Thursday, May 21, 2015

A helpful beginners guide for going Vegan

When I started out on my Vego/Vegan journey I made some horrible dishes, I still make horrible things from time to time due to experimenting but a lot less frequently now and you know what I actually make things I really love eating :)

I'm still finding my feet but this guide is for those who are complete newbies and wouldn’t have a clue where to start – that was me a few months ago!

I've also learned along this journey that there’s a lot of smart vegan bloggers out there so if you're ever missing a certain type of food, a google will probably come up with something amazing :) For now though I'm going to write the main things I miss and what I did to overcome them :)
THE VEGAN (SUPER SIMPLE!) GUIDE

Can't live with out cheese? Neither could I until I found Nutrional yeast, I first bough it online (it comes in flakes) and then I found that my local food store stocks it (I live in a small town too!). The cost is about equivalent to a block of cheese, it unfortunately doesn't have the same texture but has a lovely cheesy taste which I love and sprinkle onto nearly everything! (I call it my MSG). There's also this stuff called daiya cheese which melts, has a great texture but not quite as awesome taste as nutrional yeast, in my humble opinion.



Need that awesome salty cheese like feta? I found that substituting olives usually does the trick. I have a fridge full of delicious pickled/marinated things :)



Missing Bacon? Semi dried tomatoes or liquid smoke have been filling that bacon void for myself. I won't lie they're not the same but I haven't missed bacon as much as I probably thought I would.



Craving that heartiness of meat? I've been loving those Portobello mushrooms of late, they're great at absorbing flavour! I'm also on a roast vegie stint too, especially roast pumpkin – so creamy and hearty. There's heaps of fake meats too, haven't completely explored that World but Ben and I get our vegie hotdog fix once in a while, we also visited a Chinese restaurant with fake meat and apart from the shape and slight texture I honestly couldn't tell the difference - you can see my "chicken" dish above!

What do I put on my bread now I can't have butter? AVOCADOS! I also have recently got into making my own butter bean spread (I pop in some balsamic vinegar too) and thickly spreading that onto fresh bought bread – soooo good! In Australia we also have stuff like Nuttelex, a nut based margarine which is also good substitute, especially for baking.

BUT I LOVE MY COW'S MILK! Milk subs are easy, supermarkets should stock a whole range of alternatives or you can even make your own milks but grinding up your source (like almonds) and simply adding water :)


But I can't have chocolate :( but you can! Most chocolate over 70% will just be made up of soy milk and cocoa butter – which isn’t butter, which I mistook when I first started this journey *face palm*

Accidentally vegan – This list is by PETA and is a list of items you can buy at the supermarket that ARE vegan but aren’t advertised as vegan, I was linked to the Aussie one but I'm sure there would be other versions too :) The aussie list is like 5 pages and honestly I get a bit overwhelmed looking at it

Also on my journey I found this website, the Vegan Mentor Program, I was seriously contemplating it at the time but since I was almost over the finish line I felt perhaps I would be wasting their resources - had I known about this from the outset though I totally would of signed up!
Okay, now the fun bit!

WHAT CAN I MAKE?

Below is a list of my favourite recipes at the moment but it may come down to you having to do your own googling to find recipes that are more in line with your tastes and craving :) Just don't get discouraged if you make something and you hate it, keep going!
CREAMY PASTA
source
I grew up eating, meat, noodles and gravy (wasn't so fussed on the meat part but loved loved love the noodles and gravy) and the other day I found this recipe above the, Creamy Butternut Squash linguine totally fulfilling my gravy missing! (you do need a blender but you only need a simple one because the ingredients to blend are soft and liquidy! Also I know butternut squash as butternut pumpkin (here in Australia) just to avoid confusion. Recipe edits: I never have fresh sage on hand so I get away with using the dried variety and I also add 1/8 teaspoon of liquid smoke and a good shake of nutrional yeast when I blend it all up - super yum! I also add a bunch of silver beat to the mix as well :)

MUSHROOM RISOTTO
The funny thing is I've been making this rissoto long before I went off dairy and meat. So it's been meat eater approved, it does take a while to cook (damn you risotto stirring!) but it's one of my favourite things to cook because Ben volunteers to stir (he says it's therapeutic :P) and we (well probably more so me) get to drink wine in the kitchen!


VEGAN BURRITOS

These Black Bean and Butternut Burritos are one of my staples, I probably make them once a week and great for when people (who aren't vegan) visit for dinner :) Just recently I've been making them with mushrooms instead, I bought the burrito seasoning from the shops and fried the mushrooms up in a pan with onion, garlic, the seasoning and some drops of liquid smoke and hey presto - a mouth watering feast! Oh and I add spread some wasabi to give my burritos a bit of a kick!

