All posts filed under: meet the locals

Introducing Ning Xue

Who are you? My name is Ning. I am an artist, illustrator and graphic designer. I came from China. How long have you lived in Melbourne? Eight years. Why Melbourne? It is a beautiful living space on this planet. I enjoy the free and dynamic atmosphere. I found the pace of life here just right for me — not too fast, not too slow. I love the bright sunshine, fresh air, lovely birds and plants, cute night animals, ever-changing clouds and starry night sky. Friendly and genuine people everywhere. Also, it is a harmonious, diverse and multicultural community; people tend to respect and understand other people from different backgrounds. You can choose from any lifestyles: urban, suburban, farm, bush, mountain, seaside… What do you like to create and why? I draw simply because I love it. I love to be versatile and try to eliminate all boundaries. Drawing is all about play and fun. I love random things, simple lines, freehand brushwork, textures, collage. I love to draw animals, human beings, human beings with animal heads, …

In conversation with pianist Hoang Pham

It’s a sunny Saturday afternoon when I meet Hoang Pham in an inner-city cafe in Melbourne’s CBD. He orders a cafe latte, and as we sip our coffees I steal a few furtive glances at his hands. They look relatively unremarkable – really quite, well, normal. Somehow it seems unfair, considering this 28-year-old has performed as a piano soloist with the Melbourne, Brisbane and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras and only two weeks ago won the prestigious ABC Symphony Australia Young Performers Awards. ‘Melbourne’s the best city in which to be a musician,’ he says. ‘It’s not too big, first of all, and not too small. Compared with any other city in Australia – and perhaps even the world – we have a good mixture of people from different areas of life who happen to love classical music.’ Hoang was born in Vietnam, but soon after his birth his parents arrived in Australia as refugees. He began playing the piano at three-and-a-half years old, and by the time he was five he had already appeared on national …

Introducing Conrad Williams

    Who are you? Conrad Williams. Originally from London, England. How long have you lived in Melbourne? Two years, nine months. Why Melbourne? Firstly, Melbourne is very different depending on where in Melbourne you live. I have only ever lived in the inner suburbs so I can only speak from that experience… Melbourne has all the plus sides of city life that I enjoy without a lot of the downsides that often come as a city grows. It has a diverse range of nationalities represented in the population with all their varied cultures shining through in day-to-day life, as well as numerous festivals. It has a vibrant arts scene with many art venues and educational arts institutions. I am a musician so this is important to me. If you live in the inner suburbs as I do then it’s easy to meet people to socialise and collaborate on projects and hobbies because if you meet someone within the area, chances are they don’t live too far away. The crime rate is lower than most cities of a …

Introducing Tajette O’Halloran

    Who are you? My name is Tajette. I’m a photographer, a filmmaker, a left-handed Scorpio. I love cheese and airports, I love the wind and creative magazines. I run my own little photography business called SHOT OF SOUL. How long have you lived in Melbourne? Almost four years now. Why Melbourne? After six years of Sydney and still not feeling at home, I finally came to the freeing realisation I could pack up and leave … and I did. Within two weeks of entertaining the idea in my head I packed everything I owned and drove down the Hume. I fell in love with this city and never left. Favourite cafe? Penny Farthing in Northcote. They see me with the worst bed hair and sleepy eyes every morning and are still so lovely to me. They know my coffee without me having to say a word. It feels a bit like family. Favourite restaurant? I’m a vegetarian so I’m not the most free and easy when it comes to eating out. A few …

Introducing Chris Mulhall

    Who are you? My name is Chris. I live in Fairfield. I am a musician. I guitar, I sing, write, produce. I eat food, love to cook it, get inventive with it, shop for it, smell it, feel it, share it, think about it, plant it, watch it grow. Work a casual retail job. Passionate about the environment, sustainability, ethical produce, conservation, awareness, family, friends, music, life. A city-dwelling, sport-playing, Rudolf Steiner–influenced spiritual being. How long have you lived in Melbourne? Twenty-seven years, three months – minus travel times. Why Melbourne? Difficult… I was born here and haven’t yet been scared away. I suppose if you’ve been shown the secret laneways, bars, pubs, festivals, coffee hang-outs, live music venues, markets, gardens, suburbs (north, south, east and now even west all have lovely places to spend a day) then you have cool friends and you’re lucky! That’s the ‘Melbourne’ that we Melbourne folk miss when we’re anywhere else in the world. The fresh and vibrant farmers’ and community markets are without a doubt simply wondrous! …

Introducing Andrew O’Keefe

    Who are you? A dad. A Melburnian. A filmmaker. A writer. A lecturer. A Pisces. A  dreamer.  In that order. How long have you lived in Melbourne? About 25 years, on and off. Why Melbourne? Before it became the AFL, it was the VFL and I loved the footy as a kid. As I got older, I looked for all the reasons I could to NOT live in Melbourne, so tried a few other cities – interstate and overseas – but here I am. Now, though, the real question is ‘Why not Melbourne?’ It’s consistently one of the world’s most liveable cities for a very good reason. For someone like me, being into the arts, food, wine etc, it’s the centre of the world. Favourite cafe? I don’t really have one. In Melbourne, you don’t need to have one – there’re so many good ones. If I had to name one it would be Palamino’s in Northcote. No, make that TiAmo on Lygon St. Actually – Pelligrini’s on Bourke St. Oh, I don’t know. …