After the first highly successful, and totally fun light painting evening in August another one was scheduled for October.
The old Bradmill Factory in Yarraville, has been sold to a chinese developer for $160m. Its scheduled to be pulled down and redeveloped into a mini city, but until then its a photographers mecca. And the Bradmill Factory and Lightpainting go hand in hand.
The place is massive.. and I do mean massive. All 24 hectares of it. Opening in 1927 and producing fabrics in heavy-duty cotton and canvas products it was abandoned in 2007 when manufacturing moved overseas. The main buildings are huge, open floor areas, pocked with holes both small and alarmingly deep. Every wall is covered with graffiti and every window is broken. Broken glass, empty bottles, burnt mattresses, wrecked and burnt out cars lie discarded. Not a single intact external or internal door exists. Access is beyond easy, just park the car and walk in.
The lightpainting was starting at dark, but I wanted to get another go at the site in daylight and my first stop was the old furnace. We crawled in through the small opening and looked straight up the chimney… adorning the walls inside was a white walker scene… everyone’s a GOT fan 🙂
Leaving the furnace we headed to the little house..apparently coal was unloaded here, and gone up the conveyor into the main building the fire the boilers. After deciding the conveyor was sturdy enough, and seeing another two photographers and two models head up there as well, we entered the little house and walked up the conveyor. Its not too bad a hike up there… I’m not young and I made though the heart was pumping by the time I got to the top 😉
At the top we found a mesh walkway with a tantalising glimpse of stairs the floors below. This top room had machinery and rollers but we could see better machinery downstairs so we headed back down the conveyor again and found an opening on ground level. Once inside again we headed up the stairs one level and hit the motherload on the first floor…..
As it was getting close to meet up time for the light painting we left the machinery room and headed back over to the main buildings. Bill and Deanne Holmer are the Light painting maestro’s… the should have been love children of Mc Gyver where they take a bottle opener, two nails and a rubber band and create something amazing. All of their light emitting equipment is original, designed and made by them. They put on an amazing LED lightshow for about 30 of us, tripods lined up in front, camera’s on bulb, with Bill calling the ‘shutter open’ and ‘shutter closed. After the LEDs they followed up with the steel wool spinning. The factory by now was black as pitch, and when the steel wool spins it throws out amazing sparks, dancing across the floor and roof.. and standing in the middle is our own ‘God of Fire’ ;