The ultimate go-getter – Jan Fran

It was 2013, one mid-May Monday coolish night, I snuggled up on my second-hand couch with my new housemates to be greeted by SBS2’s new show, The Feed.

Instantly I fell in love with the captivating stories and relaxed attitudes of the TV hosts.

Since then, the show has shimmied to a new channel SBS Viceland, scoring a bigger audience through social media.

One of the main hosts of the show, Jeanette Francis – a.k.a Jan Fran, has made a name for herself with a fiercely funny way of captivating her audience.

I was fortunate to speak to Jan Fran, gaining some insight in the world of journalism and what story telling really entails.

SUNDAY LIFE. Portrait of Jeanette Francis (SBS) for an article by Sharon Verghis. Pic by Nic Walker. Date 23rd May 2017. Photographed in 8080 studio in Artamon.


Continue reading “The ultimate go-getter – Jan Fran”


Notes of a Northerner – A thirst for sights

How often have you felt the desire to just pack up and leave what you’ve always known?
Many people dream it, but how many actually follow through?
This afternoon, I was able to speak with an inspiring photographer with a wholehearted desire to explore the world. A young woman who did what some can only dream of – pack up and travel for work.

Hello! Can you give a brief description of who you are and what you do? 
Hi! I’m Sophie Piearcey, originally from the UK but now living in beautiful Queenstown NZ.
I run a blog / Instagram called Notes of A northerner which follows me around the world on all our adventures as I write and take photographs.
What inspired you to get into photography?
As cliché as it may sound my Dad gave me an old Canon film camera when I was about 7 and since then I have never stopped taking photographs. The printed form and how I could stop a moment in time fascinated me.
I went on to complete a Masters in fine art and photography at University and then bought a one way ticket to the southern hemisphere and haven’t looked back since.
How did you get to where you are today? 
Hard work, persistence, perfecting my trade and constantly learning. I learn new things from the people I meet, the blogs I read and the workshops I attend. I make sure I always get a library card for whatever city I am in so I can make sure I keep my literature knowledge up.
What do you love about your job?
I love the fact it’s hard work. It pushes me to challenge myself daily. I also love the amazing network of friends I have met through using Instagram and blogging my life away… I’ve also been to some pretty cool places in the last few years too.
What is a typical day like for you? What qualities do you think make a great photographer?
Emails, Instagram, catch up with the news and any blogs I follow regularly. I then edit images from the weekend or previous trips and I write.
Sometimes I write when I am not going to publish it just to keep my brain active.
I don’t think there are specific qualities you need to have to be a great photographer. For me the most important thing is passion.
If you are passionate about something it will shine through in all your work, I also don’t think it’s about fancy equipment – spend your money on adventures instead!
What are the biggest challenges in your job? 
Keeping up to date with current trends and goings on in the world while also trying to stay true to yourself and style.
What advice would you give to someone who wanted to get into this profession?
Get out there and start taking photos pronto.
You will start to see the world a whole lot differently through a camera lens.
Also networking is so important. Not only does it boost your skills & knowledge but also helps your hone your own craft and puts you in touch with so many awesome like-minded people!
Thank you so much for the interview Sophie. 
Sophie documents her travels on her site – Check her out!
Her instagram is @sophiepiearcey

‘Slut Sundaes’ – Single 4 lyf 

I feel like there needs to be a new wave of celebration. Forget birthdays, birthing children or getting married. 
My name is Ruth and I’ve been single for 8 years. 
My relationship with me has been amazing. I’ve travelled, met new people, experienced foods and smelt new smells along the ride. 

With myself I’ve never felt so comfortable and yet challenged. 

When I was first single, I was scared. 

Unsure of who I was in this relationship I needed to be in control. Thankfully, I didn’t mind. 
This control has pushed boundaries I never thought possible. 
I’ve conquered my ability to have injections, including blood tests.

I wasn’t always able to do this yet I helped myself push through. 
Living overseas for a while took a toll on my relationship with me because I was spending a lot of time with kids.

Somehow I got through this. 
This year has also proven the most challenging for my relationship with me. 

I’ve started studying a new field of work which has been hard for myself. Finding the time for me can really affect how I interact with me. But I’m getting there. 
Anxiety also has been visiting my relationship with myself.

