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Renew Newcastle - Strip of a Lifetime

4th May, 2012
Jenny Butler
Friday 4th May 2012

We have had an AMAZING time discovering Newcastle this week and I cannot wait to visit with all these fantastic tips in hand! A huge thank you to Siobhan for being our Guest Blogger this week, and profiling a great variety of Renew Newcastle projects. Be sure to bookmark Siobhan's blog, The Novocastrian Files, for more Newcastle news and subscribe to the Renew Newcastle newsletter here. Happy weekend!! - Jenny x

Paula Birch and her 1960's photo booth at Strip of a Lifetime - photo by Sean Fennessy

Big THANKS to TDF for giving Renew Newcastle the opportunity to shine a light on just some of the projects currently operating, and on Newcastle in general. It’s been ace!

This last project highlights just one exciting outcome of Renew - giving people with a niche interest the platform to share their idea and passion with the community.

Paula Birch channels a fair slice of Amelie with Strip of a Lifetime, a photo booth and 60s/70s vintage props hire station, and an art gallery dedicated to showcasing original artworks from photo booth and lo-fi analog artists. Polaroid & Lomo fans rejoice! It’s hard not to be taken for a trip down memory lane with a fully operational 1960s photo booth in-store (also available for event hire).  Remember the feeling of anticipation waiting for your photo booth pics to be developed? Oh, the joy!

Visit: Shop 20 (upstairs), Market Square, 119 Hunter St, Newcastle.
Tues & Sat 12pm to 4pm, Thu & Fri 10am to 4pm, or by appointment.

Photo strips of Lucy and Siobhan!

Can you give us a super brief bio about yourself and your practice?

I’ve been a practicing architect, photographic artist and vintage collector for 10 years, although it’s been 20 years since I started my most precious and personal documentary of my life through the lens of old photochemical photo booths. I’ve moved around a lot, at least a different place every 2 years, including a year studying each in Olso, Papua New Guinea and San Francisco. I returned to Newcastle only a year ago after finishing my degree here in 2002 and was tutoring in architecture at The University of Newcastle and running my own architectural design studio. About a year ago, I sought and imported my first traditional black and white 1960s photo booth.

How have things changed for you since being part of the Renew Newcastle?

I’ve met so many interesting and like-minded people.  I feel as if I’ve been adopted into Newcastle’s most creatively celebrated community.

Some of the props available for hire at Strip of a Lifetime

One big lesson you've learnt from the whole experience?

That carpet and glue do not like to part with concrete.

What's your favourite local neighbourhood and why?

Newcastle East as it offers all one needs to live a charmed life, within walking distance.

Newcastle's best kept secret?

Newcastle Ocean Baths. Time stands still there.

Finish this sentence - 'Newcastle is.... '


- Siobhan x

The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email