Monthly Archives: February 2016

Be in competition with yourself, not others.


I’m a man with many pursuits but I’m a designer by trade, more specifically, a web designer. I was around during the dot com boom and have been building custom sites since the 90’s. At some point WordPress took over and web budgets came down as ‘off the shelf’ products just made building web sites so much easier.

When we launched Zen in 2011 I used WordPress to build our site as we had no time before launch to build something custom, we had to hit the ground running so a WordPress site was put into place, we bought a theme that did all the things we needed it to do and voila, we were running. Thing is I hated the site and have hated it ever since! At some stage tuned. also installed the same theme as us, this gave me the motivation I needed to tweak our theme to make it “our own”, but even then I still wasn’t happy with it.

I’ve always been meaning to re-design the site to have much bigger impact images and a much cleaner design and tighter layout, 4 years in I’ve finally made the move to re-design the site by starting with a new theme. I had my developer James Linney install the theme for us and I didn’t sleep much for a week playing with it until it all started to look and feel right, then Sydney based Photographer Sam Law (a BOTFC and Zen blog contributor) messaged me to say that we’re using the same theme as BOTC

Oh shit!

I’m excellent at putting myself in other people’s shoes. When you’ve experienced as much stuff as I have (I’m 40 and I’ve been at it for some time now!) you tend to get good at taking a step back and seeing things from a bigger perspective. I knew, instantly, that the BOTFC guys would be upset that Zen, a brand bigger than theirs, could be stealing their web site design. I note that BOTFC is a grass roots thing, much like all the stuff I run, it’s run on passion and mostly “just for the fun of it”. That obviously makes BOTFC precious to whoever owns and runs it. I knew I was going to cop heat, but I sincerely never saw that BOTFC were using the same WordPress theme, which mind you is publicly available for purchase by anyone out there.

I made the call to go ahead and continue with the theme knowing that the BOTFC guys would be upset, and also that at any time anyone else can purchase the same theme and have their site look and work just like ours. I have all intentions to lean on my design experience though and with James’ help I’m positive we can really heavily tweak this theme to make it our own over the next few months.

One can choose to fight in public, or one can take it to private messaging where you have a much better chance at reaching resolutions. I ended up having a chat with BOTFC founder Nicholas Cole over Facebook Messenger, and once we got through the site design issues I think we both realised that there was no point in fighting, especially since we’re both just doing the same thing, and that’s creating content, for the fun of it, in an aim to inspire others.

Be in competition with yourself, and not others.

Nicholas went a step further and asked if I’d like to contribute a piece for BOTFC. That’s a champ move which I couldn’t refuse! A sincere thanks to Nicholas and the team here at BOTFC for taking the higher road. Much respect! I’m looking forward to sharing more BOTFC content on my network, who knows, maybe a BOTFC x ZEN collab of some sort will eventuate at some point too!

Originally written for BOTFC (click here for the feature). Visit:

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Ved introduced me to O’le a few years ago and we’ve gone back a few times since. Ole’s a small Portuguese style restaurant that does super fresh and clean chicken burgers that don’t leave you feeling like you’re gonna die from bloat post feed. I recommend!

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Top One Auto


Design week continues! I have 2 mechanics. Indy at IS Motor Racing for my GT-R, and Dedy at Top One Auto for everything else, especially general servicing and log book stamping of my daily drivers.

I highly recommend Dedy at Top One, he’s honest and takes so much care which I truly respect and appreciate.
Their site got hacked a little while back so I’ve just quickly designed and implemented a simple one page web site for them using fantastic customer car photos by Jason Hanif of


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Midweek Moët

moet (1)
Posted in OUTTAKES.

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ZEN x Heasman Steering


Must be Design Week or something?! Here’s some progress on a collab T-Shirt design between Heasman Steering and Zen Garage. I’m having fun with this one!!!

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Fish Tank update





Long time no update! Tank is doing well, but lighting is starting to become an issue. The light is so off centre/towards the back that a lot of corals are living in shade now. Now quite sure what to do about it, might just let things be.

I had a MASSIVE issue. I packed the filter in the Edge with too much media, and over the span of a day the edge leaked, and it sits on MDF board, so the entire tank almost fell through the air-conditioning chute it sits on!!! I’ve moved the tank to the kitchen bench for now and will repair the bench ASAP.

The Nuvo is doing well too. A month or so ago I noticed my 6-Line was missing. Turns out he jumped over the back wall and into the rear sump compartment of the Nuvo! Took me a while to catch him out of there! A few days later he jumped into the back section again! Smart fella?! I caught him out again, only to have him jump AGAIN so I gave in and just took off one of the spinning nuvo pump thingies, leaving a hole for hi to freely swim fro the front section of the tank to the sump (very cool!). He loved this for the past few weeks as he gets beaten up by the Dottyback, and this has relieved the issue, but 2 days ago I noticed he wasn’t coming to the front for feeding time, today I had a good look and it turns out he’s jumped out of the tank completely, fallen on the floor, then even worse fallen into the air conditioning grate under the tank (I can’t get his dried up dead corpse!).

Posted in Pets | 1 Comment



I’m on fire! Another logo design! I designed the ClubITR logo a few years ago for Felix Alim. Felix is setting up a club for S2000 owners now so he reached out and asked for help. I’ve kept it in line with what I did for the ClubITR logo, that’s using the font for the actual S2000 badge (I had to make up the “K”).

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Johny Jordan Photography


10 minute quicky! Got to love it when shit comes together so quickly you end up laughing out loud. Here’s a logo I designed for Johny Jordan Photography. I’m not a huge fan of watermarks, but I’m itchin’ to see how this logo will look on his photos!


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I don’t design for others too much these days but ex-Zen staffer John Lor is setting up a new thing and I’m excited for him (big time!), so I thought I’d help out!

Check out Greaser, the boys are off to an amazing start! Visit:

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Heasman Steering






Dropped in to Heasman Steering today to hang out with Ved who was installing KW V3’s on his MK1 GTI (new goods on old cars, so kinky!). There’s alway’s some heavy metal at Heasman’s, couldn’t help but rattle off a few shots!

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