THAI GREEN CURRY
I first learned this recipe off Shane when we lived together, back then it was all about the chicken but just the other day I whipped it out to see if I could veganise it (or just remove the chicken and sub the fish sauce). It was so so yummy. Would you guys be interested in me blogging the actual recipe? Unfortunately it comes without a handy link as this one is old school recipe card style!

MUSHROOM SUSHI!
source
I used to make delicious chicken sushi with avo and cucumber. I cut out the chicken and my sushi suddenly tasted horrible. It wasn't until I found this recipe, Sesame Shiitake Sushi that I got excited about sushi again. Her instructions are so easy and the result amazing, so much flavour. I will say, the first time I made them adding the salt to the sushi rice water was too overpowering. The next time I didn't and they were perfect! I also didn't have shiitake mushrooms on hand so just used what ever mushrooms I had :)

SANDWICHES
Did I mention I'm a carb girl :P we have sandwiches quite often at our place, it's been fun experimenting with different toppings, at the moment I'm loving, avo, artichokes, red onion, capers and black pepper and it makes for an easy lunch or dinner when you're short on time.

I'm also constantly trying out new dishes, the other day I made some rice paper rolls, which were nice but probably didn't make it to my weekly recipe folder.

I also like experimenting, one day after a burrito night I used the left over ingredients, blended them up with some pumpernickel bread and added in tomato paste and hey presto - sausage roll filling! I've had a few people (meat eaters included) remark that my sausage rolls taste pretty close to the original thing! and who would of thought THAT most puff pastry is dairy free!



ROAST VEG PASTA
The lucky last dish for today is something I made a lot, probably once a week (I'm a pasta lover). It's really simple, I roast whatever vegies I have on hand, cook some pasta and make sure I throw in some spinach and olives and avo + sprinkle on top loads of nutrional yeast!

I realise these recipes are super carb friendly fitting in with my indulgent taste buds but there is so much out there, to explore and experiment with. It probably does help, to own a blender and have some interest in cooking but it's not the end all if you don't either. Ben was one of those boys who could only "cook" steak. Now he is pretty much a bread eater, fee food stealer, eater-outerer and not phased by the change either. Actually he has gone a step further than me and has cut his plastic buying down by 99% which in turn has encouraged me to be more mindful, I'm always amazed at the domino effect. Oh I should say you don't need to rule out things like takeaway junk either, I still eat pizza I just ask for no cheese and when I get home put that Nutrional yeast on top (told you I sprinkled it onto everything!)
The last thing I'll leave you guys with are my Vegan Pin Boards

And maybe you have some tips you want to share with me too, I'd love to hear them :)

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Becoming a Semi Vegan

If you haven't read Part 1 or Part 2 you should because this part will make much more sense to read :)

 

Valley Rattler Elvis 2012 - the moves
Gabe the Vegan Elvis!

 

I know Bronwyn because my oldest brother Andrew is part of the Elvis club, and her husband Gabe is an Elvis tribute artist. They are honestly one of the nicest families, very warm and funny and definite advocates of animals (and vegans). We got chatting one day after a show and I told her where I was in my food journey - at this stage I've cut out 80% of dairy because of an allergy and I've stopped buying meat from the supermarket because my cat loves killing birds (you need to read part 2 for clearing that one up!). When I was talking with her I still had a slight resistance, I had a feeling that I'd be made to question my ethics and by doing so I'd have to give up things I'd love and that didn't really sit well with me. So I listened to her with open ears but not a complete open heart - there was still some part of me not willing to change. When someone puts forward the idea of being a vego or vegan, your mind does this little check list of all your favourite food and it seems like the worst idea ever! That's how I felt anyway.

 

I talked with her a lot especially about how I was trying to make vego meals but feeling really discouraged because I ended up hating 80% of them. She wrote me a list of helpful resources. She linked me to a tried and true recipe her family makes once a week, explained it was easy and that all the ingredients would be those I could find at the supermarket or I could substitute anything fancy for what I already had in the fridge. This sounded brilliant. She also said it was a matter of finding foods you liked. Which has completely stuck with me and been one of the most important things I've learned. She linked me to some blogs to follow and said not all the recipes are going to gel but once you find some favourites you'll be okay. I went home made the delicious soup and thought, maybe this is possible.

