Well hello there.

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I believe it’s convention to apologise for blog silence explaining the life has just been over the top busy and the blog fell by the way side. And while, yes that did happen there have been occasions when I did have time to blog I found I had nothing to say. That’s not entirely true, I have a lot to say but I’ve started to feel I need to be even more selective of what I put on my blog, as Little A grows I am mindful of his public digital-footprint. Even though it was never my intention to make him the focus of my blog – no this is still all about me me me.

Life has been going on and at times I have wanted to come here and rant and rave about perceived slights, boo hoo work and general crud but it would have been self indulgent crap that would have done more harm than good.

Exciting things have happened and are going to happen.

I continue to put my heart and soul into my work. Running the up hill battle that is freelance design.

Little A is well and truly a preschooler and we are only now emerging from the fog that was the threenager stage where everything said or done or not done prompted earth shaking tantrums. As 4 rounds the corner in September our articulate, interested, interesting young man reemerges and it is sublime. Stories are told, questions are asked, hands are held, games are played, cuddles are had.

We got our first glimpse of spring on the weekend and were determined to revel in it. So we bundled into the car and headed to the National Park and hired a boat to row around Audley Weir. I took one for the team as I am definitely not a boat person and felt queasy within minutes of boarding the vessel – it didn’t help that I was told it was all in my head but my well-meaning fisherman SAH. Walking in his father’s footsteps Little A had taken a shine to a fancy fishing rod earlier in the morning so to placate him SAH crafted a homemade fishing rod for Little A to play with – with he did with gusto.

We rowed for an hour at vast expense while the boat house owners dreamt of returning home to their gold-plated beds. It was beautiful and a perfect way to spend a warm Spring-preview day.

Not willing to leave the area Little A insisted that we go for a bush walk and we wandered the park lands area while the kiddo ran around with sticks.

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I recently purchased a new camera for work and have been experimenting while trying to master it. So far so good. It’s an Olympus EM-5 Mark II – which is the model up from the camera Olympus sponsored me to use last year. Sadly no sponsorship for the new camera as I forked out my own hard won cash – but it was worth it.

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Book Design Process: Birth to big school

Time has gotten away from me and I am most certainly on holiday time, I had to ask SAH what day it was the other day as I couldn’t for the life of me remember – surely a good sign that I’ve relaxed a little and am truly on holidays for the first time this year? Well it may not last long as I have a huge work load to continue on with over the New Years break but for the last week there has been no work, just play.

This year I tried to work a lot more play into my work and having a child has really helped me explore this. I was given a brief from Pearson Education for an early learning and children’s services educational textbook series. The production editor included images of children painting as suggestions for the cover and it inspired me to combine work and play with Little A.

As Little A happily splodged and splattered paint about I photographed the sheer joy of it all.

The outcome was a uniquely tailored image for my client showing elements crucial to the learning outcomes in the textbook: freeform play, exploration, kids being kids and getting messy!

The internal designs continued the painty theme with splashes of watercolour on the page corners, as well as using light, bright colours for the pedagogical features.

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Growing up

You probably noticed, or maybe not, that I stopped participating in the 52 week project midway through the year. I felt that, as I am a sporadic blogger I was flooding this place with the feature and it wasn’t my intention to have a blog devoted to my kid. As amazing as Little A is, this is still my own acropolis of narcissism.

However I can’t help but look at the photos taken this weekend and think what a long, amazing year it has been so far. Comparing them against the first photo I took for the 52 week project, standing before me in a child, no longer a baby. Competent, intelligent, polite, inquisitive, funny and lovely; my young man.

Slightly water-obsessed and indulged by his Oma, playing in her huge country sink. Lucky the laundry is a wet room.

Smith Journal: Red Brick Suburbia

Last month I was contacted by the good people at Smith Journal after they found my blog post on Red Brick Suburbia. Turns out they were writing an article on pretty much the same subject: the beauty of the humble post-war red brick house and they wanted to use some of my images.

The catch was they were looking for a full frame, front-on image of these houses which I had none of but I offered to take a wander through my local area and scout a few houses for them.

Outer-inner-westies will know that our area is red brick heaven, with some beautifully preserved and meticulously kept 50s houses so it was like shooting fish in a barrel.

I drove around while Bub was napping in the back and took a few reccie photos for them to choose from. All the while getting a bit nervous about taking photos for such a visually strong, prestigious publication.

Quietly I was sweating bullets but I thought why not? However when the decision was to made to make the article the cover story, they decided to commission architecture photographer Rene Vaile to shoot the story instead. But they did stay in the area.

I felt a sense of relief and disappointment at the time, but holding the finished product in my hand yesterday I was nothing but proud. So excited I could contribute to the documentation of these gems that deserve better than being demolished and their lots filled with monstrous duplexes and unkempt insta-gardens.

Volume 8 of Smith Journal is on sale September 2 but if you’re like us and your fella has a subscription should already have it in your hot little hands.

I highly recommend this issue and my fellow outer-inner-westies will get a giggle from seeing local houses and playing spot-o with them.

Images courtesy of Smith Journal

Correction: I had previously written Stuart Vokes took these images, but I had it mixed up. Stuart was the Brisbane-based architect who wrote the article. Sorry about that Stuart!

 
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