Saturday, 31 March 2012

My Scruffy Angel

    I title this photo My Scruffy Angel. Don't you think that title just says it all. I love how this photo turned out. It was just one of those magical moments. My daughter was standing in a perfect pocket of Autumn sunlight and my camera settings were just right.

Shutter speed: 1/125
Aperture: 8.0
ISO: 800

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

It's Not Easy

Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano

    It's not easy. Trying to write something good.
    When I read other people's books, I wish to myself, that maybe I could write something like that. It would be nice to express myself - to be clear and concise, to be heard and understood. To share something wonderful and be remembered for that.
    I am re-reading The Carrie Diaries. I like this version of Carrie Bradshaw and Candace Bushnell is one of my new favourite authors.
    The way Carrie was written, she is someone I can understand. I feel like I know her well. Like she could have been me, if I was a different person. An ambiguous statement - yes! But it is logical to me.
    Carrie listens to the people around her, she explores the city and lives life up. She may not like all that she sees. Yet the obstacles in her life help define her writing. I think Candace is telling up a lot about herself through Carrie.
    One of Carrie's struggles is getting started with writing her ideas. This frustrates her because she thinks she has to work a whole lot harder to be a spectacular writer. Initial laziness appears to be her hallmark, but once she knows what she wants there is no stopping Carrie.
    On another slightly similar subject - reading [as it is just the flipside to writing]! I am doing a lot of reading at the moment. In fact I have four different books that I am currently in the middle of. I enjoy re-reading my old books but my mind needs new fuel. I want to read Ernest Hemmingway. And there was another one. What was it? Virginia Woolf. And Tender is the Night by Fitzgerald.

Friday, 30 March 2012

Carla's Competition

Image by Carla Coulson

    One of my favourite photographers, Carla Coulson, whom I could not give enough accolades, is running a perfectly packaged photography competition.
    To find out the details of this competition simply follow this link...

Autumn Light

    I spent a lot of the day in the backyard with my eldest. We painted in the morning and in the afternoon, we threw a ball around. I also read a bit and did some photography.
    I wonder what the weekend has in store for me. I think I still need a bit of recovery from this headcold, but it would be nice to do something different.
Painting by Melissa Gaggiano
I was trying to use up the last of the paint on the palette,
after my daughter had finished her art session.
Photography by Melissa Gaggiano
I love this Autumn lighting. I kept waiting for my daughter to run through the lit
patches in the backyard.

The Swing Stage

    A couple of weekends ago I checked out the Swing Stage, which was part of a local festival. The Swing Stage just happened to be sponsored by one of my favourite bloggers - Candice de Ville.
    At the time my Canon EOS 1100D was undergoing maintennance so I whipped out my super old Ricoh camera and bought 400 ISO film. Following are just a handful of pictures from that afternoon.

Image by Melissa Gaggiano
Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Slow Week

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

    Really it has been an off week for me. The first few days were spent in the land of head colds - both my own and one of my daughters. The rest of the week has been spent in recovery mode. So not a lot has been accomplished. To be honest I've only managed to crochet one whole granny square and taken a few photos.
    Today though I needed to get everyone out of the house for some over due fresh air. So we stepped out and visited the local newsagent. I picked up a copy of Frankie and two Freddo Frogs for Gwennie and I to snack on.
    On the walk back home there was the overwhelmingly delicious scent of a fish 'n' chip shop. And if a smell like that is so intoxicating it's a sign that I'm certainly over my head cold. Maybe we'll have some fish 'n' chips on the weekend.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Epic Love Vs Rebound Boy

Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano

Have you ever watched the awesome, but short lived television series Veronica Mars? If you have then you will know what I am rambling on about in this essay. If not, then you will be entirely lost, and will want to watch the series to work out what I am going on about.

During season three of Veronica Mars, quite a few people were relieved to see Veronica Mars dating a good boy like Stosh ‘Piz’ Piznarski. Particularly after the many heart aches caused by on again, off again boyfriend, Logan Echolls. Others, like me, feel that when it comes to Logan it’s a case of better the devil you know.

