26th March 2015 Written by John Ma Trending Fun

The Kiss

If Fair Day was a family affair, and the Harbour Party was a grown up’s shindig, then The Party was one big sloppy kiss! Much like the ‘Parade Portraits’, The Kiss is all about the people and their moment. And as the title suggests, it’s all about kissing.

Throughout this eight part series, I hope I was able to bring a little love, passion, and fun into your world. I hope this has shown the world what the Sydney Mardi Gras was like, inside and out. And I really hope that we can go out like these guys and share our love with the world.

So no more from me. If we’re gonna use our mouths, then we should use it to kiss someone we love. And for whatever reason if you need inspiration, then look no further! Because don’t these guys look like they are having fun?

JohnMa Kiss 1

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 2

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 3

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 4

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 5

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 6

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 7

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 8

© John Ma


JohnMa Kiss 9

© John Ma

This is the end of the official coverage of the 2015 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, but if you need more you can head here, theres lots more to see!

And until next time… Much love and happiness!

23rd March 2015 Written by John Ma Trending Fun

Twinkle Twinkle Little Party

JohnMa 01 Invasion

Zombies © John Ma

Oxford Steet was laid to waste. Fish and chips and kebabs refuelled tired bodies as the hordes of party zombies descended onto the Hordern Pavilion.


JohnMa 02 GoodAndEvilAndStringCheese

Good, Evil and String Cheese © John Ma

The bodies flowed through the gates. There was a nagging feeling that serious choices had to be made that night.


JohnMa 03 Union

Union © John Ma

Aussie girl meets Brazilian girl. They fall in love and decide to get married. The ceremony took place on one of the floats in the parade. Imagine what their kids will look like.


JohnMa 04 Entourage

Entourage © John Ma

Some rolled deep.


JohnMa 05 Razzle

Razzle © John Ma



JohnMa 06 Gaga

Gaga © John Ma


JohnMa 07 BigRooms

Big Rooms © John Ma

There were lots of big rooms like this and all of them boiling with human energy.


JohnMa 08 TheMenu

The Menu © John Ma

On full display.


JohnMa 09 NeonPeaces

Neon Peace © John Ma

They came in neon and peace.


JohnMa 10 Deuces

Deuces © John Ma

Two is better than one.


JohnMa 11 Bodies

Frenzy © John Ma

It was like a feeding frenzy.


JohnMa 12 Victors

Victors © John Ma

He is a winner.


JohnMa 13 Jocks

Jocks © John Ma

Fully sick jocks!


JohnMa 14 Unicorn

Unicorn © John Ma


JohnMa 15 Rider

Rider © John Ma

Some were just riding it out.


JohnMa 16 Teleporter

Teleporter © John Ma

If you let it, you can imagine it’s a teleporting machine.


JohnMa 17 Pray

Pray © John Ma

Sometimes this happens when I stand up on high places. I hope I granted him what he prayed for. I gave him the only thing I could, and took his portrait in this raving mass of Mardi Gras excitement.


JohnMa 18 MadMaxine

Mad Maxine © John Ma

Definitely teleported here.


JohnMa 19 Twinkle

Twinkle © John Ma

I caught one twinkle.


JohnMa 20 Selfless

Selfless © John Ma

Some friends are just so selfless when they are taking selfies.


JohnMa 21 FairyFloss

Fairy Floss © John Ma


JohnMa 22 DanceFloor

Dance Floor © John Ma

The struggle and hassle of walking through the crowd is easily justified by what you’ll find. I found him in the middle of the buzzing balminess.


JohnMa 23 Pasties

Pasties © John Ma

Sometimes when you lose a pastie you just have to make do.


JohnMa 24 Fairytales

Fairytales © John Ma

Someone playing with the teleporter again.


JohnMa 25 RockOn

Rock On © John Ma

By now I had no idea which one of the big rooms I was in. The Party kept on and I held on.


JohnMa 26 Poof

© John Ma

And like magic, she appeared again.


