Autumn may be the forgotten season, but it’s one of our favourites nonetheless. The warmth of summer eases, the cool wind blows in, we complain about the weather again and we eat more. It’s festival season too – with the food and fashion festivals and everything else that goes on around them – but perhaps more than anything, it’s time for some balance after the excitement of the first couple of months of the year.

For this autumn issue, we’ve found some interesting individuals who are really getting their hands deep into what they do in various ways. I guess this is the way most people do their job – hands first – but whether it’s a scientifically minded chef, a not for profit bar, a cheesemonger, a family business, a fancy butter maker or a group of creatives who teach us how to make a piñata, we wanted to get our mitts in there too.

For the cover we tried to move away from food and dining, but it’s not all that easy for us. So we looked at some interior spaces that have seriously impressed us while we eat. We spoke to Dion Hall and Nick Cox – the team behind Projects of Imagination – about creating some of Melbourne’s most notable restaurant interiors in the last few years (think Chin Chin, Baby, Golden Fields, Trunk and Yo-Chi). These are places we all know, talk about, have visited and can recognise visually – light walls and dark lines, floor tiles (not always on the floor), long bars and neon signage are some key signifiers. We sat down with the designers to talk about their process, why your seat can change your dining experience and how they’ve helped define many of our city’s great eating experiences.

We’ve noticed that Melbourne is becoming a much more international city on a global level. The art market is transforming, and instead of just cultivating what’s in our own backyards, we’ve begun looking over the fence, with many of our independent local galleries showing at international art fairs abroad. We’ve also spent some time with a few Aussies who now call other cities home – be it a fashion director in London, musicians in New York and a shop owner in LA. These people remind us how small the world can be, but how diverse and exciting it is to navigate our way across it, even if it is vicariously from the comfort of your own home as you read this paper.