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Idle


Idle Magazine


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Contents 7.

Editor's note Can I call this an Editor's note?

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The New Beginning Snippets from Magnus

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Touch Has A Memory Growing with another and growing apart

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Herbarium A poem by Zuzana

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The Phenomenon Growth is the phenomenen

When Growth Becomes Bad Lacking a purpose is the most liberating thing out there

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Not Too Niche Allie Jackson's new project

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I Wish I Were I wish I were a girl again – half savage and hardy

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Growth We meet student Kara Ashdown

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Freedom I lost myself in the forest and found freedom again

On Equal Terms Katie tells us about her experiences as an Au Pair

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Haiku A selection of haikus

Wolf Creek 2 Travelling through Australia

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Bloom A poem by Melissa

Mountain Trips A series of short stories

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Road Diary snippets and photos from a new series

Plans Are Not For Me A terrifying moment

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Holy Roast A ritualistic family tradition

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Silence I need to disappear for a while, and escape

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Grandmother Cardinal Every time we see a cardinal we think of our Grandmother Death And Flowers The world stops and I find a piece of myself

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Welcome to the third issue of Idle words by Chloe Ray

Can I call this an Editor's note?

Issue 3 is here! It’s about time too. We faced some big challenges and feared we wouldn’t pull through them, but if you’re reading this then we obviously triumphed. Hooray! We have learnt from our mistakes, and have grown just a little wiser than before. Our theme for this issue is growth. We asked our contributors to think about what that word meant to them. Had they grown within themselves? Or, did they have a new project on the brink of blossoming that they wanted to share? We also asked them to look at nature, its growth and new beginnings. Had they explored any new territories? The stories we read were touching and inspiring. We have learnt that in moments we feel lost, we can adapt and grow until we find ourselves again, and if sometimes we don’t, there is something new and even better to be found! We have also learnt that growth can sometimes mean leaving something or someone behind. “The garden is growth and change and that means loss as well as constant new treasures to make up for a few disasters.” – A wonderful quote by American Novelist, May Sarton. So, perhaps embrace growth and change, in whichever form it comes, because it could lead to something great. If it hasn't yet, it's a sign you're still growing. Right?

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Touch Has A Memory words and photography by Svetlana Zdrnja

Growing with one another and growing apart.

The first two photos in this collection are inspired by the following words: "…are not the mountains, waves, and skies as much a part of me, as I of them?" And the last photo (on the following page) is from the series that I called "Touch has a memory". It is a part from a poem written by John Keats. In the both series I was inspired by the feelings of romantic love, of how those feelings can let us grow in a certain way. There are many ways of growing, people can grow with one another, or they can grow apart. The best way we can influence each other in those relations is when we can inspire the other person to become the best version of her/himself, and vice versa. I choose the nature setting in my photographs because the nature is the best example that describes those inner changes - nature represents the constancy in changing. There we can be true to ourselves and we can feel that unity with everything that surrounds us. And that cognition can bring us much closer to ourselves and to each other. see more of Svetlana's work at www.svetlanazdrnja.com

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The Phenomenon words and photography by Chris Moody

Growth is the phenomenon showing itself in unlikely positions.

Growth is often affiliated with new growth or how big something has become, but growth is about strength and growing through situations that are adamant. Growth is on an island in the middle of nothing, growth is a tree surviving on a barren rock. Growth is the phenomenon showing itself in unlikely positions. see more of Chris's work at www.flickr.com/chrismoody

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Not Too Niche words and photography by Allie Jackson

Allie Jackson's new project.

These photos are from a recent project I started as a way to connect all of my favourite activities such as drawing, designing, making, and photography. It is based around things I have been making, mostly barrettes and hats (so far) that are documented with my photographs and drawings. Since starting this project in the fall of 2014, I have felt a great sense of relief and wholeness come to my creative process. In the past I had found myself very limited while experimenting with each outlet on its own. There were too many influences and not enough focus. Combining my interests into one cohesive project has given purpose and direction to my work in turn leading the way to unlimited growth and future possibilities! The project is called Not Too Niche. see more at www.nottooniche.tumblr.com

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Growth

words and designs by Kara Ashdown

Kara Ashdown is a final year student at Bath Spa University, studying Textile Design for Fashion and Interiors. She specialises in painted artworks, inspired by nature, that are translated into digitally printed fabrics and wallpapers.

