Website re-design

I am in the process of changing over my website design / layout / template. If you are visiting for the first time over the next few days please come back again soon - Hopefully at the weekend it will be ready-ish.... More and more images will be disappearing from this site and are migrating to the new one, so please bare with me… One of the bonuses of my new and improved website is more sub categories, which means I am making my way through images that previously have been hidden from view aka the dark depths of external hard drives and random USB sticks… Such as this one below, combining a few of my favourite things - Vintage Neon signs (in the shape of a teepee - added bonus), turquoise and Indian jewellery. Give me that any day over diamonds or Tiffanys… Sadly the shop was closed during our visit there… Which means I'll just have to visit Williams, Arizona another time…. UPDATE - NEW DESIGN IS LIVE… It is still a work in progress and will have new images added over the coming days / weeks etc...

 

No Parking

So yes I am crap at regularly maintaining a blog… I should have known that I would be, well yes I probably did but hoped differently…. So random photo Thursday… No Parking - don't think that person saw the sign… Or maybe he/she thought it meant no parking either side of the arrows but the middle was OK….

Wednesday Wander - Horse

Imaginative title - yes I know… well it's the country and it's a horse and it's early morning (well not that early as daylight savings hadn't happened yet)… But I thought I would share a photo or 2 of Blue - that's the horse - because I am actually afraid of horses (and birds but that's another story)… I have had 3 encounters earlier in my life that kinda scared me… In primary school my sister and I would walk ourselves to school and back. In those days (the late 70's) - not every suburban block was built to the hilt with McMansions, there were paddocks / empty blocks of land… Imagine… And sometimes there were horses… So I used to save my apple from school (tsk tsk) and on the way home I would feed it to the local horse. Well one day it decided to try and eat my hand too… There was no blood, but lots of tears followed by an explanation to my Mum and a lecture about me not eating apples… Horse Story 2 was on a Brownies camp - at a horse riding stable where we slept in wagons (that bit was good) and a horse that didn't want me on it's back - well you can guess the rest, needless to say it gave me an early experience in rodeo horse riding that I didn't appreciate… Finally Horse Story 3 was when I was about 20, a few friends decided to go on a horse riding day, my horse again didn't like me on it's back, when all the other horses were led to a small dam / lake to drink, mine decided to roll over and go for a swim with me still on it…. So for me to get up close to horses and photograph them is a big thing… 

Random Photo Fridays - Blimpo the Talking Clown

In 2012 we visited the Pinball Museum in Las Vegas and I highly recommend a visit there if you are ever in Vegas - well that and the Neon Museum - way better than 99 cent margaritas and loose slots ( I have photos of those signs somewhere)... Blimpo the Talking Clown was manufactured in 1988 and is a talking vending machine. The Saturn 2000 gum ball machine was manufactured by NorthWestern Corp starting from 1961 and this version looks from the 80's too (but I could be wrong)... During the week I'll try and locate more photos from the Pinball Museum as it's filled with so much great stuff, with most of the machines still operational and playable...

Wednesday Wander - Country Victoria

Over the Easter weekend we visited family who live in the country, so a wee bit of fresh air and wandering was called for... Obligatory shots of paddocks and sheds at sunrise, outdoor dunnies,  burnt gumtrees and sheep - This is Australia (sing that bit).... And this shed - I love old weathered tin sheds and this one is a beauty... These images and a few more are now available to license at Stocksy United in my Australia library....