Bronwyn's hand written note that I still have and treasure :)

She also linked me to some discussions and docos. I think, had I not of “watched” Earthlings, I might not be writing this blog entry. I use the word watched loosely because my fingers half covered my eyes the entire time and I think Ben and I got through ten minutes before we couldn't handle it anymore. I've always loved animals, I've always enjoyed eating them but I really separated those two things. I used to say I was a hypocritical meat eater because in my heart I knew the connection but taste always won out and I guess now that balance has simply flipped.

 

The most surprising thing of this all is I don't feel bitter or that I'm missing out but just how delicious my new diet has become. I honestly wasn't a huge vegetable eater before, I was more a meat and carbs type girl but now I'm all about those vegies! I can't believe I'm saying that but I am.


And guess what, you'll lose weight (until you find out you can still eat many delicious and bad things and desserts!), your shopping bill goes down significantly (opening up that spare change to exciting expensive ingredients – exotic fruits anyone?) and you’ll feel really good about what you're eating :)You will also feel like the oddest person alive when you ask if they have a vegan meal option, you will have to answer questions about why you think it's okay for plants to suffer and die but not animals, or about your protein intake and you will have to ignore when people mention that being vegan makes people self-righteous . You will probably also be scrutinised for ALL your actions – “what!! you bought fries from Mcdonalds?”


The hardest thing is other people not the diet itself. On the flip side, all my friends and family have been super kind and supportive. I still can't believe my family let me cook Christmas dinner (sans meat and dairy), I can't believe for my birthday everyone came to a vegan cafe and I can't believe, Ben the biggest meat eater of all, a few months into my diet also gave up meat when he saw how easy it was :) He did also watch Earthlings.

 

I'd love for everyone to be challenged to watch that doco but I realise not everyone is at that stage of the journey, I sure wasn't a few years ago. And hey some people are simply 100% okay with killing animals and eating them and that's 100% okay. I have my own idea about eventually having a farm and having a pig and killing the pig myself. Could I kill a pig? I have no idea but if I could we'd be able to have meat for 6 months and if not I'd simply have a pet pig :) I still think meat is delicious, I'm just not okay to have an animal die in a horrible way to keep myself happy when there is so much food out there to keep my happy already! That's really the crux of how I feel.

 

So we're at the end and maybe you’re eating some cheesy chicken pasta for dinner – that is 100% okay. Maybe next week you'll have one meat free day – super yay! Who knows but all I can say is that it's way easier then you'd ever imagine and it really isn't that odd :) I swear and this coming from someone who less than a year ago thought it was pretty damn weird and horribly restrictive and not something I’d ever find myself doing.

 

I've rambled a lot but I thought it would be nice for a final installment to be a practical one, with some resources, suggestions and my favourite dishes of the moment for anyone interested to try :) Thanks for reading too it's been a word journey and it's nice to know at least someone got to the end of it!

 

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Quitting Meat

Lynsey 30th - birds

Today's entry is a small detour but important to share, it's the beginning of quitting meat and although small in length it's ultimately the beginning note to some big changes.

So I yakked on about eating/not eating dairy - paralling at the same time to this one of the most traumatic things happened to me.

 

Alone upstairs in our old house I heard this horrific shrieking/crying high pitched squawking coming from below. I ran downstairs to where my eyes met with Gremlin (our cat) and in his mouth, an amazing pale faced rosella – sad story ender, the bird died. I'm not sure I can explain the horror of that exact moment. Looking back, it was lucky our neighbours were hundreds of metres away because I was a blabbering screaming mess - I'm sure an Oscar winning performance or at least deserving of a police call. I kept screaming at Gremlin over and over to drop the bird like some madman but it was all too late. Sadness turned into anger and I couldn’t even look at gremlin or speak to him yet everyone around me assured me it wasn’t his fault it was just his nature. The irony being that for dinner that night I cooked myself a chicken pasta. The irony wasn't completely lost on me and I contemplated for about 3.4 seconds whether this made sense. Chicken is delicious though so I gave myself some solid reasoning :)

 

My main concern at that time was to stop the bird killing (the Gremlin bird killing) we tried a few things, extra bells, a slightly earlier then intended de-sexing, keeping him in at the key bird times, dawn and dusk but despite this over the next few weeks there were still a few close call bird incidents – all good story enders but we still needed a permanently solution. That solution came in the form of a cat bib – aka the bird life saver :)

 

A simple invention with a velcro top to latch onto your cat's collar.


