And so we come to the end of Month 4 of the Photo A Day project...

This month took in Easter (Days 6-9), a very, very brief trip to Sydney (Day 14) and a bout of illness (Day 17... technically through to Day 23, although Day 17 was kind of the worst of it)...

Once again there were days that were planned well in advance (Days 2, 6, 12, 23, 30) and others that were kind of last minute inspirations (Days 5, 13, 25, 26)...

And another instance (Day 18) that I just threw together (Lego hair was a fall back if I couldn't manage to photograph real hair, but I'd originally planned on a different interpretation... the three colours was a last minute thing) and ended up being really popular (relatively speaking).

The obsessive compulsive in me also appreciates that April has 30 days, so it lines up as a perfect six by five grid (as will June, September and November).
  • Day 1: My reflection (taken in the glass of my Sam Evans artwork)
  • Day 2: Colour (the Derwent pencils I've had since I was about 13 or 14)
  • Day 3: Mail (the minifigs I'd been waiting for for ages finally arrived)
  • Day 4: Someone who makes me happy (hot guys on the bus make me happy)
  • Day 5: Tiny
  • Day 6: Lunch (about as religious as I get at Easter... making Fishy Crisps on Good Friday)
  • Day 7: Shadow (at the Kite Festival)
  • Day 8: Inside my wallet
  • Day 9: Younger me (very, very young me in fact)
  • Day 10: Cold
  • Day 11: Where I ate breakfast (the same place I always eat it on a weekday... standing at the kitchen counter)
  • Day 12: Stairs
  • Day 13: Something I found (I had trouble with "found"... plus I was packing for my trip to Sydney, so Little Traveller ended up as it)
  • Day 14: How I feel today (I was in Sydney... so I always feel as happy as Little Traveller looks when I'm in Sydney)
  • Day 15: Sunset
  • Day 16: Flower
  • Day 17: Something I don't like (not toast... I love toast... but I was feeling sick and couldn't stomach anything else to eat... and I don't like feeling sick)
  • Day 18: Hair (there's just something about little Lego heads people love... this flew to the top of my "most liked" photos, and is currently tied with March's Day 5)
  • Day 19: Orange
  • Day 20: Something I drew
  • Day 21: Bottle
  • Day 22: The last thing I bought (I couldn't have planned the headline better myself)
  • Day 23: Vegetable
  • Day 24: Something I'm grateful for (I'm very grateful for hot water... especially after all the trouble I've had during the past few winters)
  • Day 25: Looking down (from the flight back from Sydney a couple of weeks before)
  • Day 26: Black + white
  • Day 27: Somewhere I went (lunch at the Burger Theory truck)
  • Day 28: 1pm (lunch at Jones the Grocer)
  • Day 29: Circle
  • Day 30: Something that makes me sad (all movies... plus one teevee show/episode... that make me sad)
Now onto the May Photo A Day Challenge...

Current Mood:

unconscious mutterings 483

Why is when you buy a new pair of pants that are exactly the same size as your old pair of pants they actually feel smaller. Is it some trick the retail industry is playing on everyone?

Unconscious Mutterings...
  1. Background :: Image
  2. Performance :: Anxiety
  3. Husband :: and Husband
  4. Scaffolding :: Construction
  5. Third :: The Third Man
  6. Stirring :: Teasing
  7. Slogan :: Advertising
  8. Odour :: City
  9. Accent :: French
  10. Suspicion :: Hitchcock
Current Mood:

shopping and the art of the brick

waiting for a friendall the world's a lego brick
Today can most easily be summed up in nine words... "partially successful shopping and a buttload of Lego bricks"...

The day started in the usual manner...

Well, except for a trip to Target to find some new pants for work... my current ones are kinda falling apart. And while they didn't have the flat front, cross pocket pants I would prefer, I got a pair exactly the same as the ones I already have, which is good.

I also tried a really nice blue shirt on... but it was a size too small and they didn't have anything between "too small" and "circus tent".  Oddly though it was kinda too small through the biceps/shoulders... I mean, I know I've been working my arms/shoulders at the gym... but I didn't think I was getting "won't fit in clothes" kinda progress.

I'm just going to chalk it up to the shirt being too small generally...

yellow brick manred brick couple

red brick faceyellow brick skull
After we'd done all the necessary shopping stuff, I wanted to swing by Big W to try and track down a new Bonds hoodie, given my "best" hoodie is now living in Sydney somewhere... hopefully with a nice owner...