Random Photo Fridays - Phil

I love a good urban wander with my camera and finding random art / graffiti / whatever you want to call it... This photo was taken in Greenpoint, NY in 2012. Phil Collins is one of those performers that I can appreciate his musical talent but never would listen to - no offence Phil... Whenever I look at this image I always think of a quote from way back in 1993 (yes I am a child of the 70's meaning my musical era of choice is always the 90's) from Evan Dando of the Lemonheads... (Taken from Sky Magazine - I used to love that Magazine).... "His one about flying goes a bit like this: If you find yourself sitting two rows in front of a really talented megastar on an aeroplane then there's absolutely no way you're going to crash because, according to Dando, that person just isn't ready to leav this earth yet (er, right). "The other day I found myself sitting right by Phil Collins," he says, trying his best to enlighten us, "and to be honest I wasn't sure what our chances were of survival. I told him who was because I figured we're on the same label and stuff but he wasn't at all friendly, which was kind of good 'cause if he'd been nice and we'd talked the whole journey or something then next time I'd heard Susudio on the radio I'd have had sort of a moral dilemma and would have had to listen to it. He's really OK though," Dando grins, stopping briefly to draw breath, "and that's kind of my theory about music - there's nothing really you can say about any musician just so long as he or she enjoys what they're doing and other people enjoy it. I mean there's a lot of bands I don't like but I still respect them a lot."

Vintage Mondays - Children's Lamps

It turns out I have collected quite a few ( ok 12 or so ) vintage children's lamps... The ones pictured are from the USA and date from the 1950's / 60's... The idea was that Nick being a former electrician would re-wire them, but it turns out it was never that simple - in Australia the light globe mounts / fittings are different and they would also need replacing... And of course I think that would then spoil the look of them, having to add modern plastic mounts. This type of lamp can be found quite easily online via eBay or Etsy... Unfortunately ours have sat unused on shelves, but they still make a lovely display and are a great addition to a child's bedroom... Although I do lust after some custom built shelving for our living room and would love my lamps lined up and curated with all of our other random collections... We also have quite a few Australian-made children's night lights from the 1960's / 70's. Though they are a completely different style and made from plastic... I might photograph them next.... 

Random Photo Fridays - Route 66 GAS

It was another, slow down / pull over kind of moments while driving through the small town of Truxton on Route 66. Opposite the historic Frontier Motel (yes I took photos of that too) was the Barker Apartments, Bar and Gas Station... The Frontier Motel and Cafe was bought by Ray and Mildred Barker in 1957. Ray died in 1990 and Mildred continued to run the cafe until shortly before her death in 2012. Since our visit in 2012 the motel, bar and gas station have been bought by a tour operator from New Zealand and the motel is to be refurbished and due to open this year...

TCB Wednesday - The art of craft

I have some seriously talented friends that do amazing things in their work life. They (like everyone else) go about their day to day, doing what they do and often don't see what others may see - hence my ongoing love of photographing the banal and everyday... The past few weeks has seen me visit a mirror / glass restorer-maker, a brewer and a record maker - yes a place that presses ye olde vinyl... I love visiting and photographing environments of creators and hand crafters - especially ones with beautiful old industrial machinery.... And tomorrow I'm off to photograph a leather worker / shoe maker... I'm on a mission to seek out old trades being resurrected or continued in this online digital world of ours... Over the next few weeks I'll be adding some new images to my craft folio but first up are just a few taken at the mirror / glass restorer.... Please tell me if you or anyone you know are doing awesome old school things as I'd love to photograph your craft / workplace... 

Vintage Monday - Children's Annuals

This will come as no surprise to people that have known me since our shop days - I have collected Vintage Children's Annuals for at least 8 years. Initially when I start collecting something I get a little carried away (like my cookie jars)... I start all gun-ho and buy buy buy, especially if it's cheap. Then I step back and think, maybe I don't need that many and will sell a few and I then refine what I buy... (Back to the cookie jars - I now only collect ones with faces) ... The same now applies with my vintage annuals. I have to love the cover illustrations and especially ones illustrated by Denis McLoughlin. I am no longer addicted to scouring the internet (ebay and etsy) but am happy to stumble across them in vintage shops or markets... In my opinion Vintage Annuals make great display pieces and artwork. They are bright, colourful and sometimes a little politically incorrect for today's times... I have been wanting to frame at least 12 covers and hang them in a grid / block on a wall, however I have no wall space left, so that will have to wait... Instead I have photographed and printed a few at home and stuck the prints to the wall - a lot cheaper and easy to change around.... And a few years ago I had my favourite cover printed up super large, mounted it on thick foam core and it hangs in my sons bedroom... I seriously have so many children's vintage decorating ideas I could fill a book.... 

