4 February 2008


Before I left Ballarat I desperately wanted to visit my favourite Ballarat landmark and get a good picture of it for posterity’s sake. If you know me then you know I have an interest in this site bordering on obsession and also that the majority of my honours exegesis came from it as well. It’s simply an old billboard next to the railway line on Armstrong st. I’ve never been able to explain it really, even though I tried in my exegesis. The closest that I can come to in explaining the interest is the naturalness as an accidental artwork of this billboard. Maybe it’s the irony that this object of advertising is not really desirable to look at and coveys a subversive message. Finally it’s the message itself, the mystery of it, “IAN FLOOD FOR KING” who is Ian Flood and why did he proclaim his kingdom on this billboard?

I never did make it to the billboard for my ideal final photoshoot, which in my mind consisted of a film SLR camera and tripod and long exposures. But I did make it with my humble Samsung 5 megapixel camera to take a few quick snaps. I had a mental image of how I wanted the final shot to look, but photography’s not one of my fortes, so I was stabbing in the dark at how I was going to achieve this in the first place.

Now it’s been over two months since I took those simple photos and over the past few days the metal image has started creeping into my head again. I knew this was going to take some photoshopping to get the rich textured and oversaturated look I was going for. When I use photoshop in this manner I never really know what exactly I’ll do, I just creatively play with the controls and hope for a result in the ballpark of what I want.

After a few short minutes of playing around with one particular shot I feel I got close to that inner image I was talking about. Of coarse the finished version is never as good as the fantasy version but ins’t that what propels artists along in the end anyway. Constantly trying to one up yourself. I’m not sure if this is the image I’ll ultimately get a large scale print and frame but I thought I’d share it with you anyway.


DaveMahler said...

fantastic! such a unique picture...i love vandalised billboards, did you ever see the one in..uh...crap. near Vic Gardens, i presume living in Ballarat you didnt go to VG much, but there was a billboard with a fur coat nailed onto it, with red paint dripping down underneath it. a Melbourne landmark, before it was taken down.

Anonymous said...

There is a story behind the billboard. He is still living and working in Ballarat.

awcomix said...

Hi anonymous, I would love to hear from you. Anything you could tell me would be great. Use the contact button on the blog