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Cape Town and Bo-Kaap Through The Lens of My iPhone

I’ve been really fortunate to be able to travel around South Africa for work. The last trip I made was to Cape Town, where I met up with some really rad peeps, like Talya and Lucas of Nifty250, and some of the local Instagrammers, who organised an early morning Instawalk in Bo-Kaap for me. It was great seeing some of the old faces, and making new friends.

That’s the one thing that I love about Instagram. The way it brings strangers together, and creates friendships. I’ve met so many cool people through Instagram that I can count as real friends.

These are the shots I took in Bo-Kaap in Cape Town. I had fun taking them. I hope you enjoy them.

 

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Lily Allen Wants To Be Sheezus

Lily Allen is making her comeback with Sheezus. And she’s ripping into other female pop stars in the process.

“RihRih isn’t scared of Katy Perry’s roaring/Queen Bey’s gone back to the drawing/Lorde smells blood, yeah, she’s about to slay you/Kid ain’t one to fuck with when she’s only on her debut,” is how the song starts. “We’re all watching Gaga, LOL, haha/Dying for the art, so really, she’s a martyr/Second-best will never cut it for the divas/Give me that crown, bitch/I wanna be Sheezus.”

So yeah, it’s getting real up in here, yo. Check out the dope music video.

Hat tip to Talya for finding this.

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Top 10 Links of the Week: April 13 Edition

  1. Embed Instagram | EmbedInstagram Sure, Instagram has embed code. But how responsive is it? I found this while looking for a responsive solution for mobile.
  2. The Downsides of Storing Files on Your Desktop | Lifehacker If you’re anything like me and your desktop is a mess, this is for you. Disclaimer: My desktop is still a mess.
  3. The Coolest Things You Can Automatically Add to Google Calendar | Lifehacker This is for the geeks. You can add some pretty cool ish, like your travel itinerary and weather forecasts,  to Google Calendar if you know how.
  4. 50 must have free backgrounds for your next web design project | InspiredMag Design geeks, this one is for you. I particularly like the geometric patterns, and as you can see above, I’ve used them for my featured images.
  5. How to Make Your iOS Notifications Smarter with IFTTT | Lifehacker If you haven’t heard of If This, Then That yet, you’re in for a big surprise. It’s a fantastic way to get the internet to work for you. Now available on iOS.
  6. Get Better Sleep and Improve Digestion with This 30-Second Yoga Move | Lifehacker I don’t know about you, but I sure as heck could sleep better. Try out this easy 30-second yoga move and thank me later.
  7. Anne Hathaway’s “Gin and Juice” Cover Is Like Nothing You’ve Ever Heard | POPSUGAR Jimmy Fallon and Anne Hathaway sing our hip hop favourites, Broadway style. They also sing Kendrick Lamar’s “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe”, which has gotten a mention in the South African press lately.
  8. Is This The Most Heartbreaking Poem You’ve Ever Heard? | Thought Catalog This. Is. Just. So. Damn. Awesome. If you have a heart at all, you’ll love this poem about a guy with OCD that loves a woman. I just watched it. AGAIN.
  9. 10 Ways Smartphones Have Completely Ruined Our Lives | Thought Catalog You’ve thought it, haven’t you? That little screen you see first thing in the morning and last thing at night. Sheesh. We need to get a life.
  10. 7 Sites You Should Be Wasting Time On Right Now | Huffington Post If you’re bored with the sites you normally visit, check these out. They’re awesome.
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Top 10 Links of the Week: April 6 Edition

I spend a lot of time online. Unhealthy amounts of time, actually. But I do come across some cool shit, that I’d like to start sharing with you on a weekly basis. I save plenty of links to Pocket from Tweetbot and Flipboard, thinking I’ll get back to them to read them, and honestly, that very rarely happens, so I’m gonna put them to good use and share them instead.

  1. Online Graphic Design Tool | Canva This is a really cool web app that allows you to create your own designs for social media, presentations, posters, Facebook cover images, etc. Its drag and drop functionality makes it easy to use, plus there’s a 23 second tutorial to help get you started.
  2. 10 Steps To Becoming A Better Writer | Copyblogger I could definitely be a better writer. So I’m going to have to follow these ten steps. Not easy, but essential.
  3. 8 Ways To Get The Most Out Of Instagram | Entrepreneur Instagram is my drug. So anything related is worth reading.
  4. Baby Suiting, A Photo Meme Where Babies Are Dressed in Oversized Suits | Laughing Squid This is so rad, I couldn’t help but share it. And Instagram.
  5. 10 Life Lessons To Excel In Your 30s | Mark Manson These are super powerful lessons, and I’ve been seeing this shared all over Facebook and Twitter. Even though I’m in my LATE 30s, it’s still some pretty solid advice.
  6. Mozilla Webmaker Teaches You to Build Web Sites, Apps, and More | Lifehacker This is the geeky side of me coming out. The folks behind Firefox teach you how to build cool things online. For free. I love the Internet.
  7. Best Of Johannesburg | EatOut Well, firstly, it’s about food. And I love to eat good food. Who doesn’t, right? Joburg has some of the finest eateries in South Africa, we just need to find them. Here’s a list.
  8. 9 Ways To Grow Your Twitter Following (Ethically) | The Next Web For some people it’s a numbers game. Some people will do anything to get those numbers, and sometimes its unethical. Don’t be one of those people.
  9. Ramith Sethi: How To Charge What You’re Worth | 99U This is for all the freelancers out there. Sometimes we overcharge, sometimes we undercharge. Time to charge what you’re worth, which is probably more than you thought.
  10. Famestagrammers: Alessio La Ruffa | F#ck Yeah 250gram! Sorry, I had to put this one in. The cool peeps over at 250gram, now Nifty250, interviewed me recently. So if you wanna see what makes me tick, check it out.
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#Vodawalk: A Bird’s Eye View of Joburg

A couple weeks ago, a bunch of us local Instagrammers got an email from Craig Rodney, the head honcho at Cerebra, inviting us on an Instawalk on Friday the 28th of March, that was sponsored by Vodacom. Sounded great. What better way to spend your Friday afternoon than missioning around Joburg with your mates and taking photos, right?