If I ever wanted confirmation that Piz was all wrong for Veronica, then I would look no further than his reaction to the unauthorised sex tape of Veronica and him. Or I should say his non-reaction. Upon learning that someone had infiltrated his dorm room with spy equipment, and thereby recording an intimate moment between Piz and Veronica, he is surprisingly calm about the situation. He doesn’t appear embarrassed, nor is he angry. I cannot help but feel, even if he’s not concerned about his own personal exposure, he should at least feel so for the sake of his girlfriend, who was ultimately the target of this attack.

Veronica’s Dad, Keith, was never entirely comfortable with Veronica dating Logan. And when she began dating Piz, Keith happily gave his thumbs-up to this set up. As far as he was concerned Logan had no future and Piz and in computer game terms he was the new and improved beta.  Translation Piz is not a trouble maker. But here is the funny thing. Keith thinks very little of Logan yet they are mirror images of each other.  Certainly he doesn’t have Logan’s anger management issues. However when it comes to the safety of people he cares about, he has taken the law into his own hands.

In the other established caveman definition of a beta, Piz is most definitely that. Put these two up against each other in a fight and Logan would come out on top. The first episode we meet Piz he conveys to Veronica that he is a “lover, not a fighter”, in what is an attempt to prove to her that he more evolved than his fellow gender. Little does he know about our sweet Veronica is that she has walked darker roads in the past few years.  And while she doesn’t approve violence per se, she has been desensitised to it. She is no wall flower and subconsciously appreciates a bit of retribution in the form of fisticuffs. Veronica is not perfect, but so she is a product of the Neptune environment, where corruption reigns supreme. In her world the law is backward and insecure, so for order to be maintained some degree of vigilantism is a necessary evil.

Is Logan wrong for Veronica? Of course he is, but he is ‘oh so wrong’ in the way that it is ‘oh so right’. What I am trying to say is that Logan is not a perfect person. His imperfections are visible like ripples on the water. He has done some pretty stupid things, and has some habits Veronica would prefer to discourage, but everything you need to know about Logan is laid out on the surface if you are prepared to take a look. The good thing about Logan is that he is passionate about the people he cares for. In point, even when he and Veronica have broken up [which has happened quite a few times] he has repeatedly defended her. And as much as Veronica likes to point out his faults, Logan knows her well enough to turn the table and is able to bring her down to earth when she is too high handed.  Basically Logan and Veronica ground each other.

Whereas Piz… Well what can be said about Piz? He is loveable, has a sense of humour, easy going and for the most part does appear dependable. You would not find Piz heading off for a wild night of debauchery in Tijuana, but neither will you find him having the gumption  to defend his girlfriend’s honour. Piz is a nice boy, but he hasn’t got what it takes to be Veronica’s equal, which is what Logan is.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Carla Coulson

Image by Carla Coulson

    One of my favourite photographers, Carla Coulson [whom by the way is an absolute inspiration] has relaunched her website and blog. Rolling it all together in a fabulous new way. Even for those who are familiar with following Carla's work, will feel like they are seeing her in a whole new light.
    If you do anything new today, I highly recommend getting your shimmy on and visiting Carla Coulson...


Image by Melissa Gaggiano

    I have now finished making ONE HUNDRED and SIXTY SIX granny squares for my blanket project. To view my entire progress of this project simply follow this link.

Standing Up

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

    The world, in a constant state of flux is ever changing. Major events every moment of every day are changing the course of millions of lives.
    Yesterday a single event in my life happened, which was no less significant than the political movements of the world. For the first time my baby stood up by herself. In moments like this everything else fades away and all that matters is your children.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

In My Dreams

... I would wear these Christian Louboutin shoes which were custom made for Christina Aguilera, in the film Burlesque. These sparkly pretties are truly heaven sent.
Christian Louboutin shoes as worn by Christina Aguilera in Burlesque.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

It's Back

    My camera is back and not a moment too soon. I mean don't get me wrong. I really enjoyed reacquainting myself with the old Ricoh but I did miss how the Canon EOS 1100D felt in my tiny hands.
    To celebrate I took photos of tonight's dinner - BBQ pizza. It Last week I wondered what it would be like to cook a pizza on the BBQ, and Michael thought it sounded like a nice idea. We still have a few kinks to iron out with the cooking time and temperature, but I tell you what... Once you have eaten BBQ pizza, there is no going back. It was truly awwwwwesome.

