Studio is go!

Monday September 17,  2012

Well they say better late than never…  The studio  is finished, late, over budget, but finished none the less…

We had an unfinished shed at our place, that became a dumping ground of junk I had collected for 20 odd years, but it had the potential to be a studio space, and then it could be used later for another purpose if required.

It still needs a paint on the outside (as does our house), but we are now using the space for it’s intended use.

Right hand side is the studio

Work in progress shots

I was happy to leave the old chipboard, complete with years of neglect and stains as the floor, as is.  Sue persuaded me that this wasn’t such a good idea, and she was proved right after three coats of paint.

The old floor didn’t look that bad did it?

Grey going on over the undercoat, glad it was just one shade!

I wanted to hand our paper rolls on the wall permanently, but all of the information I read said that you were unable to due to the cardboard inner roll, sagging under the weight, and creating ripples in your paper.  I found one post n flickr that looked promising, and I contacted the author of the post (years on from the original post) and he was very obliging with confirming that it had stood the test of time, and gave me some great additional detail. Thanks Robert Mac from the Sunshine Coast, kudos to you for being so helpful to a random!

So Sue and I replaced the inner cardboard core, with an aluminium core.  After a somewhat frustrating hour or so, attempting to get it right, we were done.   Well Sue was, I still needed to get them on the wall.

Transferring the paper to the new core.

Mechanism for unrolling the paper

Mounted on the main wall

Storage c/- Ikea

When I was wiring up the power, I made sure to put in speaker cables so that the radio, playlists or TunnFM can be streamed during a shoot or whilst I am testing.

Old amp gets a new life

One of the elinchrom’s ready to go

Old couch also gets a new life, with the inlaid speakers punching out the tunes

Never have enough sandbags, though these are filled with gravel.

Our intent is to shoot friends for free in the next couple of months, so that we can build a portfolio before hanging the shingle out proper.  An old work colleague came over with his wife and 18 month old son, for a studio session, and then to the park and beach.  It was great fun, and we got some great shots, and learnt a heap!  Like when you scope that perfect location on Thursday afternoon, it may be a little more busy on Saturday with a Rugby carnival going on!

Sue was a great help, and I couldn’t have done the session with out her!

Testing the lighting prior to the shoot

One the shots we captured

Looking forward to the next shoot!

The song of the day is Santigold – LES Artists, as this song sits on most of my excercise playlists (which has picked up again) and I like the link in to artists, and with the strobes going off in the film clip is now occuring in our studio.


Thursday June 7, 2012

Ok, firstly a tip of the hat to Jane Kennedy, whose cookbooks adorn my collection and I love her recipes.  Along with being good for you, they are also very tasty.  Jane coined the term Piemakins as a pie served up in a ramiken, in her case, with a blitzed cauli top.

Jane’s books are superb!

Tuesdays and Thursday are busy nights with football training and Ryan not getting in until 7:30, so to find a meal that can have split times often falls back to omelette’s, toasted sangers and the like.  Well I had a thought yesterday morning on the bike (as I was trying to build up to a 50 km ride event in a fortnight, and not too successfully when you head off without your water bottle, but I digress…).  What if I slow cooked some braised food through the day, with enough left over for piemakins tomorrow night.  It must have been a great idea, as I got a wobble up on the bike, and a retired gent walking on his zimmer frame, passing me on the right, managed to settle my balance.

So last nights dinner was a success with the crew, and with the ingredients in the bank fridge, I was confident with our usual Thursday dinner dilemma.

First batch ready to go.  I had the pumpkin carrot mash top to try and be good.

A couple of behind the scenes shot, I decided to get a flash out and off the camera to get some shots

Second batch at the ready

Oven getting ready, with our beloved tea towel souvenir  from Disneyland

Tegan’s ready to go

I decided to make some sizzler toast as a side

Song of the day:  I made a new gym playlist this morning and I put some heavier stuff on it to help with heavier weights.  The logic sounded right at the time, when I thought of it.  So enjoy some Spiderbait – Monty.  A great Australian band, and I own a most of their catalogue.  Sarah Blasko coming on after this song in random order somehow worked as well… 🙂

A blue visitor

Tuesday 21 February, 2012

As I have previously written, I am undertaking a 52 week photography project with a flickr group, to keep me thinking and posting something creative each week.  I haven’t yet got to the standard I am wanting to get to, but I am holding out that when the back shed transforms into the studio, it will all come together. (Note that is getting very close now, though the painting of it scares me)

So, the flickr group I am posting to, has a very proactive lady from South Africa, Clare, who had a terrific idea to have a couple of mascots sent around the world, photographed and sent on to their next port.  Such a fun idea, I had to put the hand up.  In the end, there were 4 mascots that set off from Cape Town to their new hosts.

