sydney, meet diana

I haven't shot extended exposures before because to be able to do it on the Holga, one must undertake irreversible camera surgery. This is one of Diana's advanced features, so I thought I might as well give it a go on my debut roll.

We - that is to say, myself and my travelling companion, whose face appears below - sat on the very shallow ledge of a newsstand (or some such small street-corner construction) in the middle of Sydney on a Sunday night for approximately two-and-a-half minutes while the open-shuttered camera sat precariously next to us, absorbing all that you can see above. It isn't the best setting for this kind of thing, nor is it the best result for this kind of thing, but I don't have a tripod and, as I discovered, it is rather difficult to find a suitably stable surface on which to balance a camera at Sydney's CBD intersections. I'm including it here because a) it isn't awful, and b) it's new for me.

So, I no longer have to shamefully admit that I've never been on a Sydney ferry... above is the on- and off-board view from my outdoor seat (who sits inside on a ferry?! A lot of people, apparently).

I used the straight-up colour film that came with the camera, and I'm not used to how the images look; I've been so preoccupied with slide that standard colour rarely gets a look-in. This image in particular has grown on me, though. The colour is very plain, and the city skyline decidedly unspectacular. These qualities are precisely what draws me to it - the whole thing really recalls the eighties for me. And I don't mean the garish fluoro-and-shoulder-pad eighties that lines the walls of General Pants Co and its ilk, either. Instead, I see the washed-out colour of bad home photography, the ugly corporate buildings and yeah, OK, the white sunglasses. It's the unsightly side of the era - the side that is perhaps forgotten or unknown among the young eighties revivalists. It interests me.

So here are the first shots from my new lomo. And the first shots from the aforementioned Sydney trip. The images aren't spectacular. But just like the trip, there are aspects that are very interesting.


blondes have more fun

So my sister has this car. Sometimes it doesn't have a roof. She drives around, when it isn't raining, without a roof. Sometimes she drives through the hills, when it's sunny. And it looks like this.

Come late January 2010, she's gonna be looking like this from the south coast of Victoria, right across the dry brown land - battling wild kangaroos, camels, horses and backward bogans - all the way to the upper reaches of the Northern Territory. See, she decided to move to Darwin. And she's taking our cousin-slash-honorary-brother with her.

She's kind of prone to spontaneity, especially of the outrageous variety, and for better or worse she lives for the moment. When I think of my sister, the image of her blonde hair and multicoloured headscarf flying in the breeze with youthful abandon as she cruises the open road is apt, to say the least.

In lieu of my (only) sister, I will have to turn to this cheeky blonde monkey for some uninhibited fun on my visits home next year. Here she is - my cousin's irresistable second child - playing hide-and-seek while her younger sister (also known as my delightful goddaughter) watches on inquisitively. Also pictured is the tree that hid more than a few of us during the brief play session one bright Saturday afternoon.

If my beautiful little girls are too busy sleeping, playing with others or, god forbid, growing up, I might end up having no-one to frolick with. And then I will just have to go back to being a grown-up.