Friday, October 21, 2016

Rangefinder Camera - Minolta hi-matic F

I'm finally getting around to adding more cameras to my film camera guide - today's addition, is a camera I've had for a while but shamefully have only put one roll of film through it. It's a relatively cheap film camera, you can pick up for under $50 off eBay and I got mine whilst thrifting.

The hi-matic f, is a range finder camera which peaked my interest since I've never owned one before. Your typical SLR (single lens reflex) cameras have a mirror (reflex mirror), so when you look through the viewfinder the mirror shows you what the lens sees, with a rangefinder camera it's mirror-less so the viewfinder doesn't give you an accurate view of your shot which is something you have to take into consideration when shooting. On the plus side without a mirror it's really compact and inconspicuous and from reading this article makes for a good street photography camera!

Another thing with rangefinder cameras is to get an image in focus you look through the view finder and you'll see a ghost image in front of your image.  You then need to match up both images by turning the focus ring on the lens. Since this was my first range finder, I found it more novel than awesome but I definitely want to revisit this camera again.  

The batteries meant for this camera are no longer in production (or at least I couldn't find them) so I bought a pack of AG13 (LR44) button cell batteries, placed two batteries on top of each other, wrapped a thin strip of paper around the two (to stop them falling apart) and popped them into the battery compartment which did the trick :)  The comment thread of this article suggests that this battery trick will give more voltage and thus causing the exposure meter to read wrong and underexpose. The film I got back did seem to err on the underexposed side so possibly due to the battery voltage.  Unfortunately, because this camera is auto, the only way to really play with exposure is to rate the film speed lower.  You do this by turning a black wheel on the front element of the lens.  The film I used was 100 speed and I set the camera to 50 but next time I'd use a much higher speed film and go a few stops lower :)

The camera comes with a fixed 38mm Rokkor lens 2.7f/stop so wide but not super wide!

I also think the camera looks really nice, that counts for something right?

I put through a roll of lomography 100 Colour for my test roll, I wouldn't say I got stand out results and probably why I never came back to it but I'm definitely keen to put through a black and white roll next time, I think that's where its magic could lie!

Blue light leak? Not too sure what caused this guy

Rangefinders are meant to be sharp with no edge distortion or vignetting (black edges) which I think these photos do a good job of showing

Hi-matic F - Colour film

Have you guys had experience with rangefinders, yay or nay - any tips?

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Bought/gift/made /04

Time to share another bought/gift/made entry :)
If you follow me on Instagram you may of seen some shots of Ben and I marbling paper :) I've already used part of a sheet for something fun - stay tuned!

Some purple amethyst I bought - always drawn to the purples :)

And some stickers gifted to me, from Ben, the two outer stickers are Ben's designs and the inner cat claw is from a Japanese artist called blot :)

Friday, October 14, 2016

Beach + Seaglass Roundup /6

More sea goodies to show you guys, I like this eclectic mix of items, they look so pretty altogether :)

The magical sea!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Wooden Pallet Shelf

So a while back I was heavily on the carpentry train + home beautification quest and realised I needed a shelf in my room :) I was also seeing if I could push my carpentry skills past a basic stool - eep!

Spoiler alert: Success!

I completed the project over a week and it was super intense! The wood was originally from a pallet we had in our yard which meant the first step was to cut it all up using my hand saw

Peachy was project supervisor btw :)

After cutting the pallet up, I then had to work out the possible dimensions of my shelf which was based off the sizes of wood pieces from the pallet and also how I wanted my shelf to function plus the space it needed to fit in. I have a giant Tim walker book so I knew the bottom shelf needed to be at least that height :) This stage was a bit painful but once I had my dimensions I was able to draw up a plan and cut all my pieces to their exact sizes, I also sanded and varnished each piece, because the wood wasn't the smoothest.