It has tried to break us up many times. Even threatening with the feeling of despair and helplessness. 
It wasn’t until I suggested to myself to attend some anxiety support groups that I’ve felt like has given me a new lease on life. 
Anxiety will always hinder this relationship but I am becoming better at dealing with it and discussing it with myself. 
8 years is a long time but it’s been a roller coaster and I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world! 
Sending love to other singles out there that should be appreciated for being with themselves. 

You’re awesome, amazing, worthwhile, and deserve the best partner in the world. You! ❤️❤️

Share this yo!



‘Slutty Sundae’ – How you know you’re a basic bitch

I’m going to be completely honest here…I am a basic bitch. 

I say that in the nicest way possible…to myself. 

But it’s true. I’ve never been extravagant with my purchases for clothes or make up. Unless it’s a wedding…or funeral.  

Here are some of my basic bitch tendencies 

1. I’m probably the only 27 year old I know of, that owns one pair of heels. 

The reason was a wedding so I felt it was necessary to have a pair – considering I didn’t own any. 

That’s a step up. 

2. I have one pair of swimmers ie. bikini – top and bottom. To be fair, I don’t swim as much. 

Mainly due to the fact when I was 12, I neglected to realise that my skin is fair, not tanned. 

Beaching in the aussie sun with my beautifully olive tonned skin friends had me burning with envy. Literally! 

What better action to take than not wear any sunscreen at all! 

That’s what I did. 

But it left me with such bad burns from head to toe – that from then on, I never sat in the sun like that again. My olive skinned friends coated me in yoghurt. 

A sight I never wish to revisit. 

With a weary heart I tried convincing myself I would somehow surpass my genetics. Morphing into a beautifully olive skinned goddess sounded like heaven. 

It has yet to happen. 

But I have realised that I will never ever have a good “tan”. 

3. I still own clothes from 6 years ago. 

I’m not a massive clothes hoarder. I know people own a lot. But I suppose I generally do buy some nice things. I thoroughly make them last. 

Up to the point of holes, stains and missing buttons. 

4. I have one going out hand bag. 

I’m starting to think I have a more minimalist lifestyle than I realise. 

I just don’t need the use of having so many things when I can make what I have last. 

The bag was bought in Canada last year, real leather and has treated me well. 

 5. Lastly my make up collection. 

I used to put an effort into my make up. 

But over time I became lazy, having realised that I wanted to embrace what I had. 

This meant my make up style become as simple as can be. 


Other than a lipgloss, maybe a lipstick, this is it. 

Mascara, foundation and blush. 

The collections I’ve seen girls have are ridiculous. Boxes and boxes of cosmetics, ‘stick this here’ and ‘apply this there’.  

I just don’t get it. 

But, there is good news! 

Today, I went to a neighbours get together – the inaugural street “Girls and goss” (my neighbour invited ladies in my street for goss and champers – champagne). 

A woman that attended, is a beauty therapist. She receives loads of products that she doesn’t use. 

An incredibly sweet hard arsed woman you wouldn’t want to mess with. 

She went to her house returning with 3 large bags of make up. 

I actually got excited. And gave them to us. 

This is huge for me. I now own highlighter! 

I feel like such a girl but I think this will kick my butt into gear. It’ll be nicer to put more of an effort into my looks. 

Not that I don’t but I’ve always had the mentality that we don’t need make up. 

Our natural faces are way more beautiful than what any product can do. Being face naked. 

But…I have to admit, every now and then I do love a good spruce, especially with products named Nudestix. 



‘Slutty Sundaes’ – “Death is an unusual concept really. No animal intellectually has the capacity to think about it. Yet we can.” 

Hi sluts! 

I can’t believe I am admitting this but I nearly forgot to write this Sunday. Granted it’s only been an hour since Sunday here in Sydney, I do feel slightly guilty. 

This weekend was slightly uneventful yet on Saturday I revisited a path I’ve been a few years ago. 
The Death Cafe.

You may be thinking, “…oh god, this sounds morbid.” But it’s not. Not really. 

Together, all of us, we have one massive step that we will all experience. 


Death is an unusual concept really. No animal intellectually has the capacity to think about it. Yet we can.

It’s fascinating. A concept that I’ve thought about many, many times. 

The Death Cafe is not an actual one physcial place. Instead it was held at numerous venues. 

The first time I attended it was held in a snazzy jazz bar converted from a well known brothel. 
Fancy lamps, naked women on the ceiling, Japanese erotica on the walls. The encouraged venue for the immaculate conception of a human. 