Random Photo Fridays - Angel's Barbershop, Seligman AZ

Just down the road from the Snowcap is Angel Delgadillo's old barbershop along Main Street /  Route 66 in Seligman. Following on from his father, Angel opened his barbershop in 1950 and he continued to shave beards and cut hair until 1996. His barbershop is now somewhat of a museum and he and his wife Vilma run the gift shop (with a little help). The building's decor hasn't changed much over the years and is filled with Route 66 memorabilia and a lot of business cards from all over the world. Next week I might rummage through some more images of other great signs and buildings around Seligman.

TCB Wednesdays - The Vintage Post

Last week I created some images for an article at The Vintage Post all about vintage shopping with children in tow... Lucky for us our son has been dragged along ever since he was in a pusher and so he actually enjoys it (most of the time) and has his own collections going on... However that doesn't mean it's always a dream, there is usually a bribery that involves ice-cream or donuts and I certainly can't wander for as long as I would like... As a family we have visited some amazing shops and flea markets locally and overseas and his collecting along the way of toys and trinkets remind us of some fun memories... First up he started collecting Little Golden Books at Camberwell Market, followed by Matchbox / Lesney cars - he could tell you which car came from where - Big Top Circus (pictured below) was the Rose Bowl Flea. He then discovered my old cereal toys and has since added a few himself. The Woody Woodpecker lunch tin he found in a great vintage shop in Lone Pine, CA that we stumbled upon 3 years ago and most recently he has started collecting Pez. Head over to The Vintage Post for some great tips on how to get your kids involved in collecting / vintage shopping.

Vintage Mondays - Board Games

Hello my name is Natalie Jeffcott and I have an addiction to boardgames.... Ok maybe not quite, but I do own more than a few... I would love to tell you every Friday night we sit down as a family and play boardgames... ha ha ha I would have to rip the ipad in a stealth manoeuvre out of my son's hands, whilst deactivating minecraft from my computer and forcing my partner pretty much at knifepoint to play with us.... So why do I have them you may ask, well because the illustrations and graphics are awesome... I used to make artwork from games, frame them and sell them in our old shop, they look ace on walls.... see here and here.... Seriously though my son and I do indeed play them and I am planning on having a games night soon with some friends. 

So here are some of my favourite games for nostalgia, fun and just because they are pretty to look at.... First up, my 2 favourites, IKE*A*DOO and Creepy Critters.... They are both quite similar to play - pick a character or a critter colour, spin the wheel / roll the dice and add your arm / leg etc... First to make their character wins...

 IKE*A*DOO is an American game that has been around since the early 1950's in various sets / guises... My game is from 1954... 

Creepy Critters was distributed in Australia by Toltoys in the 1960's and Toltoys actually changed the name from The Game of Cootie - which was first created in 1948. I loved playing Creepy Critters in the 70's with my sister... 

I bought the 2 Ludo boxes at a vintage market not only for the graphics but also for the dedication someone took in sewing (yes sewing) the first box back together - well sticky tape is the bane of serious collectors.... Ludo is also known as Pachesi and actually originated in India in the 6th century.... so it's good to know that Ludo has been boring kids for a very long time....

The next few images are some of my favourite game box artwork, followed by some colourful game board eye candy including a 1970's snakes and ladders game I remember playing when I was young, Candy Land - because what kid does not want to eat candy, play with candy and dream about candy ( It's also known as Sugar Land in other variations of the game ) as well as some older cardboard games from my collection....