I just kind of winged constructions, I hammered in a million nails and although someone told me later I should have used screws to make it more sturdy, I figure those little wood braces I put in and the amount of nails saved the day there :)

Ta - daaaa! I love it's naturally weathered look and bonus points that it fit into its space *sigh of relief*. Ben had previously used the pallet whilst spray painting Jake's nerf gun pink so I love that it has those pink splotches! The wood itself, because it came from a pallet wasn't exactly the straightest so when it came to working out the shelves, I laid all the pieces flat in our living room and worked out the best configurations for them to fit together and lay the flattest :)

Overall I'd say this project was a two thumbs up success - it's also been fun styling the shelf and I love that it's super practical and beautiful in one.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Thrifty Sunday /15

Some more thrifty goodness to show you guys this week.

First up a really beautiful print by a famous indigenous artist named Albert Namatjira. His story is definitely worth googling, powerful and sad but also nice that art can let some forget outward differences.

A heart punch - super handy for crafty time

A Matilda cup, she was the mascot for the 1982 commonwealth games - you can see her life sized version over here

I bought this kid's pottery wheel for a bit of fun for Ben and myself. Ben was able to throw a super cute pot on it even despite the wheel's many many flaws and I did some epic fails :P

To keep up with my big things memorabilia, a big banana water gun!

How cute are these stickers -the back is also so amazing with its graphics

Pastel vintage goodness

And keeping up with the aussie theme a Sydney opera house mug :) :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Pulling Portra 160

I've got some Portra 160 film to show you guys. I popped the film into my canon 1000f film camera, set the film speed to 100 and then had it processed at 160. Just so I'm using correct terminology (from my research) this is called pulling film in shooting (unnecessary to do anything further in processing). I'm loving the pulling because it gives the film a bit less contrast and more details in shadows and generally more dreamy-esque :) I also overexpose my shots by one or two stops to make sure there are nice and bright :) :) Onto the photos! Oh and just as a side note, there are a couple of shots in black and white, I just edited those digitally because I liked them better in b&w.

Ben and I found a fake flower at the beach which has started the idea that I should do a series of these!

Portra 160 - peaches

Peachy Girl!

Film is fun :)

You can also check out the results I got previously not pulling the film

And if you want to know how I scan my film you can see the tutorial here and here

Monday, October 3, 2016

Gremlin Embroidery 03/

Some Gremlin embroidery updates to show you guys - I finally got to start on his black body thread which was super fun!

It's cool to see Gremlin coming to life on the material :) I'm not used to such slow projects so this has been a nice challenge for myself! Just need to watch another ten movies or so :p

Part 1 and Part 2

Friday, September 30, 2016

Vegan Eats Guide - Part 2

It's been over a year since I did my last vegan post and I thought I would share my new discoveries. I absolutely love everything I eat now that I've really found my feet :) It definitely didn't happen immediately but I'm here to reassure you that cutting out animal products does get so much easier!

So this year I really discovered the power of cashews! My big blender broke so I picked up a slim NutriBullet when the shops were having a 50% off sale and it's been great for blending up a cup of cashews. I blend up a cup at least once a week so I always have sour cream in my fridge :) So easy to do, soak a cup of cashews in water (overnight or use boiling water and soak for a few hours) drain the cashews, pop them into your blender cover with new water, add a sprinkle of nutritional yeast, salt and lemon juice and blend away! I just eyeball the measurements now but you really can't go wrong just, keep adding until the taste is spot on for you - sooo easy!

Those tacos above are made by roasting chickpeas (sprinkled with oil, paprika, salt and pepper) in a hot oven for 10-15 minutes, alongside a chopped up roasted capsicum, avo, tomato, red onion and the home made sour cream - my new addiction!

This sandwich above is a classic lunch staple too, promite on sourdough topped with avos, red onion, black pepper and nutritional yeast!

