Sydney, Australia

Jason Reed

Sydney is one of the first cities to celebrate the coming of the New Year every January 1, and people around the globe are familiar with the spectacular fireworks that accompany many a popped champagne cork as the clock strikes midnight.

When I was a young boy, my family would join thousands of others and find a spot along the harbour foreshore to drink it all in (the fireworks that is!). We never went to the same place twice and it was always an adventure. Now, all grown up and armed with a camera, I went on an assignment that helped me relive some of those childhood memories.


I was covering the Vivid Sydney festival, a spectacle of light, talks and music that is not as well known as the city’s New Year’s celebrations, but still a sight to see.


The light shows that take place there are billed by organisers as “a wonderland of ‘light art’ sculptures, innovative installations and grand-scale projections”. Covering it for the first time, I was intrigued to find out if Vivid Sydney could match the hype.

 Giant inflatable rabbits are pictured on the foreshore of Sydney harbour on the opening night of the Vivid Sydney light and music festival

As I thought about the event before it opened, more and more potential locations flooded my mind. That’s when I thought outside the box and set myself a challenge – both to transmit images daily for the Reuters Pictures Wire and at the same time to create a time-lapse of all the locations I visited around Sydney.