Studying Textile Design at University, the question, ‘So what are you doing your project on?’ became a very familiar one. Choosing to do a project on flowers was inevitably always a popular choice amongst us printers. You could almost see the cogs whirring in our tutors’ heads, thinking ‘How are they going to make it original?’ But the fact stands that flowers always have and always will be abundant in design. I’ve learnt a lot about myself and my work throughout my degree. I started my University course open minded, eager to learn about all areas of textiles, such as embroidery, weave and knit, but had always thought I would end up a printer before I even started. From the second year onwards, I geared my work towards surface pattern design, knowing that I wanted my work to be designed with the Interiors market in mind. I had looked at nature, landscapes and florals as a starting point for projects in the past, but never with much deeper thought or consideration as to why, other than that they made for pretty looking prints. My affinity with floral design is subsequently a fairly recent one. I grew up with two green fingered parents in a house with a big garden, where my dad took pride in growing vegetables

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and my mum planted lots of flowers. I have many happy memories of long summer days lazing and playing in the garden with my brother. It was a well-known fact in my family that I infamously disliked long family walks; enduring being dragged around National Trust properties with my mum identifying the flowers like a running commentary along the way. But now always on the lookout for some inspirational flowers, I am the one asking to want to go to these places. I find myself trawling through pictures that I took by chance on these visits for inspiration, wishing that I had only taken more photographs of the beautiful flower that I had come across. I think really opening my eyes and taking in the beauty of the flowers growing around me in my own garden was a real turning point for my work. At the beginning of my final year, I chose to do a project on climbing plants, looking at flowers such as wisteria, sweet peas and passion flowers. There was something about the way that these flowers were growing in my own garden, where I could actually pick them myself and draw them from life, that was extremely satisfying, and I developed a new found appreciation for them. Selecting a particular type of plant to work


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with drew my attention to really researching and understanding the types of plants that I was drawing. I think it’s so important to learn about what sort of flowers you are including in your work. I find that my designs always end up more successful when I’ve made the effort to research what kind of flower it is, what season it grows in, what other colours they grow in, etc. By doing this, I believe, is where my deeper appreciation for nature emerges. I purposefully chose not to study art at college and opted for more craft and design based courses, because I wasn’t really into painting as I had never really learnt how to do it properly. Ironically now, in my final year of study, my work has evolved into hand painted artworks, where I like to emphasise the mark of my hand in my digital prints. I think I was always scared about working in colour; favouring the comfort of my fine liner pen, not realising that I can express my drawing style just the same or even better in paint. I like to work in repeat, as I endeavour for my designs to communicate a sense of flow, growth and movement, emulating the flowers that have inspired me.

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My final collection of work for University is on summer and wild flowers. A mix of lush flowers growing wild in a meadow is a beautiful sight to me. I suppose what I hope most for my designs is that people feel a sense of harmony when they look at the collections, as they are designed for the home after all. I’m all for originality, but I think an interior design needs to be harmonious with you and how you live in your home space. Nature just seems to achieve that; as it is a way to bring the outside in and connect us to the world around us. It’s like how William Morris so rightly puts it – “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”. I think I’ve found my home with nature, as I feel like it’s helped me to grow as a designer. I like how it is cyclical, as you can draw the changes that the seasons bring, reflecting on how you and your work have changed as you revisit them. So yes, there are going to be a million other people out there drawing flowers, but if you enjoy it and have found your peace with it, then what does it matter anyway? see more of Kara's work at www.karaashdown.carbonmade.com and on her Instagram @karaashdown

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Freedom words and photography by Emilie Delmond

I lost myself in the forest and found my freedom again.

These photos are about the beauty of overwhelming vegetation. In those quiet places, where nature is everything. No trace of humans. Nature has grown so big, that it brings up in me this contemplative sensation and the feeling to be part of something so fundamental and true. I sometimes find myself lost and somehow this is where I find myself again. see more of Emilie's work at www.flickr.com/miliepirate

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Wolf Creek 2 words and photography by Lisa Smit

Travelling through Australia and New Zealand taught Lisa a few things.

