23rd March 2015 Written by John Ma Trending Fun

Twinkle Twinkle Little Party

JohnMa 01 Invasion

Zombies © John Ma

Oxford Steet was laid to waste. Fish and chips and kebabs refuelled tired bodies as the hordes of party zombies descended onto the Hordern Pavilion.

 

JohnMa 02 GoodAndEvilAndStringCheese

Good, Evil and String Cheese © John Ma

The bodies flowed through the gates. There was a nagging feeling that serious choices had to be made that night.

 

JohnMa 03 Union

Union © John Ma

Aussie girl meets Brazilian girl. They fall in love and decide to get married. The ceremony took place on one of the floats in the parade. Imagine what their kids will look like.

 

JohnMa 04 Entourage

Entourage © John Ma

Some rolled deep.

 

JohnMa 05 Razzle

Razzle © John Ma

Dazzle

 

JohnMa 06 Gaga

Gaga © John Ma

 

JohnMa 07 BigRooms

Big Rooms © John Ma

There were lots of big rooms like this and all of them boiling with human energy.

 

JohnMa 08 TheMenu

The Menu © John Ma

On full display.

 

JohnMa 09 NeonPeaces

Neon Peace © John Ma

They came in neon and peace.

 

JohnMa 10 Deuces

Deuces © John Ma

Two is better than one.

 

JohnMa 11 Bodies

Frenzy © John Ma

It was like a feeding frenzy.

 

JohnMa 12 Victors

Victors © John Ma

He is a winner.

 

JohnMa 13 Jocks

Jocks © John Ma

Fully sick jocks!

 

JohnMa 14 Unicorn

Unicorn © John Ma

 

JohnMa 15 Rider

Rider © John Ma

Some were just riding it out.

 

JohnMa 16 Teleporter

Teleporter © John Ma

If you let it, you can imagine it’s a teleporting machine.

 

JohnMa 17 Pray

Pray © John Ma

Sometimes this happens when I stand up on high places. I hope I granted him what he prayed for. I gave him the only thing I could, and took his portrait in this raving mass of Mardi Gras excitement.

 

JohnMa 18 MadMaxine

Mad Maxine © John Ma

Definitely teleported here.

 

JohnMa 19 Twinkle

Twinkle © John Ma

I caught one twinkle.

 

JohnMa 20 Selfless

Selfless © John Ma

Some friends are just so selfless when they are taking selfies.

 

JohnMa 21 FairyFloss

Fairy Floss © John Ma

 

JohnMa 22 DanceFloor

Dance Floor © John Ma

The struggle and hassle of walking through the crowd is easily justified by what you’ll find. I found him in the middle of the buzzing balminess.

 

JohnMa 23 Pasties

Pasties © John Ma

Sometimes when you lose a pastie you just have to make do.

 

JohnMa 24 Fairytales

Fairytales © John Ma

Someone playing with the teleporter again.

 

JohnMa 25 RockOn

Rock On © John Ma

By now I had no idea which one of the big rooms I was in. The Party kept on and I held on.

 

JohnMa 26 Poof

© John Ma

And like magic, she appeared again.

 

JohnMa 27 Casualties

Casualties © John Ma

There were bound to be some casualties, and not everyone was going to walk away unscathed.

 

JohnMa 28 DumpOut

Bump Out © John Ma

I honestly can’t remember the party ending. But if I had to imagine it, it would be like this.

18th March 2015 Written by John Ma Trending Fun

The Parade Portraits

The passion, pride, and performance of Mardi Gras is encapsulated and personified by its people. In and out of it - watching and playing in it. It is the people that make up the whole thing.

I love photographing humans. The results always astound me. Mardi Gras is my rabbit hole. I won’t ruin this with words. This is all about character, so I’ll let character speak for itself.

JohnMa 01 OldVic

Old Vic © John Ma

 

JohnMa 02 Invaders

Invaders © John Ma

 

JohnMa 03 PomPoms

Pom Poms © John Ma

 

JohnMa 04 BladesOfGlory

Blades of Glory © John Ma

 

JohnMa 05 BangBang

Bang Bang © John Ma

 

JohnMa 06 NoHands

No Hands © John Ma

 

JohnMa 07 Footpath

Footpath © John Ma

 

JohnMa 09 Folks

Folks © John Ma

 

JohnMa 10 Pipes

Pipes © John Ma

 

JohnMa 11 Madame

Madame © John Ma

 

JohnMa 12 Ghosts

Ghosts © John Ma

 

JohnMa 13 Dos

Dos © John Ma

 

JohnMa 14 Gimps

Gimps © John Ma

 

JohnMa 15 Traditions

Traditions © John Ma

 

JohnMa 16 WarPaint

War Paint © John Ma

 

JohnMa 17 Partners

Partners © John Ma

 

JohnMa 18 CrewCut

Crew Cut © John Ma

 

JohnMa 19 Girls

Girls © John Ma

 

JohnMa 20 MardiGras

Mardi Gras © John Ma

 