Where was I... oh yeah... Big W... unfortunately Bonds usually only do a couple of designs for hoodies a year... sometimes one from the previous year and a couple of new ones... but sadly they're all a bit blah.  Well, either blah or exactly the same as ones I already have.

So no new hoodie for Yani this year... *sad face*

someone needs to give him a handlegoroo
By the time we were finished with all that, we headed off to the Showgrounds for The Art of the Brick by extraordinary "brick artist" Nathan Sawaya.

Now, I'll be honest... although it was all very impressive, I kind of expected there to be more of it somehow.

It didn't really take all that long to see everything... and even after we'd looked at pretty much everything from almost every possible angle and I'd photographed some of it to within an inch of it's life, we hadn't really been there all that long.

my favourite piecemy favourite piece

blue swimmerblue swimmer
These are probably my two favourite pieces in the whole exhibition though... particularly the red one. I totally forgot to look at the names for most of the pieces... so I have no idea what it's called, but it's completely gorgeous.  And from pretty much every angle.

I'm not going to lie... part of the appeal of the blue swimmer is the perky Lego buttocks... but it's just really cleverly done... half the figure "submerged" in the stand and the loose bricks as the water.

one red brickonly two bricks of the same colour touch each other anywhere in this piece
The peace sign is made out of bricks donated to Nathan by fans... and there's only one spot in the whole thing where two bricks of the same colour touch... it took me forever, but I finally found it, and it's in the photo...

Once we were done with massive amounts of Lego we made a brief stop at Kmart to check out their selection of Bonds clothing.  Turns out that since Kmart turned into the land of cheap and nasty products, they no longer stock Bonds.

We then decided to take advantage of one of the Entertainment Book coupons I got from someone at work and have lunch at Jones the Grocer in Hyde Park.

Well, I say lunch... but their breakfast menu runs until 2pm, so I ended up having breakfast at 1pm.

Not the best I've ever had, but not bad... good bacon, and their balsamic mushrooms are pretty tasty.

little traveller visits the lego parthenonlego t rex
And yes... Little Traveller did come with me to The Art of the Brick... although I didn't really get that many decent photos of him... I think I need to do some proper practice with him...

But that was pretty much our Saturday...

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photo friday: duck wag pie gull

duck duck splash
A weird week... or possibly two very short weird weeks with a mini weekend in the middle depending on your particular point of view.

And for the record, the photos have nothing to do with the post... I just realised I had four photos of birds that were all landscape orientation, so decided to lump them all in together.

The early part of the week was fairly boring... having a mini weekend on Wednesday for Anzac Day was nice, even if all I did was sit around and watch movies all day... although it did kind of throw me off a little... I much prefer public holidays at the beginning or end of the week rather than the middle.

One thing I did do on Wednesday was make soup... soup which was about 50% Pink's soup and 50% made up as I went along... plus it had chicken in it. And risotto rice (it was meant to be brown rice but I didn't have any left). Turns out the risotto rice makes it creamier than just plain soup, which is quite nice.

Plus I always make 500 tons of soup and there's only me to eat it, so it lasts for days and days.

garden wagtail
I visited the newly repainted (well, half repainted) Pearl the Burger Theory Truck for lunch today... woohoo!

And then I bought Greek doughnuts from Tum Tum the Halloumi Van. Little balls of grease and sugar... actually, not that little. I only ate two of them and gave the other two to Sugarmonkey and Rockchick.

In fact, if The Little Van That Could had been in Victoria Square, I would have gotten a meal and drink and a dessert from three different food trucks. And later I bought some popcorn from Jonny's Kettle Corn truck (which I left at work for daytime snackage).

So very much "Lunch On The Hoof" today.

I bought a Lego "airport traveller" set from eBay (yes, for Little Traveller... lame, but it's nice he has some accessories) and it arrived this week... complete with luggage, a camera (which I added a telephoto lens to with the aid of a little round brick I already had) and a little luggage trolley... as well as a minifigure with some of the worst hair I've ever encountered.

But it did make me think, how much of a Lego minifigure can you replace before the figure is no longer the same figure anymore?

And weirdly, I think it comes down to the face and the hair... which are only about a fifth of the figure's height... but clothes are easy to change, the personality really is in the face/head.

Although at some stage maybe the whole of Little Traveller will get a makeover...

riding the wind
I also dropped by (or marched completely out of my way to get to... either or) Paper String Plastic to pick up my photos. I've been meaning to do it for ages... but with one thing and another never got around to it. I didn't really have much time to chat and there were another couple of people in the gallery at the time, but I did find out they'll be moving in July and not being so much of a gallery per say... which is interesting.

