Sunday, October 4, 2009

Breaking Open The Nostalgia Box

Considering graduation just ended and there's a flood of nostalgia, I figured I would finally do something I haven't done in two years.

Be warned - it'll be a long post, most likely due to the amount of images.

Ever since the beginning of Year 11, I figured I'd try and turn things around with no regrets, since I'd missed out on a great deal in the junior years. It all began after meeting I guy called John from Pendle Hill during a week of work experience at a news company in graphic design. I'm not sure what it was, but something about just the way he talked about his friends spurred me on to finally be more social, and to go a bit beyond my boundaries that I was comfortable with. In order to remember these things, and a constant reminder to live with no regrets, I began the Nostalgia Box, where I threw every little object and trinket, beginning with the notebook from that very week at work experience.

The overflowing Nostalgia Box.

Anyway, I finally actually delved back into the box after two years of only throwing things in, and what an eventful year it has been. Full of growth, new experiences, and most importantly - new friendships, and continuing old ones. I figure that a picture says a thousand words, and the rush of nostalgia is barely able to be described, so I'll try to focus mainly on images with a only small explanation in this post.

Behold, the magnificent contents.

Behold, the nostalgia box. Two years worth of memories locked away in this thing, though I use the term 'locked' loosely as it is literally overflowing now with nostalgia. Just quickly, I couldn't get photos of everything because it's just so full, so here's a few extras, like Shuang's handcrafted invitation to her 18th birthday outing, or pens from the school librarian from my work on the year magazine. Also inside are some 3D glasses from a few films such as Coraline and Up, or a number of brochures from various art exhibitions that I've been to see with friends in the past two years, ranging from the AGNSW and MCA, to the Object Gallery or exhibitions at COFA. There's also a farewell card from Kate acquired recently, along with the tag she had wrapped around the accompanying chocolate.

The Easter Show!

One of the first items I found inside was a day program from the Easter Show earlier this year. It was absolutely epic. Both school friends and external friends came along (after an environmental rally in the morning which was also awesome), went on a number of rides, saw Vex Reverend with David, Pat, Elliot, and Zac from school in it perform, got a photo with the infomercial guy from Sunrise, and so much more.

Party Panda!

Continuing on from the Easter Show, this is also a stuffed panda I won at one of the sideshows. The stylish hat he is wearing is a blue party hat - one of a set that we all rocked for an entire day in the city for Derek's birthday. Totally stylin'.


Littered all the way through the box were an incredible number of free postcards, often stolen in a raid of the rack with Shuang and co. as we grabbed any free things we could find at any venue that had them available. The photo above only shows a *very* small selection of what is a ridiculous amount of postcards (sometimes even doubles) that will never be used. Never hurts to have nostalgic free stuff though.

National Art School forms and an invite to the final exhibition.

....and who could forget the two week course at the National Art School during 2008. Seriously, it was quite possibly one of the best experiences of my high school life. Not only was it an immensely enjoyable learning experience, an outlet for some creative freedom and new techniques, and more, but it created the foundations for some new (and some of my best) friendships ever since. Whether they were people I'd known prior from school, but just not gotten that close to in the past (Dora and Shuang), or entirely new friendships from a number of schools (Derek, Julie, Johnny, Stella), or even meeting Alicia's apparent clone, it truly was one of the greatest growing experiences I've ever encountered. Even the general atmosphere of the area, such as visiting Pie Face (and devouring an terribly undercooked quiche), or...

A Yoshinoya brochure, and some original Yoshinoya chopsticks, never been used.

...experiencing the much loved and now lost Yoshinoya beef bowl. The brochure was only recently acquired from Dora, as she'd thankfully held onto it. That, and after digging through my box of odds and ends, I came across some chopsticks from my first ever visit to Yoshinoya with Derek during the NAS week, kept in pristine condition and never used because, at the time, I couldn't use chopsticks anyway. I only partially learnt how to use them like half a year to a year later, heh. Certainly some great memories in that place, revisited many times before it closed.

First ever concert. The Red Paintings, woooo!

Next up was both a ticket and a newspaper clipping I found detailing my first ever concert - The Red Paintings. Yes, I know, my first concert was kind of late, only being in Year 11 and all, but I don't mind. Went with Kirsti and Joel (though at the time I was quite awkward and I'm pretty sure Joel thought I was retarded, heh), as well as my sister and my cousin, and they had a great stage presence. Awesome costumes, great music, very artsy atmosphere. Still a great night overall.

Miscellaneous memorabilia from Newtown.

Next up is an odd assortment of items purchased from Newtown with Dora/Lynneal/Shirley/Bas. I'd completely forgotten about some of this stuff, such as the small blue button badge that evokes memories of the *epic* button store that had buttons up to the size of one's head. Gould's was equally incredible - the sheer amount of books and reading all over the place was amazing, so I figured I'd buy a cheap comic as a token of the day (which just so happened to be an Issue #1 of this series, wewt).


