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Category Archives: travel.

yesterday, after breakfast, graeme and i wandered around a bit and had breakfast at the same spot as the day before. it’s interesting how no matter how many times we step outside of the hotel, we are just blown away by the beauty of the city. i love just being here — even the simplest of activities feel so special here. we then went to st. nicholas cathedral. i’ve never seen anything like that place…

me…

then, we checked out of our hotel… while i was waiting for graeme to sort out where we’re going next, i was setting up a shot just to pass the time, and then this man walked right into the shot, turned around, and smiled. i was able to focus quickly enough, and now, i love this photo so much.

after checking out of the hotel, we took the subway to the (greyhound-type) bus station. for $9, we took a 2-hour trip to karlovy vary. the ride here was one of the most amazing things that’s ever happened to me… after seeing all the beauty of prague, to then see the contrast of the country… prague feels like what i imagine paris feels like, but just outside of the city is definitely eastern europe. centuries of poverty + communism has really left the country in a bad state. which is not to say that it’s not beautiful, because it most definitely is, but it’s just… worn. when we leave karlovy vary tomorrow, i’ll take photos to show what i mean. another thing i noticed… no one here has a car. even in the cities, there aren’t that many cars… pedestrians just walk in the streets and it’s rarely any sort of an issue. i guess that’s just one of the remaining effects of communism… people wouldn’t have been allowed to have cars, and now, they still can’t afford them. it works out well though, i think, because the public transportation is super cheap and super effective.

karlovy vary is a ridiculously cute town, and i’m really looking forward to taking lots of photos today. right now, we’re in the only non-smoking place we could find (which is also where we had dinner last night). they don’t really have food… last night, i asked if they had sandwiches, and she said just toast. so i ordered it, and in the end, it came grilled with ham and butter and cheese in it… so, basically, a sandwich. they also have the most delicious cakes. like i mentioned before, the czech don’t really eat breakfast, nothing more than some bread and cheese, so we’re having the same toast again. two toasts, two pieces of sweet cakes (one blueberry one apple), one latte and one irish coffee = $15. not bad. helps compensate for our $150+ off-season-rate room.

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so, yesterday, after writing the post of day 1/2, graeme and i got ready and headed out for breakfast. well, turns out, that’s a real challenge in prague. apparently czechs aren’t big on breakfast. it took a lot of walking to find a restaurant with breakfast. i had the most delicious spicy indian hot chocolate with mine… people here are really into hot chocolate. you can get about ten different kinds at each restaurant! while there, we met the nicest people from england, and i really enjoyed sitting in a nice little cafe in prague, chatting with them. people in prague also seem to get a late start in the day… but here’s one man off to work with his briefcase…

the g-man, happy to have finally eaten breakfast…

i’m really glad we came here in the fall. it’s slightly cool, but so ridiculously beautiful…

graeme, taking some pictures…

after a long walk up a long hill, we were rewarded with this…

so, at the top of that hill was prague castle. we went to the gallery first, and the lady mentioned a library, and i asked if we had to buy our tickets for everything separately (because i know prague castle has a cathedral and about a zillion other things)… she said yes. well, we went through the gallery and it was quite nice, and then we were headed to the library and stopped to look at a map (to see how to find the other stuff)… well, turns out, we weren’t at prague castle at all! it was some other amazing old monastery “the premonstratensian monastery at strahov.”

the ceiling of the restaurant where we had lunch. graeme ordered… wow, i don’t even know how to say this… fried cheese. it gets worse. the “meal” is: fried cheese with french fries and tartar sauce. that’s how it comes, you just order it. can you believe it?!! that said, it was delicious. also of note… here, they eat a lot of cheese. with butter. they butter their cheese. and it’s not even on a cracker… the cheese *is* the cracker for the butter.

i hate having my picture taken…

next, we went to sternbersky palace, and checked out some more art. no photos from there…

ok, gotta run!  we’re off to some cathedral (i seriously can’t keep the names straight…) and then, taking a train to karlovy vary.  hope to update you again tonight/tomorrow!

what a trip! this is my first time leaving north america, and although it’s obviously worth it, i am totally beat!! monday morning, i woke up after 2-3 hours of sleep, raced to the post office (clients tas, julia and michele, your discs are in the mail!), then headed to the airport. first of all, i need to say it… seattle has the most disorganized system ever. honestly, “system” isn’t the right word, because that implies that there was some sort of planning involved. there clearly wasn’t. seriously, every time i’m there, i’m a total basketcase. we flew from there to detroit, and i kinda like this shot i took sitting in a corner charging my laptop before boarding the plane to amsterdam…

we flew with klm, and so far, i am crazy about them. the flights were smooth, the service was great, they fed us lots of (surprisingly good) food and drink, and they didn’t lose our luggage. the flight from detroit to amsterdam was just over 7 hours, and it really wasn’t too bad because of all the a) distractions like food and drinks they kept coming around with and b) in-seat entertainment. the tv screen on the back of each seat can be used to watch tv, movies, listen to music or audiobooks, play games, send emails and text messages, etc.

flying in to amsterdam was really cool… i saw at least a hundred windmills popping up through clouds. it was so beautiful. i wish i had taken a photo, but my camera was in the overhead. the amsterdam airport is very modern-looking and has lots of neat shops. i loved seeing all the different everyday products they sell, like little waffles in vending machines, or… herring… i mean, who doesn’t pick up their frozen fish in an airport…

so many opportunities to drink wine and beer here!…

then, it was off to prague!!  we decided to save some money and take public transportation to our hotel.  i loved the designs of the subway stations!

