Month: October 2014

Escape to LA – Venice Canal District, California – Photographic tales of an ex-Emirates flight attendant

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Escape to LA - Venice, California. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group)  https://hotndelicious.wordpress.com/

Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! – Photographic travel diary series.

Escape to LA – Venice Canal District, California. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

So here I am 12 hours after finding out that my brain scans are clear for another year and I have got another twelve month leave pass.

Grateful, relieved and happy to find out that I’m tumour-free for another year, I’ve spent some time today reassessing where I’m at, where I want to be and what makes me happy – reflection of previous goals I’ve set myself, flashbacks to watershed moments and memories of experiences that have changed my life for ever.

1 such trip was to LA and Texas last year shooting photos and providing social media for a series of international Australian music industry showcases called The Aussie BBQ. I’d returned from the Middle East in 2006, with grand plans (some might say delusional :p ) of being a rockstar living in the USA within 6 months. Flash forward to 2013 and I finally land in LA, not as a rockstar but a photojournalist of questionable technical proficiency, but a keen eye for a the money shot and social media skills to boot.

Upon landing into LAX, Andrew Bongiorno, one of my best mates and an Aussie actor who’s been living in LA for a few years picked me up from the airport and we cruised straight down to Venice Beach for breakfast and a stroll down to Santa Monica Pier. It wasn’t my first adventure to Venice, but this trip was under different circumstances… on my terms… and paid for through my hard work and a tenacious, relentless driving passion to love what I do for a living.

Captured this shot in the Venice Canal District on zero sleep after flying 15 hours across the planet and I can’t describe the happiness I feel as I stumble across this photo amongst a swag of others from my trip to Los Angeles, Austin and Houston last year.

My heart soars knowing what’s possible and following on from the Calling All Cars post 2 weeks back, following your dreams is a way of life and this moment in time has got me thinking about what my next steps are.

I’m floating on the sensations of the delirium and joy that come flooding back as I look at this snapshot of my life and clarify exactly what I want in my mind.

DW

Listen to the Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast series here.

Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet is a weekly podcast interviewing inspiring individuals and successful entrepreneurs from around the planet across a range of industries (incl. music, film/tv, fashion, travel, comedy and more) about what makes them tick as people and drives their hunger for success.

Hot & Delicious Group.. Passion, Creativity & Community.

Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet:

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Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

 

Zac Abroms (Viceroyalty) – Travel the world & work in the music industry

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Zac Abroms and Ryan Manu - Pyramid Rock Festoval 2012/13
Zac Abroms (Viceroyalty, S.T.E.P.) and Ryan Manu (Icah) – Pyramid Rock Festoval 2012/13

Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast series

Interview #5 – Zac Abroms (Viceroyalty, S.T.E.P.) – Music Industry

Good morning! Zac Abroms is a buddy of mine that I met a few years back when my business was running social media for Pyramid Rock Festival – an Australian music festival on Phillip Island just an hour or so out of Melbourne.

Beautiful little spot and magic memories of Tame Impala bringing in the New Year, chatting backstage with the humble and lovely Xavier Rudd and getting to know a bunch of amazing people including the boys from Kingswood, Zac Abroms, Ash Sambrooks of Higher Plains and Zac’s sister, Charlotte, of Large Noises. Zac and Ash’s respective businesses were looking after all the festival’s PR & Publicity and that festivals remains one of my happiest and proudest personal achievements as I basically got paid to hang out at a music festival, meet a shitload of cool people and share those memories with the world… or at least the work of Pyramid Rock fans & music-lovers.

Zac runs a music business called Viceroyalty providing online music publicity for a bunch of amazing Australian and international artists including Kimbra, Jessie Ware, Regina Spektor, Active Child, Bertie Blackman and many many more. He also has a music management business managing a few Aussie acts that I love including Manor, Danvers and the beautiful Kate Martin.

This year Zac and Ash Sambrooks also set-up The Society of Tastemakers and Elegant People (yes, it’s very tongue-in-cheek :D) also known as STEP which is a series of music industry events with live panel discussions and interesting live musical performances designed to connect people – match-matching video directors and photographers to bands and artists to mixers and producers.. mixing promoters with record labels and artists, but the beauty of it all is that absolutely anyone can come down and when I attended their first event a few months back, the bar was rammed with everyone from grassroots artists to seasoned music industry professionals and even newbies to the scene who don’t care what they do but just really want to work in music. It was awesome!

