Melbourne is a great place for art and quite a lot of it is not stuck in galleries but is on the walls of the many alleyways that run through the city. I am referring to piece of street art (as opposed to tags).

The council actually have a funny attitude to street art. They have a scheme where (with the building owner’s permission) an artist can submit a concept for a piece of work which will last for 6 months. The piece will be approved, but the artist has to paint it without being seen, because graffiti is illegal. Obviously because one man’s art is another graffiti trying to come up with a definition has been too difficult for them.

I doubt that it is actually policed much anyway.

While we were holidaying there I spent quite a bit of time down alleyways trying to capture the best of the work and now have quite a collection that will probably be used with some more commercial work.

Photographing in alleyways has special challenges (apart from the obvious one of being mugged). The ones is Melbourne can be three or four story high so light is a major issue. Deploying the flash will often not produce a good result as you end up with hot spots as the paint reflects the flash.

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