Some brief notes and observations of this year's Vivid Sydney situation, before I dive back into exam study mode.
It's easy to forget Sydney is quite a big city and a popular tourist destination, until you're listening to frustration happen around you in five different languages, and it takes you 30min to drift, sardine-packed, with the human sea from the Opera House to Circular Quay station.
Don't go in torrential downpour. Especially not when you have expensive camera gear. Alternatively, go with a group of other photography enthusiasts who also have similarly expensive camera gear, who will understand your instinctive urge to protect your camera above all else.
Prepare adequately for night photography, because you should at least bring a tripod and have a clear idea of what you're seeking to achieve, or extraordinarily patient friends who will stand in an alley and twirl a glowstick for a good 10 minutes while you figure out your life (thanks James). Or join a Sydney Instagrammers photowalk if you're not in the midst of exam period hell.
Forget that your camera was on super slow shutter speed and give it a (slow) wave in front of the lights. You might be surprised at what you get (see last photo).
Go to the Canon Photography Hub. Because you get free prints from your camera and cool lessons from experts and you can hire lenses too, apparently.
People watch. Even when you're part of the sea of humans inching towards the Cathedral of Light, with arms outstretched high above, camera phones glowing. Whether it's a particularly millennial zombie hoard or the postmodern version of that scene from Half Blood Prince will depend on your mood. You might just see silly faces and laughter and sharing (and phones being stowed away as quickly as they come out), that will contradict any think-piece about the Disconnected Nature of Contemporary Society (TM).
Approach people with cool style on the street like Maki, and try not to be too creepy while exercising rusty Japanese skills to ask if you can take a photo of her.