Friday, 8 September 2017

Offices you might like

Mike was contracted to do a shoot at the FB offices. I wanted to see the interior and so he let me tag along, I was to be his 'assistant'. We weren't allowed to post the images before the launch. I only took a few stills because I was carrying a video camera around the rest of the time. Nice time out of the office, fun to do something different. Like this page if you want ;-)

The last pots

So, yes, I am defeated and have given up pottery. My failure rate was too demotivating to continue. We're looking at 25/75% imbalance. I do wish I could have conquered it. There was this vision of all these awesome things I wanted to accomplish but my hands and technique could not give it shape. Sadly. Trish had to glaze my last few pots that I left behind, thanks Trish.

Wrapping paper design

I took a picture of the flame tree, to be honest I don't know what it is called, just that it is pretty.
I played around in Photoshop and created wrapping paper.
The top section is the original image and then below on the pink is the wrapping paper.

Exhibition in Mellville

We attended a photographic exhibition in Mellville a few weeks ago, about Mellville. The images were black and white, it always makes for great drama.
I took a few images in Mellville myself, while we were there.

Learn the language 1: VUUR EN VLAM

Afrikaans is a wonderfully descriptive language. There is no translation that can do justice to the expression: vuur en vlam. Learn the language!

Artwork created by © Liam Longland, 2017.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

English breakfast at No. 5

So there are no images of the great English breakfast because we didn't want to share it. It was yummy - fried eggs and bacon, toast and marmalade, coffee.

Anyhoo, then we sat outside on the patio, chatting, enjoying the crisp winter morning.

Took some photographs and I said I was going to put them on my blog. Trish said it was fine, I said: they're my photographs, she said: it's my house. Fair enough.

Here are the pics with kind permission of Trish ;-)

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Crazy in the morning

We get these crazy ideas on a Friday afternoon when we know that in a half hour we are free from work and it's the weekend. So we plan to get up at 5:00 on Sunday and be in the Cradle by 5:30 to watch the sunrise. We are so excited. We stop for coffee at the same corner where others are grabbing coffee on their way home from their great Saturday night that lasted until the next day. The coffee tastes delicious and it's warmth contrasts with the biting cold of the winter's night. I am wearing more layers than a virgin bride on the wedding night, and I am as fridge(t), ha ha. (Yes, I know the spelling is wrong, just go along with my humour).

The light creeping over the horizon creates a magnificent vignette on the sky canvas. It changes so subtly the eye can hardly follow it, so we freeze it as images on camera and register night becoming day. A ball of white light rushes towards us from behind the trees and then suddenly it's just a yellow ball hanging in the blue sky.

We look over our shoulder and gasp, while the sun has been rising so have some hot air balloons. They are moving slowing and silently, getting closer and then start coming down. I run along the road to find where it goes down in the field. It collapses, lopsided and clumsy when a moment ago it was floating elegantly and gracefully.

Mike is still back at our original spot completing the time-lapse capture on cyclists on the road, each of the commenting on the cold as they pass, each enjoying being out here on this crisp quiet morning. 

We have breakfast at a venue close by and are home before 10:00.

What did you do Sunday morning?

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Free - please take one

I made up this sheet of compliments at work and stuck it on the fridge before I went home in the evening. Much to my surprise when I got in the next day some of them had already been taken. That's great. By the end of the day there were only two left. Can you guess which two?

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Up and down the Vaal

As part of my niece's birthday we booked a cruise on the river after lunch, lovely, lazy, relaxing.
In no-man's land between Gauteng the the Free State.

Wonderful surprise in Modderfontein

I saw on someone's blog their visit to Modderfontein Historial Village. Wow, what a wonderful surprise. There was a market on the grounds of Frans Hoenig Haus. Lovely coffee and beer brewery nearby where I had a late breakfast. Drove around a bit and it was wonderful to see how well maintained the old building were, most are being used as offices, for business. I drove to the casino but the security guard wouldn't allow me to take photographs. A stones throw from my house and I never knew. I have been to the Modderfontein Nature Reserve not knowing that up the next road was this incredible historical landmark.

Visiting a friend in Heidelberg

I went to visit a friend in Heidelberg. Whenever I have been to visit her I drive home through the town and say to myself: I really should explore the town next time I come. So eventually I made the effort - got there a little early, before the appointed time I was to meet my friend and strolled around the town a little. Pretty.