We got the address to the meeting point, which seemed to be an abandoned building in Jeppestown.  We each received a goodie bag with the new 4-in-1 Olloclip. Hmmm, these guys really know how to butter us up.

We headed to the rooftop and waited for everyone to arrive. So, being Instagrammers with short attention spans, we started entertaining ourselves..

When everyone finally arrived, we got told that we were being shuttled to a secret rendezvous point. Rad! We had absolutely no idea what to expect. So after a bit of driving we ended up at Rand Airport. Okay, cool, we thought. We’re gonna take photos of planes and stuff. Different to the usual routine. Until they started handing out indemnity forms. Hold on, what?!

Then this happened.

Oh, and this too.

There are no words. Flying shotgun in a helicopter is one of the coolest things I’ve done in my life. I’ve bungee jumped and done a scad freefall, but those just made me shit myself. Sure, there’s an adrenalin rush, but for me, nothing compares to doing a helicopter flip over Jozi. What a rush!

Once we were done, we headed back to the rooftop in Jeppestown, to discover that we had burgers and craft beer waiting for us. WIN! Again, we had to wait for the others to arrive, so obviously, we took more photos.

These are just my shots, go see everybody else’s incredible photos from the Instawalk, by searching for the #vodawalk hashtag on Instagram. You won’t be disappointed. You can also read about @timvanrooyen‘s experience here, and @2summers‘ experience here.

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I Don’t (Really) Do Valentine’s Day and What I Do Instead

What do you mean, what do I mean I don’t (really) do Valentine’s Day?

Valentine’s Day comes once a year. Once. If you think it’s cool to show your significant other how much you love them and make an occasion of it only on the 14th of February, then you can stop reading now.

Miss Delicious and I do things differently. Sure, we buy each other cards and little gifts on Valentine’s Day, but we don’t regard it as the most romantic day of the year. From the first month we started dating, we’ve done ‘date nights’, every single month. Without fail. Sure, it’s only been six months, but that’s irrelevant. We take one day a month, over a weekend, and we stay the night somewhere nice, and go for a nice dinner.

We take turns treating each other, and it’s something we both look forward to every month. A break from the routine, away from laptops and the internet (usually). Just one day a month to unwind, disconnect and spend some downtime with each other.

Our date nights have been diverse. We’ve been gambling and we even won some money. (Miss Delicious said she’d keep the winnings for one of our next date nights. Somehow I think the funds have been used to acquire a new pair of shoes.) Our date nights have taken us from Monte Casino to the Hartebeespoort Dam in a MINI Countryman and as far as Umhlanga. As much as our date nights are all about love and romance, we also made sure to pack our running shoes to do some Two Oceans half marathon training on the Umhlanga promenade. And if we’re going to a place with unlimited wifi? Well, then we might do a little web surfing and download ALL the updates on our laptops and iPhones. (Don’t judge us, I’m pretty sure you do the same.) We’re also big mobile photography geeks, so if we’re going somewhere out of town and scenic, we’re in our element and snap away like crazy.

We had an awesome date night this past weekend. We went to a nice little 5 star boutique hotel in Joburg, and the moment we got there, it felt like time stood still. We chilled on the colonial patio, connected to wifi and I may or may not have downloaded a couple of updates. And Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas for my iPhone. We had a glass of wine and just chilled together. When you love someone, you can just sit next to them, without having to say a word to them, and be incredibly content.

Miss Delicious had something up her sleeve for the next day too. We went to a nice little spa for a couple’s massage. It was the best way to wrap up an awesome weekend. The little Asian ladies that massaged us were wonderful. They were so small, but damn, could they contort us in ways that we didn’t think were imaginable. We were kinda bummed that we couldn’t take at least one home with us, and keep her in the cupboard for massages whenever we wished.

I love the adventures I share with Miss Delicious every month. Why the hell should I limit that to once a year?

A Quick Photo Editing Tutorial

As you know, I’m quite a keen Instagrammer. Over the years, I’ve developed an editing style, using only one app, Snapseed. Today, I’m going to share how exactly I edit my photos. This tutorial shows you how I do it, but you should use it as a guideline when trying to find your own editing style. After all, I’m already doing this, right?

Step 1

This may be really obvious, but you need a decent picture to work from. Editing is only going to enhance your picture, not create miracles. I chose this shot.

#trainsntrees Instameet 94

It’s not totally straight, so I straightened it and started going to work on it.

Step 2

Next up, I went Tune Image, and adjusted Ambience to +15, Contrast to +10 and Saturation to +15.

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Step 3

Head over to Crop, and crop your image in a square format (1:1)

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Step 4

Go to Details and adjust Structure to +20

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Step 5

Go to Centre Focus and adjust Blur to 0, Outer Brightness to – 70 and Inner Brightness to +35.

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Boom. That’s all there is to it. Here’s the final result.

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