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Curtain Call

    Still waiting for my camera to be returned. Hopefully I'll have it back this weekend. In the mean time I have been using my old Ricoh. One thing that has resulted from this switch is that I have learnt economy with taking photos. With an old fashioned camera that uses film I cannot immediately review my photos. So I need to be sure that each shot I take is just as I planned.
    A few months ago my eldest was playing in the curtains and it was a bright summery day. The light hit the thick white lining almost creating a professional studio effect. Naturally I had to grab my camera and start snapping away. This was just one of those photos...
Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Annie's Pilgrimage

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

  Excitable me here! The other day I visited a bookshop with a gift card in hand. It has been a while since I last bought a book so I was looking forward to my little splurge. What with my burgeoning love of photography it was little wonder that I chose this book - Pilgrimage by Annie Leibovitz.
    As the title implies the book covers Annie's pilgrimage, over the years, to the homes of people that interested her. This photographic essay is part history lesson [but not the boring kind] with a personalised account. I am seeing the homes of Virginia Woolf and Emily Dickinson [to name a few] through the camera and personal senses of Annie. This book is a treat.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

There's A Flower In My Garden

    While I await the maintenance of my camera, I thought I'd share with you some lovely, floral photos I took earlier this year.
    I grew these flowering plants from seed myself. And my daughter nicked my floral headband all by herself.

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Not Always What They Seem

... So don't take anything for granted.

Image by Melissa Gaggiano:
My eye on film, literally speaking.

    A few nights ago I dreamt that I attended the swing dance festival down Mordialloc way. In my dream a band performed on stage. Parents and children sat in chairs and listened.
    Today I attended the actual festival, truly imagining that I'd see swing dancers, which was partly what drew me and my camera to the local festivities. Alas! Alack! My dream turned out to be a premonition. There were adults sitting on the grass. There were the occasional child twirling and wiggling on the mat available for dancers. There were bands, and a stage that had the words "swing stage". But, no swing dancers.
    Okay! Admittedly, I was just a little disappointed. But I didn't let that stop me from taking a few photos and enjoying the festivities. There were the usual carnival rides, and many cultured food stalls. After all this was part of the Bayside Food and Wine festival.
    I certainly could not have left without picking up a sweet treat. I bought two chocolate brownies [preservative free] from a Gilbert & Marcel stall. It was soooooo delicious.
    I cannot show you the photos just yet, because I used ye olde camera with ye olde film. So you'll just have to wait for ye olde film processors to do their ye olde thing. Is my saying ye olde getting a bit olde? Sorry about that. I thought I was on a roll [Oh look, a pun].

    I came away from today having learnt a few lessons about festival photography...
  • Pack ear plugs. Trust me, when you are taking photos of bands you need to get close to the stage, which means extreme exposure to loud noise, which is really, really bad for your ears.
  • Pack a water bottle. Even if it is not a particularly hot day. Photography is quite active and you will dehydrate quickly. And take little sips now and again so you are not busting for the toilet 20 minutes later.
I am so glad I attended the festival. It was good to get out amongst the folk. And it didn't really matter that I didn't see actual swing dancers. Which, by the way, gets me thinking. I still want to take photos of swing dancers. Maybe I could find a swing dancers association [if such a thing exists] and take photos at one of their events. Add it to me list of must things to do this year.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Going Old School

    Things have been quietly busy. I have been trying to balance my days so that nothing is left to the wayside. I have been staying on top of clean ups [although I must admit, that even though I vacuumed this morning, I cannot bring myself to clean the dishes], playing with the girls and fitting in my craft work between all that. Plus making a little time to read.
    My crochet project is still in progress. I always aim to make a minimum of 3 squares a day.
    I am reading Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility for the umpteenth time.