My Town/Travelling Mascot - 03/01/2012 and 1/52

Smurfs on Scooters

The 4 mascots setting off from Cape Town, photo credit Clare Carrier

 The mascot were sent to

  • Australia/ New Zealand/Other;
  • UK/Europe;
  • USA; and
  • USA/Canada.

Their first port of call in Australia was Brisbane, though he was having 2 visits Rodney and Dennis hosting him, before he joined our family .  I took the little fella to the Kangaroo Point Cliffs on sunrise, after already dropping a very groggy son off at school to jump on a bus to a rowing regatta.

6/52 Light

At Kangaroo Point

Week 6-52 BTS

The behind the scenes of a blue mega star

As we live by Moreton Bay, I thought I should get a shot of him looking out past the channel markers to St Helena Island.  People watching me in the prone position taking photos of a smurf couldn’t hide their snickering, or maybe it was the wind…  I am thankful my bride doesn’t read this, and that Sandy won’t tell her of my antics…


Checking out the Wynnum waterfront

I sent the travelling smurf on his way to Sydney to hang out with Edward.

Here is a selection of photos of the various mascots on their worldwide journeys and this thread is where there travels are chronicled.  Kudos to you Clare for getting this fun journey started!

Snow Scooting

In Ottawa, Ontario, Canada photo by Perry McKenna

Smurf abroad in Brisbane - Week 5: 2012

adventure smurf

In brisbane with Rodney Chester and Dennis Eagles

Travelling Mascot in Sydney

In Sydney with Edward Yuliardhyanto

In Orange County, California photo by  Connie Terry

Project 52 weeks [week 07] 07/52

The Europe Smurf, photo by Hans

Song of the day: Well obviously I was looking for a blue theme, so here is a song from a band that I really like from Manchester, in fact I really got into the whole Madchester scene of music at the time.  Check out the movie 24 hour party people if you are interested.  But I digress, the band is New Order and the song is Blue Monday.  It was the first 12″ single I owned, and it is still in my possession some *cough* 29 years later *cough*

Damn Hot!

Wednesday 11 January, 2012

Today’s temperature was in the high 30’s, and it felt it!  I had to finish off the wiring for the new workshop today, as I am heading to Adelaide tomorrow unti Monday afternoon, and the builder and plasterer are here on Monday morning.  Wiring, what the, don’t panic as I started working life as an apprentice sparky, whilst studying at night.  My Dad was quite insistant that my brother and I get a trade “that you can fall back on”


The shed being being reno’d

It is going to be a superb space when it is finished!

The high ceiling are perfect for the photography work I want to do!

I then wanted to post my 52 week project shot before heading away, and the theme this week was fashion.  You can see the final shot here, or small pics below, including the setup for the shot.

Glad I haven’t had to wear this in a while

Sue will be glad when studio is finished, and no more lights and stands in the house

Today’s song of the day is Lotus Flower by Radiohead.  My favourite band, and I am hoping that they will tour Australia next year as I have never seen them play. I do have a leave pass to travel to see them, though I am hoping not to have to use it.

First Photo Project of 2012

Friday January 6, 2011

I will be undertaking a few photo projects in 2012, and the first is a 52 weeks project on Flickr.  Each week there is a theme given and people post into the group pool.  My aim is to produce some high quality images,  especially once the studio is finished end of January, more on that later…

This weeks theme was “Show us your town”. I debated whether to show our local area Wynnum, or to show Brisbane and decided on the latter.  I decided to head into a spot I knew about in Wednesday evening to get a picture of the story bridge with the city in the background, as I had travelled over this city most days heading into work over the last 12 years, and in a perverse way I do miss the commute across, listening to sounds and getting my head together for the day ahead.

You can see my commentary and other comments on Flickr by clicking the image.

1/52 Brisbane

Song of the day is Lisztomania by Phoenix as both Ryan and I like these French guy’s music.

Burleigh, Bikes and Busters (ghost)

Wednesday November 9, 2011

Early start as it’s Water polo training for Tegan, with a 5:45 drop off.  I was then heading down to the Gold Coast for a catchup with K to talk photography stuff.  I had some time to kill before we were to catchup, so I headed to a beach a couple of k’s further south, to my favourite beach of all, Burleigh Heads.  It has had a pull on my since I was probably 15.

Looking North from the headland towards Surfers Paradise

We used to holiday in the old 6 pack flats in my childhood.  When I first got a car, and was surfing, this is where I headed when the conditions were right.  When Sue and I were a young couple living on the coast, we both loved this area.  The headland itself is an oasis of greenery that has walking tracks around to Tallebudgera creek. That in itself has good memories of Sue, I and the kids camping there. The black rocks that have you focused on your leg rope not getting caught as you jump of the rocks after a set has come through. And of course the iconic (at least for me) pandanus palms, that goes with this area of the coastline, I love them! In fact a friend Steve dropped a couple of small ones over to us, that I need to find a home in the garden for.

