My New York (inner) Journey

I just got back from New York. What a trip. It was as much about the inner journey as it was the outer one.

Let me start by saying 2016 was a packed year. Full of surprises, breakthroughs, a few frustrations, lots of growth and new experiences. And now… lots to think about, feel into and make decisions about.

And I’ll admit it, I took a blog break. Just a little one. Even I need to step awayyyyy and take a breath now and again. Y’know, get a new perspective. So I did.

The Value of A Personal Trip (for art’s sake)

New York was a personal trip. I made it with my friend Valerie Jardin. We thought it would be fun to just take a trip and not have an agenda (which turned out to be challenging for both of us!)… and just see what came our way.

Now, I love NYC, but personally I find it challenging. It’s alot; alot of energy, alot of distractions, alot of input on so many levels. Artistically and photographically, I find it harder to find my balance, focus and voice there than almost anywhere in the world. And that’s always bugged me.

So this time, I decided to “embrace the horror” (as a friend of mine refers to his approach to almost any challenging situation).. and let myself be uncomfortable. Dwell in possibility, not expectation. Allow things to happen in a new way. Ask to be shown the way. NOT KNOW. It all sounds so noble on paper… but it’s incredibly uncomfortable when you’re in the middle of a process like that. Days when you delete everything on your camera. Times when you feel like you suck at this and should just take up knitting. Moments of doubt and agitation on a level that have you questioning everything including your sanity.

Not that I speak from personal experience or anything.

Embracing The Horror Leads to New Perspective

So. New York.
Like I say, it was challenging for me. But I chose to embrace the horror, take no shortcuts – and was rewarded with a renewed (refreshed and deepened) perspective… which honestly, I can’t entirely put into words yet. It’s still unpacking into my being. I do see it in my photographs though. From subject matter to post-processing, I wiped the slate clean and did my best to follow the quieter voice on the inside. The one that never fails me. Tried new lenses, new approaches.

As an artist it’s how we expand and deepen our art.
As a human, it’s how we create a life we truly love.

It’s also how we survive in times that push us to our limits. We have to walk past the outer clamor and chaos, past the inner mind chatter and continue on till we find our stillpoint. Easier said that done. And even when you think you know how to do that… you have to then be willing to take it further than you ever dreamed possible.

So… this was my journey. Make of it what you will.

Comments, questions – as always, welcomed.

 

 




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Fuji: My Parisienne Paintbrush

Paris Speaks

NOTE: This is a lengthier post than usual. It’s a summary of how the Fuji gear I took to France and I got along. (Famously!). It’s not meant to be camera “review”. It’s one human’s experience of being on a mission of art and heart; and the gear that helped bring it all to fruition. I’ve had a ton of questions about whether I’m sticking with Fuji after this… I think this will answer them all. 😀 Continue reading “Fuji: My Parisienne Paintbrush”

Street Photography: 12 Lessons Learned

I’m posting this right as I’m ready to run out for the final day of Valerie Jardin’s Paris Photography Workshop, during which I’ve been her guest. She’s a good friend and this whole idea just sounded like fun. I wanted to revisit Paris in the springtime, having only been here at Christmas once… and what better way to see the city than with a native?

This is the first of 3 weeks here in Paris; each completely different. Except for the part where I have a camera Velcroed to me at all times. 😀

Today I mostly just want to share some photos… and some thoughts. 12 of them, to be exact. 12 is completeness and spiritual perfection; which just about perfectly describes this entire week!

(Panorama taken with my iPhone 5, from the Towers of Notre Dame)
FullSizeRender

Continue reading “Street Photography: 12 Lessons Learned”

A Would-Be Street Photographer In Paris

So you thought I’d abandoned you? Mais non!
This “prep for travel” thing tends to take over EVERYTHING; my life, my brain, my blog posting schedule! I’m always so glad when I’m finally on the plane and can only look ahead… and not at my list yet ONE more time. Once safely landed and on my feet in a new place like oh, say, Paris… baby, it’s ON!

I’m here in the city of lights for 3 weeks and 3 different adventures. Crazy!

Valerie Jardin’s Workshop

Week 1 is with my most excellent friend Valerie Jardin‘s Paris Street Photography workshop. In fact, here’s one I just shot today:

AccordionMaistro

Continue reading “A Would-Be Street Photographer In Paris”

The Textures of Paris

Paris in the Springtime

I’ll keep today’s missive short(er)… since lately I’ve just been blabbing like a babbling brook, haven’t I? Heh.
So… put on some lovely French jazz, heat up a croissant and pour yourself a cuppa cappuccino… we’re going to Paris today!

We’ll talk about these two images in a sec… but first, I AM going to Paris in May! In fact, you could join me if you’re in the mood for an awesome street photography workshop. No, I’m not teaching it… but I’m tagging along, doing video, Virtual Photo Walks, etc!

Valerie Jardin is a good friend of mine, who gives the most incredible street photography workshops in amazing places… Paris, Rome, NYC, etc. She’s also French and knows Paris like the natives. Maybe better, since she sees it through the lens of a camera. TOTALLY different view!

Anyhoo, her May workshop was completely booked up – but suddenly just had 2 spaces open up. They’ll be snapped up in no time flat, I’m sure.

So I thought (I’m a thinker, I am!) HOW FUN it would be if a couple of folks from the KHutt camp came along! Street photography… Paris… May?? SIGN ME UP!
Oh wait. I already did. Grin.
And now – you can too, if you wanna join us for an amazeballs week in Paris at the end of May!

Before/After and Why It Matters

They were taken in Paris, naturellement. This was from one snowy December night in 2010. That was the trip I vowed I would one day visit Paris again – in May!

But I’m bringing textures into the conversation – since R&D is still going on with the new ones Tanya Wallis and I are developing. So I took this photo of a corner in the Bastille neighborhood of Paris… which I liked a great deal…

RueDuCreperie
Continue reading “The Textures of Paris”

Paris, 2015!

French Cravings

Do you ever get a craving that never goes away, no matter how much try to ignore it? It just tugs at your sleeve, clears its throat – loudly, hums a little French tune. No matter how many times you stage-whisper “Sssshhhhh!!”… it just smiles and keeps on humming.

Paris is like that for me.

I went there in 2010 for a voiceover job. I mean, how glamorous is THAT? For once, I can say it really was as cool as it sounds. It was a quick trip, not a lot of photo time… but the hubs and I made it count by staying out REEEEALLY late at night. We indulged in wine and chocolate at a romantic cafe on the Champs Elyssee at 2am one night after 8 miles of wandering – and photographing – our way through the streets of Paris. In December. At Christmas – in the City of Light.  Ahhh, the stuff legends are made of!

Understandably, I’ve wanted to return every minute since. But I’ve had Spring in mind… and wanted another Perfect Moment event. Hey, a girl can dream!

So when my friend, photographer Valerie Jardin (a native of Normandy, knows Paris like the back of her hand!) invited me to come along to her Paris street photography workshop in May, 2015, how could I say no? I mean, really… how COULD I?

You already know the answer…

Continue reading “Paris, 2015!”