I discovered Thai food is easy to veganise too. You can just sub fish sauce by using a combo of stock mixed with soy sauce! I made that Tom Kha Gai above and it was fantastic. I've also been loving just a plain spud, covered in, yup, you guessed it the sour cashew cream, along with garlic chives, some smoked salt (if you can find a shop that stocks smoked salt, it's a game changer!) and some vegan margarine.

Eating out is still the only slightly tricky thing thing but you just need to do a little research and you'll be surprised just how many places can make you something vegan when you ask nicely :) Cupcake above is by Stormie D's in Caloundra and the burger was from Kimnat in Woombye.

Another game changer for me this year was discovering the group, Australian Vegan Foodies, on facebook. Everyday I get inspired by what others are making and I've found lots of new vegan foods that I can buy locally from our supermarket. Obviously that group is dedicated to us Aussies, but I'm sure if you do a search you could find a group for your location! I learnt about the above cake from that group and I've made it several times and it's always a hit - super fudgey - thanks Nigella!

Mac n cheese with crispy sage and coconut bacon - yes please! And some Chinese inspired cauliflower above - thumbs up from me :)

I discovered the world of spanakopita from my vegan fb group. So easy to make, you just finely chop some firm tofu, soak it in lemon juice, add in some salt, garlic, toasted pine nuts and a pack of frozen spinach (defrosted) and mixed altogether. Then that mix gets wrapped in filo pastry and popped into the oven. Not a huge tofu fan but these convert me!

Another discovery this year for me was Oyster Mushrooms - oh my goodness! When I tried out the "scallop" pasta recipe above, I got a little misty eyed. As a huge lover of seafood and someone who use to eat a lot of prawns, I really missed that option in my diet but I feel like these king oyster mushrooms have such a great texture filling a void in my life. I find that the stems when chopped and cooked in white wine and stock really have a seafood/scallop taste/feel but the tops of the regular oyster mushrooms take on a more of a chicken texture/look. The secret I've discovered is cooking the oyster mushrooms in white wine + stock water for a few minutes, draining the liquid (but keeping it to pour back over later in your dish) and then frying the mushrooms back in a super hot pan so they start to get a lovely seared texture - soooo good! Also oyster mushrooms don't do that weird soggy/sauté thing that happens with the regular button mushrooms.

Not eating animal products, means you'll get well meaning comments from others (which I was also guilty of asking!) "what can you eat?" or "how come your not wasting away?".  Now those questions are strange to hear because I love food and there is soooo much I can eat to the point where I actually eat a greater variety of foods then ever before and hence not wasting away :p

One good thing about eating out is junk food is a little trickier to find, you do have to hunt down places with vegan options, like the doughnut above from doughnut time but I kind of like that it's a special treat now - others might disagree with me on that one!

If you are starving for baked goodies, it's really easy to just make them yourself, I'm fairly confident you can veganise pretty much any baked recipe, you just need to change the milk to a non dairy option, the butter to say a vegan margarine and you can use a few things to sub eggs, have you heard about Aquafaba? Those cinnamon scrolls above I made from this recipe here

I do really enjoy cooking and trying out weird ideas, those sausage rolls I started making after thinking pumpernickel might make a good mince substitute - it does! I just use left over ingredients from when I make burritos and blitz them altogether in my blender. The picture over on the right is a quesadilla, I put a tiny bit of wasabi on the bottom base, along with lots of avo, chopped up tomatoes and red onions, coriander, pop the top on and then grill in my sandwich press, and hey presto easy lunch/dinner! You can grate some fake cheese too, like bio cheese, but I found it really isn't that necessary.

Obviously I love a certain type of food with ingredients making return appearances but my biggest advice is just to find what you like and run from there. Also, don't be scared you're missing out, I'm sure like me you'll find you're adding in lots of new things into your diet and end up truly loving what you eat :)

I've seen some incredible non dairy cheese popping up on pinterest so maybe next year's update will include my journey down that path and perhaps more exploration into cooking tofu! Wish me luck!