For me, growth can be found in travel. Exploring new environments, getting to know different cultures, being on un-trodden ground and getting of the beaten track. The last few years I have been travelling quite a bit and exploring different parts of the world. Settling down in another city and another country gave me a fresh look on life and opened me up to different kind of experiences. During my road trip through Australia and New Zealand I got used to the concept of free camping. There was one evening, somewhere on the East coast of Australia, where we weren’t entirely sure where to camp, so we decided to drive down this inland route, while the sun was slowly setting. Apart from some birds and lost cows, there was no one around. After driving down this quiet dirt road for 45 minutes we got to an open spot next to a creek. The moment we arrived the sun set behind the mountain. The wind was blowing hard and it was impossible to pitch our tents without putting big stones inside to prevent it from blowing away. We finished the evening by warming up next to a camp fire, cooking our freshly caught fish and drinking cheap red wine. It could have been the setting for another "Wolf Creek" movie, but for me these are the reasons I travel and moments that make me grow personally. see more of Lisa's work at www.lisasmit.tumblr.com

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Mountain Trips words and photography by Kellen Mohr

A series of short stories of Kellen's experiences in the mountains.

When I was approached to contribute to this issue of Idle Magazine, I was presented with a dizzying array of potential paths that my contribution could take. Pouring over multitudes of scans from the wildly diverse lineup of adventures I embarked on during the past year, I began to realize just how much individual moments from each trip expanded my perspective and that of those surrounding me. Personally, time spent in the mountains is about being fully present in the present, grounded by the solitude and vastness of surroundings I find tucked away far off in the wilderness. Thinking only of the placement of your next step, or basking in the last light of an all-time day on some mythically beautiful ridge, soaking in every single input from your senses, and just being. Every trip has one, maybe a handful of these slices of time, where for a brief moment, every fiber of your being is fully tuned in and appreciating the spectacle around you. These fleeting moments, often soaked in rays or cloaked in swirling clouds, are not something I am attempting to “capture� per se, but rather enter into the record as a means to remind me of where I was when my consciousness expanded. Here are a series of short stories on the feelings I experienced at the scene of each of these photographs. Two of these photos were taken on the same trip; my second trip into the North Cascades of this last summer. I had scoped out a particularly stunning spot before we left, but upon arrival at the ranger station, we found that all the permits for that zone had been issued the day before. A friendly ranger suggested instead that we venture to Hidden Lake, which she described as an impossibly blue high alpine lake, populated with mini-icebergs, nestled high above the valley floor in a cluster of rugged peaks. We quickly agreed that it would be a more than suitable replacement destination and giddily headed off to the trailhead a few miles up a steep fire road. The trail was a series of spectacularly different landscapes, winding through dense forest, then snaking across spectacular alpine meadows teaming with wildflowers, hopping through fields of huge granite boulders, before finally winding up

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a steep snowfield at the bottom of a jagged, vertical face of rocks with the lookout perched precariously on top. Attaining the final saddle before the lookout, a mythical landscape came into view, with the iceberg-dotted lake nestled below, dropping away to reveal some of the most rugged peaks of the North Cascades across the valley. We raced up to the lookout, which unbelievably was ours for the taking, and spent the rest of the day drinking tea and reading on the summit. As the sun sank lower and began to shine through the golden haze left from the nearby Carlton Complex wildfires, the largest in Washington state history, we danced down through the boulder field to explore a nearby ridge sublimely illuminated by the last rays of the day. This ridge turned out to be something straight out of a fairy tale; with both sides sharply dropping off into the haze that obscured the valley floor, it gave the impression of a thin catwalk suspended a mile up in the sky. The air was filled with the late summer sounds of the mountains; birds chirping to one another amidst wind gently winding between the boulders and scraggly trees that adorned the ridge, all soaked in the impossibly peaceful light and warmth that only a late evening in August could have. I hung back for a second, jaw on the ground, overwhelmed by the rawness of my surroundings, waiting for Hope to continue on as I took it all in, and snapped this shot of her exploring the final stretch of this magical diving board of rock over the void. Next, we scampered back up through the field of boulders to the lookout; where we cooked dinner and watched the day fade away next to the ultimate room with a view. A small group of day-hikers were of a similar mind, and we hung out and swapped stories quietly as the light faded behind the ridges of varying shades of blue, bringing an incredible day to a close. I scrambled up the boulder marking the highest point of the peak, and snapped this shot of their group in a small slice of the stunning panorama of views available to us as I waited for my tea to come to a boil, hardly able to believe the limitless wilderness that stretched out all around me and the day I had just had.