JohnMa 27 Casualties

Casualties © John Ma

There were bound to be some casualties, and not everyone was going to walk away unscathed.


JohnMa 28 DumpOut

Bump Out © John Ma

I honestly can’t remember the party ending. But if I had to imagine it, it would be like this.

25th February 2015 Written by John Ma Trending Conversation

Pride in the Park, Fair Day

John Ma HelloStranger

Hello Stranger © John Ma

I ventured into Fair Day as a blank canvas. I wanted to experience the event through what I encountered alone, and so I avoided any PR material that was available to me. As I walked onto the grounds of the park I was immediately greeted by characters that only our special Mardi Gras can bring out.


John Ma AllYouNeedIsLove

All You Need Is Love © John Ma

It’s heart-warming to see our future generations so colour blind and oblivious to the present divisions of our society. At a time when the adults are arguing amongst themselves because of the walls we’ve built up along the way. These little ones are emerging through the noise and learning about the world by seeing that all you need is love.


John Ma UnitedColours

United Colours © John Ma

Not surprisingly there was sass everywhere that day.


John Ma SomeDontNeedAStage

Some Don’t Need a Stage © John Ma

See… I told you so.


John Ma Diva

Divas © John Ma

A large part of the fabulousness of Mardi Gras comes from the drag queens. The flamboyance and colour of these beautiful ladies are iconic to their image. So when capturing Kara Zmatiq during her performance, I wanted to visualise her in a way that wasn’t dressed by the usual symbols. This black and white image was to me, a way of seeing these talented ladies as a timeless classic.


John Ma MonkeySee

Monkey See © John Ma

PDA (public displays of affection) at any Mardi Gras event is never an issue. And if you had an issue with it… Too bad!


John Ma Marilyn

Marilyn © John Ma

As I peered through my lens and watched the crowds all day long, seeing face after face glide past my view, this lovely little lady reminded me that sometimes I’m not the only one watching.


John Ma Heels

Heels © John Ma

Some girls complain about the pain that their heels give them after a night out… some girls.


John Ma Fairday

Fair Day © John Ma

Is there a better feeling than the arms of a loved one holding you close?


John Ma DoTheRightThing
Do The Right Thing © John Ma

Not everything was about glamour. Sometimes it’s a case of a round peg in a square hole, and you just have to make it work.


John Ma Encore

Encore © John Ma

Fair Day was filled with commotion and jam-packed with acts and performances. But even as the last light of the day started to fade, for some that only meant that it was time for their encore.


John Ma GoodbyeStranger

Goodbye Stranger © John Ma

I couldn’t help but smile when just as I was leaving Fair Day, I caught my welcoming party on the other side of the road leaving as well. Still very much in character and with all the exuberance of the day, this lovely lady seemed to remember me and gave me one last hurrah. This frozen goodbye only made me look forward to the next event that leads us just a little bit closer to the final parade.

3rd October 2014 Written by Warhol's Children Music

Don't Say a Word, Just Listen


Just listen to this until the weekend.

Lots of Love,

Warhol’s Children




Image: Hannah Greethead

14th July 2014 Written by warholst Arts

Nerdy Dirty: Illustrations for Nerds in Love

Nicole Martinez is an art directer and designer based in Boston, USA. Her designs act as adorable homages to cute characters and pop culture icons - we particularly love her set of 'nerdy' illustrations.

We fell in love with Nicole's nerdy series of illustrations but seriously, who could resist them?

29th April 2014 Written by Aimee Tracton In Conversation

Why You Shouldn’t Hold Your Lover Hostage

We all know that one person we’d lock in a cellar with limited human contact until, due to either epiphany or Stockholm syndrome, they realise how in love with us they are. We don’t really do it though, because it’s illegal. “But why?” you ask, lacing a beverage with Rohypnol. It’s because Dr. Aaron Ben-Zeév says so. He’s carefully separated the very politically incorrect, sometimes illegal, notion of ‘possession’ from the more positively adaptive ‘belonging’. Possession is restrictive and steps on the toes of individual rights. Belonging is a more subtle kind of romantic love that doesn’t involve a tranquilliser gun.