Yet there we were talking about death and dying. It was a surprisingly most uplifting experience. 

On Saturday, I headed to a rustic cafe in the south end of Newtown. An area known for its openness in all manners. 

I met the woman who conducts these meetings at a cafe. 

Michele Knight. A doctor in social work and facilitator for the monthly meetings. 

I interviewed her for an up and coming project which I’m pretty excited as it sounds rather compelling. 

The attendees happened to be much older people – I was obviously the youngest. 

I won’t disclose what was said because it’s a very secure, warm, open and highly confidential meeting. 

But I will say, I posed a question to the group. 

Without getting into the path of religion or spirituality, which clearly the group all seemed to follow in some shape or form, I wanted to shake that thought. 

“Just hypothetically, if we all found out that this life was all that there was,”

“Would you live your life different knowing that when you die that’s all there is – nothing else?” 

One person confirmed it wouldn’t. 

The conversation swerved allowing my to divulge in my thoughts on religion.

I don’t need religion to have a moral compass. 

I don’t need to be told what to do. 

I don’t need the notion that if I do good things I will later benefit from it.  

I don’t need to think some Godly figure has granted me a job when in fact I was capable myself. 

And I certainly don’t want to believe that a God would allow children with incurable cancer or born in war torn countries to exist to test my relationship with religion and God. 

I don’t doubt religion has its benefits for people and I totally get that. In all honesty, I’m slightly envious. 

But it just isn’t for me and that’s okay. 

You can check out the Death Cafe online – the link is worldwide and has dates for up and coming meetings within your closet city or town. 



‘Slutty Sundaes’ – Life in colour 

Welcome to this week’s Slutty Sundae. 

I’ve finally had some time to look through my photos from my little break away. 

My partial perfectionism has led me to only hand pick a few photos I really liked. 

Unknowingly I chose a theme of colour so do enjoy. 

The sun’s shift is over. The night sky is about to begin. 

Oh, the prettiest rooster I ever did see. 

Getting lost in the snake-filled forest. 

Nothing better than a colourful heart bench – accompanied by some very loyal doggies. 

This view just instantly made me happy. Being there is just as good as it looks. 

Cafe lovers couldn’t keep their hands off each other – or their eyes for that matter. 

Till next Sunday, don’t forget the true meaning of Slutty Sundaes. A day of rest with little regret yet fulfilled with pleasure. 

Take that how ever you want. 😜



‘Slutty Sundaes’ – when Life hands you bruised bananas. 

Bananas are great. They’re good for you. Easy to eat and take with you on the run. But occasionally you get the odd bruised banana. But is it really a bad thing? 

A friend of mine was just diagnosed with a chronic disease that has great potential to inflict pain and a very physical abnormality. 

It’s a rare condition, one that my friend is in turmoil over it. 

Throughout my life I’ve hated my body. My number one enemy. 

‘Why can’t my legs be more toned?’

‘Why can’t my arms be straight yet muscular?’

‘What if I just took some fat out of my sausage fingers?’ 

The questions and revelations really wouldn’t stop. 

That all being said. I’ve come to appreciate what I DO have rather than what I don’t. 

‘Did you know I have two completely functional legs that can get me from A to B?’ 

‘I know it doesn’t look like it but my arms are actually quite strong.’ 

‘My ass is big, I know. But I actually love how it looks at this angle!’ 

Believe me, I wasn’t always like this. 

I would write in my journal every week about how ugly I was. 

How there was nothing going for me because I was that hideous.

How everyone just pitied me and that was why they were surrounding themselves around me. 
I once attributed myself to the “Ugly Duckling” because have no boobs or my period meant there was clearly something wrong with me. 

But as time moved on, I’ve begun to appreciate what I do have. 

It takes a lot of hours, dedication, changing your thought patterns and really just not giving a fuck about what people think. 

If someone doesn’t like something about you. Fuck em. 

You’re not here on this planet for said person. You are here for you. 

This is what I’ve been trying to tell my friend. But she’s so enthralled in this idea that she is hideous because of said condition. I assure you, she isn’t. 

Much like a bruised banana, once you delicately peel away each side you’re presented with a imperfectly perfect banana. 

I believe if we appreciated ourselves better we would treat others better. 

But maybe that suffering DOES form itself into something better. 

But ultimately it’s up to you to change that mentality. 

Trust me, it’s not an easy path. But slowly I’m peeling away the bruised skin filled with bad thoughts and self doubt. To eating that damn deliciousness and appreciating it filling my tummy. 


