Tag Archives: journey

Snapshots from Guatemala

Guatemala_002

I love that moment on a plane when  you begin your final descent into a new country and you catch that first glance down onto foreign soil. What are the colors? How is the light? What does the landscape look like? I’ll never forget watching the sunrise over the flat dusty plains as I touched down in Africa, or seeing the Patagonian glaciers of Chile streaked in time. Looking at Guatemala from that little frame, I was enchanted with the layers of volcanoes dancing along the horizon line of a setting sun.

Guatemala_007

It was just a weekend getaway, a short stop through Antigua, one of the most beautiful and romantic places I’ve ever seen. We didn’t have time to wander around, but I swore I would come back someday to photograph it and stay at the heartbreakingly beautiful Meson Panza Verde. We had a late dinner there on our last night in Guatemala where I discovered its enchantment. From there, we ventured around the lakeside town of Panajachel where the fashion accessory brand Mercado Global‘s design offices are located. The purpose of this trip was to discover the craftsmanship behind these artisanal bags. We spent a little time in Santiago Atitlan and in the hillside town of Santa Catarina Palapo where we slept in a dream villa.

I have many takeaways from Guatemala. The fruit is incredible. The people, so petite, have beautiful traditions they keep despite the reach of globalization. I loved comparing their dress to how the Peruvian women dress, each in their specific way. The colors in their clothing are mimicked in the textiles of the market and in the lush landscape, bursting with flowers in hues of sherbet orange and hot fuchsia. As we wandered through the old colonial built towns, there was the distinctive sound of women’s hands patting out corn tortillas. I’ll never forget the way they tasted hot off the griddle. I loved how drivers would honk as a courtesy, a way to say thank you. Perhaps my favorite feature of this beautiful country though are her volcanoes. It had not been since Bali that I found myself gazing upon such a scene. Every day brought a new view: sometimes we spotted smoke billowing from the top of a volcano, sometimes we admired their silhouettes against a setting sun. I found them a constant reminder that the earth is alive beneath our feet, and as I stood in Guatemala, I was reminded of how alive I am, too.

Guatemala_003 Guatemala_004 (more…)

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“Fly the ocean in a silver plane…”

An old propeller plane seen from the ground in South Africa. “…see the jungle when it’s wet with rain…”

As I write this, I am somewhere over the Atlantic Ocean between Europe and the United States. I always request a window seat because you never know when you’re going to get that perfect shot of the sun rising over South America or see a distant thunderstorm illuminate the horizon on your descent into Singapore. I was just lost in thought gazing out the window and thinking about how flying’s magic is not lost on me. The fact that you can close your eyes in New York and wake up in a world you’ve only dreamed of in what seems like minutes still leaves me in childlike wonder.

I ponder sometimes if the pace of our distances allows us more or less? What would Darwin have accomplished in the era of air travel? Part of being a freelancer is never knowing which way the current will take you nor how hard the undertow will be but I feel so incredibly lucky to have seen so much of the world through my lens. I haven’t yet figured out what the ultimate influence will be on my life’s work of all the lands I’ve seen, and to be honest I am still exploring…it’s true what they say: “The more I travel, the less I know.”

A view of New York City from above the clouds. Cover image originally from HERE

Second image is flying out from New York

 

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Part III: Berlin

In the 1950s, my grandfather Beck was stationed in Berlin. Growing up as a child, I was always so fascinated by the old black & white photos of him from this era in this place unlike anything I knew on the country roads of Texas. I’ve always wanted to go and walk in his footsteps, to think of him as a young man, his family so far away, the devastation of war in front of him. We walked from East to West, we studied the differences from old photographs. We wandered the streets of Scheunenviertel and Kurfürstendamm. We had pretzels and beer, schnitzel and sauerkraut and look back in time of a city that changed so much.

Berlin in black and white film photographs Berlin in black and white film photographs Berlin in black and white film photographs     Berlin in black and white film photographs

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Part II: Paris

A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy.

Paris is so much to me…a constant source of inspiration, of light study, and beauty. When we stepped off the train from London at Gare de Nord, the smell hit me, that same familiar Parisian smell of coffee and cigarettes, and dusty old books in a garden of roses. The hotel, so quaint, with the Eiffel Tower framed between the walls of the street. We sat in cafes and drank wine, watching the people go about their day, their loves, their minds lost in their own thought. I wonder what they are thinking and have I thought that same thing before? We climbed the stairs of Sacre Coeur, danced with the states at the Louvre, and watched the sunset on Pont Neuf. On a poetic day we found ourselves on a train to Normandy, on a walk through the beaches of Omaha in silence, imagining the horror of war, looking up at the fate of too many. I always love Paris – it’s never goodbye but only I’ll see you soon…. and soon I did.

A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy. A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy.

A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy.

A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy. A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy. A black and white film journey through Paris and the beaches of Normandy. (more…)



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