then, we made the short walk to our hotel.  i didn’t take very many photos yesterday because i was so tired (i slept less than 30 mins total on the flights here), and because i was managing my luggage, but i just couldn’t believe that people walk here every day.  people walk past this view on their way to work here.  insane.

after settling in our hotel, we headed off to find some dinner.  the neighbourhood we are staying in, malo strana, has all these amazing cobbled streets with tiny walkways (some so narrow, you have to walk sideways!)  you’re looking at the entirety of this shop.  just a little closet.  i love it.

this street is right next to our hotel… we came over here for dinner (roasted rabbit with rosemary, spicy cabbage, steamed spinach, dumplings and potato pancakes).  can you believe this is real life here?!

i love prague.  i love it so much, even though i’m still finding it difficult to believe that it’s real.

i l

note:  i have no clue what day it is.  wednesday?  i know i woke up at 3:30am and it’s now 6am.  i’m sitting in my bed, typing quietly with a blanket over my head so as not to wake graeme up on the other side of the room.  i wish he’d wake so i can go take more photos…

i took this baby out for another run… and my first time using it at night. and can i just say… i’m freaking in love with it!!! now, it’s much easier to use it at night time than in the day (for me, at least…) but the colour rendering is just ridiculous. soooo beautiful. all of the following shots are straight out of camera, with the exception of the one i converted to black and white.

look at how blue the sky looks… i lovelovelove it!!

and the reflection of the sign in the lower left corner… it literally gives me shivers!!

i love the bokeh and how golden the colours are…

i waited a long time for a group of people to pass. i wish they were a bit further back, but the manual focus is really taking some getting used to…

and this was taken on the way home in a tunnel. like i mentioned before, i love it when tilt-shift lenses are used to create depth, and i think this photo is a good example.

so, i’m learning czech. piece of cake. i mean, who doesn’t know how to pronounce “Kde koupim jizdenku” or “V kolik hodin oteviraji zaviraji?” (oh, and of course, like half of those letters have unfamiliar accent symbols above them…) i ordered this czech phrasebook and you know, it’s really handy, because it has common phrases and each are written phonetically… except, i don’t know how to say “skhle” — THAT is the phonetic version… what the heck?! the funniest part about this book is that they have a section on bartering prices… umm… even if i could manage to say “Muzete mi snizit cenu” or “Mate neco levnejsiho,” there’s a 0% chance of me understanding their response! so, yeah, i think i’m going to be in trouble anytime i’m outside of prague..

do you happen to know anyone in the czech republic that would be willing to model for me while i’m there (oct. 6 – 21)? i absolutely must have someone to photograph there! ideally, they would already own a wedding dress/suit, but if they don’t, maybe we could find one for them to wear. ideally, they or a friend of theirs would also speak english.

and, just to help google try to get someone over there to read this, i’ll be very specific… looking for models in czech republic — Central Bohemian Region (Středočeský kraj), Prague (Praha), South Bohemian Region (Jihočeský kraj), České Budějovice, Plzeň Region (Plzeňský kraj), Karlovy Vary Region (Karlovarský kraj), Ústí nad Labem Region (Ústecký kraj), Liberec Region (Liberecký kraj), Hradec Králové Region (Královéhradecký kraj), Pardubice Region (Pardubický kraj), Olomouc Region (Olomoucký kraj), Moravian-Silesian Region (Moravskoslezský kraj), Ostrava, South Moravian Region (Jihomoravský kraj), Brno, Zlín Region (Zlínský kraj), or Vysočina Region (Vysočina). They might also be models from Poland, Germany, Austria, or Slovakia. point is, if you or someone you know is anywhere near there, please contact me! :o) (sorry for being so shameless….)

i will be out of vancouver later this week, and will not return to vancouver until the 22nd of october, as i am going to the czech republic for two weeks!

for anyone with a contract out, if you finalize your booking this week before i leave, you will receive 5 additional pages in your album or a complimentary session of your choice. otherwise, it will likely have to wait until i return. i will be checking my email (and hopefully updating my blog) while away, but i don’t know how frequently. any print/product orders will be handled upon my return. for potential clients, please send the regular inquiry through my site, and we will arrange a consultation for when i return.

i apologize for any inconvenience this might cause, but i’m sure you understand that i need vacations too! :o)

last friday, i went to orcas island to shoot a wedding, and i just wanted to share a few of the “getting there” photos. my friend graeme came with, and we had a nice day — lunch in anacortes, then a beautiful ferry ride, and finally, a bit of driving around orcas island.

poor graeme, i made him be my model… how could i not — this wall is amazing!!

most amazing sky ever…

the first of about a million deer that we saw in the 30 hours we were there…

this is graeme’s “i’m sick and tired of you and your camera” face… he makes this face a lot…

ok folks, i’m so sorry i haven’t responded to the insanely long list of emails i must respond to.  i was out of town and shot three weddings and two portrait sessions in 7 days, and yesterday, after the third, just crashed.  i just woke up after a 12 hour sleep.  i absolutely must run some errands today, but i promise to respond to all of my emails by tonight.  thank you so much for your patience!!

lots to come, including…

lara & steve :: wedding

kristen & nick :: couple session

my travels to orcas island

keith & leanne :: wedding

leigh & leslie :: wedding

as  you can tell from my blog entries this summer, i am available for worldwide destination weddings.  i am also available for worldwide portrait sessions.  perhaps you’d like to return to the university city where you met, or your favourite vacation spot — for your engagement photos.  maybe you are planning a family vacation to disney world and would like someone to document it — let me know!  my destination portrait packages are all-inclusive — they come with the session, all of my travel costs (airfare, lodging, etc.) and a disc of all high-resolution images!  destination packages start at $750… contact me for further details!