We must admit, possessive relationships are the most entertaining. Emily Bronte’s novel Wuthering Heights had characters like Catherine haunting Heathcliff from beyond the grave, just in case he met someone new. The hottest scene in Vicky Christina Barcelona was when Penelope Cruz went nuts in a little black dress yelling in Spanish and shot the painfully boring Rebecca Hall in a fit of romantic jealousy.

Dr. Ben-Zeev has concluded that we are all just saps who want to belong to someone. That’s okay, when belonging is limited to psychological terms (no prisoners) and is mutual. Belongingness comes from repeated, positive and meaningful activities you share with another. “How can I belong or be belonged to like a healthy, normal person?” you ask. You can do this by:

Not getting involved in an unrequited love situation. Inequality in the giving and receiving of care will make you feel like crap. Belongingness is only possible if it’s mutual.

Dropping that ‘you complete me’ crap. Belongingness doesn’t mean the fusing of identities. A good way to know if your love is profound is that you and your lover are flourishing like two separate and unique flowers in the same dirt patch. Not like an insidious vine slowly strangling and draining your partner of vital life sources.

Seeing your jealousy in perspective. A negative attitude towards the violation of the belongingness you’ve built is normal. Sexual jealously is the fear of losing that sense of belonging.

So, we are clearly very entertained by the heightened emotions possession arouses. In reality, only highly attractive Europeans can get away with it in relationships without getting dumped. We all know about the correlation between craziness and hotness (the hotter you are, the more socially acceptable it is for you to be nuts). If you’re a Brazilian supermodel, ignore this article. The rest of us can watch the good looking people on DVD, snuggled on the couch with that special someone we do not own. 

Read more about Dr. Aaron Ben-Zeév’s research on belonging here.

4th April 2014 Written by Yael Brender Film & Photography

What Does Love Look Like? A New Look at an Old Tradition

You know those wedding portraits that hang on the walls for twenty years (or until the divorce, whichever comes first) that always look staged and like the subjects are slightly uncomfortable? Blush photography is hitting back against conventional (read: boring) wedding day snaps and capturing the happy couple in their natural habitat.

Blush’s latest album is her best yet. At least, I’m assuming it’s a her – Blush’s online presence is incredibly cagey about finicky details such as their name. Based in Salt Lake City, the photographer has some of the most unusual and beautiful snaps I’ve ever seen.

The latest album, ‘A very non wedding’, captures Whit and Colby on their wedding day. The shoot starts where the couple presumably started their morning – making coffee in the kitchen – and tracks the whole day, including the not-usually-seen moments, like when the dog sat on the train of her wedding dress.

The pictures are beautiful, real and emotive—more so than usual wedding portraits and refreshingly original in a world where every online blogger with a Cannon thinks they’re a photographer. There’s a range of black-and-whites, candids and posed – Blush states simply, “I want you to know what love looks like.” 

You can see the entire album here

12th March 2014 Written by Yael Brender Dangerous Ideas

Love More, Live Longer

Morgan Freeman famously declared, “I hate the word homophobia. It’s not a phobia. You’re not scared; you’re an asshole.” Touché. Good news though, homophobes are going to die sooner.

Mark L. Hatzenbuehler published a new study in the American Journal of Public Health this month that concluded people who aren’t highly prejudiced against gay people live an average of almost three years longer than those who are.

Between 1988 and 2008, 20,226 heterosexual men and women participated in interviews for the study-4,216 were dead by 2008. Most died from a heart attack, and most were homophobic.

Anger – one of the crucial components to anti-gay prejudice – contributed most significantly to the heart attacks, especially among men.

Furthermore, interacting with people whom you are prejudiced against is stressful, which isn’t good for your health either. In other words, if gay couples tick you off, then you’ve got a bigger risk of dropping dead of heart failure.

So basically…be nice and tolerant and you will receive three extra life points – and you won’t even have to share those last three years with intolerant assholes.  

