vendredi 18 décembre 2009

holiday gift guide

Isn't the concept of birthday presents strange? It's like receiving congratulations for not only existing, but existing for yet another year. If anything, parents should be the ones who are congratulated, at least until the child is old enough to be responsible for their own existence and well-being. 

Another musing on present-receiving in general: have you ever contemplated over what you've received and thought about what the assorted miscellany says about you? Or at least what it says about how others perceive you as? My portrait would be painted by dessert cookbooks, jewelry, red lipstick, sketchbooks, tea cups, ironic t-shirts, hand-made cards and IOU's. For this year at least. It makes me uneasy to see myself in this way (in a completely predictable and logical way characterised by objects). At the same time it is also nice to gloat over all the nice new things I've accumulated simply for still being alive. 


lundi 14 décembre 2009

i feel old but not very wise

Today I am 19! I have had a year now to do grown up things. 

mercredi 9 décembre 2009


Make-up for me is like a grown up way of enjoying colouring in. Any girl who poured over colouring books as a child surely must contest that the nail polish counter is the best part of any department store (kitchen appliances comes a close second). 

 You may have also noticed that my walls are now blank. After eight years of enjoying the view of our neighbours' backyards from my bedroom window, I am finally moving. As for where I am moving to, I am not sure yet...

mardi 8 décembre 2009

ah...the serenity

I am quite resolute in thinking that I am a city gal. I like the sense of purpose I get from waking up to the sound of morning traffic, and then being caught on the trains during rush hour. It cannot be denied that I am most comfortable when I am feeling "alone in a crowd'. Unusual, perhaps, since that phrase tends to give negative connotations, yet, I cannot describe my favourite setting any more aptly.

Once in a while though, granted there is good food and wine (in gratuitous amounts if you please) and a comfortable bed, I do enjoy a more remote get away, somewhere to do nothing but sit on the deck sipping tea and G&T's during the day and play cards during the evening.


dimanche 6 décembre 2009

movies i can't resist watching whenever they're on tv

- Titanic
- Bring it On
- About a Boy
- Harry Potter (any of them)

(Tonight I watched Titanic again on our tiny old TV while sitting on a kitchen chair because we're half way through moving. Two comments: 1) it was worth it, 2) I still think Rose was being a fat bitch for not insisting on sharing the door/raft)


lundi 30 novembre 2009

john and yoko


samedi 28 novembre 2009

the burden of freedom

These photos are from a week ago when I first relished in my summer freedom. Maddy had a picnic which transferred into the living room due to poor weather, and later we had gourmet pizzas for dinner while watching Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. We weren't in the mood for concentrating, so the movie was too confusing for me to follow. I think I will give it another try though because a few days later at Anni's beach house I found the book on their shelf and read the first few pages. Anni said she doesn't know how the book got there, so I see it as a sign. I like to follow signs where possible.

Eric and I took photos of each other taking photos. A few days later I took a similar photo with David. It seems as though all my friends have taken up photography, which is quite exciting actually. This summer will be carefully documented. 

I am thinking of teaching myself Swedish to fill in the gaps of boredom between work and picnics.

jeudi 26 novembre 2009


I went away to my friend's holiday house for a few days and met two overweight ponies. 

I have never been one of those girls who cooed over horses, a condition inflicted by two mental images in particular: Chinese paintings of horses running in water, and that bed scene in The Godfather. Nonetheless, they were very sweet ponies. 


If you've ever stroked the muzzle of a horse, you'll know what I mean when I say it beats a baby's bottom. 

samedi 21 novembre 2009


I like revisiting photos of Kurt Cobain and young Johnny Depp because it makes me feel like I was actually old enough to experience the early 90s. Here are my favourite photos of Kurt.  

Wedding photo.

this girl is so hot


vendredi 20 novembre 2009


I wrote my last exam today and am now too overwhelmed by this sense of freedom. I just want to climb onto my roof and make weird noises at the moon because that is the craziest thing I can think of right now. 

When I walked out of the exam hall with my friend whom I've been studying with for the past week, it felt like one of those synchronised dancing in the street scenes from Ferris Bueller or 500 Days of Summer. This is the building we walked out of, and the fountain is the first thing that we saw:
Royal Exhibition Building - Melbourne
My friend looked like he was ready to dive into the fountain, which is exactly how I felt as well.

