make something.

i went out west the first time to find my true north. i was greeted with the mighty pacific and oregon charm. i went out the second time to find inspiration. i was sun kissed and madly in love with arizona, and all of those hues of red and burnt orange and purple and haze.

as the wheels lift off my heart pounds with joy and excitement. there it is, the world as a miniature model, with only several layers of plexi between us. the calm that takes over and the curiosity about the places i've yet to see is like nothing else.

as a child, i hated flying because i associated it with immigrating and displacement and losing my sense of home. i would often look up at the sky and ask those little metal flying machines, 'why can't you take me back home?' as an adult, i love flying. ironically, it brings me a sense of home or a glimpse of the familiar back to me. my head is clearest above the clouds.

two weeks . two trips . two cameras . eight flights .

as the wheels lift off my real work begins. all of these fleeting moments, all of this insane beauty, this is my real home... it all needed to be put to film. [i'm quite sure my loud click and film winding was annoying to those around me, but i'm so happy with what i was able to capture from my window-seat of the flying machine i was on.  mother earth is incredible from above].

// special thanks to artifact uprising for their incredible work, the book turned out amazing! it's available for sale in my shop [as soon as i can figure out how to make it work].


oh, oregon.

i arrived midday on a saturday in february, and all i could think of was how pleasantly warm and green my surroundings were.  i had shed my bulky ohio winter coat for a layered hoodie and jacket, and set out to explore the wild wild west... the trails of folklore, of lewis and clark, of epic beauty.

i was greeted by friends, who spent time to show me their favorites - spots, eateries, parks, boutiques, overlooks, drinks, rooftops and card games. and then i set off for the misty coast.  just outside the city, the terrain became something out of movies.  hills became mountains, moss and texture was in abundance, and oh that rolling fog!  i've never seen so many shades of green and grey.

the drive was leisurely, pulling over at whatever caught our eye and needed a deeper sense of exploration; a speedy car can never really show you the real abundance of a space.  we drove from dotted coastal town to the next, were greeted by elk, went up and down cliffsides, until we reached the spot my best friend wanted to show me most.

this was what he wasn't going to tell me about. this is what I was supposed to see with my own eyes.

and so we started from the top of the cliffs, through the jungle trails and muddy switchbacks, past the mossy bushes; and then a glimpse - but only for a quick second - of the rolling Pacific, until, we finally emerged out of the thick, and over top of rolling logs of redwoods that had been trapped into the cove by high tide and years of rotting. the sun was setting, the soft light made the sand glimmer with gold, the mounds of redwood logs we climbed over smelled sweet and the edges of the cliffside perfectly framed this secret beach. it was pure magic.

i sat there, breathing it in, using all of my senses and letting it all sink in. "stay in the present moment," i kept telling myself, "this is  all very real."  and finally, the calm, quiet disconnect iI've been needing took over and pacified my mind.

oh, oregon, you've found a way into my heart of hearts.  i'll most certainly be back. 

new york city.

oh dear, where do i start with this... the past three days have been a dream.  a constant whirlwind of movement, discovery, subways, photo expos, shoots, friends, drinks, more drinks, more subways, walking, more walking, not feeling my toes walking, roof tops, the high line, trains, graffiti, more drinking, fire escapes, familiar places, new spaces, bridges, train tracks, art shows, the quay brothers, and a client couple to die for.  phew. 

it's been too long, but i finally went back to the one place that feels like home for me. the first time i set foot in new york city i was sixteen and star struck, and i knew it was the place for me. for the four years i lived there, i had never felt more alive. columbus is home in that there are people here who tie me to this place, but new york city is one of very few places i really feel like myself, like i belong. it makes me feel alive, feeds me through culture, history, art, spontaneity and the life that surrounds you at all times. i'm lucky to have a business that is starting to spread its wings, infiltrate other markets, and make the most of what the entire world has to offer.  travel is the best gift you could give someone, especially if it means i'll come to you, explore on your turf, and take photos of your sweet personality and pretty faces.

although this was a business trip for aperture, i also built in some time to catch up with some dear friends and to do some personal shooting.  i don't have any film developed as of yet, but i did take a ton of iphone and instagram photos. a handful of favorites are below.  i'm sure i'll post more once the more serious photography is developed. next trip is to the smokey mountains in a few weeks.  but for now, time to recoup and get some work done.  enjoy.  hp