Although my heart kind of belongs to Espionage Gallery now... I'm so fickle.

I really have no idea what the hell I'm going to do with all the photos though... I gave the guy who runs Paper String Plastic the one that he kept mentioning as his favourite though.

Current Mood:

random lightdark hotness

Beyond the fact that today's two Random Hotness guys are both models, there doesn't seem to be anything linking their photos that I'm aware of...

Yet they almost look like they could have been taken at the same time.

They're also a study in opposites... Travis Cannata on the left is dark, Dennis Johnson on the right is light...

lightdark - travis cannatalightdark - dennis johnson

Current Mood:

unconscious mutterings 482

We've had some torrential rain today... it woke me at about 2am... then right before I was about to head out to the gym it started to bucket down, including hail... so I crawled back into bed for ten minutes until it went away.

Then I had to wait out some thankfully brief rain when I left the gym... and I had to clear a couple of storm drains of their leaves so I could make it home again without getting my feet wet. I do love doing that... especially when there's a lot of water backed up and it then goes thundering down the drain.

Unconscious Mutterings...
  1. Soul mate :: Fairy tale
  2. Design :: Part of everything
  3. Line :: Parallel
  4. Jane :: Tarzan
  5. Nice :: Biscuits
  6. Spider :: Scuttle
  7. Gray :: Storm clouds
  8. Ruffles :: Girly
  9. Inspired :: Something I'm not feeling this evening
  10. Fashionable :: Not me
Current Mood:

minimal city shopping saturday

supermarket animals
So, the day I've been dreading has finally arrived... Blogger has changed over to it's dumbass, stripped down, completely user-unhelpful version and I loathe the fucking thing with the fire of a billion suns.

Hate, hate, hate, hate hate.

It looks dumb, it behaves dumbly, they've bundled it with a bunch of crap to make it more "Tumblr" like... which is clearly insane... and it's much more difficult to deal with images in.


But this isn't a post about that (I may blog about that later... or I may just fume about it silently for several weeks... either option is good)... this is today's shopping adventures.

Although given that my body is still misbehaving, it was a slightly lighter version of shopping than we may otherwise have done.

But again, it really gets filed under "did what we needed and nothing more".

This morning was the usual routine of tidy, shower, shop and unpack...

Because I really didn't end up eating very much from a dinner perspective last week, I really didn't need that much shopping-wise this week... so my total haul didn't end up being particularly big... but I think I did more of a "big shop" last week anyway.

Then we headed into town...

You know how sometimes nice things just happen randomly... well today had one of those. We'd just missed out on a carpark that was close to where we were headed, but there was another one further down the road... and as we were locating change so that I could go to the ticket machine (actually, just as I stepped out of the car), this woman appeared from seemingly nowhere and offered me her ticket saying that they hadn't used very much of it and that we could have it.

And it still had about three hours on it... sure, the price of a carpark isn't that expensive on a Saturday, but it was the thought that counts... and the fact that I think she came across from the other side of the road to give us the ticket. Very sweet.

Then the universe taunted me by having an entire football team walk up the opposite side of Rundle Street from us... seriously... in their little football outfits and everything. Granted I think they were collectively more attractive than the sum of their individual faces... but if push comes to shove, you could just pull the football jersey (it's a jersey, right?) up over their head and leave it there...

Anyway, we stopped in at Smiggle... then Ma finally made a decision about getting a bag from Crumpler so we called in there. I'm a little bit jealous actually... it's like a mini version of the messenger bag I have, but it's white and it looks really good.

But at least she finally made a decision... and, like mine, it's a bag that it potentially never, ever, ever going to wear out... so that's one less bag we're hopefully going to have to go in search over at any point in the future.

Then we wandered through Myer... not for any real purpose... just because. And even though they have my name down in the little book to call as soon as the Lego Series 7 Minifigs come out, I figured we could check anyway since we had some time.

It was actually kind of funny because there was a mini-me at the counter with his parents, looking for a particular one of the Series 6 figures... whether this was the first time he'd seen any of the figures, or whether he didn't quite get the blindbox concept, I'm not sure... but it was amusing to see/hear him and the guy behind the counter going through the bags looking for particular ones. I resisted the urge to offer my assistance, since I think I can pretty much identify every single one of the Series 6 figures by feel now.

But I left them to their own devices and we headed back down the Mall...

Once Espionage Gallery was open we wandered in to see the latest show... it wasn't something that I was overly excited about, so I didn't bother with the opening on Thursday night, but there were some interesting pieces... a couple I could have been interested in buying, but nothing that really screamed out for me to own it right then.

