Archive for July, 2010

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Adventures in the Land of the Midnight Sun – Chapter 3.1

July 28, 2010

27 June 2010 Springboard to the Arctic – Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Longyearbyen, 78°N

Proof that we were there – really!

Because people are starting to wonder, considering there have been no pictures of anything vaguely resembling ice or polar bears lately.

Watch this space.

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Adventures in the Land of the Midnight Sun – Chapter 2

July 22, 2010

26 June 2010 Wedding of the Year – Oslo, Norway

So this was the reason I made the trip to Norway in the first place. In my opinion, had the rest of the vacation turned to shit, it was worth it to have been there to celebrate the union between one of my closest girl friends and the man of her life.

The wedding was a most lovely affair. Everything was absolutely perfect in its simplicity and sincerity – from the beautiful service in a quaint little church atop the hill overlooking Oslo, to strawberries and champagne back at the house, to the intimate dinner at Dyna Lighthouse, to the heartfelt toasts that left us all weeping, to the after party that ran till the wee hours – and to top it all off, we were blessed with absolutely gorgeous weather.

I am so blessed to have been able to share in their special day, and I wish all the love and happiness in the world to this wonderful couple.

More pictures on my Flickr site.

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Fangirl moment

July 17, 2010

Ok, so I haven’t done a pseudo film critique for awhile – probably since selling my soul to the corporate world – and this isn’t one, but I am having a major fangirl moment after catching Inception tonight.

I can’t remember the last film that got me gushing long after the credits rolled. Oh, yes I can, The Dark Knight probably came quite close, and I remember the “morning afters” to The Prestige and Memento when I was literally jumping around discussing arguing about the film (incidentally I only caught the last two on DVD).

Yes, writer-director Christopher Nolan always blows me away. You know how people you have high expectations of have a penchant to disappoint? I am amazed that he consistently delivers after all these years. Actually, I am quite thankful Inception turned out as good as it was; I was so hopeful that I would have been terribly disappointed otherwise.

In another life, when my ambition was still to be a writer / director (and when I still gave a damn about concepts and scripts and production design), I idolized him as the pinnacle of a filmmaker. I would take his carefully crafted high concept films over Jerry Bruckheimer’s blockbuster inundation any day.

And when you have sat pen in hand trying to think of a coherent story that is not cliche or trite or, as it usually is, just plain lousy, you truly appreciate what a work of art each and every one of his films is.

In a world where even die-hard Twilight fans lament about how it’s-so-awful-don’t-even-try-to-see-it Eclipse is, Nolan represents all the good that’s left in the film industry these days.

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For the romantic in all of us…

July 14, 2010
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Inspiration Part III

July 10, 2010

“For three hundred and sixty-five days, I’ve searched for the beauty, even on days when it was hard to find.” – http://xantheberkeley.wordpress.com/

I have been wanting to share about this awesome photographer whom I stumbled upon some time ago. I love her style and perspective, but somehow couldn’t find the perfect image that captured the essence of her work. Classic gestalt theory, where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

How great is it then that she came up with this meaningful video to celebrate the moments of her 365 project. Finally, this is something I can share that does justice to what she is about.

I’m even more impressed that she managed to complete her 365 project. I’m not sure I have enough stamina even for Project 52, let alone take a photo a day for one year.

Truly inspirational stuff.

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The darndest things

July 10, 2010

In Oslo, I spent a week with the nieces and nephews of the bride and groom, more often than not chasing them with my camera.

If nothing else, kids are such a joy to photograph.

And so it is, that of all the pictures of the wedding and my travels, these were the ones I gravitated to to process first.

Cool shades

Best Friends

... and the worst enemies

Passion for pictures

Through his eyes

Runaway groom

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In the moment

July 8, 2010

Here’s a little interlude while I put off uploading posts from the rest my trip, which has, by the way, been inducted into Pig’s hall of fame as BEST VACATION EVER.

I think I got a little too trigger-happy though. Taking like 300 shots of every polar bear I saw probably wasn’t the best idea as I am actually dreading having to go through my photos right now.

Anyway, I have come realize over the years that I can’t seem to pull off what people call “living in the moment”. Even at high points in my life, I often find myself wondering, anticipating, daydreaming or worrying about what the future holds. Much to my frustration, I’m always looking forward to the “next big milestone” that I can’t fully appreciate the present.

But as we held our breath watching two polar bears sharing a kill from our zodiac, or stood staring right into a walrus’ tusks from three feet away, or collectively shrieked as a 90-foot blue whale surfaced just inches from the ship’s bow, it was difficult to be anywhere else. As Joe Holliday puts it, it was the marine mammal equivalent of Forth of July fireworks.

People often talk about vacations as “getaways”; I think I now comprehend what they are all about. This trip swooped me away from my past, present and future, and for once in my life I really was THERE. All of me,  basking in every minute.

Although, I must admit that I was still having stress dreams about work, so maybe Freud would say my subconscious really wasn’t fully into it. Bleah…

Thanks to my travel buddy for sharing this little two-week escape from reality with me. Having no internet (or phone) connection in the high Arctic (despite us purchasing a 30-minute internet card that went untouched) probably helped to this end too.

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