Magical Moments

I recently stumbled upon the work of Ukraine based art photographer Oleg Oprisco and I am in love. Oleg is a genius – not only does he source, style and shoot all the pics single handedly (what a legend!) but he does this all in film – amazing!

In his words ” I like the ability to stop time and create my version of reality” he goes on to say: “you press the shutter button but do not know what happens. This is real magic.” I have to agree – his whimsical photos are truly impressive.

Visit Oleg Oprisco’s portfolio of breath taking work here and check out the original interview with Oleg here.

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

Oleg Oprisco

All photos by Oleg Oprisco

Cat Marshmallows

Okay – I hate to admit it, but winter is around the corner and thoughts will soon be turning to delicious mugs of piping hot chocolate… and to take this comforting drink to the next level this girl is going to have to get her hands on some of these cute critters – Cat Marshmallows. Aren’t they just so adorable (almost too cute to eat!)?

Perhaps its a good thing that Japanese marshmallow company Nagano don’t deliver internationally – those skinny jeans would fast become a thing of the past.

cat marshmallow

cat marshmallow

cat marshmallow

Found via My Modern Met

Water Babes

As a kid, did you ever dive to the bottom of the pool and just lay there for a couple of seconds, quietly listening to the weird distorted world above you? I remember wishing I was a mermaid – imagining how cool it would be to be able to stay under the water for more than the 20 seconds my little lungs would allow – surely a magical kingdom existed down there?

Alix Martinez manages to beautifully capture this aquatic fairyland in her children’s photo series called Water. Alix’s work is so gorgeously intimate and fresh, effortlessly capturing the wide eyed enthusiasm of childhood. I love it all.

Be sure to check out her portfolio – it’s so inspiring.

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

Alix Martinez

All photos by Alix Martinez

New haircuts

A visit to the hairdressers always inspires me – a morning of pampering mixed in with pots of tea and red velvet cupcakes is good for the soul (yes, my hairdresser spoils all her clients with the cutest cupcakes). I always walk away from the salon feeling ready for anything.

After my most recent visit to this magical place (otherwise known as Mooi Hair & Beauty Salon) I happened to spot the amazing collage work of Erin Case. One of her digital collections is aptly called Haircut (done in collaboration with Andrew Tamlyn) – I love the simplicity of these “cut’n pastes” so sublimely surreal.

Erin Case

Erin Case

Erin Case

Erin Case

Erin Case

Erin Case

Erin Case

Erin Case

Check out more of Erin’s work here

Happy Monday

I have my moments and last week I spotted this brilliant graphic and it could not have been more true.
Let’s hope this week is a little less tricky!

Happy Monday folks.

Too old
Found here

Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Being a huge bird fan – I love British photographer Luke Stephenson’s “Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds”. Having said that I am opposed to the keeping of caged birds and sadly most of the birds photographed in this amazing body of work are all caged pets, but Stephen has done them all justice, he has carefully captured their delicate finery and vibrant characters beautifully – doing justice to both the birds and their loving owners.

In his words: “An Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds began with a very simple idea, that I wanted to photograph budgies. I met a great deal of people (mostly men) who were very knowledgeable about their hobby and only too happy to share it with me. Their enthusiasm became infectious so that by simply photographing a species I felt I was adding it to my collection.”

An Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds has been published in a really gorgeous book and can also be seen in Luke Stephenson’s portfolio.

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Luke Stephenson - The Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

All photos are from Luke Stephenson’s Incomplete Dictionary of Show Birds

Wise Words

Yikes, it has been far too long since my last Wise Words post! To get us back on track for the Weekly Wise Words here are some very pertinent sentiments to refer to daily.
Created by Bianca Cash

Wise Words

Test driving my new lens

In the hope of improving my photographic skills I recently purchased a new lens for my camera – a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II. This is a very basic lens and is often referred to as the “Thrifty Fifty” (it’s slightly more expensive brother the Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM being referred to as the “Nifty Fifty”).
Well what can I say… I wish I had bought one of these ages ago. It makes photographing stuff in low light a breeze and as you can play around with really large aperture settings you can get great blurring effects in the foreground and background – making portrait style photos so much more interesting.

