PIX … Playing In The Streets #1

On February 19, 2012 by Eye on Auckland

Playing in the Streets.

What a fantastic idea and experience – a huge thanks to the organizers. Partially closing off Queen Street to traffic has transformed the space and given the people of this great city the opportunity to reclaim the space so that we (and not cars) may take advantage of the space and get a taste of things to come  (which can’t come soon enough). Queen Street was one big playground with people of all ages taking part in sports activities and there was also lots of entertainment available. One thing that I did notice was that the closure of Queen Street caused no traffic jams which just goes to show that it isn’t necessary for vehicles to use the street. It also proved to those shop owners who think that the more cars we have the more shopping there will be – wrong ! When last did you see Queen Street this busy on a sunday ? It was heaving with people. Another important thing to remember is that it is people who spend the money and not cars.

As for the psycho couple that harassed us and accused us of taking photographs of children for other purposes – go and see a psychiatrist – you are both very sick people. Public events are full of journalists and bloggers taking photographs for posterity – if you can’t understand it then stay in your little padded cell and don’t ever come out in public to try and “clear” your guilty conscience.  Speaking of photographs, here they are so please enjoy (Part 2 continues HERE):

A touch of fairy magic.


So cute.

Street Soccer.

The inner child appears.

The girls showing the boys how it is done.

So much talent on display.

The coach always knows better.

Queen Street as you have never seen it before.

Sibling rivalry.

Playing in the streets.



At the Disco.


37 Responses to “PIX … Playing In The Streets #1”

  • MollyBrown

    Wow, amazing photographs, I wish that I could have been there. Did those people come up to you and accuse you of taking pornographic photographs ?

    • The Eye

      They came up to us and insinuated that we are taking too many photographs of children. Then they questioned why we are taking photographs (stupid I know) and then the husband accused us of taking pics for “personal” use. At first we were utterly dumb-struck and then all hell broke loose. They asked for our names etc. and I referred them to Eye on Auckland. I also told them that I take pics for the Auckland Council and that the organizers of the event asked me to take some photographs as well. Never in my life have I experienced something so absurd and something so pathetically juvenile. They are nut jobs in every sense of the word. I just want to forget them.

      Thanks for the compliment :)

      • MollyBrown

        They probably have something to hide, a guilty conscience perhaps ? If somebody came and accused me of that they will be standing in front of a court faster than they can say pedophile. Stupid morons.

      • James B

        OMG that is so strange. This sort of stuff is apparently very common in the UK whipped up by a media more concerned with ratings than truth. I hope it doesn’t put you off. Photographers have a hard enough time as it is with anti-terror laws, over zealous security and unintentional copyright infringements.

        • The Eye

          Yup, so let’s just ban photography in NZ … full stop.

          • James B

            I saw this youtube video on taking photos of buildings in London. The photographers were instructed to take photos from public land, if confronted they should explain that this was for a documentary on architecture and that they were to explain that it was legal to take photos from public land.
            They were all confronted by building security one photographer was on private land and was asked to move 2 metres to the other side. The security manager was perfectly happy with him taking photos from the public land and offered to take him for a tour should he apply to reception.
            One security manager started railing about anti terrorism and demanded the photos be deleted. He went as far as calling the police. The police arrived, quite quickly assessed that no crime was being commited and explained the law to the security manager. It was interesting that most of the building security thought company policy over photographs overrode the law.

  • Alan

    Did they not ask you why you were taking photographs ?

  • Alan

    Sorry ignore that, it is a stupid question. You have every right to be taking photographs at a public event. Are they crack addicts perhaps ?

  • Hannah

    It was a fantastic event. My girls (and me) has such a great time on the obstacle course and being able to throw a rugby ball around on Fort Street was a real treat. Wouldn’t it be a lovely start for this to become a monthly event?

  • Marcus

    Hey Syd, don’t normally comment on here, but I really enjoyed this photo set in particular. Great work in capturing what sounds like an exciting event. I can but hope this will continue and add greater weight to the argument of pedestrianising Queen Street.

    Also, as a side note, I am disturbed and rather annoyed by the insinuation about you and your partner. These photos are innocent, vibrant, well taken and offer an excellent snapshot of the event. Heck we might have our disagreements/differences but I’d vouch for your conduct any day!

    • The Eye

      Thanks Marcus, our lawyer has given us some good advice and I would like to share it with all of you – if somebody does accuse you of taking photographs for “personal” use – don’t give them your details, take them by the hand and lead them to the nearest police station so that they can accuse you in writing and then you can get their details in order to lay a charge of slander and harassment. It is the most insulting accusation that I have ever had to endure.

      • Gollum

        It is a shame that you didn’t know that before, people who think that they can just walk up to you and accuse you of something need to be taught a valuable lesson in life.

  • Matt

    awesome photos!

  • AbelTasman

    LOL, they sound as if they have been smoking too much of the green stuff. I am loving your photographs, you have captured the event well.

  • Margaret

    Your photographs are amazing. I couldn’t make it but a friend of mine went and she loved it. I also hope that it becomes a regular event and don’t let foolish people put you off capturing events likes these for us to enjoy.

