Tips for the best views (and photographs) of Vivid Festival in Sydney:
- a great starting point is on Hickson Rd on the western side of the Harbour Bridge – walk out on the finger wharf closest to the bridge, towards the end is a great position to get shots of the bridge with the lower north shore and Luna Park in the background.
- follow Hickson Rd around under the bridge and walk along the front of Dawes Point Park – the lights being reflected off the opera house sails are actually projected from Dawes Point Park, from the top of a large covered scaffolding (with flouro pink V on it)- when you walk in front of this and look towards the opera house, you will be able to see and photograph the bright beams of light coming into the opera house – they won’t be visible from any other point.
- keep walking around in front of the Park Royal and then in front of the row of tourist restaurants with their outdoor seating under big sun shades – take a right up the stairs at the end of ‘restaurant row’ and then a left up the street bridge to Quay restaurant. Go up the stairs just to the right of the door into Quay, and you’ll come out on the top balcony at the front of the Overseas Passenger Terminal, directly in front of the Opera house and far above the crowds.
- come back out the same way down the stairs, on the road outside there is a great view of the Harbour Bridge and some of the Vivid artworks on your right, and lights on other old Rocks building to your left.
- turn left again onto Hickson Rd and then George St, when you reach the MCA take the steps down onto the grass in front of the MCA. There are continuos projections onto its walls, and Vivid artworks in front of it as well.
- cut through the train station at Circular Quay and cross over Alfred St (between wharves 2 and 3) for great views of the lights on the front of Customs House.
- There’s also Vivid in Darling Harbour but I haven’t checked that out yet so I can’t give you any tips for there.
If you have them, this is the time to use a DSLR or any camera that allows you manual control of aperture (Av), shutter speed(Tv) and ISO, a tripod, and a remote shutter release.