Once More

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

There is so very much I could say and tell you about. My life has done a 360 in the last few months and as I’ve been trying to process it and organise for it, there has been little time for keeping up with my usual routines.

And of course, the decision that we have made is once again turning our normal routines upside down for a brand, new start. After much deliberation, the Canadian and I have decided to move back to Australia. We don’t know if this is the right choice, but for now, at this point in time, it is the right one for us. It’s going to take lots of re-imagining and finding our way in the waters of a different kind of life again but I know that our adventurous hearts will guide us through.

We love and will miss the beautiful village life we’ve made here in Vancouver. I know I will certainly miss seeing those snow capped mountains each morning as I looked out our window. I will miss the ease and the stress-free day to day living a smaller city brings and hope that readjusting to the bigness of Sydney will be a fun change, rather than a troublesome one.

As I think of our new life, I have been imagining us close to the sea, taking daily walks by the beach. Fingers crossed that an apartment will be waiting for us when we are ready to find it in just the right place. I, of course, am overjoyed at being able to spend real time with my family and friends again and cannot wait to reconnect with them all. I’m already planning our Christmas gatherings. As excited as I am, we will leave here with heavy hearts, knowing that we once again have to say goodbye to people whom we love and to a place that will always be our home.

These images were all taken around Vancouver with my Polaroid 180 Land Camera and Fuji film.

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Hello Again

Monday, August 13, 2012

Where to even begin? I’m still alive, dear friends! Life is certainly full of ups and downs and twists and turns. Lately I’ve been experiencing them all and enjoying the things in life that important while trying to figure out the next move.

But rather than let life get in the way too much, I thought what better time to come back to this space than Roid Week! I will be sharing some instant images that I’ve shot in the past few months, plus some that I’ve held off from sharing from Instant Love.

I’ve got some big changes happening again in my life soon but more on that later. Hopefully, I will be able to share some new images from my latest toy with you soon.

Happy Roid Week!


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Impossible PX70

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday brings some images from Impossible PX70 colour film shot in my Polaroid SX70.

I’m really liking the colours that you can achieve with this film. The blues and pinks are lovely. The reds are still coming out a little yellow but it’s such a great advance in colour from the original Impossible films. Those pesky leaks happened because the light managed to break through my mighty-impenetrable-defense-of-steel-shielding technique (aka flimsy card attached to camera with sticky tape). However, in these 2 shots, I quite like the glowing effect.

I’ve been waiting for the weather to clear in Vancouver to get out and shoot more with this film. I shot so much instant film while I was in Morocco and France and haven’t shot a lot since (apart from a sneaky little project I’m working on at the moment). Now that sunshine is here, my camera and I have a date this weekend. What are you doing with your two glorious days? Go shoot some instant film!

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Instant Love Retreat in Marrkech: Behind the Scenes

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hello friends!

You’ve seen the Polaroids, the Impossible images, and the Fuji shots, but today I wanted to show you some of the behind the scenes fun that was had on the Instant Love Retreat in Marrakech this year. After all, this is what it was all about. The people, the fun that was had, the photo taking and most importantly, the eating!

In this little montage you can see from left to right in each row:

Line 1: Heidi, Amy and Briana at our group dinner one night in the Marrakech medina after a day of shooting and shopping in the souks; Susannah shooting Briana’s henna at the henna party at Peacock Pavilions; Jen shooting her Polaroid 180 in Essaouira

Line 2: all our Polaroid cameras on display at the Basics workshop in the tent at Peacock Pavilions; the Impossible shot that Susannah was taking of Brianna above; me holding a baby goat on the road to Essaouira

Line 3: Debra as shot by Susannah at Peacock Pavilions; Heidi as shot by Briana at Peacock Pavilions; Liz shooting a pile of Polaroids out at lunch at Terrace des Epices in the medina

Line 4: A group of Moroccan men in the medina as shot by Irene; the front door of Peacock Pavilions as shot by Debra; our yummy breakfast at PP

Line 5: Heidi shooting a self portrait at PP; Jen and Susannah looking at Polaroids at a cafe in Essaouira; Henna hands at the henna party

Line 6: Cocktails at PP; the group giggling and having fun at our wine tasting at PP- with wonderful host Chris leading; Helen as shot by Briana at PP

Line 7: Amy at our medina dinner as shot by Heidi; me and Heidi shooting in Essaouira; cocktails in beautiful evening light; the Atlas pavilion at PP – I stayed here with Irene, Debra, Briana and Helen.

Line 8: Jen, me, Amy and Susannah somewhere in Marrakech; Helen and Michelle at PP; Andrea and Liz at PP; Helen and Briana at PP

Line 9: Everyone at dinner in the cosy tent at Peacock Pavilions. We sat on the floor for our dinners here. In this shot taken by Irene, you can see Debra, Heidi, Amy, Susannah, Briana, Helen, myself, Jen, Andrea and Carol. Liz and Michelle must have been hiding.

As you can see much fun was had by all. This is just a sampling of the good times that were had. The retreat is a chance for you to get to learn more about your Polaroid camera, to learn about shooting instant from Polaroid photographers, to see an amazing part of the world and to experience an incredible culture, but it’s also about spending time with like minded people and making new friends. We had a blast- I know I will keep these memories with me forever.

We had so much fun that we are going back again next year. Jen and I will be running two  retreats over two weeks and we would love you to come join us! You can download our pdf brochure here. Once you’ve read the brochure, email us for a registration package. We would love to have you!

Check out more of the lovely ladies’ photographs of our time in Marrakech here, here, here and here!

Thank you to Briana Morrison, Debra Cowie, Irene Georgiou, Heidi Swanson, Amy Haney, Liz Manyan, Andrea Kuhn, Michelle McGee, Carole Gentry, Helen Agarwal, Susannah Conway and Jen Altman for the images.