    I think that maybe they are concerned parents but you have to expect photographers at these events, it is a public occasion.

    • The Eye

      It is great that they are concerned parents, they make the best parents. I don’t have children of my own but I am very protective of my nieces and nephews. I don’t go around making false accusations and getting paranoid because there are cameras around.

      We live in a free society and we are free to take photographs (and as many as we want to). These people do NOT have the right to come and accuse you of things that are so demeaning and hurtful.

  • little_miss_muffet

    I really enjoy your blog and especially your latest posts on the closure of Queen Street for the day. Keep up the great work! It was a roaring success and hopefully the council can arrange this event every month, or even better pedestrianise Queen Street permanently. They should include High Street in weekend closures as well – combined with Freyburg Square would make a great party atmosphere.

    Sorry to hear about your run in with the ‘camera police’ Generally these kind of people are happy to cast aspersions on one’s character at the drop of a hat, giving very little thought to what they are actually doing and unwilling to listen to any response you may give them. Even when confronted with the truth in the full light of day they will refuse to see they are wrong, and they are in truth only pandering to their own inner demons. This type of behaviour rings alarm bells in social welfare circles.

    • The Eye

      Funny that you mention the “camera police”. According to them we were singled out because: “I have no problem with one or two photos, it was merely the quantity that grabbed not only my attention but also other parents of those whose children were in the display”

      Since when is there a restriction on the amount of photographs one can take ?. There were hundreds of other people taking videos, capturing shots on their cameras, iphones and ipads. How do they know how many photographs were taken by us ? was it more than what hundreds of other people took or was it less ? Are they psychic ?

      These people firstly don’t understand photography, secondly suffer from delusions of grandeur and thirdly have no consideration for people’s feelings. I will show them the same amount of disrespect as they showed towards us.

      As for carrying identification/tags … why didn’t they have any on them ?, they were also at the event taking photographs. We didn’t question their integrity. I guess we need a new law in NZ – if you are carrying a smart-phone, a camera, a video camera, and/or an iPad, you will be required to wear some form of identification. How ridiculous can it get ?

      • little_miss_muffet

        I think common sense would dictate that if you don’t want anyone to take pictures of your children, simply don’t allow them to participate in a PUBLIC display.

      • Osmand

        I have never heard of anything so ridiculous in my life, people thinking that they can target you because of the number of photographs that you take. They sound like absolute idiots living in Narnia.

        I am a keen photographer and I can take in excess of 500 photographs per session. Somebody must come and tell me that they don’t mind if I take one or two photographs but no more they will regret the day that they were born.

      • MaryB

        At the very least, these idiots owe you a written apology. You have given them all your details and yet they gave you nothing. On top of it all they had the audacity to accuse you and victimize you without any proof. If you receive any feedback from them and you have a witness take it to the police, I would.

        I for one am very happy that you post these photographs. I work very strange hours and I can’t always attend these events. Thank you.

  • Andrewf

    Looks like an event to remember, the little ones are sure enjoying themselves. I echo the call that you continue posting and bringing these events into our homes. If somebody came up to me and questioned why I was taking photographs I would slap them with camera and then drag them to the nearest police station.

  • Bryce

    As above, great photos :-).
    I had hoped to get down there but Coastguard duty got in the way. Looks like everyone had a fantastic time and didn’t Auckland put on a stunning day weather wise.

  • James B

    Unsurprisingly a letter to the editor complained about what this event did to the retailers. I haven’t heard from Heart of the City but if they haven’t complained I guess they didn’t see a drop in sales.

    • The Eye

      That should be interesting. I can only imagine that hospitality saw some increases – it could be that people were too busy being entertained to shop but that doesn’t change the fact that it was a success and that the streets were full of people.

  • Moira

    Yay, I am famous, you have a pic of me. Thanks for going out there and taking such amazing photographs. As for the paranoid parents, get a life.

  • Great event, hope it is continued. Some work can be done on the layout and selection of activities, but as a first starting point this one was fantastic.
    I will make a post on the AAA website soon, hopefully if enough noise is made it will contribute to continuing and growing the event.
    Great photos as usual, i felt vulnerable to similar criticsm while i was there too, but was lucky to avoid the crazy couple.

  • Patricia

    Wow!!!! what a great day it was. I don’t normally comment on your blog. Well done keep up the good work.

  • meg

    A great blog thanks! and love the images. Since we came back to NZ I have noticed there seems to be a misconception that it’s illegal to photograph people here in public places without their permission. I was taking photos outside my own place and this girl (early 20′s) walking past screamed at me to “f” off and that it was illegal. I said it wasn’t (and frankly I didn’t want her in my images anyway), but she just kept yelling like I was snatching her purse or something. I find too because I carry a “big camera” I get looks which is a bit crazy I think -why would a terrorist or other be so obvious? Anyway to the best of my knowledge it is still completely legal to photograph people on the st in nz (though not on private property which includes most indoor malls eg westfields), though if they are recognisable it would pay not to use the images for commercial or $ making purposes (which blogging never was for me LOL). As I was told, probably the only recent legal precedent is Hosking vs Simon Runting (which I guess would mean you should no longer photograph celeb’s children)? But don’t quote me on that….

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