When we put the bib on I realised we were making Gremlin make a forced sacrifice so I endeavoured to play my part as well. I decided that I would no longer buy meat at the supermarket, I made a pact with myself that it was okay to eat meat out but I wouldn't directly contribute.

Gremlin with his cape aka Cat Bib.

The first month of this plan was awful. I stuck to my word but found that all my favourite dishes had meat in them. I used to be one of those people who not only said I didn't eat much dairy but definitely said, shouting from rooftops that I didn't eat much meat. In hindsight, a slight misconception on my part there :P Being a fish, seafood but mostly chicken consumer, I read online that tofu was the perfect substitute for chicken. I simply started to cook all my meals with tofu instead. I tried so many ways of cooking tofu and they were all terrible. I’m not even an advocate against tofu (the Japanese do some amazing things) but the tofu at my supermarket combined with my cooking skills were making something awful!

 

So here I am, an 80% dairy consumer, an 80% non-meat consumer, on a balance beam, feeling pretty disheartened by my new restrictions and diet and let's be honest contemplating throwing it all in but then a chat with Elvis’s wife Bronwyn changed everything. Next time, I'm going to be introducing that scary word...

ETHICS!

 

(I told you this part was short but the next part is LOOONG!- well longish so be prepared)

 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Quitting Dairy

I've learned something in the past few months that classification can be meaningful to people, so in full disclosure I'm just going to blurt out what I eat now and why I'm somewhere between Vegan and Vego...I don’t eat dairy, I don’t eat meat, I do eat honey and I do eat our chicken’s eggs. I still wear my leather shoes, am certain I have a woolly jumper tucked away somewhere and a bunch of cosmetics I have no idea on how they were tested – I’m transitioning, let’s say.

Pot Pie and Oblina - our backyard chickens

I've spent 30 years of my life eating meat and dairy, I've lived with vegoes and probably quietly scoffed or looked shocked when someone said they were vegan. Stuff like “what can you eat?” or “I could never ever do that” definitely came out of my mouth at some point. I'm pretty open minded but I used to think vegans were quite odd and now that I'm somewhere on the other side of the fence, it's really funny to look back because I think most of my life I was probably the odd one. 

I didn't wake up one day and think “gosh you're odd, lets change”. It's been instead, an interesting past year, worthy of sharing at the very least for its story value. I don't expect you to change how you eat by the end of this, I don't even want you to feel guilty about what you eat – because what you eat you probably enjoy and is also probably super delicious, I just wanted to share my story :) 

How it all began (prepare for a bit of gross-ness) 
Around a year ago I started to notice a rash on my ring finger which at its peak even spread to the opposite ring finger (still slightly baffled by that).  As someone who has sensitive skin, allergic reactions are the norm for me but this existed on the extreme end. I'd be woken in the middle of the night, unable to stop the itch, which led to raw hands and tiny blisters (sorry grossness!!). I was super self-conscious and started googling ways to mind-play it out, I figured, if I could just stop itching my hands all would be good. After failing the mental game I lathered on steroid creams (the usually fix) and yet found myself back at square one, solution-less. I decided to pay attention to when the irritation flared. It quickly become obvious the culprit was dairy and just as obvious that I was going to be in denial about it. 

The first step - cut out milk. 

Dairy free milkshakes, almond milk and a soy coffee :)


This was easy, I'd simply substitute almond milk into my morning chai or when a recipe called for cow's milk. Almond milk is a lot thinner than regular milk but I found simply using all almond milk in my tea was fine rather than using a water/milk ratio :) A year later I'm going to bold and say I even enjoy almond milk more! Butter was also pretty easy because I was never the hugest fan, they also have butter substitutes in the supermarket and of course my favourite thing ever avocados! 

Next was all those sneaky (and less sneaky) food that dairy is in. I would say my overall consumption of packaged foods has since decreased because of this, probably a good thing but at the time only managed to seriously bum me out. Thinking I could no longer have things, made me resentful and angry and just like some sort of diet I 'd break down and buy some cheesy corn chips knowing the ramifications :P I've never really been on a diet but I imagine it has a similar, denial, indulge, face-the-consequences cycle. 

I then became reduced to scouring the health food section paying far too much for a 5 piece bar of ‘dairy free’ chocolate. It tasted horrible and I found myself eventually stopping eating chocolate. Probably a good thing but when you’ve already lost so much, it sucked. Had younger Fee done a bit of research she would of found that a lot of dark chocolate over 70% is dairy free *gasp* so I’m happy to report that delicious chocolate is back in my life:)

delicious chocolate and some randomness because I wasn't sure what photos to put in here :P


Prior to this I was also one of those people proclaiming “Ahh I don't eat that much dairy”. I want to seriously backhand younger Fee because when faced with cutting out cheese I quietly wept inside. Actually I'd only cut back my cheese consumption to about 80% because god damn if anyone was going to deny me a cheesy pizza! So the itch wasn't completely gone but I'd reached a pretty good compromising place. 