    This week I felt like I had lost one of my senses. My camera, an Canon EOS 1100D, has gone away for maintenance. I hardly missed an opportunity to take photos with this camera. In fact the camera was whipped out every couple of hours, of every day. What can I say? There was always something interesting to photograph.
    After a few days of photographer's withdrawal it occured to me that I was not completely camera-less. I crawled under the house and pulled out my old Ricoh KR-5 Super II, and bought some old fashioned film from down the road. Thank goodness ISO 400 is still sold.
Image by Melissa Gaggiano

    Now I'll be able to do a photoshoot at the local Swing Dancing event on the weekend. Woo-hoo! Photographer's delight! Here I come.

Monday, 12 March 2012

What Will I Do

The camera has gone away for maintenance.
Whatever will I do?

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Friday, 9 March 2012

Little Mouse

Image by Melissa Gaggiano
    When I was a little girl my Lego collection began with this one little mouse. I only know for certain that I was given this mouse way before I was seven. This being because I was seven when I received my first bucket of assorted Lego bits, which happened much later.
    I remember how this mouse came with house cleaning tools, though these have long since disappeared into a black hole [probably turned up in an episode of Star Trek]. This mouse was certainly well loved. On closer inspection I can see the ears were also particularly well chewed. I must have been hungry.
    A little internet research tells me that this little mouse was part of a Lego division known as Fabuland. Isn't that a fabulous name?

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano
[My photography assistant]

Word of the Day

1 a: suffused with light : luminous b: translucent
2: having full use of one's faculties : sane
3: clear to the understanding : intelligible

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Busy Lady

Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano

Good Game

    Hubby and I enjoy watching an ABC program called Good Game [as well as Good Game SP]. This show is a hilarious and friendly reviewer of computer games.
    Near the end of the summer hiatus Good Game began advertising to remind us they were still around [yay!].
    This was such a well made commercial. Its simplicity is genius. Oh yeah, and it goes without saying, Bajo and Hex are wonderful show hosts [although I just said it]. I hope they are hosting Good Game well into their sixties.


Yes! Yes! Yes! I love this song. It is so me.

Read the Hand

I would never ask you to talk to the hand. But if you want, you can read the hand.
Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Wednesday, 7 March 2012


Kim Cattrall is fabulous. Yes!

Illustration Corner

    If I should spend any time drawing my eldest one will drop whatever it is she is doing, grab her art journal, and request that she 'draw with you, mummy'. It is an easy way to have quality time with her. We are together, and each doing our own thing.

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Tuesday, 6 March 2012


Image by Melissa Gaggiano

    Artistic people have more than one outlet for their creativity. I for one dabble with writing and drawing as a means to develop my ideas. Or a combination of the above. I keep a variety of journals at any one time. I have an art journal and two different writing journals. I keep a digital journal. And when the words don't come to me I apply myself to a hand written journal.
    I wonder why my thoughts come out so differently when I write and type.
Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano

Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano


Let's see what I have been doing in my art journal...
Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano

Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano

Illustration by Melissa Gaggiano
[Can you guess what is wrong with this picture?]

Crochet and Me

Image by Melissa Gaggiano
    It's a quiet day inside today - what with the grey clouds about. It looks like it might rain any moment now. So I am turning the day into a granny square working bee. I hope to knock out ten of these things today. Or at least until my fingers give out. I have to admit the crochet work is taking it's toll on my fingers.

Monday, 5 March 2012

There's A Party On My Finger

    It had been a while since they'd been to a party. So despite having no where to go, my finger nails decided to get all dressed up.
Image by Melissa Gaggiano
     Some things stay the same. When I was a little girl I appreciated anything that glittered. And you know what? I still do.
Image by Melissa Gaggiano

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Angelina Jolie

    One of my favourite actresses, Angelina Jolie, appeared on the cover of Marie Claire [Australian edition - March]. Despite the trash magazines trash talking this woman, I'd rather believe that she has a big heart and is more interested in helping others and developing her own mind. In fact she has recently written and directed the film In the Land of Blood and Honey, a story set in the 90s during the Serbian Bosnian war.
    Additionally I have found Angelina to be an appealing photography subject. I love how she hams it up for this photoshoot of which Alexei Hay is the photographer. And of course I like that they made it look like she was on the otherside of the camera.
Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay

Image by Alexei Hay