My fave tree, just a small one…

A previous shot of a larger one, near our house at Wynnum (funnily enough the place is called Pandanus Beach)

183 / 365 - Pandanus Beach
  Looking South back to the Headland

After watching the no swell ocean for a while, calling Sue to say guess where I am (and how I will subsequently make up for that foolish gesture), I headed towards my brekky catchup with K.

I met K at the Help Portrait event last year.  K has just finished his first year of post grad medicine, and is off shortly for a rural placement. He was kind enough to squeeze me in before he heads off,  and let me hear about his experiences with some particular photographing lighting gear I was looking at.  I knew it was going to be great to hear some first hand experience, but I got a lot more out of the catchup than I expected.  I also got to look through some of his shots from a recent wedding and they were superb!  Kudos to you K!  I now need to put my business case to the SHE-EO for the dent in the bank balance I am proposing 🙂

Breakfast and the coffee was good

In the car and back to Brisbane for do some work at a friend’s house on my current software project.  It was certainly a hot day in SEQ when my iphone in its holder on the windscreen / dashboard running a navigation app, gives an alert saying the temperature is too high…  First time I have seen that one…

As I have been getting a lot of help from N, I wanted to buy him lunch, so a 20’ish K round trip on the bike, in the midday sun, ensued… I am not “hill” fit, or “eating curry when really hot” fit, but it’s something to work on. You gotta have goals, right?  After some more coding, I was off home.

N in the lead towards curry, Sean hoping to get iphone back in pocket before road ahead

Tonight we had Tegan’s play, in which the Year 6 girls wrote, edited, organised sets and wardrobe and then acted in a 40’ish minute performance. Tegan was playing a “ghost buster” to help rid a hotel of an unwanted presence. There is nothing like the proud feeling you have when you see your (once shy) daughter flourish on stage. The amateur gaffs throughout also had you smiling! I mistakenly left my SLR camera at home, so I couldn’t get the shots of the night I wanted, but we had a point and shoot to grab some that we could.

Tegan brought a grin to us from ear to ear with her performance!

A cool drink, watching of Australian Story – The Planet They’re On, which was such a fantastic story, and fall into bed.

Whilst I reflect and post this, I have only realised when looking on a widescreen, how poorly this theme works with my pics, and the main content pane is fixed width, rather then floating.  Something for me to add to the list…

Life is good

Monday November 7, 2011

Life is in a good place right now!  We had a nice weekend doing our thing, which includes the kid sport merry go round.  On Friday night was opening night for a new Thai restaurant very close to our house, 250 metres close, so that is what we indulged in.  The food was fantastic as well.  In fact good enough to erase the ill feeling I had when the newsagent closed in the location of our new local.

The kids nana (my mum) came along to Tegan’s waterpolo on Saturday to see the girls slowly learning the rigours of the sport.

The view from the stands of Somerville House, toward the Brisbane CBD

Tegan getting some instructions (Tegan on right of frame)

Nana and Tegan

Sue watching the state of play

The weather is definitely warm enough now for pool swimming at home, which is always a good sound to hear the splashing and fun of the pool.  At least that what I tell others not in with me it sounds like.

On Sunday I had the opportunity to assist with a phototshoot of a professional photographer, who is the sister of a friend.  It was a great experience to see someone else’s way of working, especially given some difficult subjects. On returning home, I thought I would get the flashes out and ask Tegan to pose for a photo for me.  It was cute that she, and her doll Chrissa, were in the matching outfits I bought earlier in the year at the American Girl doll store in NYC.

Not sure how much longer I will have a willing test model for 

I am thinking of getting some more photography gear whilst the AUD is still up there, and to help my cause, I think I would make up a batch of sushi, which is always a winner in the school lunches for big kids and small.

Fresh sushi for the crew

Tonight, we also finally finished off Tegan’s costume for her play on Wednesday night, where she is a Ghost Buster, it should be fun to see.

Oh, and also something that made me feel great today.  You know those rare moments when you get an envelope in the mail, that doesn’t have the see through window on the front, and it may even have a hand written address on the envelope.  Well Tegan singled this one out as she brought up the mail, and I had know idea who would be writing to me.  Two Saturdays ago, I took Ryan to a school dance (at St Aidan’s Girl school, some distance from our place) and gave a mate of his a lift there and back.  No problems at all, and as the dance was close to my brother’s place, I got to see he and his wife before their child is born in the next month.  Anyhow, Ryan’s friend had written me a letter to express his thanks, which was a great measure of the person he is.  In this txt’ing, emailing and tweeting time, it is great to receive a hand written letter.  I am thinking I will start sending these out more.

It’s a busy week this one for the whole crew, which is a good thing, yes?

Today’s song of the day is Bertie Blackman – Thump   A couple of years old, but it still sounds fresh for me.