Monday, 20 May 2013

Sydney, Part 2 - People Watching

All images were taken by me and are un-edited.
When I went to Sydney earlier in the month (you can see part 1 here) my absolute favourite thing about my visit was the people and their street style. People of so many various interests, cultures, origins, ethnicities, languages and accents with such different and unique style.

I love people watching and Sydney was the perfect place for it. People were fearless in what they wore, I could've donned a top hat, zebra print shirt and a rainbow bubble skirt belted with a curtain tie and I would have fit right in. Although this ensemble would be with the addition of warm tights, fluffy socks and a big jacket -which would all be as equally outrageous - as it was freezing. I wish I could have gotten some shots of the people that wore get-ups like this, but unfortunately the people I managed to snap were wearing rather casual clothes. Most of the people were pretty much on a mission, so if I wanted to take a photo of them, I'd have to act fast. By the time I'd debated  in my head whether or not to chase after them or had taken my  camera from its' case, they were out of sight.

Although one very stylish person I managed to photograph was my mum's fabulous friend Robyn Catchlove (yes, that's her real name) who was mentioned in my previous post as our guide around Newtown and can be seen in the last image. She's posing for me inside a bar, positioned in front of a big glass window chosen especially so we could watch the people pass by. Although the image is in black and white, she's very vibrantly dressed: in an oversized electric blue jumper, a rainbow scarf and necklace, black leggings with red snakeskin shoes and her usual red lipstick and orange hair. But her personality is even more fun and exciting than her wonderful outfits.

As my mum, Robyn and I watched the people walk past the window we were sitting at, we spotted a rather brilliant looking man in a big leopard print coat. He was just the first of the people I am wishing I photographed. The clothes were as vibrant and as unique as the people that wore them, who were seen in flashes of colour wherever I went and were almost always smiling.
During my visit I saw a girl with galaxy tights, blue hair and a tardis dress and a man with so much curly black hair it hung over him like an umbrella. My mum and I spotted a guy who looked just like Viktor Krum from Harry Potter and the goblet of fire when we were enjoying Sushi Train one night, and another time we watched a woman in a full length cloak and elf ears as she crossed the street. One day we saw a lovely old man pushing a trolley and selling flowers (who I kind of wanted to be) and a girl wearing a summery fifties dress on a vintage bike, complete with a sixties picnic basket on the one day it was sunny.

Despite my wishing that I could have taken photos of all the lovely people I saw, I'm still happy with the images above. The first one is my favourite, I took my camera out after my mum and I came across an area where almost everyone was smoking. The photos I took weren't that great until this lady sat down and lit her cigarette. I was clicking away and managed to capture the smoke quite nicely I think, she gave me a smile and my mum and I continued walking. The second was taken not long after that and the others were snapped on different days.
I could go on forever about all the beautiful and interesting people I spotted and the clothes they wore. How liberating it was to wear whatever I wanted, putting on my stripy tights or my faux fur jacket and zipping up my seventies boots so haphazardly. Living where I do, pretty much anything other than sneakers, a plain shirt and jeans would be considered overdressed, so it was nice not to care about what I was wearing. After my experience in Sydney I will endeavour to be a little more fearless in what I wear.                      

Monday, 13 May 2013

Sydney, Part 1

Sydney Antique Centre

All images were taken by me and are un-edited.
 In my previous post I mentioned that I was going to Sydney, well I'm home now! I only managed to comment on about two blogs while I was away, but I'll be doing more catching up soon. My visit to Sydney (with my mum) involved lots of walking, visiting vintage shops, exploring the culture, people watching, taking photos, drinking some wonderful coffees and chai lattes, eating fabulous food and of course, taking way too many photos of the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge.

Living rurally near a small country town, I don't really get out much, so Sydney had me a little overwhelmed with all the weird and wonderful stuff to gawk at. The best way I could describe to my mum what I thought of it was 'there's always things to do and look at and there's always stuff going on.' I was so distracted by everything that most of the time I forgot to take my camera out (I ended up learning to just leave the strap around my neck and keep the lens cap off.) I wanted to see and experience everything Sydney had to offer in such a brief time - which of course, I unfortunately couldn't do. Sometimes I found it hard to sit still because I was anxious to take in as much as I could. Visiting places like these give that feeling that there's always more to do and see and more parts of the city to visit. But I still managed to have a wonderful time and some great experiences.

My mum's good friend Robyn was our guide around Newtown on our second day in Sydney, showing us vintage shops and streets with some amazing graffiti. As well as a community art project (sixth image) which she told us about, it was photos of people - just people, doing all sorts of people stuff in black and white images. Some had had graffiti done over them or been ripped, which sometimes created an interesting effect. It was certainly very entertaining to look at all the beautiful images and graffiti she showed us. We had dinner one night at an Italian restaurant and ate some of the best Tirimisu I've ever tasted. Another day we explored a market where we picked up breads, olives and several cheeses to take to her place for a delicious evening snack.
Other days it would just be my mum and I, wandering about King st (Newtown), getting confused about which bus we were catching to get to Surrey Hills, taking the ferry on the darling harbour after a delicious breakfast and a look at the exact replica of The Endeavour (third image)or riding the train into the city.

The city was definitely one of the highlights of my visit, I was constantly blown away by the beautiful architecture, shops and people. We visited art museums and walked around the streets pointing out the amazing things (which was everything we saw) as well as looked at all the fancy shops, including a Burberry store - no, scratch that, museum which had about six security guards. You could definitely tell we weren't from there, as we took so many pictures and stared at everything with wide eyes (and we also may have rode the escalators and went around in the revolving doors for fun.)

Another highlight was when we visited The Sydney Antique Centre (last five images) in Surrey Hills on the last full day of our visit. It was packed with gorgeous little vintage and antique stalls full of some incredible furniture, jewellery, clothes, etcetera. The entire place was an absolute visual feast, I saw some of the most exquisite vintage pieces: seventies green maxis, floral embroidered sixties robes, fifties autumn leaf cotton dresses, sheer forties overdresses, thirties silk bed jackets, twenties satin heels and antique beaded mourning gowns. Although I didn't buy anything (despite some really good prices) it definitely had my head filled with inspiration, I could have spent a week there looking at all the gorgeous things and eating the delicious food served at the Cafe.

Although I enjoyed my time at Sydney immensely and felt a little melancholy when we were flying back home, it's good to be home with my family and and the beautiful rural sky - there was something very surreal (and a little discomforting) about not seeing the stars in the city.