So as most of you know by now and to our 1st time listeners, welcome, this podcast is designed to tap into the lives and experiences of people who inspire me, help them tell their story and hopefully inspire a few of you along the way to chase what it is you love in life… ‘cause I tell you there is no better felling!

Enjoy!

Listen to our interview with Zac Abroms (Viceroyalty) & subscribe to Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast here

Photos from Pyramid Rock Festival by Hot & Delicious Group (Elijah Mina, Jordan Marshall and Dan Wilkinson)

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Hot & Delicious Group. Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet.

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

Bangkok checkers – Photographic tales of an ex-Emirates flight attendant

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Bangkok checkers. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).
Bangkok checkers. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! – Photographic travel diary series.

Bangkok checkers. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

I’ll do almost anything to feel alive… to escape the mundane… 

Every day I mix up even the little things up in my daily routine to keep the spark in me alive; walk a different way to work, decide on what flavours I’m craving that day and use them to fuel my meal choices rather than planning ahead, listen different tunes across a range of genres to clear my head or enhance existing emotions, change-up my fitness workouts and the days I do them on, varied styles of mediation… just several examples of little things I do kind to keep my life & mind fresh.

This also translates to my study & career path. I’ve worked many and varied roles including studying biochemistry at Swinburne University of Technology, working behind the barat Crown Casino, Emirates Airline flight attendant, a Cert IV in small business management, music industry (event operations & logistics/photographer/music supervisor/sponsorship & more), entrepreneurship & innovation at Swinburne Uni again and now social media… I base my choices on what I’m curious about and think I’d be good at and most of all I explore… my emotions, my faults, tastes, sounds, the lives & experiences of the people I know and those I’m fascinated by, the city I live in, the cities I don’t… It’s how I grow, have wonderful new and unexpected experiences… it’s how I feel alive. In short, pretty much my whole life I’ve walked the path less trodden. I like to get off the beaten track.

On my weekends in Melbourne and during the week, I’ll use different streets and alleys to reach my destination, taking in the sights and people around me. Jet-setting the globe with Emirates, I’d often wander around cities full of life and colour with no set plan, purely for the opportunity of what I might stumble across.

It’s quite amazing how many special little moments you experience and the people meet when you’re not so trapped up in the destination and by opening up your mind/soul to do things differently.

I captured this image on one such excursion stumbling around the streets of Bangkok. While I’ve taken more immediately eye-catching photography in my life, it’s amazing how such a simple photo capturing 2 local Thai gents playing checkers with Pepsi & Coke bottle tops can still capture my imagination and make me smile a number of years later. 

Your move 😉

DW

Click here for more photos from the Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! travel series

Hot & Delicious Group.. Passion, Creativity & Community.

Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet:

Twitter @hotndelicious 
Instagram @hotndelicious
Facebook.com/HotnDelicious
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Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

 

How to build a career as a fashion blogger & model – Winston & Willow

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Charlotte Bridgeman AKA fashion blogger Winston & Willow
Charlotte Bridgeman – Winston & Willow fashion blogger

Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast series

Interview #4 – Fashion blogger – Winston & Willow.

Hello world! 

Today’s podcast chit chats are with the very cool and stunning fashion blogger and model Charlotte Bridgeman AKA Winston & Willow. Charlotte’s been a friend of mine for about 7 years now and has built a career for herself as a blogger that sees her traveling to the USA a number of times a year just doing something she loves, which to me is the absolute ultimate and exactly why I wanted to sit down to with her and find out more about it.

Let’s get into it!

Listen to our interview with Winston & Willow here.

Gallery of images courtesy of Winston & Willow:

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Hot & Delicious Group. Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet.

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

New Foo Fighters single drops.. you’re welcome!

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Hot & Delicious.. music news & sick live photography from around the planet:

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Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.
Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

Calling All Cars. I’m a believer in following your dreams… Photographic tales of an ex-Emirates flight attendant

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Calling All Cars - Pyramid Rock Festival. Photo Credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).
Calling All Cars – Pyramid Rock Festival. Photo Credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! – photographic travel diary series.