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The next shot of a hooded hiker weaving along an exposed ridgeline occupies a special place in my heart. When I took my twin sister Kylie up to Mt. Baldy, just an hour’s drive from my current home base in LA, I had the opportunity of experiencing personal growth from the outsider’s perspective. I had just been up for the first time a few days earlier, and I had summited in the sunshine with views of the Pacific, but on that day, a winter storm rolled in as we hiked towards the precarious section of ridgeline known as the Devils Backbone. The trail in this particular section cuts on the side of the ridge with fatal exposure, a steep slope dropping off below, scoured by wind until only ice remains, with no way to stop if you were to misplace a step and stumble. This is my favorite section of the entire trail, where I allow myself to put every fiber of my being into the placement of my foot, my mind becoming a total blank as I began to grin, slowly dancing my way across. I had warned my sister, who is just as adventurous as I am (but is slightly less likely to be wearing a grin in situations like these) that this was a section she should pay particularly careful attention to. After making the initial crossing, I came back to the side she waited on, sizing up the risks of following her fool of a brother. I watched, humbled, as she nervously bit her lip and began the traverse, willing herself across. As she made the last step onto a flatter patch of gravel, a smile eased across her features as she turned back to me. We didn’t end up summiting that day, due to the trail becoming impossible to traverse a bit further up with the new snowfall, but watching her take those steps meant more to me than the summit possibly could have.

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Last but certainly not least, this sunrise shot is from my first trip to Yosemite a few weeks ago with my friend Bryson. A Yosemite veteran, he was insistent on doing something incredible this time around. We settled on hiking to Half Dome in the dark in order to catch the sunrise from the top, which would be the most intense hike of my life. 15 miles round trip (plus at least a mile or two of us losing the trail in the darkness and retracing our steps until we found it again), nearly a vertical mile of elevation gained and then lost on the way down, combined with the cables on Half Dome being down for the season promised me an adventure like none other. We started at 12:30AM, and after cruising up past roaring waterfalls in total darkness, arrived at Sub Dome a bit before sunrise to prepare our gear for the ascent of the final few hundred feet up the cables, which are laying flat on the face during the off season. A person in our group let out a shout and pointed, and we all collectively turned around to witness a huge green meteor with a red trail streak across the morning sky for several seconds, shocking our group into temporary silence. Slowly, we started regaining our voices; I don’t even know how to describe that moment- we were all just totally in awe. Quickly, Bryson and I harnessed up, clipped in and started up the cables, which was a sublime experience as the beautiful early morning was slowly starting to illuminate the side of the Dome as we worked our way up it. Dizzying exposure 2500 feet down to the valley floor on our right kept us very much in the present as we put hand over hand, gaining foot after foot on a scramble/climb unlike any other. Our fear and endurance limits shattered, we regrouped on the top, laughing and jumping around between boulders, and soaked in the early morning rays as the sun snuck over the horizon. Euphoria and awe swept through me, with my sense of accomplishment completely dwarfed by the huge cliffs and waterfalls surrounding us as we looked into the valley, realizing that everyone below was probably still asleep as we gallivanted around Half Dome’s summit. I’m still not sure if I was dreaming. see more of Kellen's work at www.flickr.com/kellenmohr

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Plans Are Not For Me words and photography by Caitlin McKone

And it's a terrifying moment when your straight paved road turns into a trenched maze.