See the entire study here

11th October 2013 Written by warholst Pop Cultured


By Oscar S. Pretty much everything I know, that’s in anyway important, I have learnt from porn. Go ahead, snigger if you want, go ahead, get that chortling out of the way because I’m quite serious about it. If you think carefully about porn, you’ll find that there is an ideology that drives it. Porn makes no conscious effort to adopt this ideology, it’s just there, embedded in the very fabric of porn. Ok, so what has porn taught us? 1. No one cares what you do for a living. Men are so messed up, they are so concerned with status and money and power and it’s fucking up the entire world. The main reason men are so concerned with all of this is because they think it will impress someone enough for them to get laid.
10th October 2013 Just Listen

Mixtapes For Boyfriends Nicola Jane Mitchell

1. Where did you sleep last night - Nirvana 2. White blank Page - Mumford and sons 3. The XX - Shelter 4. The Strokes - Under Control 5. Poison Cup - M Ward

The stages of eradicating love for someone. Stage one anger. Dispelling all notions that it has reality is what it is. The all consuming rage stops rational thinking processes ‘Tell me where did you sleep last night’. After solid confirmation of the breakup you begin to analyse their new found love and attempt to squeeze any love left to the surface. Questioning their ability to love another to the same extent. ’ can you lie next to her and give her your heart as well as your body’. 

30th August 2013 Written by Ryan Brooks Must Read


I used to smoke a lot of weed. Like, a lot of weed. My roommates and I kept no shortage of bongs, pipes and papers in the house. Paperclips were strewn everywhere, for reasons only another stoner might fathom. Wake-and-bakes, bucket-bongs and fat blueberry-flavoured blunts were regular fixtures of my day-to-day existence, though to what extent I can only wildly speculate. Looking back on that hazy time in my life, I realise now that I was unhappy, though I never stopped smoking long enough for this realisation to sink in.
28th August 2013 Written by warholst Pop Cultured

Better late than never – here’s this week’s Throwback Tuesday.

All we need is love,” wrote some person or other. That seems fair. So we turn to the great love stories that hold steadfast places within the annals of history; Cleopatra and Mark Antony, Romeo and Juliet, Kathy and Heathcliff, Amy and Rory … But there is none quite like the story of Harold and Maude, as depicted in Hal Ahby’s 1971 cult classic film. This is a rom-com with a refreshingly hilarious black comedy difference. Maude is a 79-year-old free spirit who is in love with life and lives each day to it’s fullest— enjoying the occasional nude modelling, while Harold is a 20-something who is obsessed with death, enjoys committing fake suicides and drives around in a hearse, and both enjoy attending random people’s funerals …
20th August 2013 Written by Alexandra Catherine Pop Cultured


By Alexandra Catherine Braces. In high school they were a rite of passage. Everybody who was anybody had braces because they were inevitably going to make you super cool and sexy when you were older.
20th June 2013 Written by Lee Bemrose Hipster Life


By Lee Bemrose Addiction can be a horrible thing. It makes you a slave. It makes a level-headed person change their habits and do things they wouldn’t otherwise do. Addiction can ruin lives.