The first few photos I took with my new lens where all pretty bad, but after reading a lot about using this lens and watching some tutorials on Youtube, I thought I better buckle down and take some serious shots.
Of course Stripes (better known on Instagram as #bestcat) was quick to volunteer and making use of the bright autumn sunshine – we set up our own little home photo shoot.

I know I have a long way to go, but I thought I would share some of my favorites from this morning’s little session – what do you think?

Stripes

Stripes

Stripes

Stripes

Alfajores Dulche De Leche Cookie Recipe

Alfajores recipe

According to Wiki the spanish word Alfajores is derived from the arabic work for “luxury” or “exquisite” – and let me assure you, this couldn’t be more spot on – these cookies are heavenly.

Alfajores are originally from South America and normally are made up of two thin buttery biscuits sandwiched together with a generous dollop of dulche de leche (or caramel).

I found this recipe on Twigg Studios (a super blog with tons of delicious recipes and mouth watering photos). Although I followed the recipe quite closely I did find the dough quite sticky so I chose to roll mine into a sausage shape and freeze it until it was hard enough to slice.

Alfajores Dulche De Leche Cookies:

For the biscuits:
250g Cake Flour
25g Icing Sugar (sounds like very little, but it’s just perfect as the filling is super sweet)
1 tsp Salt
225g Butter

For the filling:
1 Tin of Caramel
1/4 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Ground Cloves

In a food processor combine all the biscuit ingredients and whizz about till it forms a smooth dough. Tip this out onto a floured surface and form into a long sausage shape, wrap in cling film and pop in the freezer for a couple of hours. You don’t want the dough to be frozen rock hard as you will need to slice it, but if it is solid, just leave it out for a few minutes and it should soften up making slicing easier.

Preheat your oven to 180C. Line a backing sheet with grease proof paper and set aside.

When your dough is just hard enough, slice it into 5-8mm thick slices and lay them out on your backing sheet. Don’t put them too close together as they spread a little and you want to keep their lovely roundness.

Bake for 10 -15 minutes until golden and delicious looking.

Remove from the oven and cool on a wire cooling rack. Once they are completely cool dust them with icing sugar.

Now you can whip up the scrummy filling – pop all the filling ingredients together in a bowl and mix together thoroughly.

Smear a spoonful (or more) of the Dulche De Leche filling onto half of your cookies and use the remaining half to finish of the little sandwiches. Perfection.

Now pour your self a cup of tea, sit back and be prepared for pure bliss!

Original recipe from here

Happy St Paddy’s day

Sláinte!
Today is St Patrick’s day, I hope your day is full of Irish luck and happiness.

Weekend Knack

I have a huge soft spot for gorgeously illustrated maps and recently I found this fabulous map of Ireland illustrated by KHUAN+KTRON. They created a serious of 7 maps for the cover of Weekend Knack magazine, each map depicting various cliche’s associated with that region.

You can read more about KHUAN+KTRON here

Weekend Knack

Weekend Knack

Weekend Knack

Playing Arts

Do you love card games? I must admit one of my secret indulgences is playing Solitaire on my iPad.
Naff I know, but I love it and it reminds me of my Gran – she used to make huge pots of tea and sit in the sunroom playing Solitaire in the afternoon light. Such good memories.

Gran had a basic pack of cards – the kind with the blue and white bicycle backs (the kind I am sure everyone had back then). Sadly all my current deck cutting and shuffling happens on my iPad, and to be honest, I don’t even know if I own a pack of cards. Well if I am going to spend some money on a pack I might just be tempted to go for a deck of these really special Playing Arts play cards.

They are designed by 54 different designer from across the globe. Here are a few of my favorites.

Playing Arts

Playing Arts

Playing Arts

Playing Arts

Playing Arts

See the complete deck here and find out more about the artists involved