Since as long as I can remember I've always had a mental plan for how I was going to live my life. Finish high school, graduate from University, travel the world, meet the love of my life. I was supposed to settle down and start a family at 25. With two children or maybe three. Life was going to be filled with love and happiness. Everything was going to be perfect. But as I've grown to understand myself, I've learnt that plans are not for me. To have a life already lived in my head screams misery and disappointment. I want adventure. I want to overcome the fears and the unknown. I don't want to destroy the potential of what I could become, see and experience all for the satisfaction of drawing pretty crosses on my checklist. At the end of the day, I want to be excited to be alive! I no longer care if I don't finish University, find love at the same time my friends are marrying, or have that multi-million dollar apartment in New York City. I want my dreams to be the most beautiful thing about me. I want my passions to glow like the brightest star on the darkest night!

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I'm a million puzzle pieces scattered across the dark room of unknown. I've been disconnected, trying so desperately to connect. But I have nothing to grasp, no set course to follow. And it's a terrifying moment when your straight paved road turns into a trenched maze. You're friends have returned to University and your standing behind a counter, with a vacant gaze at the chaos beyond the store. You're wondering which corner to turn, which wall to climb, who to trust and who to ignore. You would think by now that I'd know where I'm going, but sometimes I feel like I'm still going nowhere. There are moments of doubt, but they are only moments. I've experienced the taste of achieving something close to my heart; every aching moment will be rewarded. And that taste will run through my veins thicker than blood. I belong to the wind. An open heart, mind and soul. Trapped, but guided and free in it's breeze. find more from Caitilin at www.facebook.com/caitlinlouisephotography


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Grandmother Cardinal words by Linda Vaccese and illustration by Joy and Noelle

Every time we see cardinals we think of our grandmother. This how we imagine her as she left her cancer-ridden body. She had stayed in her comfort zone for so long, she almost forgot what it could feel like to be free. She glanced at the opened door and suddenly realized this was her moment to become her true self. And as she leapt from her perch for the very first time, a tremendous feeling of joy mixed with some fear overcame her... Yet she followed her heart as she spread her wings triumphantly and her voice cried out, "Look at me! I can fly!" see more of Joy and Noelle's work at www.joyandnoelle.com

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Death And Flowers words and photography by Hilke Achterberg

Hilke sent us a selection of film photography and words from a series dealing with growth through loss and finding comfort in nature.

death and flowers in between our broken lives we had light, plainly visible, daylight, I thought and stood waiting delighted wide awake until damned to remember the disturbing peace after you were told to wait for total departure it's different these days you are gone so high and mighty now, are you still struggling present but silent unite us, again see more of Hilke's work at www.flickr.com/lifeletmego

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The New Beginning words and photography by Magnus Jørgensen

Snippets from Magnus – a few warming words and photos. I took this photo of the greenhouse in my back garden on what, at that point, was the warmest day of the year. It was a Saturday, and I couldn't bare to do work inside, so I spent most of the sunny hours on the patio. After what felt like a lifetime of grey and rainy days (winter in England), it was this day that beckoned spring. Surely enough, flowers started blooming and birds started singing again soon after; this picture reminds me of the warmth, the new beginning.

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This is my good friend Izzy, on one of our walks through a forest near my home. It still felt like winter, but suddenly the sun peaked out from behind the clouds, and even though it lasted half an hour at most, the warmth we knew was temporary seemed to wash away everything else. Of course, it rained later that day, but for those bright moments I was in a dream, and I took this photo to try and capture it. see more of Magnus' work at www.flickr.com/the_last_magnus

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Herbarium words and photography by Zuzana Hรกbekovรก

A poem by Zuzana. branch out to me, shroud me with the leafage of who you are so when the tendrils that grow from the void of the wakeful nights bind your every extremity, we shall tear the stringy vine with twice the strength, the strength of we. branch out to me, cushion me where I ache with the leafage of who you are so that the lesions that reopen when I try conquer the thorny umbrage so helplessly cease crying the red and the lymph and the sap, because now it is we. branch out to me, our rootlets in the warm moistness of soil twine, my bud into bloom into fruit, embraced by your bines - wild bouquets grow selflessly. sweet-smelling petals to brown, withered leaves - the flora of we. see more of Zuzana's work at www.flickr.com/habologique

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When Growth Becomes Bad words by Millisande Bath and photography by Joe Nigel Coleman

Lacking a purpose is the most liberating thing out there.