My name is Lee, and I’m a Banh Mi-aholic. I love my Vietnamese pork roll. I love the crispy crust on the outside, the fluffy soft bread inside, the seismic crunch of cucumber and shallot and coriander stalk all so wonderfully juxtaposed with the cream-smooth pâté . I love the incendiary explosion of fresh chilli, the deft balance of salty soy with two-tone pork products. Oh Em Gee, it’s gotta be Bahn Mi for me. Problem is, you start calling into the same place everyday to get your fix and strange things can happen. It all started innocently enough. I saw that a local place in my new neighbourhood served Vietnamese pork rolls and remembered that I quite liked them. I’d had a bit of a thing for them before, so on a whim I decided to try these ones out. Ah yes, the memories came flooding back. So began my first steps on the road to ruin. Soon the girl behind the counter started to recognise me as not just another random walk-in but as a regular customer deserving special treatment. Soon there were smiles and “how are yous?” as our transaction got under-way. Soon the thin spread of pâté seemed to become more generous – no mere scrape for this loyal customer; I, it seemed, was worthy of a luscious, thick spread that made my heart pound in anticipation. Likewise, the rest of this symphony for the mouth grew in quantity until surely I was getting the Mac Daddy of all Bahn Mi. I could feel the eyes of other Bahn Mi addicts on me, wondering why I was getting such royal treatment when they were receiving their pedestrian efforts. I tried to restrict myself to one indulgence every second day but it was no good. I was hooked, and hooked good. Some days I almost made it past the bakery, only to be lured inside at the last moment. My Bahn Mistress’ smile of greeting turned to a flirtatious giggle, her cheeks blushing as she set about professionally assembling my daily fix. I knew things were spiralling out of control when one day, as we came to the dirty part of the deal, when I paid my $4 for her services, ever so softly, gently and I swear in slow motion, the tips of our fingers touched…And I don’t know if you’re an illusion, Don’t know if I see it true, but you’re something that I must believe in, and you’re there when I reach out for you… Love is in the air, every sight and every sound… But it got worse. How could it possibly get worse, you wonder? Like this: Lure, giggle, blush, Bahn Mi assemblage, payment, slow motion fingertip caress, cheesey 70s music followed by, “One moment. Something for you.” Bahn Mistress has deposited a mystery item into a paper bag and slid it blushingly across the counter. I thank her and we smile blushingly and shyly, then I make my way through the thought balloons of the other customers (“Oh right – so not only does he get better pork rolls than us but now he gets mystery gifts as well.” “What’s so good about him?” “What the hell is going on here?” “Where is that cheesy 70s music coming from?”). Outside, curiosity piqued, I peek inside the bag: a doughnut. But given the circumstances, it’s not just any doughnut but a Doughnut Of Love. And it might have been manageable if she had given me any other pastry (there were lamingtons and cookies and caramel slices and chocolate eclairs to choose from) but the symbolism of this Doughnut Of Love was unmistakable; she was clearly telling me she wanted to put a gold wedding ring on my finger. This latest development happened just yesterday. I am due to be lured inside in a few short hours. I have no choice – I have to tell this Bahn Minx that I already have a partner. Perhaps I should let her down gently by making light of it and telling her that it’s not her, it’s Mi… no, that won’t work. How-oh-how do we get ourselves into these things? Image Credit: Helmut Newton

17th May 2013 Written by warholst Hipster Life


What would you do for a couple of freebie tickets to a music festival? The Snowy Mountains Music Festival to be exact? A picturesque view and a killer line-up featuring over 120 concerts with headliners Blue King Brown, Jeff Lang and Kylie Auldist of The Bamboos. We’re waving a free double pass in the air. A willing pair of souls can accompany Warhol’s Children’s Nick (pictured with his head inside part of a horse) and Pam to the festival by answering the question below…
25th March 2013 Written by Rebecca Lay In Conversation


These are some anecdotes and thoughts about love and relationships. They may be uninteresting, unwelcome, silly or naïve, or all of the above, but there’s no denying that they are my own … LOVINGLY SPONSORED BY DUREX. Enjoy! Here are a couple of anecdotal reminiscences about childhood and love (sort of). When I was in grade 4 I used to write love letters for my friends to give to their crushes; not because I was a prodigiously talented writer (have you read my stuff?) but because I had some really awesome stationery that I thought would be perfect for conveying messages of love around the playground. I recall one letter in particular where I wrote, “Your eyes are like pools I could dive into and do laps in” – because the guy had really blue eyes … The skill and mastery of the English language at just 9! In yo face Keats!
15th February 2013 Written by warholst Music Madness

We Hope Your Valentine’s Day Is Fabulous

We love you. We hope your Valentine’s Day is fabulous. If it is, stop reading now. Still with us? Ok, we feel your pain too; this is for all of us who have had a shitty Valentine’s Day. Grab a bottle of gin and a box of tissues; here are 4 playlists for indulging in a little melancholia, presented with love from Warhol’s Children…
7th February 2013 Just Listen