Urban farmer 2

I would love to be able to harvest fresh produce from my garden, select it as I need it for cooking or baking. I picked these pomegranates in a friend's garden, wanted to dry the seeds in the sun and then plant them next season. Alas, as soon as they were dry and wonderfully warm in the sun mice (and perhaps rats too) came and gobbled it all up. Empty shells and broken plates is all I had left.

My stash of chilli was a little more successful, and I have shared this harvest with friends, and made some spicy meals. Yum. However, these are very thirsty little plants.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Cosmos season

Cosmos season was about a month ago, but you can still find the odd flower on the side of the road. There is a small holding on the way to my evening classes that has a whole field of cosmos, all in white. So beautiful. The gate was open and I wanted to drive in, but I didn't. And only because I wouldn't want some random person driving unto my property either, no matter their motivation.

Plates and misfits

After 4 months of pottery class, once a week, this seems all I have to show. The rest I was really disappointed with. I have to ask myself: am I just not passionate enough about it to get it right or am I just not good at this? It seems likely that I will not continue with this 'hobby'.

Albert's farm

I want to walk some of the CityParks parks in areas that I don't normally frequent. So this is Albert's Farm. It was a little awkward because I was walking and everyone else there was doing their park run. When they finished the run they were picnicking or braaing a little something for breakfast. Seems like a lovely morning out, especially the picnic bit.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Fresh green bouquets

With my garden so overgrown after all the rain this year I have been cutting these big bunches of greenery as bouquets for the house. Quite magnificent. 
Even when I buy fresh cut flowers, like the sunflowers for instance, I add garden cuttings to increase the volume and dimensions of the bouquet.

Do better

I find words and quotes everywhere that inspire me. This one I have been quoting to everyone at work so I thought I should put it up on my board at home.

'Do the best you can do until you know better, then do better.'

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Buildings springing up like mushrooms

As I mentioned before, Mike bought this new camera and wanted to experiment with it, as a theme he choose time-lapse city traffic, using interesting, landmark building as backdrop, on this day it was in the Sandton area. I tagged along out of interest and took some pictures of my own. I love the contrast of the steel and glass with that one moment of three friends strolling down the road and sharing a good laugh.

Serbian Orthodox Church

I find all churches beautiful and wonder about their interiors. Every religion, I suppose, manifests their beliefs with different rituals and adornments and I find that so interesting. When I was at school I would go to church with my friends just to get the different views, the different experiences. In essence and at the core, I think, it is all similar but the differences in presentation and expression is what resonates with you or not. 

Everyday I drive past them Serbian Orthodox Church. I have been wanting a peep inside so when they had a food market day I went along. The church is so simple outside, so rich inside. Small but with so much detail. 

They also have the Serbian community hall on the property, the music I am sure just makes them remember, makes them homesick. There were posters, photographs and memorabilia on the wall brought over from Serbia and shared in this space where everyone has an appreciation of them.
I was certainly the odd one out. But I do understand what it means to them and how important it is to have this space. My parents gathered with others at the German club, sharing the music, stories, memories, jokes, gossip. Never were they so free of inhibition and so expressive as in their mother tongue. Great memories.

Art Eye Gallery

I plan most Saturdays end to end with activities but then I get sidetracked or I get caught up at one point and the rest of the itinerary is abandoned. So it happened the Saturday I went through to explore Art Eye Gallery, there was an hour allocated but I stayed for five. So interesting and inspiring. 
Art Eye is made up of many rooms and different spaces each more exciting than the previous one. Sanele gave me a great and informative tour, even of the storeroom/basement, where I could have stayed all day unearth masterpieces. I just wanted everyone from the office to come on over and enjoy the experience. Alas, I haven't even shared the idea with them yet.

I love the colour of the walls in the Launch Pad, the dark grey, it highlights the colours of each artwork. 

It is too much to take in, a real wow. Honestly, I would have bought at least four pieces if I had the money. I even wanted to take up brush and paint and splash some design onto the wall. Haha!

They told me to go a few floors down and see if any of the artists in residence were about. A passage of closed doors until there was an open one. The artist is Thokozani Mthiyane. He made rooibos tea and we chatted about his incredible experiences and his art. He shared the notebooks, books and dairies covered in sketches from moments throughout his varied and interesting journeys. I felt honoured to have met him and the time he afforded me. As if the day had not already been awesome. Icing on the cake. I bought one of his small illustrations. 

At the other end of the corridor was another artist, that I had already met in the gallery, David. Also a lovely man, putting together artwork with printed images, textures and paint.

