great southern land

Going back to Perth for Christmas, after being away for almost two years, was surreal. I thought everything would seem new again, but it was all exactly the same. The only thing that had changed was me. I now have a massive map of London in my head, but I can remember every part of Perth just as I knew it before. The biggest shock when returning to Perth from grey December London is the light. Sunshine everywhere. Here are some photos from the film I shot during my 3 week stay that cheer me up now I’m back in the cold.


All photos taken with my Olympus Trip 35 on Kodak Ultramax 400.

back to the start: Holga 120CFN

My first film camera was the Holga 120 CFN. I got it back in the day when there was ONE Lomography shop in Sydney, and if you wanted to order online you had to email them an order form and pay over the phone. I also didn’t have the maturity to have a debit/credit card so yeah, my Mum had to buy it for me. I had used film cameras at school and wanted a cheap one for myself (I enjoyed using a massive Mamiya 120 camera but uh, didn’t have the budget for one). Having since accumulated many more film cameras the Holga slipped to the sidelines, mostly because it costs so much to develop 120 film. I thought it was about time to revive it so here are some photos taken recently, but on film that expired 15 years ago!


All photos taken by me with my Holga 120 CFN on Kodak Portra 160VC film (expired 2001!)

time for change

The past month or so has been a time of change for me. A new job, thinking about my blog in a different way, doing more things that make me happy.


I really loved being at the V&A for a year & a half but in the end I was happy to leave. I had gained a whole lot of different experiences but that came from doing an internship that was quite general for a whole department followed by covering 4 or more different roles. I am grateful for that as it has given me what was needed to get a new job, but it did wear me down and sometimes made me feel like I wasn’t valued as much as I deserved to be.

Wonderfully I am now working in Exhibitions at the Royal Academy of Arts. The job is permanent (throw two years of worrying out the window) and everyone is so lovely I am just so happy to have finally found somewhere to belong! As with the V&A I am now obsessed with the history of the RA (which is older ha!) and works in a completely different mindset. It may be almost 250 years old but it has always been quite contemporary, governed by the living Royal Academicians, which is where I see the main difference to the V&A that is still very much set in its ways. Joining at a time when the galleries are always full and theres people enjoying the RA so throughly it is really exciting to be involved.

I mentioned those two years of worrying. When I started at the RA, contract signed, I was left feeling a bit empty. Now that is not the feeling you should have when you start a new job but I’ve narrowed it down to two reasons. Reason one is that I have been only living for six months ahead in my mind at any time since I moved to London. My course at Sotheby’s took me from August to December, then I had enough money to live until February. I got my internship at the V&A which was 6 months, then I covered a job for 3 months, then I covered another role that they said would be 2-3 months but turned into six and then in May I was told I could stay until the end of September. I pretty much lived in constant fear of being suddenly unemployed (although, as my Job Centre advisor told me, I am extremely employable) and that is something that took up a lot of my mental time. The second reason for the emptiness was moving. Yet again I had to move, leave friends behind and start all over again. Even though the best friends I made at the V&A I keep in regular contact with it just felt like yet again I was all alone. No-one to go have lunch with, not in on the in jokes. It is tough to start again. That said, I have been given a (positive) nickname at the RA so I feel like I’ve been accepted very quickly.

The security I now have of a permanent position on a healthy wage, and having found a place to live that I am comfortable in has led me to finally explore the things I couldn’t do when I had neither of those things. Most importantly, my photography had suffered. I couldn’t really afford to get film developed so I didn’t shoot any. When I did it was one roll over a long period of time, and then I would procrastinate developing it. Now, I am trying to do more project focused photography. I am throwing around ideas about making zines from the photo projects which I think will make me actually do them. I have finished one project, developed and almost ready to print & share, and today I have finished photographing the second to be developed this week.

That brings me to this blog. Over the past 5 years it has been sporadic and loosely focused. Was it vintage clothing, photography or general life that I was writing about? Who wants to read all those things? I think it would make me happier and make it easier for myself to keep going if I really focus what I post. So it will mostly be my film photography, which in turn gives me the opportunity to share other things I love (the magic of images!). I look forward to sharing more of my photographs and thoughts, maybe more frequently now that I have finally settled down in London.

Royal Academy of Arts

Both images taken on my Olympus Trip 35 with Agfa Vista 400 film.

best food in London

I’m not adventurous with food so I always find a few places that I really love and stick to them. I’m not saying I won’t try new things but it’s always nice to know off the top of your head somewhere that is great and you don’t have too many choices to deal with. Because in London, choice can ruin you!

Honest Burgers
Honest BurgersMove aside Gourmet Burger Kitchen, Byron and Five Guys, Honest burgers are my favourite in London! (see, spoilt for choice!) The bun is fluffy, the meat melts in your mouth and the chips are amazing and just the right amount because YES you can eat all of them! They have many locations, I’ve been to Brixton and Soho, but get in early so you don’t have to wait for your next best burger! Also, I am told that the gluten free bun is the best gluten free bun ever, tested by someone who has had a lot of gluten free bread in her time, thanks Georgia!
No bookings so get there early if you are impatient like me

Snog I love a little snog, a big snog, a snog with one topping, a snog with many toppings. The best frozen yoghurt I’ve ever had. And all the staff seem to be male models which is a bonus! The chocolate yoghurt with strawberries and a chocolatey topping is my favourite. Georgia tried the popcorn and loved it so I will have to try that next time. Don’t miss the Snog bus at Southbank! They also have many other locations including one dangerously near where I work.

Chop Shop
Chop ShopI had wanted to go to Chop Shop for ages. I walked past it in Haymarket and thought that it looked really good. And I was right in my assumptions. I got the white onion mousse jar (amazing!), the steak was cooked to perfection and the salted caramel and Grand Marnier gelati was delicious. The cocktails are lovely too although definitely London prices at £9. If you get in between 5-7pm the set menu is on £22 for three courses which I think is a great deal for food this delicious.
I’ve booked online a few days before and on the day

WahacaI can’t talk about food in London without mentioning Wahaca. I have taken almost every single person who has come over from Australia to Wahaca. I go with a group, I go alone, nothing will stop me from getting this delicious Mexican street food! The menu is great, lots of little things to choose from all around £4 each. I always get the frijoles and tortilla chops to begin with and I used to get the black bean quesadilla for my main BUT they have taken it off the menu, sad times. I can’t be sad for long because they have so many other wonderful things to eat and I know I will be back time and time again. My favourite ones to go to (as there are many locations) are Soho, the one north of Oxford Circus & the shipping containers at the Southbank Centre (outside Royal Festival Hall).
You can’t book but there is always tequila at the bar!