Spoiler alert! I am now 100% dairy free and the last 20% was really easy, or much easier than my brain had convinced myself otherwise and simply came down to making a commitement to myself (and finding some yummo substitutes).

I'm going to put a pause in the story and place the next stage (the meat part) into another post because it’s a tangent all in itself. I wanted to start at the beginning and the beginning was a rash and next time is the story involving our cat Gremlin!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Thrifty Sunday /9

It's been a while but I'm getting my butt into action and showing some more thrift store finds :)

 First up my favourite cats in my cat collection as of now.

At an op shop I visit they have a fancy section aka the collectible sections aka the ridiculously expensive section! When I first spotted this blue/purple pair of cats they were $25. I was eyeing them off but at 25 it was a bit too crazy for me.  I don't know how it happened but on a subsequent visit they had found their way over to normal ceramics section now for only a few dollars *yoink* :) I was a happy person that day!



I have a terrible memory which I often feel embarrassed about.   Although only a quarter of a way through the book I'm already feeling a whole lot less brain dead.  They dispel the myth that writing notes will only result in a weaker memory, they point out that using things to help memory is awesome and different things will work for different people :)


Not sure if you can see or not but these swizzle sticks are awesome naked blue ladies. In an edition of Frankie (awesome Aussie mag) they showed someone's collection of swizzle sticks which got me wanting to start yet another collection! (It's a problem :p)

This cuckoo clock I actually got at a car boot sale, it doesn't work but for a few dollars I totally love it and it's a nice nod to my German heritage!

And lucky last this plate with the prettiest illustration on it. I umm'ed and ahhh'ed about this one, not because the price wasn't right or I didn't love it but just because, what the heck do you do with a plate that's too pretty to eat off? At the moment I have it leaning up against my craft board but I still think it's one of those awkward type of items to own and display :p  

So tomorrow I'm off to Melbourne for two weeks! I hope to take lots of photos, maybe get back into the film again and share it all with you guys.  I have a tendency to drop off the face of the Earth when I go on trips so big apologies in advance, I do have some post lined up though, I mentioned before about sharing my food journey which is quite long so I've split it up into a few posts :) See you on the flip side guys!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

My Birthday Haul + Escape Room

My birthday has come and gone and now I get to (excitedly!) share my Birthday Haul with you guys. I'm super lucky to have such thoughtful people in my life and excited to be 31 and for all the adventures this birthday year might bring :)

It was fun to see the prominently pink birthday card haul and some happy kittens :) Also Jake's card bottom right was so sweet and listed on the back all the good reasons to be 31 :)

Mum got me this awesome vintage cat card, which I love everything about.

Mum also got me a vintage cat tin and brooch, cat socks (which make a sneaky round 2 appearance) and cute cat erasers!

I also have to show you the vintage wrapping paper my Mum used, isn't it the best!

I also got some super funny shirts, it took me a few seconds to get the shirt on the right but pretty obvious once you get it.  It's funny because growing up I was obsessed with guinea pigs (RIP cupcake and pixie!) and now I've gone cat crazy (with still a huge love for dogs too!)

My big bro draws these heart people called Hearties and he remembered my love of bo peep lollies!! + way too generous with cash gifitng.

I got this amazing Fluro pink dressing gown from Shane and Lynsey, if you know me, you know I looove pink and I looove being warm!! If you follow me on Instagram you may of seen me wearing it as well :)

Ben's mum sent me some cute paper and a cute little glittery tin

My cousin, heather and her family went above and beyond with their gift. So funny that two people bought me the same awesome socks - love it! I also got an awesome voucher to use up which I've already written up my Wishlist for :)

Last year, Isla (Shane's niece) gave me the cutest bottle cap necklace and this year she presented me with the sweetest loom bracelet, hand wrapped in printer paper :)

And lucky last Ben's card, he loaded me up with cash so after much deliberation aka, should I get an instax or not?!?!? I think I'll save it as my Melbourne spending money with my trip less than a week away now, weeeee!!

