The fear of being alone~ we all have it to some extent, the great anxiety that we will have no one to share our moments with, good or bad, the whole time forgetting that we are born alone and we die alone.

Maybe we should take a moment everyday to enjoy, value and make use of our own company, learning to meet and know ourselves a little better.

I once practiced a month of silence and discovered among many things that there was so much to be learned inside of the human complex I learned to call ”me”.

Monophobia~

Chasing the Christmas spirit~

Europe loves its Christmas Markets, the festive mood, the warm drinks cuddled by cold hands, the delicious smells of roasted almonds and the magical lights that chase away the darkness of winter. From the first advent till the winter solstice, people try to spend as much time as possible out in the markets calling on hope, warmth and light to comfort them through the long hard winters.

In the last 2 weeks I went with my camera and some fellow photographers chasing the Christmas spirit from Valkenburg in the Netherlands to Duesseldorf and then today to magical Cologne.

Impressions from Bruges~

The greatest part of living in Europe is the proximity of different cities with their varied history and culture and if you enjoy photography and travel as I do, then magic is just a few hours away.

Now being back home in Germany, the short journey feels like a pleasant dream added to my visual diary of this amazing world we live in.

Shanghai Moments~

Visiting the city we called home for almost 12 years is nothing short of strange at first. But within a day or two I felt the streets call me back with their charm, unique flair and warmth of the people. So little of the old city is left as the large construction projects drive forward leaving bits and pieces of the beautiful old alleys around the city. As I walk around and find huge empty lots and big buildings on the sites of my favorite alleys, I realize that all my photography over the years in Shanghai has been about recording history and vanishing alleys that are never to come back again…

Rescued by Art~

On yet another gloomy winter day in Duesseldorf

museums and art galleries can save your soul
This image was created by using in camera multiple exposure of a photograph I took of a fellow photographer and an exhibited gallery photograph, I love what the camera did with the head and eye …
another in camera double exposure
who said a visit to the bathroom has to be boring!

All images taken during a meetup of photographers I organized last Saturday in Kunst im Tunnel museum in Düsseldorf.

A self portrait I created using shutter priority setting at 1/8 of a second

The magic of a rainy day~ Germany

There is a charm that can only be captured on a rainy day and a mood particular to that atmosphere of chilly raindrops, umbrellas and leaves blowing in the wind that I always long to photograph. It’s visual poetry that turns gloom into romance and magnifies the bit of light the day has against the dark background. I wouldn’t hide my camera from the rain, no, I would always choose to join it.

And don’t get me started on reflections…

Wanderlust~

yanghsuo portrait 2.jpg

an image of me meeting a local woman and child,  taken by a good friend on an adventure in Yangshuo, China, a few years back.

How gratifying it is to explore the spinning sphere we call home. Each time I plan a new trip, I feel a bubbling of excitement at the unknown that would undoubtedly meet, the amazing people who cross my path and the images my camera would capture. It is as soul nourishing journey when I am far from my routine, away from the usual comforts of home and when I get the chance to push the limits of what I know. It makes me think of how knowledge was collected prior to the industrial revolution and the schooling systems that created machines for the industry; before that time knowledge was sought through experience, apprenticeship and exploration. What an incredibly esoteric experience.

Where is your next journey taking you?

Lost and found in Marrakech ~

Marrakech, a city that does not trust photographers, a place that lives off tourists and snubs them say the same time, but that’s just on the surface. In the last 4 days I asked every local I had the chance to speak with why is there such an automatic and immediate negative response to being photographed, and strangely, no one could give me a straight answer. So I took an approach that I never had to use before in all my travels, I asked, then I laughed and joked (speaking Arabic is definitely helping) and somehow the ice was breaking here and there. It has definitely been a great exercise in disarming, building trust and finding a human common ground connection that is making it all worthwhile.

More about my day in the Berber villages in the next post.