Which is a good thing.

However Ma ended up buying a couple of really nice prints... which were actually very cheap and totally worth it.

That was it really... we headed back to the car and headed back here... made it back just as the rain started, and Ma headed off before it really got going... which is good because it then proceeded to rain for most of the afternoon.

And I spent most of the afternoon watching Season 3 of Penny Arcade, which I've kept putting off, but finally got inspired and added all of the new episodes to Miso and got into the groove of downloading one episode while watching another...

So if you'll excuse me, I still have about twenty episodes still to watch...

Current Mood:

photo friday: the hummingbird and the neko

artwork by cameron brideoakeFirst things first before I get into the rest of my week...

I picked up my two pieces of artwork by Cameron Brideoake on Tuesday... and I'm even more in love with them now than I was when I bought them. I also noticed that although they look completely different, they're actually connected... the two red patterns on either side of the Hummingbird Warrior are exactly the same pattern on the fabric behind Maneki Sama (which I think translates, rightly or wrongly, to "Beckoning the highly respected" or something similar).

But they're both completely gorgeous and I love them to bits.

The rest of my week has been less than stellar.

I've been suffering from either a prolonged bout of mild food poisoning (which sounds completely back to front I know) or some other form of gastro... I haven't really wanted to eat all that much, and what I do eat my stomach complains about...

So not good at all.

Add that to the fact I haven't been to the gym since Easter thanks to a knee that went completely mental on me...

I'm essentially broken and need to be taken back to the store and exchanged for a homosexual that functions properly.

It also has meant (well, the stomach thing more than the knee thing) that I both missed out on eating at Burger Theory this week (sob) and also found out what Alka Seltzer tastes like (ie not pleasant).

And the only thing I feel safe eating is stodgy, carb based foods... although nothing really seems to settle my stomach. I even went without any of the donuts or cupcakes for Rockchick's birthday afternoon tea today because I just couldn't face any of it.

Urgh... hate it, hate it, hate it, hate it.

Current Mood:

random b hotness

This week's Random Hotness is blonde, buff, on a beach, barely wearing any clothes and Bel Ami's exclusive American model.

He's Brady Jensen...

brady jensen brady jensen
Current Mood:

building the lego sydney opera house

"You never get tired, you will never be finished with it - when you pass around it or see it against the sky... something new goes on all the time... together with the sun, the light and the clouds, it makes a living thing."
- Jorn Utzon, Architect, Sydney Opera House
When Lego's Architecture series meets one of my favourite buildings, I had to get my hands on it. And even better that I was able to buy it from the shop in the building in question.

It's been a long while since I had a new Lego set... so long in fact that about half of the bricks in this set didn't even exist yet.

I do like the Lego Architecture series boxes... simple, but classy.

lego sydney opera house - the boxThe bricks came divided into three bags, with some large loose plates as well as the 83 page book that's mostly instructions, but also contains the history of the Opera House.

lego sydney opera house - inside the boxThe baseplate, complete with specially printed name tile.

lego sydney opera house - the baseplateThe two swivel plates are the key to getting the two halves of the Opera House to angle in properly.

lego sydney opera house - lower levelThe single sloping pieces make the stairs... and Guillaume at Bennelong starts to take shape on the right.

lego opera house - the stairsAnd the tiles make up the plaza... the colour is pretty spot on too.

lego sydney opera house - the plazaThen the Opera Theatre (sans sails) takes shape at the back.

lego sydney opera house - the opera theatreFollowed by the Concert Hall (also sans sails) at the front.

lego sydney opera house - the concert hallThe last step is to add the big white sails.

lego sydney opera house - the completed buildSo there it is... my completed Lego Sydney Opera House!

Current Mood:

feelin crappy

food poisoningHaving a turkey sandwich for lunch yesterday that had obvious been sitting around for most of the day was a giant mistake.

I started to feel "not right" last night, kept waking up through the night and still didn't feel 100% when I got up this morning.

But I didn't feel bad enough to stay home from work...

I've just been really flat all day... flat and not feeling well...

I also haven't really eaten very much... cereal for breakfast, Boost Juice for lunch and toast with an egg for dinner.

I so totally hate feeling like this. Hopefully it's only about a 24 hour thing and I feel better tomorrow...

If not, I'm so not going to work... meetings be damned.

Current Mood:

unconscious mutterings 481

I'm not feeling particularly stellar... hopefully it's just something random and not the turkey sandwich I had at lunch... that wouldn't be cool.

