With Winter creeping in in Melbourne, my mind can’t help but wonder to warmer climates. While I was in Oaxaxa, Mexico I found the most beautiful place. Before my trip it was already on my to do list and I was so excited to discover that it was on my tour’s itinerary when I arrived. Hierve el Agua, also known as the Frozen Waterfalls.

A fifteen minute walk off the beaten track down the side of a hill, and you are created with an emerald spring overlooking the carbonated falls. It was like a secret paradise, on the edge of a cliff, just around the corner from civilisation.

We floated and splashed in the cool emerald waters and then perched ourselves up on the water’s edge to admire the view. It is more beautiful in person than on any photo. It was surreal really; when I showed my family and friends the photos, they couldn’t believe it was real, they thought it was photoshopped… and the photos were taken with my iPhone!

What is the most beautiful place you’ve ever visited? Which simply took your breath away?

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When I was looking for a place to study Graphic Design I had a specific list of criteria:

1. Duration: Having studied Medicine for 5 years, I didn’t really want to endure another 3 years stuck in university sitting in a lecture. I wanted a course which was not too long but also used its time effectively. Also I had given myself a year off to see how chasing my dreams will go and I wanted to see what real life design was like, not just in a classroom.

2. Real life application: What made my Medical School really good was that it was very practical. Third year into the course we were moved into the hospital system and learnt while we worked, hence when I became an Intern I didn’t struggle as much as the kids who spent more time at uni. I wanted a design course to be like that. Set it up like life in a studio and also be up to date with the current design trends, not just focus on one thing and make you sign up for another course to do another component.

3. No prior experience: It was immensely frustrating to find courses which required previous experience. You needed a portfolio and to pass an interview to get in. I understand that’s necessary for some but it made it difficult for people who were looking for a change like me. ┬áPeople who dreamed of designing but never got a chance because of other commitments or life pressures.

Then I stumbled across Shillington College. I was at a Design market about a year and a half ago and stumbled across their stall. The old style portfolios with works in plastic sleeves laid out on wooden tables. I flipped through them, amazed by the work, received a cute typography tote and then walked away. Few months later I purchased a Computer Arts magazine and their ad was on one of the pages- I googled them. They were my perfect fit!

It then took me several months of thinking and over thinking and encouragement of friends before I applied. I applied about a month before the course started! I admit it is on the pricey side, however I do not regret this investment one bit. I still remember my first day, anxiously standing in the excruciatingly slow elevator to arrive on level 9. Walking through the white hallway and being greeted by two excited and colourful individuals- my extremely talented teachers and feeling less nervous. The classroom is like a studio, clean white walls, teacher’s computer and projector at the front and 4 lines of wooden desks with MAC computers for each student. At the back there’s a library and comfy couches and a mini kitchen. From there we could see the city as we were 9 levels up and smack bang in the hub of lane ways, design studios and boutiques.

Everyone learns differently and in this case Shillington was the perfect fit for me. I highly recommend researching and getting a hold of Computer Arts Student Handbook- The definitive guide to breaking into the industry. It lists the many ways you can learn design and the pros and cons of each avenue.

Good luck!

Woah what a jammed packed weekend! The only time I get to see my friends properly now is on the weekend so I find myself juggling catch-ups- sometimes 2 or 3 a day!

Saturday I caught up with a dear friend. We lunched at a new burger joint in my area which plays along the theme of 8bit and arcade games. Pixels flying here and there and nods to Mario, Bubble Bobble, Final Fantasy on the menu and on the decor. Happily satiated and inspired by gaming we went over to his place and played video games for the rest of the afternoon. I definitely felt I was in high school again! By the way, what an awesome rug huh? My friend’s housemate has a knack for collecting cool things.

Also helped one of my mates move into his new apartment. Most of the packing was done but he still needed some essentials to make it more like a home, so we perused Ikea and the local supermarket. Pizza for dinner then we lounged around watching Blades of Glory and White House Down. I really like the area he’s moved to, lots of great restaurants, Ikea down the road and iconic landmarks, like this Vinegar skipping girl.