It's so good to not be distracted by stress, I have a lot of things planned for the summer. 

lundi 16 novembre 2009


Whilst on the topic of discovering photography, I was just looking at some photos I'd taken from almost three years ago now. They were from my trip to Europe, and at the time were of what I considered "romantic". 

This was probably my favourite shot. Like someone had laboriously spent an entire day scouting for the most Parisian looking couple in Montmartre and then arranged their embrace just so. In actual fact, it was spontaneously taken as I was being seated for dinner in a moment of disbelief. I seem to live out many clichés when I am in Paris. 

This 'dyptich' shall I call it is ostensibly less 'romantic', but the story behind it is a good one. The top photo was taken late at night close to St. Mark's square - I believe I was quite enamored by the concept, as well as the silhouette, of a bottle of wine against the Venetian night lights. The bottom photo was taken perhaps a day or two later on a different island. The sight of a couple setting out a picnic by the river had me all excited again and so click clack went my camera. It wasn't until I was back home in Melbourne sharing my holiday photos with my family did a sense of deja vu dawn upon me. Indeed it was the same couple in these two shots - indeed I had somehow assumed the role of fate's embodiment in all my click clacking of romance. Of the hundreds of thousands of couples who had spent that weekend in Venice, I had somehow absent-mindedly captured the same duo. 

I have thought about how lucky I was to have come across these unlikely, albeit romantic, circumstances. I have wondered if it would be at all feasible to track down the identities of these couples so that I could send them these photos with my regards. In reality though, there is probably nothing magical about these lovers. In fact, they, being young, have probably since found other people to be in love with. It's lucky then that at least I have these photos to fool me.

dimanche 15 novembre 2009

lukas p.

I first started taking photos about 3 and a half years ago, mostly due to the influence of joining the online art community called deviantart. As the years have gone by,  I have come to find the site to be less and less charming, and to an extent overwhelming. From time to time though, I still go on to check the recent works of a select few talented people. I don't do much exploring on the site anymore, I guess I'm not as interested in art as I was a few years ago and I have other things to do (like watching 30 Rock and cutting my toenails - what?). It's therefore quite lucky that I was able to find this particular Czech Republic gem amidst the self-indulgent rubbish that makes up 99% of the site (and also amidst the self-indulgent rubbish that I commit 99% of my time to).  

I don't know anything about Lukas P. except for what's on his deviantart page, but I can pretty confidently say that he knows how to work a 6x6. 
There is a paradox - a certain timeless eccentricity - to all of his work which I cannot explain. Maybe it's the extraterrestial beauty of his models combined with black and white medium format, or maybe it's the fact that his style reminds me of Richard Avedon- whatever it is, I am very jealous. 



samedi 14 novembre 2009

jane birkin (born 14 december 1946)

I have at last found someone cool to share my birthday with.

vendredi 13 novembre 2009



For a period of 2-3 weeks during mid-spring, these roses brimmed the front garden of a house I walked past everyday to and from the station. The house is made of  brownstone, and is awkward to look at, in that it is of an Edwardian style, but the freshness of its materials and its lack of tall shady trees implies a much newer home. There are statues of cherubs on the lawn, but they too are yet to acquire the charm of age, so instead do nothing but contribute an implicit tackiness. 

For a period of 2-3 weeks though, all this was forgiven - the ten or so thorny stumps which had lined the white picket fence had seemingly blossomed 100 big magnificent roses overnight. The colour of the roses are difficult to describe, and even in the photo above the shade is not quite right. Perhaps the best way to imagine this particular blush of pink is to picture Marie Antoinette biting into a macaron and then ascending into heaven. Now multiply that by 100 and you can get an idea of how inundated with satisfaction I was each time I walked past this house. For a while I considered leaving a note with my phone number in their mailbox so that they could enlighten me with what species the roses were. I never did so, I'm not sure why. Now that the roses have for the most part dried and wilted, it doesn't feel so urgent. 

sorry for talking about the weather again

I've just remembered that watermelons can be refrigerated then cut in half so that the flesh can be scooped out and consumed like a bowl of gelati. This has brought much relief and excitement to the prospect of summer.

jeudi 12 novembre 2009

post physics exam

- made conscious decisions on food
- enjoyed the weather
- cut finger nails
- wore eyeliner 
- found a seat on the bus without thinking it would be a good chance to go over notes one more time
- discharging 

lundi 9 novembre 2009

blatant taunting


I've just about had enough of this studying business. Why is the weather always so fine when I am cramming for my exams?

dimanche 8 novembre 2009

chim chim cher-ee

I wished they were my parents when I was 6.

vendredi 6 novembre 2009

locked in a golden afterglow

It was a hot day last Saturday, one of the hottest so far this spring. One of those days where even after the sun has set, you can still feel the coax of a lingering warmth vapourising into the sweaty air. 