TAFE Journal

When visions become reality #anonymousconfessions

I’ve had a project in the works.

It’s called ‘Anonymous Confessions’.

Essentially, I have a tent and in this case, the Confessional Tent. In which participants, reveal something that they’ve kept to themselves by recording confessions.

I had been planning this for a while but finally took it out into the public view.

Devising a plan was pretty simple. Set up the tent, stay there all day and try aim to have people record their confessions.


I started at 9:30 in the morning, staying the whole day next to my Confessional Tent like a needy child.

It was worthwhile though. I was quite apprehensive about it all. Perhaps also the fact I wouldn’t pee until about 6pm that night!

Anyway, it was a fun day. I met so many incredible people. Most reactions from strangers were positive saying how they really liked the idea.

This boosted my confidence in the whole project. Especially coming from the least likely people. In total I had 14 recordings.

My goal was 20 but perhaps that was a bit ambitious.

I did have one guy approach me and said I didn’t give enough information. “If I’m just walking passed that and I see ‘Confessional Tent’ I would run for the hills,’ he said.

I understood his feedback and that’s fine. He is entitled to his opinion. But then I replied “I understand that, but now that you saw my poster. You’ve actually come up to me,” I added. I then went into detail about how I had formulated the idea.

Once he heard it he looked at me and said “Okay, yeah now I like the idea.”


I also included additional questions to help (Okay I didn’t know that the tent would have slots for this but how awesome) if people were stuck on what to say.

This seemed to really work as most people would begin to say they didn’t have anything to confess. I would then just place other questions in their hands and it seemed to spark something.



Along with little thank you notes, I had lollies to give them once they were finished. Just a nice sweet touch to say thanks for their participation.

Honestly, this idea was sparked from my love of connection, people and sharing stories.

I’m hoping to continue this project and see where it takes me!

It’s just fascinating to see ideas become reality when you start from the drawing board to sitting on a crate for more than 8 hours talking to strangers in a park.



‘Slutty Sundaes’ – I have to say, I have found my retirement village. 

How has everyone’s week been? 

I was away from last week and had a day off class. 

A much needed break. 

Sometimes it just helps getting out of the big smoke. Visiting little towns like Nimbin who pride themselves in herbal fixes, hemp and “Pit paste”. 

We, my parents and older brother, were staying with my Godfather. He was present at my birth 27 years a go, subsequently seeing my mum’s vagina. 

The first day my brother and I headed to Dreamworld in Queensland’s Gold Coast, or should now be called ‘No-people-world’. 

Apart from the short lines allowing us to go on rides way too many times – to my inner child’s delight. 

It was also quite deserted. 

Last year’s devastating incident which left 4 adults dead from a ride, must have had an affect on the crowds. 

Google ‘Rapid Water ride – Dreamworld deaths if you want to know about it all. 

The staff there were very friendly and seemed to all be in good spirits. 

A few days after, we went to a family friends house in Federal, Northern NSW. A beautiful in land location surrounded by hills, trees and farmland. 

At 27 years of age, I can say I have found my retirement village. 

If this view doesn’t convince you, I wouldn’t know what will. 

The sun was streaming between the outside decking. As it rested on the horizon creating an ambience that left me feeling way more appreciative of life than usual. 

Birds were singing as I looked over the hill and down the backyard were black cows sitting comfortably under the trees nearby. 

Never had such a moment felt so peaceful. 

On our last day, we ventured to this lovely little secluded waterfall called Northbridge in Lamington National Park (so Aussie!) which was amazingly tiny but so pretty. 

We were walking towards the waterfall when my brother said to my mum. “Keep walking”, she turned to her right and there was a huge 3-metre python snake just making its way towards the path. 

Luckily my mum’s swearing made the snake head in the opposite direction. 

Eventually we headed to the cave, with tiny bats flying around in circles in the darker parts of the cave. 

And we embraced the view. 

Needless to say, I need to take a break from the city more often! 



‘Slutty Sundaes’ – As soon as I met him, I knew it wasn’t going to work

Over the years, I have had few relationships.

I’m proud of this fact but also it slaps me in the face when people ask me my relationship history. 

Being single for a long time has many benefits. 

I’m highly independent in what I want. I don’t have to consider anyone’s feelings when making a decision. I do as I please when travelling. I can be a recluse without feeling guilty. Casual flirtation. The works. Sex. 