I should also mention Dad shouted us all to lunch and to play at Escape Hunt.  Do you guys have these puzzle type rooms where you live?  It's a relatively new concept for me but right up my nerdy alley - I not so secretly love solving things.  Unfortunately I left booking a little late so there was only the difficult room left but we managed to finish all the puzzles and disarm the "bomb" :) The place was super sweet and did give us a few clues and an extra three minutes at the end! 

My little bro, Jake, me, Dad and Ben :)
You may not know but I have this problem of being super competitive in board games and the such.  Before going into our Puzzle room I was so nervous and even the night before I was having nightmares of people not taking it as seriously as me - lol (I can laugh at my only weirdness luckily).  When we got in we had no idea what we were meant to be doing but we soon worked it out and picked up the pace but I can honestly say I've never had an hour disappear so quickly!

Despite me probably taking the thing way too seriously it was so fun and definitely up my alley, not only did you have to solve puzzles but there was even parts where you had to physically find things - okay I realise I'm sounding way too nerdy here :P Anyway, it was a super fun Birthday and I'm appreciative of all the love I got :)

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Polaroid Challenge 2015 /4




It's time to share April's Polaroid challenge. Dani and Damaris the guys behind the year long monthly challenge, mentioned here about using your phone first to nail composition of the scene and avoid wasting any of that precious instant film. I totally ran with that idea and ended up changing my composition a million times before settling on THE ONE! (sorry Ben!). 

I also envisioned my shot to be taken at night using flash. I casually mentioned to Ben about my Amigo 610 Polaroid having auto flash, luckily he questioned me even after I had pointed out the "flash" spot on the camera and insisted I Google it and hey low and behold it definitely does not have auto flash or even a flash - oops! Anyway, quick fix, I grab my video light, Ben pushed the Polaroid button and we play the waiting game. After a solid 30 minutes and still a blank Polaroid I start googling developing times of the new Impossible Film and read that it can take up to an hour.   I happily went to bed with hopes of a beautiful photo in morning but unfortunately the next morning not much had changed :( I'm not sure the exact lesson learned here.  One theory is that despite knowing you're meant to shield your Polaroid from light after it ejects, I dd take a sneaky glance and perhaps the video light shone onto it whilst doing so (the first ten seconds are apparently the crucial ones). The only other thing is that the video light didn't cut the mustard, making it perhaps an outside only camera from now on.  I'm probably going to roll with the last theory although I will try and be more cautious about protecting the Polaroid when it ejects from the camera as well.

I feel like I haven't been on my Polaroid game but I also feel like I have learned things, or have learned what not to do, so that's a plus.  I should also say this month's theme was meant to be me wearing a party hat because it was my Birthday the other day - can you kind of make it out? lol, I keep thinking if I squint or stare at the photo long enough it will become amazing :P

If you want to play along yourself it's super easy and you can find the details here

Thursday, April 23, 2015

the FIND Lab

I wanted to try something, I wanted to trust the Aussie postal system (hard to do!) pop my film into a mailer and post it to America to be scanned, crazy? Maybe!

I've been a big fan of Jonathan Canlas for a while now - chances are if you're into film then you are as well.   Mr Canlas only shoots film, coined the phrase "film is not dead" and does a lot to promote the artform and keep it alive, he also has started (I believe or had some involvement with) the Find Lab. Speaking of which, FIND becomes the awesome acronym for "film is not dead" :)


I shot my very first roll of slide film, some Agfa CT Precisa 100 that I wanted to cross process and knew it would be in great hands if I sent it to the FIND lab (and it was!). Cross processing, simply refers to processing a film in different chemicals then what's intended for the film stock.   In this case I had my slide film processed in normal colour film chemicals. You may ask why and the simple answer is because you can get some interested results by doing so, crazy colours, contrasts, all slightly unpredictable but hopefully all awesome :)

I have to give mad props to the FIND lab, I will say upfront it is more expensive then when I was sending my film a state away through the lomography website (but not that much more) and much more expensive then dropping it off your local drugstore but I can honestly say it's worth it to do so. The Find lab's customer service is outstanding, not only did they do a killer job on the scans but they took the time to give feedback and offer some other film/suggestions to try :) I appreciate the communication and felt free to ask questions, something I'm not use to and took me pleasantly by surprise :)

Okay onward to the photos, they're a hodge podge of photos from Biggenden, Byron and Fraser.  There's also a few non-slide photos in the mix, like the cactus shot and the black white one (portra 160 and lady grey 400, respectively) but other than that it's all cross processed goodness shot on my Canon 1000f :)
























I definitely want to play with slide film and cross processing more in the future - I love the unpredictable nature!