Doesn’t it look like fun?

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Photography Happenings

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Hello friends,

There are so many good things happening in the online photography community at the moment and I had to share them with you today.

>>>> Time Zero is a documentary about a subject that is dear to my heart- the last year of Polaroid film. Grant Hamilton (one of our Instant Love contributors) is the man behind this movie that is released at the end of the month. As quoted from the website: “This is the story of the artists who loved it, those who wanted to save it, and the man crazy enough to try”. Grant Hamilton’s abstract Polaroid work is well documented and loved all over the world. There are some familiar faces in the trailer for the film and you can read all about it here.

>>>> Another fabulous Polaroid photographer, Jen Gotch is now offering prints of her Polaroid work. Jen’s Polaroid photography has long been an inspiration to me. Her print store is here!

>>>> My good friend and fabulous photographer, Tracey is hosting an awesome giveaway on her blog, Sh1ft. Tracey runs an online store called Stitch where she sells cute baby and kids wear, but she also sells fun toy cameras such as the Holga and the Diana by Lomo. Tracey was one of my first photographer friends and I’ve learnt a ton about photography from her over the years. As a birthday celebration, she is giving away 4 film cameras from her store! Head over to Sh1ft to enter. Yay, Tracey!

>>>> On a personal note, we three instant ladies are super excited to be collaborating with the amazing Ryan Marshall of Pacing the Panic Room on a trailer for our book. Ryan is a very talented man who makes gorgeous videos and writes a heart felt and captivating blog. Some of his work includes videos for The Gap’s Do What You Love series. You can check out all of his videos here. We are thrilled with the work he has done for us already and can’t wait to share the finished book trailer with you!

>>>> And lastly, Instant Love has its first little mention in the UK mag, Mollie Makes. Thank you, Mollie Makes!

You can check out my new book page here where you can read the snippet clearly and that will be updated regularly. Viva la instant!

Cherry blossom shot with a Polaroid SX70 camera and Impossible Project PX70 film.

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I’ve Fallen Hard For Peacock Pavilions

Friday, March 2, 2012

Today I want to share a little magic from Peacock Pavilions- the fine establishment where our Instant Love retreat was hosted. Peacock Pavilions is a beautiful oasis in Marrakech owned and run by lovely host couple, Maryam and Chris. We spent a week staying, teaching and playing at the pavilions and it was such a beautiful backdrop for our workshops. Every inch of the 3 buildings and grounds is showered in gorgeous detail and loveliness. I was there a week and even on our last day, I was still discovering new little details that I hadn’t noticed previously.

Each room is decorated with a different look but all using elements of Moroccan design to perfection. The first shot above was taken in one of the rooms in the Atlas Pavilion, while the next 2 were taken in the Medina Pavilion. The view from the room at the top of those stairs looks out over the olive grove and as the sun was setting, it was one of the most picturesque sights I’ve ever seen.

Staying at Peacock Pavilions is not just about the beautiful surrounds, for me the best part of our stay was hearing stories and learning about the Moroccan culture from Maryam and Chris. We ran our workshops from the sweet and cosy tent each day and lunched on the patio by the pool- and the food was pretty amazing too. I ate my own weight in Moroccan bread with every meal- Jen shared a Kesra recipe and some images of PP on her food blog, Nectar. It was so good!

Between the cocktail hours, Henna party, yummy breakfasts, amazing hosts, movie night in the tent, fun dinners and photo taking by the pool, our time at Peacock Pavilions was extremely memorable. Lucky for Jen, Susannah and I, we had an amazing group of ladies who joined us on the retreat and you can read about some of their experiences here, here and here!

Maryam writes the popular blog, My Marrakesh and has her first book on Moroccan Design coming out in May. I cannot wait to get a copy in my hands.

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Instant Love: How To Make Magic and Memories with Polaroids

Friday, January 6, 2012

What do you do when you have a post all lined up for the first one of the year and then your first book arrives on your doorstep? You ditch that post, snap a Polaroid with the only colour film you have (expired beyond expired) and do a happy dance.

Friends, yesterday, Susannah, Jen and I got the most lovely surprise in the mail- for our baby of the last year and half arrived in actual book form. Our lovely editor Bridget sent us the first copies of our Polaroid book and I can’t even express how many emotions ran through my body as I flipped through its pages. We have been dreaming of this day for a long time now and to finally have it here is rather surreal.

From the moment you start hatching ideas to the day you get to hold it in your hands is such a journey of; emotions, hard work, long nights, excitement, freak outs, re writes, fun, editing (and editing again and again), bonding and looking to the future. It’s hard to even put into words the feelings I’m now having to see my writing and photography in published form. Up until this moment, it never really seemed real.

I want to thank our editor Bridget and Chronicle Books for believing in us, our designer Brooke for making it all look so beautiful, but mostly I want to thank my co-authors Jenifer and Susannah, my pola sisters who I love so dearly.

Instant Love will be bursting from the shelves in bookstores from May/June or you can pre order it now on Amazon.

Here’s a sneak peek!

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A Polaroid 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

pola 2011

As is now becoming a Mocking Bird tradition, I am signing off for the year with a look back at some of my favourite Polaroids from 2011. These Polaroids were all shot with either my Polaroid SLR680 or my SX70 using a mix of Polaroid 600, Polaroid 779, Impossible Project PX100 and Impossible Project PX680 films.

I am looking forward to a big Polaroid year in 2012 with our Instant Love Moroccan retreat in February and the release of our book, Instant Love in the Spring! Here’s to another year of Polaroids in 2012!

And you can start off the year with me and my cameras by signing up for Shoot By Design: Refining Your Photography Style. There are places available now.

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