Pleasant lunch on Queen’s Birthday at Three Bags Full, followed by seeing How to Train Your Dragon 2 which was alright. Not as good as the first movie. Felt the first half of the movie was awesome and then it kind of went downhill, but still love Toothless!

 

Spotify’s “Cure for Loneliness” playlist – more inspiring than depressing!; chocolatey hot chocolate; complimentary miniature chocolate frogs; dresses which make you feel beautiful; snuggling under the sheets on a cold day; feeling inspired; helpful sales assistants; people who “get you” and continue to; experimenting with water-colour; appreciating the written word again; hugs; window shopping; talking comics and movies; the sun sneaking between the blinds in the morning; discovering amazing designers; wondering into florists; sitting in magazine stores and flipping through beautiful pages of design-loveliness; my friend finding a new home; craft markets; my new obsession with ceramics; reminiscing doctor days; friends who are there when you didn’t realise you needed someone; the phrase “he’s a good egg”- makes me giggle every time; listening to Jose Gonzales while I apply for design jobs; amazing teachers; watching movies; being inspired by things beyond the computer screen; talking about childhood tv shows; laughing about things in kid’s tv shows which used to scare us as kids- like Count Dracula in Sesame Street gave me the creeps while my friend was terrified by the ‘Yip yip’ monsters, haha; sketching again; catching up on Naruto manga and camomile tea.

Have a lovely weekend x

Hiya! I know it’s been 3-4 months and everything looks so different on the world-wide web! As some of you may know from my last last post, I have completed a Certificate IV in Design. YAYAY! It was absolutely amazing- creating art everyday was a dream come true. I never thought I’d wake up in the morning (I’m not a morning person) and be excited. Packed into three months with two talented teachers at the helm we blitzed through theory, design software and briefs (30+ briefs in 3 months!). The experience was also heightened by being surrounded by 21 like-minded individuals, despite our varying backgrounds- pharmacists, musicians, marketing majors, architects, fashion designers, event planners, we all wanted the same thing… to create beautiful and meaningful work.

It was far more busy than I expected, I was planning to sign up to Japanese classes but after the first few weeks that thought was pushed for another time. After spending 9 hours a day sitting in front of a computer and letting our creativity go to the max, all I wanted to do when I got home was shut my eyes. I thought talking medicine and seeing medicine was bad, but now my senses cannot escape bad kerning or leading. Haha. However, this course has made me view the world differently, instead of seeing design as “good or bad”, I see it’s meaning. It may not be my taste but I appreciate it for its concept and handwork the designer put into it and the world has become more beautiful because of that.

It’s been 3-4 weeks since I graduated and I admit it’s been hard sitting at home with no teacher or class mate pushing you on. I’ve never been not working or learning so having this lull is rather uncomfortable. However I took this year for a reason- to chase my dreams and to get organised, so I have..

Ah it’s so nice to be writing again :)

My sister (courtesy of her boyfriend) has been getting into juice. Every morning she takes out the blender and throws in whatever fruits she finds around the house, adds a handful of kale or spinach and presto! Not exactly a “juice” but it’s mashed up fruit with skins retaining all the good stuff. No part is left out except for the pips of course.

Mamasita sweetcorn ice cream

This week was a little more about catching up with friends and appointments and a little bit of shopping. I caught up with my best buds over Thai food and cocktails on Wednesday night, but before that I had a pre-dinner meal with my friend because he was hungry and couldn’t wait for the other friend to arrive. Haha. So for pre-dinner we went to Mamasita‘s and even had dessert of sweetcorn ice-cream with caramelised popcorn which was delicious… definitely reached food overload after having two dinners.

Taco Truck

There’s definitely more food trucks popping up around Melbourne lately and there are people who treat it like a sport- stalking the Facebook pages to see where the truck will be next. My friend took me to a taco truck where we had prawn and lamb tacos, which were okay coming from a truck but definitely needed more chilli.

I’m going to go run off and relax a little bit. I have a friend’s party tonight at a bar and am still recovering from going out last night!

Hope everyone is having a lovely weekend! … I start the Graphic Design course on Monday! :D