Music For A Boring Thursday #21

It’s Thursday!! You know what that means – no, no, put away that rope, take that toaster out of the bath, and open the windows to air out those exhaust fumes …

22nd November 2012 Written by Mickey Suzuki Pop Cultured


By Warhol’s Children’s Mickey Suzuki. So, I’ve always been highly suspicious of this whole long distance relationship thing because I am of the mind that relationships simply cannot conquer distance. Marvin, you write a mean Motown tune, but I beg to differ, I believe there are in fact mountains high enough, valleys low enough and rivers wide enough, baby…. Hey, maybe this is just my pessimistic point of view and besides, til recently it didn’t even matter what I thought because it wasn’t like anyone was actually going anywhere anytime soon. But as I creep closer into responsible adulthood (I am 2 years deep into my twenties now), it’s getting unavoidably blatant that certain life decisions must be made, which means this long distance bummer is something I may have to throw into the mix as well. So, here I am, with an open mind, hopeful and ready to be swayed on the topic of long distance relationships. I just have a few questions though.
5th October 2012 Written by warholst Pop Cultured


Breaking up with a nice guy , part of our on going series on sex and relationships, by Warhol’s Children’s Rachel Clun I recently broke up with the loveliest boyfriend I think I’ve ever had. He treated me like a princess and was seriously the sweetest person I’d ever met. For my birthday he made me (yes, made, with his own hands) a pop-up birthday card. He took me out to dinner many times, and bought me flowers. He was willing to listen to me whinge about anything and was always there when I needed him. He even baked me brownies…. Problem was, I wasn’t that into him. When we first met I really did like him. A lot. But after a while things started to get a bit more serious, and I started to cool off. He got more needy. I got less needy. He started to irritate me and I realised after having a bunch of arguments that I was actually beginning to avoid him.
25th September 2012 Written by E. Bristow Hipster Life


Is one a hipster, or is one not a hipster? That is the question. Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer
 the slings and arrows of outrageous hipster stereotype, or to take arms against a sea of troubles
 and by opposing them live forever after in a world of denial. Did we just desecrate hallowed prose with hipsters – yes … yes we did. All’s fair in love and war. Warhol’s Children’s Emma Bristow takes a somewhat Darwinian angle in her attempt to understand, come to terms with, and unravel the enigma, wrapped in an irony-laden La Nouvelle Vague-loving bubble, swathed in Bill Crosby cardigans and thick black-framed bifocals, that is the hipster.
30th August 2012 Written by warholst Just Listen


1. Where did you sleep last night - Nirvana 2. White blank Page - Mumford and sons 3. The XX - Shelter 4. The Strokes - Under Control 5. Poison Cup - M Ward
24th August 2012 Written by warholst Pop Cultured


By Warhol’s Children’s Mme Severin von Kusiemski (pictured) I’ve always been comfortable talking about sex; in fact since I was young I’ve felt obliged to discuss the things that other people shy away from. Things such as disastrous relationships, negative self-image, fascinating fetishes and above all embarrassing sexual situations (that we all get ourselves into from time to time). Since we are just getting to know each other I thought I might share with you a sexual matter that continues to mortify me to this day…
22nd August 2012 Written by Savannah Ross Just Listen


By Warhol’s Children’s Savannah Ross I’m a girl. It’s my natural instinct to wallow and pine after a break up. You should only start to worry if I wasn’t in bed in the foetal position force-feeding myself nutella and 10 different types of pastries. There’s no saying how long this could go on for….
21st August 2012 Written by Emma Bristow Pop Cultured


By Warhol’s Children’s Emma Bristow I recently found out I was in a relationship, completely by accident of course, and naturally the ‘accidental’ part almost cost me the ‘relationship’ part. It would seem that despite the rapid advances in ways to communicate, human beings still can’t find the right words. Nothing seems to help – not facebook, not twitter, not unlimited credit, so instead of giving in I’m going to right down all the warning signs, here are the top 10….