Calling All Cars – Pyramid Rock Festival. Photo Credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

I’m a believer in following your dreams… nay, it’s not a belief, it’s a way of life, a burning passion from which those of us with the creativity and drive inside can not escape, explain or hide. Everything I’ve done until this point in my life has been the result of an overwhelming desire to live and be what every single one of us wants to be… happy.

For me it’s finding the simple pleasures in life, living for the moment and planning for the future. If you don’t love what you do 100%, then you shouldn’t be doing it. Every job has it’s challenges, but it’s all about the positives outweighing the negatives and if they’re not then it’s time to move on buddy.

Every cool job I’ve had – Emirates Airline cabin crew, running music festivals and events around Australia, music supervisor on a snowboard show on TV, shooting music festival photography and even guiding social media for some of the world’s biggest brands – has eventuated by me wanting to try something new and putting my balls on the line to ask if I can have a go.

I need to lay this story out in full over the coming weeks/months/years, but this photo of Calling All Cars is the result of series of events that started with checking out Russell Crowe‘s Twitter and lead me on the journey through all those jobs to where I am now. I shit you not.

This particular moment in time I was shooting a music festival for the 1st time and it just so happened to be for Australia’s top radio station triple j. I was so pumped for the opportunity and shot many amazing bands that weekend including Scissor Sisters, Gotye, Grandmaster Flash and many more, but Calling All Cars were a stand-out live performer.

An unstoppable, explosive force field of energy from word go, I clearly remember the seconds leading up to this Calling All Cars photo and the instinct lead me to position myself for what I could sense was going to be an amazing shot… and then it happened… Wow! I still get chills thinking about it! 

My 1st time shooting a music festival, all the result of not being afraid to ask. Not everyone you ask for an opportunity is going to say yes, but man when they do… When was the last time you did something for the first time?

DW

More photos of Calling All Cars here

Hot & Delicious.. music news & sick live photography from around the planet:

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Regan Lethbridge (Bonjah) on love, life & kick-ass rock music!

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Bonjah headline Hi Fi Bar, Melbourne. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

Fuckin’ love the boys from Bonjah. 4 dudes from New Zealand who decided to form a band, booked a one-way ticket to Australia and never looked back!

Today’s podcast chat is with Regan LethbridgeBonjah’s lead guitarist, booking agent at 123 Agency and band manager at Lemon Tree Music.

Eddie Vedder impressions, finding, losing and then re-capturing true love, busking on the streets of Melbourne to being one of Australia’s premier rock bands of the independent scene. Loved catching up with Regs and here’s just one little gem that I left the podcast with that’s applicable to all you aspiring musicians out there.

“At the end of the day, all the bullshit aside… it comes down to good songs and if you got a good song there, and you’ve got a good team and you got a little bit of luck you’re in with a sniff.”

Words to live by. Enjoy the show!

Listen to the full interview here.

Subscribe to our weekly Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast via iTunes here.

Gallery: Bonjah headline Hi Fi Bar, Melbourne. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

 

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Hot & Delicious Group. Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet.

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

Sunset. 4WDing. Middle East – Photographic tales of an ex-Emirates flight attendant.

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Sunset. 4WDing. Middle East. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

Flashbacks to Dubai days… from 1999 to 2006 I lived in the Middle East working for Emirates Airline. We lived a plastic-fantastic life traveling the world with disposable income, pretty girls and 5 star hotels. The rock-star’s lifestyle without being the rock star.

This expat lifestyle and cash cash cash meant buying toys that we’d otherwise probably not buy if we were living back in our home countries. One such treat to myself with my Monopoly money and access to cheap fuel, was a blood red JEEP Wrangler Renegade. It was a beast 🙂 some of the happiest memories I have in the haze of parties and hundreds of flights across our planet was hitting the desert with friends in our 4WDs and dirt bikes, driving through sand-dunes and creeks to rock-pools out in the back-blocks of the Dubai Emirate at the base of the mountains near Hatta.