Next up are a few odd Nintendo items from *both* days of the Nintendo Connection Tour for Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Went the first day with Kirsti and Joel, and the second day with Alex, Jeremy, and Lee. DESPITE the fact that I got beaten by a 5 year old girl at one point (which I have still not lived down), it was altogether awesome. Also, the hideous Polaroid they took for my ID Card for the competition resulted in some amused laughs from the girls at Subway when we went to order lunch, followed by some terrible flirting when they were quite obviously just trying to flog a sandwich, heh.

Miscellaneous Adobe scribblings.

Buried toward the bottom of the box was the item that started it all - this old and semi-useless notepad from my week of work experience in graphic design at a news company. I pretty much explained this in the opening paragraphs, but it's just a reminder of starting things over in my senior years, all because of that random John guy I met that week from Pendle Hill.

Ticket explosion.

Scattered throughout the box is a number of tickets from random places I've been and things I've seen. By no means is this picture exhaustive, as there were PLENTY more where these came from. This was just as many as I could fit in a single picture whilst still remaining barely readable. Ranges from movie tickets (e.g. Lars & The Real Girl, Coraline and Fame), bus and train tickets to a number of places, art exhibition tickets (such as the Archibald or Monet exhibitions), a ticket to a King Curly concert, some random receipts, and who knows what else. So many scraps of paper in that box, but each holds so many memories.

The collection of Derek's cheap-yet-amusing paper CD cases.

One of the recurring themes throughout the box was a number of Derek's paper CD cases for things he'd burnt me over the last year. I think I just kept them because of the thoroughly amusing images or messages he'd always draw on them, with my personal favourite being the first one depicting both the awkward squid and the sad orangutan (whom I'd completely forgotten about). Ah, the sad orangutan... created after he destroyed the statue of Diana back in the drawing class at NAS and then basically curled up in a corner with his drawing pad, heh.

Miscellaneous scraps of paper that were thoroughly amusing reminders of earlier times.

Oh now *these* were certainly a surprise. Random scrap pieces of paper that most likely all require some sort of explanation. Firstly, the "Happy Happiness" card and the manly pink present were concocted in a free period by Shuang for a number of us, celebrating her newly created holiday of "Happiness". Instantly put a smile back on my face just looking at it. The next is a random note from Srishti (note that the "Nordeau" name is an in-joke between the two of us) that, when Shuang, Dora, and I were all cooped up in the art rooms constantly working on our bodies of work, she littered the room with a random note for each of us that made no sense, but each was still absolutely hilarious. Lastly, the Cloud Cadet badge was received during an FBI Radio Concert with Ama/Shuang/Derek/Dora where we went to see Cloud Control. Aside from the ridiculously crap band known as The Bennisons, the rest of them were awesome. Sierra Fin were epic, and even signed my Frisbee, Tom Ugly - though not necessarily my type of music - had a great stage presence and entertainment value, and then Cloud Control was...

Absolutely. Freaking. Awesome.

Awkward Squid draft illustrations. The bottom left was the final choice.

The very last of these photos for now is one of a number of draft sketches for the Awkward Squid t-shirt that Johnny and I collaborated on (even though he actually got his made and I just... never got around to making mine). Though the awkward squid has died down slightly as of late amongst our group, it still lives on every once and awhile, going all the way back to the drawing class at NAS yet again, when I introduced them all to it after learning it from my cousin. Courtney from NAS even made an epic awkward squid emoticon to accompany it, and Johnny wore his shirt we made to the Sculpture By The Sea exhibition meet-up we had. Good times.

...Well, I guess I should stop rambling as that ended up far longer than intended, yet again. I know half of you probably just gave up altogether or only skimmed the pictures, but I don't mind. Even considering the length, this is only a minor snippet of the full contents of the box, which is only set to continue growing (possible in a new and bigger box). If anything, it was a bit more therapeutic for me, reliving the past two years which, with both their massive ups and incredible downs, have been exceedingly epic, due to the shared experiences with friends - new and old.



  1. wowww!
    That's pretty amazing...
    It reminds me of a glory box... you know, those chests filled with houselinen and stuff for a girl's coming-of-age/marraige, hahahaha. However, right now, I'm trying to avoid anything vaguely sentimental, lest I suffer from an emotional breakdown - not the best idea when trying to study! :D (keyword: trying)

  2. ick, i spelt marriage wrong!

  3. I think you’ve definitely achieved your goal of living the last 2 years with no regrets. Looking at someone’s memories i.e. your Nostalgia Box (Nike, Just Do It. lol) was really cool. Cool postcards and funny Polaroid :P
    You should keep adding more things because later on, you’ll enjoy going through all the bits and pieces and the memories they bring back (as you have done today).

  4. I still have that nintendo ID thing too =D

  5. Hopefully yours had a less sucky picture on it haha. Mine looks like I'm trying to eat my own face. D:

  6. llamas pop a cap in yo grassOctober 10, 2009 at 7:37 PM

    we have the same carpet

  7. Nostalgia: Just Do It.

  8. I hadn't actually realised what was on the box until taking these photos, but now that a few people have pointed it out... 'Just Do It' is kind of an apt slogan for what I hoped to achieve over the years that I'm recording within the box really. Do everything, no regrets.

    And yes, our carpet is awesome Ama haha.