I stood atop the Canton Tower, reinforced misting Plexiglas trapping me in the stagnant air of the observation tower, looking out across the mega city of Guangzhou in southern china. It spread for as far as the eye could see on a day clear of everything but smog and heat. It spread like a barnacle on the side of ship, pushing out against the natural landscape, obliterating it, like a cancerous growth. That wasn’t the only mega city I saw. There’s something within us that compels us to keep growing – keep growing the population as far as it can go. That something within us is our genes. Genes aren’t long-term players. They’re as long term as it takes to raise at least one child. That’s all that matters for genes. Being frugal with what resources we can get our hands on hasn’t been a good idea since, well, ever. If we ignore any belief in a divine purpose, we are here on this earth with the sole purpose to reproduce. Yet that’s something

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we cannot sustain and will potentially cause untold havoc and pain in years to come. It was a struggle to spend three years of my life, whilst at university, being told my purpose was to reproduce and I shouldn’t be allowed to either. So where does that leave us? My friend says that lacking a purpose is the most liberating thing out there. With no purpose there is no pressure. Accept that the Darwinian purpose no longer being relevant as a chance to do whatever you choose. There is no failure where nothing is expected. I wish that I could live my life without purpose with vim and excitement, but I feel instead that something is lacking. Life is hard, what pushes me if I have no purpose? Perhaps it’s more to do with the guilt. I am incredibly lucky to be born into a western loving family. A person could fly from New York to London every day of their life and still not create as much of a carbon footprint as


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I do from living. I cannot justify my existence and that makes me feel guilty. I saw a beautiful graphic floating around the Internet, many years ago, which said “You are a child of the Universe, no less than the trees and the stars. You have a right to be here.” Like a shot from the defibrillator, it went straight to my heart. The words seemed to speak to exactly what I struggled with in my soul. I felt like I was less deserved of living than the trees growing in the rainforest. Yet they are just as much a quirk of “fate” and evolution. It is just a much of a coincidence that their forebears where able to procreate as mine were. I am just as deserving of life as that tree. So are you. see more of Joe's photography at www.flickr.com/joe_coleman

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I Wish I Were... words and illustration by Molley Scoble

I wish I were a girl again – half savage and hardy.

I’m grateful for my childhood. I used to look back at my past self and cringe. I was painfully shy and quiet, and I used to believe that this had meant I’d wasted my childhood. I used to think that I should’ve been a hardy, inquisitive girl, who charged about the Somerset countryside with dirty hands, instead of the child I actually was; indoors, reading and terrified to speak to almost anyone. Now I’ve grown into a happy and confident person; the thought of speaking in public or sharing my work no longer fills me with terror but anticipation. I am a world apart from my childhood-self. However, I have also grown to accept and love my childhood-self, instead of feeling the regret I used to feel, I now know that it is because of them that I have blossomed this way.

Nowadays I am proud that I spent years reading; it’s made me love books and has greatly influenced my creative work as an illustrator. Accepting that I was shy, meant that I became a good listener which subsequently means I can understand others emotions well. I’m glad I only had a few friends, I still have them now, after nearly 17 years of friendship, and I love them dearly. They made me happy and confident to be myself within a group, but they also taught me how to be alone. I’m grateful that I wasn’t the rowdy, loud child I once thought I should’ve been, because who knows what kind of person I could’ve turned into? It’s human nature to look back at our past self and analyse our actions; it’s normal. But I hope that when you do so, as

I have learnt, you do it with tenderness. There’s nothing you can do to change the person you once were, so it’s better to just accept them and appreciate what they may have given you. So ultimately, what I’m trying to say is love yourself, not just in the present but always. Self-acceptance and appreciation leads to growth and growth can lead to many wonderful things. see more of Molleys work at www.molleymay.com and on her instagram @molley.may

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On Equal Terms words and photography by Katie Lionheart

Katie tells us about her experiences as an Au Pair.