While the photo inset is actually of a 4×4 tour I took to the desert with Arabian Adventures, it evokes memories of wadi BBQs and beers in the middle of the desert with good friends, dodging boulders at speed in wet, rocky creek-beds with James Brown cranked and diving into crisp cool rock-pools like no other place on earth.

Happy 🙂

DW

Click here for more photos from the Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! travel series

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Hot & Delicious Group. Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet.

4x4 driving in Hatta, UAE.
4×4 driving in Hatta, UAE.

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

 

Caro Taylor AKA Fashionista Fail – Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet.

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Listen to the full interview here.

Caro Taylor AKA Fashionista Fail joins Dan Wilkinson for Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet:

You had me at hello… Our guest today on the Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast is stunning, bubbly and lovely NZ TV Personality, blogger and all around legend, Carolyn Taylor.

Earlier this year Caro launched the Fashionista Fail blog with the goal of giving up her shopaholic tendencies for 1 year and putting every penny saved towards traveling the world.

Over a bottle of bubbly Caro and I chatted about getting paid to eat snails, interviewing Richard Branson, ghost hunting haunted houses… Caro is truly a breath of fresh air and her’s is a life full of rich and interesting stories.  

Enjoy! 

Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet is a weekly podcast series where we interview inspiring people and entrepreneurs from around the world across a range of industries including music, film & tv, fashion, comedy, travel and more.

Subscribe to our weekly Hot & Delicious: Rocks The Planet podcast via iTunes here.

Drop us any podcast feedback via email at info@hotndelicious.com or come say hi on social media here:

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Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.

Sunset #805 Pink Bldg. Dubai – Photographic tales of an ex-Emirates flight attendant

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Sunset beers. 803 Pink Building, Dubai.

Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! – photographic travel diary series.

Sunset #805 Pink Bldg. Dubai. Photo credit: Dan Wilkinson (Hot & Delicious Group).

Sunset. My happy place. Ingrained in my daily ritual. It’s my down-time, recharge, meditation & relaxation all in one.

For me, this ritual began in Dubai days when I lived on Sheikh Zayed Road in “Emirates White Building”, an apartment building next door to the Shangri La Dubai, that can quite clearly in the spectacular ‘Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol’ footage shot from the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa.

Fortunately my 2nd Dubai apartment faced away from Dubai’s busiest strip of road – a 4 lane freeway on each side. My balcony faced west towards the Persian Gulf overlooking a medium-sized mosque and part of the ritual I had with 2 best mates that I shared our “Club #203” bachelor pad with (yes, I’m serious – there was carved plaque and everything! 🙂 shakes head.. ) and friends in the Pink Palace next door (Emirates Pink Building), was watching the sun go down over long chats out on one of our multiple balconies or to smash a few ice-cold pints at the start of big nights out. Our kitchen had a 2nd full-sized fridge dedicated to the slabs/cartons of beer piled next to it and chock-full of ice-cold bottles of vodka, chilled pint glasses and a vast array of spirit mixers. One serious life of excess.

This shot was captured at one such Pink Building sunset session. We got up to all sorts of mischief in Pink and White buildings. Water-bombing unsuspecting Starbucks patrons from 8 floors up, tequila & Jenga drinking games, Up the River/Down The River, scantily-clad cabin crew packing out themed apartment parties, end of night drinks ’til dawn & beyond after the Dubai bars and clubs closed at 3am.. and let’s not talk about the time the tool-bag in the pic decided to drop an empty Corona off the building straight into one of our mate’s JEEPs from 8 floors up! Damage control in more than one sense of the word!

True story. In case you haven’t been up on my Hot & Delicious Instagram yet and been bombarded with sunset magic, one of THE major factors in me choosing my current Melbourne CBD apartment is it’s stunning views of Melbourne’s Docklands, breathtaking skyporn sunsets and nightscapes.

It is truly my happy place these days and some days I float away to the Middle East. 🙂

DW

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Click here for more photos from the Hot & Delicious Rocks: The Planet! travel series

Hot & Delicious Group.. Passion, Creativity & Community.

Culture, travel, music, news & sick live photography from around the planet:

Dan Wilkinson works as a Manager, Marketing Strategy & Analysis – Social Media at SapientNitro Australia and is founder of music industry biz, Hot & Delicious Group.