildings
  • Clear blue skies – make a great backdrop.

Seeking out different views:

  • Capturing the back of bathing boxes of the Brighton bathing boxes – rather than the often-photographed front view
  • The Immigration Museum – the contrast of the grey building against a person passing by with red clothing at the right moment.

Timing is Everything:
Capturing light at the right time and just being in the right place and time – can sometimes be just down to luck, for example, Mario’s images of:

  • The MCG with hot air balloons at sunrise
  • Flinders Street – with sunlight captured just at the right time.

Mario’s favourite sites are the Collins St Laneways and the roof of Southern Cross station.

Morality and the Law
Mario explained that there is no defined right to privacy in street photography – everyone is free to take photos in public. However, be sympathetic in your approach, for example always ask for a parent’s permission before taking images of children. Building owners have the right to ask you not to take photos particularly of building interiors – for example 720 Bourke St is a no but on the other hand it is permissible to take photos at the NGV.
By Kerry Hall 

The video will available on the Members Video Library page