I always wanted to take a year to float feelings around my head and be comfortable in my decision to exist guiltfree, without a clear purpose for a little while. In short, I suppose I always wanted to take a gap year. I was passionate about photographing people but I felt it was better left as a hobby to indulge and grow into organically. I wanted to further my education but I had yet to decide what to do or where to study. Unfortunately I was born into the last year group that were able to squeeze into university at a

Pair, signing up to several decidedly sketchy Au Pair websites. Between the suspicious messages from single fathers and families who seemed to desire a maid rather than a live-in nanny, an email plopped into my inbox that sat so comfortably with me that I was living in Belgium with a wonderful Danish family within the month. I had ample time to let thoughts float about my head and use my free time recklessly with no intention of ‘finding myself’. I’m sure others would attest to the way that living with a family in a role that feels so unusual spurs realisations about

reduced rate before the fees tripled the following summer. This pulled at my frugal heartstrings and put any guilt-free floating firmly out of my mind. I decided to choose the only subject that truly interested me at the time: photography. Two rocky years later, after a conversation with my tutors, I realised I had unintentionally taken it upon myself to have those twelve months of freedom in the form of an ‘interruption year’. A further few months passed by while I tried to put my time to good use and eventually decided I wanted to be an Au

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what is and isn't alien to you. You can’t help but compare your own upbringing with that of the children you’re tending to. These people are not your relations but still you try to relate to them. Au Pair translates as ‘on equal terms’ and many describe this arrangement as the role of a big sister. I felt more like I was a child lumped with the limbs of an adult who had forgotten how to play. Even so, I miss gradually learning to understand more of the boy’s Danish and laughing because just being able to comprehend their opinions made them even more adorable. I miss the girl’s clever deadpan wit and the way they would pop their heads around my door to say goodnight. Adulthood snuck up on me but I like to think that, whilst I grew better at playing hide and seek for four hours or throwing Frisbees until my arms hurt, I think perhaps we all learnt to play together best when we were playing with my camera. see more of Katie's work at www.flickr.com/katieoak

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H a i k u

In the end, no one wins; no one loses.

Haiku words and photography by Patrick Mainelli

A selection of haikus and photography from one of Patricks new projects.

The haikus are from a year-long experiment in which I write one a day. I started on the spring equinox of this year and will continue to spring of next year. I think of my work as dealing with moments and spaces in transition; this small selection reflects some scenes particularly focused on growth and change. see more of Patrick's work at www.grasshands.tumblr.com and www.goodcoolmud.com

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Nothing dead will stay long enough dead anymore —the first day of spring.

Who could ever be lonely with so many plants, reaching every day closer to touch you?

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Baptism day: and us still young enough to remember the reward of sincere vice.

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Was getting old simply a matter of trading hunger for convenience?

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B l o o m

see more of Melissa's work at www.marigoldjesus.tumblr.com and see more of Jamie's work at www.jamietobinillustration.tumblr.com

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Bloom words by Melissa Flood and illustrations by Jamie Tobin

A poem by Melissa.

I didn’t bloom for you to dissect me. I’ve watched everything grow in great strength I have let nitpickers peel my scabs back I have let people in and watch their Dirty hands try to switch and arrange Waiting for me to cry Sometimes they even got their wish.

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I’m not a thing or an object. I don’t bloom for you or anyone else. I’m not a dead animal waiting for A dissection. I am me I am here.


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Road words and photography by Joe Nigel Coleman

Diary snippets and photos from a new series called 'Road'.

- I want to capture that feeling you get when you're on the open road; nowhere to be, wind blowing in fresh thoughts and ideas through the rolled down window. - There's that beautiful feeling of the unknown, not knowing what's around the next corner. Full of wonder in anticipation of what is to come. - It's easy to laugh when you're on the open road; everything tickles. - I want to bottle that fresh road wind and keep it for those stale days when things seem out of place. see more of Joe's work at www.flickr.com/joe_coleman

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Holy Roast words by Rebecca Lauren and photography by Chloe Ray

This piece is based on a personal experience but it's not exactly a story or a specific event, more of a vignette I suppose? The idea was to try and describe the almost ritualistic family tradition of Sunday dinner and how it acts as a homing beacon no matter how far you move away. A kind of constant that never really changes even as the family grows and dynamics shift.