Unconscious Mutterings...
  1. Message :: Email
  2. Underground :: Railroad
  3. Hurting :: My knee has been, but it's okay at present
  4. Glasses :: Yes, wearing those
  5. Wholesome :: 50's America on TV
  6. Garden :: Dig
  7. Plants :: Indoor
  8. Windows :: Microsoft
  9. Beard :: Gay men's wives
  10. Encryption :: Code
Current Mood:

bell shakespeare's macbeth

bell shakespeare's macbethOne of the things I love about seeing so many versions of The Scottish Play is seeing where each company takes it.

And, I have to say that Bell Shakespeare's production of Macbeth is all about the ladies.

Kate Mulvany's portrayal of Lady Macbeth was amongst the strongest I've seen... all sharp edges, barely contained rage covering a raw grief and one of the most dreamlike and mentally fractured "out damned spot" scenes.

And, something I don't know that I've ever seen before in Lady M, a dash of humour when she took the "that which hath made them drunk hath made me bold" line at face value and drunkenly hiccuped her way through the scene. It sounds strange, but it actually makes perfect sense within the context of the scene.

The two areas that usually mark the most difference between various interpretations of Macbeth are in the treatment of the ghost of Banquo and the three witches.

This is the first production I've seen where the two things are intertwined.

Firstly there's the single witch, performed by Lizzie Schebesta... her "black and midnight hag" is beautiful, blonde, ethereal and fragile... which just serves to make her even more otherworldly. And added to that is the vocal processing they used on her voice, giving this feminine creature a demonic and androgynous aspect.

She was also marked with a thick black line down the centre of her face... which added to the oddness because it was also there when Schebesta appeared as Fleance, the unnamed Macduff child, the wife of one of the Lords at the banquet and all of the minor servant roles, particularly at the end of the play.

Whether it's because all of these characters have some impact on the prophecies given to Macbeth by the witch or if there's some other interpretation, I don't know... but it was an interesting take on it.

Also interesting was the interactions between the witch and Banquo's ghost... I mean it makes perfect sense... the witch is supernatural, as is the ghost... but the staging of the banquet scene with the witch/Lady drawing Banquo's ghost to her lap and rendering him invisible to Macbeth was beautifully done and slightly disturbing.

But it wouldn't be Macbeth without the titular performance by Dan Spielman.

He delves the depths of the character's madness and ruthlessness, but there was something... weasely... about his performance that made him somehow less likeable. Yes, I know, a play about someone who murders his ways through king and countrymen and women and little children and I'm worried about his likeability...

But before his decent into blood and insanity... I don't know if likeable is exactly the right word, but there was something that I didn't connect with.

Although the decision to replace the minor role of the assassin of Lady Macduff and her household with Macbeth himself... which was a brilliant decision, firmly cementing the depths to which he'll sink to control his destiny.

The rest of the cast was much more ethnically diverse than I've experienced with Macbeth in the past... and I think the combination of that, the costuming and the set design made the whole thing feel particularly Australian.

The set design featured a tilted stage covered in "bushland"... grass and weeds and patches of empty ground, all of which was reflected in a Space Odyssey style shiny black monolith tilted in opposite direction to the ground.

The costume design also had something of a bush theme to it... the men especially felt like shearers or outlaws and Macbeth himself was channelling a particularly "Ned Kelly" vibe with the hairstyle and beard.

There was more of a 50's/60's vibe to the women's costumes... Lady Macduff being more of the former and Lady Macbeth having a slightly more vampy 60's feel to her look.

I'm not sure what was with the light blue military jackets for the men though... it did contrast nicely with the oranges of Lady Macbeth, and it was very visible on stage.... but it seemed almost out of place amongst the darker, more naturalistic colour palette.

Both the interpretation and the staging of the play also felt quite fresh. Other than the staging I've already mentioned regarding Schebesta's witch, they also took the moments in the play that either deal with internal monologue or private conversation and had all the actors not actively involved in the scene move in "slow motion", which was distracting at first, but became more and more cinematic as it went along.

Director, Peter Evans, and Mulvany, in her role as Dramaturg, have chosen to include more of the original text than I've seen in most other versions, but at the same time completely remove a number of the minor characters (or have them be played by the witch). The most notable example of this is the complete removal of Lady Macbeth's maid and the doctor during her "spot" scene.

A bold choice, but as I mentioned before about this scene, one that works brilliantly.

All in all, this was both one of the more original versions I've ever seen as well as being amongst the best.

And totally worth the trip to Sydney.

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