At 8pm, the scene in the city was one of confusion: the unlikely combination of race-goers and Halloween. There are three types of women on a night like this: those in cocktail dresses and fascinators, those in something slutty and bloody, and those who look like an average Saturday night. I find myself in this third group - not dressed for anything. My friend is having a last minute birthday celebration at a rooftop bar. 

A few jugs of sangria (and something with sloe gin) later, the weather takes a turn for the worst and the sky splits into flashes of white. There is no thunder, the rain is too loud and the space beneath the umbrellas too crowded for anyone to hear it. 

We find an expensive cocktail bar too wait out the storm. We make flimsy paper cranes out of the napkins. 

call of the wild

A sudden need to prowl a Parisian flea market beckons. 

jeudi 5 novembre 2009

shall i compare thee to a summer's day?


I don't want to get too ahead of myself, but it's really starting to feel like summer, and the way this photo turned out really reminds me of David Hamilton's work. 

mardi 3 novembre 2009


Next year, will you call it "two thousand and ten" or "twenty ten"?

I think I will start with the former, out of habit, and then downsize to the latter, out of laziness. 

lundi 2 novembre 2009


For someone who carried around her writing utensils(courtesy of the University's orientation week) in a plastic pocket for a whole semester, I've really come a long way in terms of stationery acquisition.

Exhibit A: my go-to mechanical pencil - reliable, cheerful, erasable and ice-cream shaped. 4 months ago I received it as a gift from a friend. It has since performed the role of being a conversation starter with many a new friends.

And then I have this pen. I friggin love this pen. It has six colours and is the most expensive item of stationery ($3.95) that I've paid for since my duo tip whiteout (a misjudged purchase - only the brush tip works). This pen is so versatile that it is the only one I've used for note-taking since I bought it. You can screw off the tip to see the mechanism inside, something which amused me immensely until I dismantled it too many times and almost broke the black cartridge. Before that happened though, my friend had written a tiny note and put it inside this 'secret chamber' for me to open when all the cartridges run out. Now this pen is not only a work of brilliant design, but also a time capsule loaded with potential nostalgic value. I am so excited. 

Most of all, it encourages artistic pursuit and provides continual distraction in lectures. 

jeudi 29 octobre 2009




I now realise  how embarrassingly insular my life has been for the past 18 years and 10 months. Someone please tell me that they are also experiencing a moment of disillusionment. 

dimanche 25 octobre 2009


At the start of every October, I wish that Australians celebrated Halloween. Though, to be honest, I'm one of those people who don't understand why they can't just make every party a mandatory dress up party. 

To make the Halloween situation worse, some even like to turn it into a moral and political crisis - as though wanting to celebrate Halloween means that I'm selling out to the traditions of a redneck American. 

Well let's just talk hypothetically then. If I was going to a Halloween party this year, I would dress up as Edward Scissorhands. A fairly sane and generic idea when compared to some more radical and abstract ones I have hypothetically dressed up as in previous years. The advantage of this is that I already have all necessary items for the costume (bar the simple craft project of making some scissorhands), and my hair is of the right length for teasing into a Robert Smith nest. In fact, once the novelty of the obtrusive scissorhands wore off, I could take them off and just be dressed up as Robert Smith. 

edward scissorhands Pictures, Images and Photos
robert smith Pictures, Images and Photos

If you are lucky enough to live in country where celebrating Halloween is not only a tradition, but encouraged upon, what are you dressing up as?

olivia bee


I just discovered this 15 year old photographer about an hour ago on flickr. I don't know why I like her photos so much, maybe because of the way she uses the beautiful natural landscapes around her, or the fact that her friends all look so happy and non-contrived. The youthfulness that exudes from the pictures is so genuine and joyful, it makes me both really happy and really sad.

I guess this quote from Mad Men comes to mind:
Nostalgia - it's delicate, but potent. Teddy told me that in Greek, "nostalgia" literally means "the pain from an old wound." It's a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone.