they met in moscow, they fell in love while traveling together through 13 countries, and they finally tied the knot in lisbon, portugal. this is just a very brief description of irina & charlie’s relationship, but it also happens to be the beginning of the biggest adventure that life could offer: their new life together.
i can truly say that i am honoured to have been able to call charlie my friend for a certain number of years now. with somewhat of an odd beginning to our friendship (my sister met him online and i kept calling to make sure he wasn’t a psycho killer) that i now like to think back on as part of the fun. charlie also happens to be one of my friend’s with the biggest sense of adventure. in fact, we have had the pleasure of exploring germany, holland, and belgium together… sometimes riding motorcycles, minivans, or a snowboard/ski combo. all of this is to say that when given the opportunity to have one more adventure together, and travel to lisbon to photograph his beautiful wedding, all i could say was yes.
now, let me tell you about this wedding… there were some language barriers, there was a heck of a lot of sun, and it included indulging in some delicious pastries… and that was all before it even started!! the ceremony itself was held at the beautiful pousada castelo de palmela, pretty much the most gorgeous castle atop a mountain that overlooks the entire city of lisbon and even has a view of the ocean… and all of it draped in perfect rays of sun. it was perfection. i have to give a huge shoutout to the few and the proud… that would be the few guests that were proud to cross halfway across the world, face insanely long overlays, and even the ones that went straight from the wedding to the airport. these guys were there because they are proud to call irina and charlie friends. i can’t ignore that kind of commitment and love.
and what else can i say? russians, spaniards, portuguese, americans, and the dutch. tears were shed cigars were smoked, and memories made. i think that pretty much sums it up. and if it doesn’t, that’s what these photos are for… see for yourself!
i wanted to be in one of the photos too! 😉
congratulations irina & charlie!!!
ever had a dèjá vu? i definitely did as i unpacked my gear and realised that i was meeting up with the same couple, same dog, on the same beach, barely a year after their session. i guess you could say that the one new addition would be the fact that they were now… three. elisa and victor rocked it in front of my camera before, and they sure are fun enough to rock it in front of the camera again… and again… and again. elisa braved the chilly weather and came with all kinds of ideas to the shoot, i ended up with sand in my ears (no joke!), laika, the dog had plenty of outside time, and elisa and victor got to have their portraits taken to remember this new and exciting season of their lives. i have to say… if I had to do it all over again, i would.
from the creators of “travel to london in january” and “go to the northernmost city in the uk on february 1st” comes “visit the sahara desert in august!!” last year i had the unbelievable opportunity to travel to tunisia, africa, to shoot dalal & imed’s 3-day arab wedding. it was such an amazing experience that i had to tell the story in two blog posts (part 1, part 2). i figured that since it was my first time in africa i should take a couple extra days to explore a bit.
i am so happy that i could count on my wonderful friend idoia and her tunusian husband to guide me around, educate me on the muslim culture, and add so much to the adventure. and what an adventure we had!
bilbao license plate in africa.
apparently the sahara sun hitting your head is not even an option.
drinking from a camel drinking hole.
you won’t have to dare me twice.
driving a 4×4 through the dunes. up next: getting a 4×4 stuck in the dunes!
napping on the sand.
rountrip tickets to tunisia: 250€. eight aa batteries, 20 dinars. riding a moped through the bumpy sandy, no helmet, and slamming on the breaks for the camel crossing: priceless!
the many wardrobe changes
if you’ve been a faithful follower of my blog through the years you’ve probably noticed that end-of-the year blogposts are not my forte. there’s something about looking back on the last 12 months of work that seems particularly challenging to me. i feel the need to put my best foot forward and be extra insightful. to pour something into the world that will make a difference. a legacy. and on top of that pressure i have to make a tight selection of my favourite photos. this is quite hard on every photographer i know. to put it in “muggle” terms, this would be like someone asking a parent to pick a favourite child. you like them all for different reasons, right? (at least i hope you do! :p) so you can see how it has become somewhat of a shameful tradition for me to write these posts a few weeks late. oh well… here it is.
the first thing that comes to my mind when i think about 2013 is that i really can’t complain. not even a little bit. 2013 has been a good year for me. it has been a year of personal and creative growth. it has been a year that has brought me great new friendships and fantastic opportunities to travel around the world. i look back and it still seems a bit baffling that a random week in august i got to spend monday in berlin, tuesday back home, and saturday in tunisia! who even knew back in january that this would be the year that i could proudly reach that milestone and get to start exploring africa?! i know i didn’t. of course, as all years do, it also came with an unexpected amount of suffering, worry, and sorrow. those closest to me know exactly what i am talking about. the only reason to point this out (as vague as it is) is because i don’t want to be one of those people who pretend their life is picture perfect. it isn’t. but i do want to try to be one of those people who take it one day at a time and focus on the positive. and in the case of this wonderful year that i now lay behind me i can clearly see how i could spend the next hour typing ’till my heart’s content. i look back on all the little anecdotes that came with every opportunity to travel a few hundred or thousand miles. every minute spent behind the lens trying my very best to capture all those little things that never fail to highlight how no matter what depressing and worrisome story is on the news tonight, there are still plenty of things to be found that show that the world is still very much a quirky, fun, and love-filled place. life is beautiful. so before i get too nostalgic i want to raise my invisible glass (or my ever-present water bottle!) and give a little toast to 2013: may 2014 be as kind, fun, and amazing as you were. cheers!
day 1, day 2, day 3
john bolduan::: music!!
travel::: edinburgh!! coming soon!!
ruth & sendoa::: wedding!!
lola & ramón::: wedding!!
travel::: tunisia!! coming soon!!
dalal & imed::: wedding!! coming soon!!
diego::: anytime!! coming soon!!
ainara & juan::: wedding!!
It’s a fact: I love sports and working out. Everybody knows this. There is something about breaking a sweat and pushing myself to the limit that I can’t get enough of.And what I really really can’t get enough of are the summer Olympics. I can think back to so may times when during the olympic games I have been motivated to eat healthier, set more ambitious goals, and get much more out of my workout. During my third day in Berlin, and having checked most of the items on my Berlin bucket list, I found out by chance that I was a quick train ride away from the Olympic stadium! How did I not know this?!
The history of it is beautiful too. The 1936 summer Olympics were held in this stadium, and were actually inaugurated by the head-of-state, a man by the name of Adolf Hitler. At the time of the games Hitler was really excited about the world being able to witness the height of arian supremacy.
Long story short, Jesse Owens, an african-american athlete, won 4 gold medals and successfully proved all them racist whiteys wrong! So there!!
The 2006 World Cup final was also held at the Olympiastadion. As you may remember, that was also the game where soccer legend Zinedine Zidane played his very last game, and tainted his reputation by giving the infamous head-butt to Italian player Marco Materazzi. Again, making sports history… even if it wasn’t for the most noble reasons.
But of course, the biggest thing about visiting the Olympiastadion is the wide array of feelings you get while walking around knowing everything that has happened within it’s walls, on it’s grass, and under it’s sky. And maybe even more so if you stop to think about everything that is to come.
Day 2 in Berlin started out with a clear plan. We were going to catch a tourist bus and get the general layout of the city. We would also visit the Reichstag building, walk around the Tiergarten park, and end the day by viewing the city lights while having dinner at the 368m high and rotating restaurant atop the Fernsehtum TV tower. As fate would have it, we didn’t exactly set off to an early start to the day. To make matters worse, one little photographer simply had to stop by Starbucks… and I failed to figure out exactly where the bus stops were. Picture us in downtown Berlin constantly seeing buses go by and having to idea where they are even coming from. So we skipped on the bus ride and stood in line to get tickets to visit the Reichstag. And we stood. And we stood. And then there was some more standing. When we were finally next in line Charlie asked me to take out my photo ID, and wouldn’t you know it? I left it all at the hotel! But after a quick talk with the helpful clerk we were actually able to go pick it up at the hotel and visit later on in the day.
The architecture at the Reichstag totally blew me away. We visited during sunset and it was an amazing time to capture all the light and shadows highlighting of the glass dome and the city views. If you visit it, and I think you should, I highly recommend visiting it at this time.
Berlin Bucket List #7 Reichstag
Berlin Bucket List #8: Tiergarten Park.
I kept hearing that the park is a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Berlin. The perfect place to add a small hiatus or break to your day. Not actually when we were there… apparently it was during a weekend-long music festival. But it made people watching and the walk in general all the more interesting.
Berlin Bucket List #9: Dinner at the Fernsehturm
After a walk around the city we found our way to the TV tower. I remember laughing when the elevator lady proudly told us that it was the fastest elevator in europe. It just seems like such a german thing to boast about. Apparently it travels 204 meters in just 45 seconds. In Spain I regularly ride on an elevator that takes about 35 seconds just to take me to the 7th floor. No biggie.
The view was amazing though. You can see all the city lights, and while you have dinner at the restaurant you are slowly moving 360º. They even have markers on the glass walls to show you what lies below. The food was amazing too, and all-in-all I would definitely recommend it to anyone visiting Berlin.
After a delicious dinner and a great day walking around we slowly went back to the hotel for some much-needed rest before heading out the next day for our last day of exploring!