Sunday comes again. At the old church, the vicar gives his sermon and the organ plays ‘Break Thou the Bread of Life’. In a kitchen ten minutes along the road, Grandma turns up the radio so she can bob and shuffle to Shaky on her slippers while she plays the melody of feeding: chopping sounds over mixing sounds over cooking sounds. A spoon rings on the side of a metal bowl like a bell, and this is our call to worship. Gather at the range to start the procession: you take the plates, I’ll take the parsnips. Sunday dinner is a ritual steeped in tradition. The congregation take their seats: they’ve come from far and wide on this weekly pilgrimage to see the high priestess in her ceremonial robes (checked pinny over comfy Sunday trousers) place the sacrificial fowl on the altar. Before we begin, the customary recital of the sacred text: “Are you not having any green beans?” “I don’t like green beans, Granddad.” “They’re home-grown you know – fresh from the garden this morning.” “That’s great. I don’t like them.” “You’ll get scurvy.” “Oh, shut up, Colin. She doesn’t like them.” “No one gets scurvy anymore!”

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“Not when they eat their green beans they don’t.” Today’s order of service is thus: the parable of the foolish man who took up three spaces with his Range Rover in Sainsbury’s car park; Is there something different about the potatoes this week? and other eternal questions; Hymn 32 ‘If You Don’t Leave the Empty Mustard Pot Out of the Cupboard How Am I Going to Know We Need a New One?’ A hush descends on the hallowed hall of the dining room. From this point on, the script is subject to change. Will today’s gathering culminate in joyous celebration? Will someone storm away from the table and slam the bathroom door in a fit of family-induced pique? The best method of predicting the outcome is through one well-timed question: What’s for pudding? “Wait and see,” the sage preaches serenely. All at once, praises are sung ecstatically to the rafters. Wait and see, as we all know, means rice pudding – and no rice pudding Sunday has ever ended in tears. Custard – well that carries certain risks with it; emotions run high when custard is involved. But today we sup on a dessert unrivalled in its powers of unification. The bowls are fetched. Before we begin this second course, another recital:


H o l y

“These are the wrong spoons.” “They’re dessert spoons, what’s wrong with them?” “You don’t eat rice pudding with a dessert spoon – we’ve got pudding spoons for that.” “There’s no such thing as a pudding spoon!” “I’m telling you, these are the wrong spoons.” “They work don’t they? Get on with it.” With the clearing of the plates, Sunday dinner comes to a close. The attendees linger, but eventually leave. Some will return next week – others will not, kept away by other duties. The only universal truth is: once you’ve been inducted to the Sunday dinner fold there’s no distance so great that you don’t hear the shake of the cutlery drawer at six o’ clock; no absence so extended you can’t claim your rightful seat at the table when you do, inevitably, come home. The blood of the covenant may be thicker than the water of the womb – but you can’t put either of those on a Yorkshire pudding, so gravy beats them both if you ask me. see more of Rebecca's work at www.rebecca-parker.blogspot.co.uk

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Silence words and photography by Alba García

I need to disappear for a while, and escape.

Silence – the scary thing so rare for those of us who live in the city. I have to admit that I am an uptown lover, but life there can usually be noisy and stressful. Ads, overheard conversations and claxons mix with my own thoughts while I’m rushing to the office, to my yoga class, to the supermarket, to home. How to concentrate in myself when there are so many messages floating around? I sometimes need to disappear. Escape from all the noises and signs and just find a place where my mind could fly free. That’s when I pick up a car, a train or a bus, a backpack with only a pair of boots and my camera. And get lost in the mountains. There, surrounded just by wild nature, I can think clearly. I see who I am and where I want to be. I can point out those things in my life I love and those I need to get rid of. I understand my moments of anger and sadness. And I let them go for good. That’s the only way I can grow and feel like myself again. see more of Alba's work at www.flickr.com/albadawn

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A magazine for the quieter readers, who wish to get away from the mundane and chaos of the real world. For the five-minute biscuit break or the indulgent bedtime reading. We want to feed curiosity and shed light on overlooked things in life.

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Idle issue#3  

A magazine for the quieter readers, who wish to get away from the mundane and chaos of the real world. For the five-minute biscuit break or...

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