JohnMa 21 Slip

Slip © John Ma

JohnMa 22 Melodrama

Melodrama © John Ma

 

JohnMa 23 Eve

Eve © John Ma

 

JohnMa 24 78ers

78ers © John Ma

 

JohnMa 25 Pixie

Pixie © John Ma

 

JohnMa 26 Feathers

Feathers © John Ma

 

JohnMa 27 Pink

Pink © John Ma

 

JohnMa 28 Looks

Looks © John Ma

 

JohnMa 29 Pigtails

Pigtails © John Ma

 

JohnMa 30 Umbrella

Umbrella © John Ma

 

JohnMa 31 Shatter

Shatter © John Ma

 

JohnMa 32 Glory

Glory © John Ma

 

JohnMa 33 Sweetness

Sweetness © John Ma

 

JohnMa 34 You

You © John Ma

These portraits represent just a few of the characters from the parade, if you're keen for more, you can check them out here

16th March 2015 Written by John Ma Trending Fun

Mardi Gras 2015: The Parade Route

JohnMa 01 Backdrops

Backdrop © John Ma

I was late reaching my media bay when the Parade officially started. Being ushered by security and event organisers, I rushed up the empty parade route of Oxford St. Not far behind me was the very beginning of the parade, and behind them was the setting sun that silhouetted the city. The energy had been building up all day, and as the waiting crowd caught sight of the marching paraders, the noise in the air wasn’t just cheers, it was a delight.

 

JohnMa 02 Fiver

Fiver © John Ma

Every float and participant was in one way or another, trying to touch and engage with someone. Some did it physically, some did visually. But either way their invitation was undeniable.

 

JohnMa 03 Unisons

Unison © John Ma

As you can see, some of the floats stuck very closely to their routines.

 

JohnMa 04 Neptune

Neptune © John Ma

Greek mythology would be so laid back if this guy had been a part of it.

 

JohnMa 05 Strokes

Strokes © John Ma

The Different Strokes Dragon Boat team.

 

JohnMa 06 Zoom

Zoom © John Ma

The night was zooming by and I didn’t want it to end too quickly.

 

JohnMa 07 Ruffles

Ruffles © John Ma

Luckily some of the paraders were less frenetic and took their time making their way along the parade route. Clearly not letting the hype ruffle their ruffles.

 

JohnMa 08 Baton

Baton © John Ma

It’s pretty safe to say that no baton was ever waved so eagerly before, nor after, this shot was taken.

 

JohnMa 09 Uniform

Uniform © John Ma

If you have a thing for men in uniforms… You’re very welcome. But for those who are a part of any long established institution where truly expressing yourself can be a difficult thing - This will hopefully give you some encouragement.

 

JohnMa 10 Glisten

Glisten © John Ma

Epically Drag.

 

JohnMa 11 Closets

Closets © John Ma

The metaphor was proud and clear and the colourful doors rolling down Oxford St provided a wonderfully surreal setting for me to photograph.

 

JohnMa 12 BeachBums

Beach Bums © John Ma

Lifesavers have been part of the Mardi Gras institution for a long long time. Budgie smugglers and little bikinis, twirling and twerking, shaking and grinding… I’m cool with that. 

 

JohnMa 13 Firebugs

Firebugs © John Ma

Emergency services was out in force, waving the flag high and representing the proud.

 

JohnMa 14 Precipitation

Precipitation © John Ma

Abstract installation art with a chance of local precipitation?

 

JohnMa 15 Twirl

Twirl © John Ma

There was so much twirling going around. And around. And around. And around…

 

JohnMa 16 CleanUpCrew

Clean Up Crew © John Ma

I don’t know who hired these guys to do the clean-up, but they did a pretty shitty job.

 

JohnMa 17 FollowTheGlitter

Follow The Glitter © John Ma

If there was any bright side the terrible job done by the Clean Up Crew, it was that finding your way to The Party of all parties was really really easy. Follow the glitter!

 

JohnMa 18 Maniacs

Maniacs © John Ma

Before we could get to The Party, I first had to dodge a horde of maniacs that were grabbing and running away with anything that wasn’t tied down.

12th November 2013 Written by Hannah Chapman Music Madness

KING GIZZARD AND THE LIZARD WIZARD LIVE AT THE STANDARD

By Hannah Chapman The lesson I learned after seeing King Gizzard play is that I miss seeing live music featuring harmonica. That underrated little bar of air channels and reeds filters breath into some hard-hitting majesty that makes you want to chew hay and drink whisky in the best way possible. And when you filter it through the tripped out effects favoured by King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, it’s a whole other kind of wonderful altogether. You get the vibe that this band was built on jam sessions between friends. This is suggested by the sheer number of members and styles; there are two drummers, four vocalists plus tunes as varied as Doorsy 70s rock, to Delta blues riffs, and all kinds of other genres shining through the ever-present psychedelic meanderings… Somehow you can’t help but imagine the process behind this group’s music involved long Sundays in a garage or living room with lots of spliffs, instrument-swapping, and a massive array of records.
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