But there are things I really miss. 

Sharing moments with that one person about each other’s lives. intimacy with someone. Laughing together. Holding hands. Being wanted by someone. Fighting and making up. Sex. 

This had sparked my trial of online dating. 

In over 5 years, I’ve been on up to 10 different dates with guys. Plenty of fish. OkCupid. Tinder. I’ve done it all.

The last date I was on, played out like this. 

I had spoken to this guy for a week or so, before I thought it would be good to meet up. 

Let’s call him ‘Charlie’.

Charlie’s photos looked nice on his profile. Quite sweet looking with long hair and beard. A musician. He had lived in Berlin for a few years but finally decided to come home. 

He was sweet to talk to. Nothing bizarre stood out. 

I decided to take him to a local restaurant to me, thinking it would be nice to see live music the jazz bar nearby. 

As soon as I met him, I knew it wasn’t going to work. 

He was wearing a white suit jacket with a blue collared shirt. Black pants and white shoes.

If he rocked it, I wouldn’t have cared but he looked how he felt. Awkward. 

I also noticed he had short hair and no beard. Slight diversion but none the less, I could manage. 

We arrived and sat in the middle of the restaurant to a warm greeting. The waitress let us know of the specials as well as a deal that gave us a free drink if we checked in. 

I suggested Charlie check-in to which he complied. I got myself a white wine and Charlie chose red. 

Conversation flowed as we continued to get to know each other. I made a joke about getting a tattoo of a penis on my back. I’m not sure he entirely appreciated my humour. 

Charlie went into technical detail of how he created his music. Something that I’m sure only a music geek would know. 

He paid for the meal which was nice but not expected.

After dinner, we headed to the jazz bar and sat down on their swanky couches. We talked some more over drinks and I was still trying to convince myself to give this guy a fair go. 

There’s something I should say. I can be so confident in certain environments but there’s also situations that force me to become incredibly awkward and anxious. Dating can be one of them. More specifically first dates I would say. 

This is when the date made a turn that I just couldn’t go along with. 

As we were talking, Charlie began to sneeze like a trooper. This meant consistent sneezing. I understand what it’s like. I get hayfever it’s the worst. This wasn’t an issue or so I thought. 

However, Charlie lacked the awareness of social constructed etiquette to when one sneezes. Instead of finding tissues Charlie had a better option. His hands. 

Charlie began to sneeze once, twice, no three times in a row. He compensated by covering his nose with his hands and swiftly rubbing them together as if I wouldn’t notice. 

He continued the conversation as if I had witnessed nothing. 

My jaw literally dropped to which I had to pick it up and pass it off as I was thirsty for my drink. 

It turned out, when he had drunk that red wine he was in fact allergic to it. 

Just a note for any guy reading this, don’t drink or eat something you’re allergic to on a first date or any for that matter. It’s not worth it! 

He sneezed most of the time which forced him to tell me he had a stroke a few years back. This made him quite sensitive to certain food and drinks, one being – red wine. 

Other than grossed out by his lack of snot hygiene. 

I hadn’t appreciated him telling me I couldn’t leave an area of the bar to watch another band because it was considered “rude”. 

I totally get this notion. In fact, I would agree. 

But, we were sitting away from the band so much so that the amount of people would have hidden our disappearing act. 

I complied to his request but I didn’t feel comfortable. 

We eventually headed back to the main stage area and this new band gathered a bigger group of people. This forced us to stand next to the bar as we watched. 

While bobbing my head up and down feeling somewhat awkward with Charlie. He just HAD to take it to the next level. 

I felt this strange tickle on my elbow, looking down I realised it was Charlie’s hand, hoping it had been washed, trying to stroke my arm. 

Writing this down makes me laugh whilst cringing inside. I was giving him major cold shoulder vibes. 

Eventually I said I wanted to go home. Charlie offered to drive me home. I declined and told him I was within walking distance home.

This was true.  A 20 minute walk. 

The goodbye was too awkward to write down even for me. 

Lets just say I treated myself with Dominoes garlic bread so I would feel less guilty. 

It’s been a good 6 months since this date although Charlie has attempted to contact me twice. Kudos to the bloke. 

The thing is I know when I connect with someone. I can’t force it. 

Online dating is a bizarre concept. 

But I’d rather someone who used tissues to sneeze or at least excuse themselves to wash hands after a good three-sneeze-session.