Wednesday, 21 December 2011

St Nicks Market

Long time no post, I've been using Tumblr for my photoblogging needs. It's seductively simple to post a photo from my Flickr on there. Sorry Blogger.
This is cross-posted from there, it's a collection of photos of one of my favourite places in Bristol, St Nicholas Markets.

Covered Market
At The Sourdough Café
Vegan Special Pie!
Coffee & Postcards

Sunday, 25 September 2011


Possibly the smallest afghans I've ever made.
I've just realised that despite posting several photos of them on Flickr over the years (1, 2), I've never actually posted the recipe for Afghans. Yes, it's a strange name for a biscuit but they're completely ubiquitous in New Zealand. Afghans are a kind of chocolate biscuit with cornflakes in. They contain no eggs and aren't overly sweet. It's a very particular taste - a surprisingly good combination of dry-ish biscuit, chewy cornflake, sweet icing and walnut.
We discovered them on a family holiday in 2003 and searched for a recipe for ages, trying the few versions we could find on the internet with limited success. One day I realised that they featured in Mum's favourite old battered Penguin Cookery Book from the seventies which was written by Bee Nilson, a kiwi. We've been making that recipe ever since and they're pretty much spot-on.
My copy of the Penguin Cookery Book was found in one of the many St Peter's Hospice shops here in Bristol and is even older - the last date printed is 1965 and it has mould spots!
So, without further ado, here's the recipe:

Cooking time 20 minutes. Temperature 350F, Mark 4, ~180C.
Allegedly makes 2 dozen, although we tend to make about 8 larger ones.
7oz melted butter or margarine (1 c)
6oz plain flour (1 1/4 c)
3oz sugar (6 tbs)
2oz cornflakes (2 c) - non-Kelloggs work better here. Kelloggs are too thin and melty
1oz cocoa (3 tbs)
1/4 tsp salt
Vanilla essence
1 doz shelled walnuts - a.k.a. 24 halves, I wonder if they came ready-shelled in those days?
Chocolate icing - refers to another recipe in the book, but I'm sure you can figure this one out

Mix all ingredients together and put in small spoonfuls on an ungreased tray. Bake until firm. When cold drop a blob of icing on top of each and press on half a walnut.

There you go! Nothing fancy at all. Perfect with a nice mug of coffee or possibly a kiwi-esque flat white (or flit whaite if you must do the accent.)

Saturday, 27 August 2011

See No Evil

Last week the whole of Nelson Street in central Bristol (UK) was shut off for a rather exciting project. Nelson Street is normally dull, grey and a bit manky - it's home to several nightclubs, a derelict magistrates court and the back of the police station - but someone had a good idea.
Bristol is well-known for its street art scene and Inkie, a local, brought the city council and street artists from all over the world together to brighten the area up. The whole thing was called See No Evil.
I missed the street party that accompanied the finishing of the project on Saturday, as well as the temporary boards which had been painted on, but what's still there is pretty awesome. I went down on Sunday and took a load of photos, so here they are in a neat slideshow.

More photos will eventually end up on Flickr but I don't see that happening for a while yet.
You don't want to see those anyway, there are loads of great ones over on Flickr.
There's a dedicated group, the Bristol group and Swishrelic's set, then there's the ever-awesome F***YeahBristol tumblrlog, and the project's own website.

Monday, 13 June 2011

I've been very quiet around these parts of late, but that's mostly because I've been being good and doing University work rather than faffing on the internet. The faff I have allowed myself is over at where I've been posting a picture a day (or as often as I manage) from my Flickr (which is also lagging a bit). I thought I should probably post something on here since Jess linked me :)
So, I shall try and keep this more updated; never mind that the last photos I posted were from September, I'll start afresh.

Here's Sporti:

He's an Iford Sporti 6 and makes square pictures on 120 film. In Niall's words the English Holga (well English company, they were made in Germany). He works a lot more reliably than a Holga though, no wrapping him up in electrical tape to avoid light leaks, plus a choice of apertures!
Of course he still has no metering so I have to guess (or use my ME Super to meter) but *so far* I've managed alright. Being a Sporti 6 rather than an earlier version he has double exposure prevention, but I don't mind too much. I've got my Lubitel(assuming it works) for that!

Here are some photos from my first film, shot on a cold, grey & misty February Sunday.

 Up in Kingsdown, I love these narrow streets that give you a slice of view down to the city centre.

Shiny old car, Kingsdown Parade 

 Ben on his bike

Me, taking a Bristol cliché photo

When I developed these it was pretty hot and I had a massive special and merrily started developing the roll with the chemicals I'd used for my 35mm films. Just as I started agitating the tank I realised I should have a couple of hundred ml more developer in there. Oops.
I hastily made up some more and chucked it in and carried on, for the stop & fix I just used the smaller amount and agitated it more than you're meant to. Amazingly they came out ok, you can see tide marks vertically on some of the photos, but clearly that's the aesthetic I'm going for, yeah?
They could still be horrible negatives but the lovely Niall scanned them for me so I got away with that one.
Next time I will get it right. I hope.