Another wonderful experience.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Leafy Greens Cafe

Jill and I have had been wanting to go for ages, to the Leafy Greens Cafe. Jill is a vegetarian and I enjoy a good vegetarian meal. We had the boys with us and it was a beautiful sunny day. We got there to have brunch but decided to wait for the lunch buffet. Mmmm, well worth the wait. It was so delicious. We each bought their recipe book.

It was so delicious I went back. 
After lunch walked through the fields and saw rows of wonderful vegetables, chicken running around  and sunflowers reaching for the sky. I returned to the restaurant for coffee and a take-away slice of cheese cake. Bought a few things for the pantry in the shop as well.

Klipriviersberg nature reserve

What a wonderful day. Got home exhausted but felt great.
This is a great reserve to walk/hike at. There are many people and some are faster than others but everyone is enjoying the great outdoors. I only did some of the trails, the brown one, bit of the blue, red and green but a mish-mash and in a loop to get back where I started from. Crossed over on the pipeline and avoided the steep and rocky hills because my intention had been to go for a leisurely walk. But five hours later when I ran out of water I really wanted to call it quits. I started chatting to this guy and the went right past the exit so I had to go all the way back again. Argh. Ha, ha!

Dancing building of Prague

When Mike told me he was going to Prague as part of his European trip I asked him to please, please, pretty please take a pic of the dancing building. He kept his promise, although, he tells me, he stumbled upon it by accident. He was out walking the streets one morning when around the very next corner there is was, dancing with delight to the gentle awaking of a new day. 

He took a time-lapse video which is really lovely. This image is a frame from that video.

He has this great new camera, he explained all its remarkable features, but I have already forgotten them along with the name of it but what remains important is that he is able to capture beautiful movement, motion and memories with it. 

Mike Kelly +27 (0)83 288 0131
His video company is called Storytellers. Such a wonderful name.

Friday, 28 April 2017

Love is a mystery

Faithful. Alice Hoffman.

Winter preparations

Looking forward to winter. Hmm, are you sure?
Log fires, soup, hot chocolate and books.
I have been gathering books over the past few months and I can't wait to get started.
I have put a recliner in a sunny spot in the garden for reading (and napping).

Thursday, 27 April 2017

The family fryingpan

I bought a book once, The Family Frying Pan by Bryce Courtenay. I realised we also  have a family fryingpan. Not with a long history like the one in the book but nevertheless a cast-iron pan that was used to create many great meals and memories.
I'll just share one of these memories with you. My father played skittles, a game like 10-pin bowling but requiring more skill and strategy, one night a week. It goes without saying that during the sets a beers or two, maybe four, were enjoyed. My father would arrive home as hungry as a labourer would be after spending the day in the fields or as hungry as the wolf in Red Riding Hood. We would all be asleep but would wake up abruptly as soon as he opened the cupboard to get out the frying pan. A man who has had a few beers is in a good mood and oblivious  that any noise he makes in the middle of the night is amplified. He would fry up onions and two eggs, strong smells to have in the house in the middle of the night. We all lay in our beds waiting for the familiar routine to play itself out.
No one got up to join him because there was an understanding that this night was his night off. This understanding was not verbalise or spoken of, it's just something you know, something you sense intiatively.
As soon as my father went to his bedroom the calm and quiet of night was restored and we all went to sleep. Well, sometimes he could be heard sharing the events of the evening and the gossip of the past week with our mother but it was a soothing sound, like a lullaby.

De-cluttering the home

We all, I am sure, at one point or another, think of getting rid of some of our clutter. I do too. I am very good at tossing out things I no longer need or use. But having said that I have a lot of 'meaningful' clutter I cannot part with. Ha, ha. The paper mache bowls I made from egg trays, my mother's salad bowls, my mother's vases, Protea wine bottles, stones and shells from my travels, the list seems infinite. Sentimental old fool, I know.
So to declutter my home I move things onto the patio. It works well in this space, creating a natural extension from the inside of the house. So clutter inside and outside, I hear you say.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Blocks of colour

I got this gorgeous little tiled table from Trish's mother. I really love it and had said so when I was at her home. Now it's mine. Thank you. Trish's grandfather made it.

See how the plants are thriving in the crate I repurposed as a planter.

Monday, 24 April 2017

Rhino and Lion Park revisited (again)

Went along to the Rhino and Lion Park with another group of friends. Always a great day out, I would recommend it. Better than a zoo. Great for kids. We had some wonderful moments watching the rhino and the lions. Pack a picnic or have a braai.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Client shoot, on campus

We had to do a shoot for our client on their various campuses, 3 days of running around with 20 students trying to get some great shoots. My images are mostly sans students, more structure and landmarks. Great opportunity that doesn't come along ever day.