Random Photo Fridays - Snowcap, Seligman AZ

In early 2012 I started researching Route 66 online and my must see places and towns to visit. We only had a few days of travel time from California into Arizona and Nevada, but as soon as I saw a photo of Delgadillo's Snowcap in Seligman, Arizona I knew no matter what, we would be stopping there... The Snowcap was built in 1953 by Juan Delgadillo - with help from his father and brothers from scrap lumber obtained from the nearby Santa Fe railway yards. His brother Angel ran the Barber and gift shop a few doors down (we will visit there next Friday)... Both Juan and Angel were instrumental in the preservation of Seligman as a thriving town and tourist attraction. In 1987 they founded the Historic Route 66 Association of Arizona and ran a campaign for historic signage to be added along the old route 66 after the I-40 was constructed in the 1960's-70's. In September 1978 Angel watched his hometown literally change overnight as traffic bypassed Seligman... Juan Delgadillo passed away in 2004 but his children still run the Snowcap. Unfortunately we arrived late in the afternoon and it was closed, but I still loved wandering around the outside of the building and could hardly believe that I was so lucky to see it in person...

TCB Wednesdays - I am still learning

TCB Wednesdays are here - the idea for the name is taken from Elvis..... TCB or Taking Care of Business is what he called his band and his airplane.... So my version is a little show and tell of photography that I have been working or collaborating with others on. Quite often it will be in regards to creating stock imagery and image licensing... First up is a project I worked on with my sister.... Like many women close to, or hitting their forties, the big 4-0 can bring up some mixed emotions... For many it means a time when the last of their children head off to school... Others have been in the workforce continuously and it seems to be a marker or opportunity to stop and reflect on where you are and what you want to keep doing... Ok this can be true for the menfolk too... So my sister is on a new career path as a life coach (she has a background in psychology) and asked me to create some images for her business that are available as a digital download from her website... At school she always excelled in writing and English (whilst I barely passed) and she lost herself in books, whilst I instead sat happily day dreaming, watching cartoons and drawing and loved art and design...Head over to her website and have a read, take a peek around and grab yourself a download ;-)

Vintage Mondays - Collecting of collections

Sometimes I feel that I sound like a broken record - well in regards to photography, vintage style and collecting.... Last week I pulled a rather large glass jar off a shelf, as I had an idea for a few photographs - yes that would be them below... I didn't realise what I actually had in that big glass jar.... I knew there were random game pieces and some rubber balls, but honestly I didn't know I had that many vintage dice, rubber bouncy balls (my son is happy) and colourful tokens... I now have them displayed in the cute retro saucers on a side table... A few of these images are now available to license through Stocksy - which makes me happy as I get to have fun making images from colourful vintage things.... 

Random Photo Fridays - Ashfork AZ

Today we are taking a detour to Ashfork - Arizona... In 2012 we did a family road trip to the USA and spent 3 days driving the old Route 66 (I am still dreaming of doing the entire route)... As we love a road trip and especially detouring off the main path, we stumbled upon Ashfork - The flagstone capital of the USA... Like many small towns in the USA it has an interesting history and has long been a thorough fare for us humans... Over the next few Fridays I will be sharing some more of my images from Route 66 that never made it into my Holiday Road exhibition...

Vintage Mondays - flatlay collections

I'm not sure when 'flat lay' became a thing - I partially blame instagram... It was previously known by me as "placing stuff on a table or floor, arranging it and taking a photo from above" - so I guess hashtagging flatlay is some what quicker and easier... Many years ago when we ran our shop Arthur's Circus I used to create images from my vintage toys and ephemera collection, such as  this one for Mixtape Magazine. Or sell them as prints in our shop such as this and that.... So recently I have created new #flatlay image for a set of promotional postcards and thought I would share it here... My image below contains a few of my favourite things - cereal toys from my Grandad, as collected from the weeties packet when I was little, dice from a trip to Las Vegas in 2012 and a stay at the golden nugget, Chewbacca - because I would marry a wookie if I could, toy train from my partners childhood and a cute ceramic head from the talented artist Lili Scratchy... A couple of my fellow Stocksy photographers do a good flat lay collection too... Take a peek at the work of Suzanne Clements and Catherine McBride....

Random Photo Fridays - somewhere near Eildon

These 2 images were taken a few years ago, after a weekend trip to Bonnie Doon. We drove around the  back of the lake and ended up at Eildon and then travelled country roads back to Melbourne. I have no idea where I took this image, but I do love chancing upon and then yelling out "stop the car" to photograph old, crumbling fascades / buildings and always wonder about the history and what life was once like....