Though I admittedly don’t travel down to Brooklyn nearly as much as I should, this borough continues to enchant me. It’s part of the reason why I love New York City. You can take a quick train ride down to an entire different city. It’s not just one neighborhood, or a few streets of different. Its an entire borough. Park Slope is one of those places that I continually find myself in, especially in the upcoming recent Spring weather.
Last year I spent a ton of my Spring free time in Brooklyn. Between Prospect Park, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden (with all of the cherry blossoms) it seemed it was the only place I wanted to shoot. I am anxiously awaiting some warmer weather. Spring is my favorite season and spending it in Brooklyn seems like a pretty good use of time again!
It’s no secret that the brownstones are one of the most treasured parts about Brooklyn. From Park Slope to Cobble Hill to Fort Greene, they cover each block. These in particular caught my eye when I found myself in Brooklyn on one of the warmer February days we had. Don’t you love the pink brownstone?
Do you have any suggestions for things to do in Brooklyn? Let me know!
Though I make the trip down to Brooklyn once in a blue moon, there is something about the neighborhood of Gowanus that really captures my attention. It’s basically a haven of warehouses turned gentrified and could most likely be the epitome of why Old New Yorkers are disgruntled about this new city. BUT to be very fair the gems you can find in this neighborhood are unbeatable. From trendy BBQ joints, to shuffleboard clubs, to palaces of ice cream… this is the best of Gowanus.
What To Do
The Bell House: A bar with a stage and plenty to do, The Bell House is more of an event space. My friends and I attended a drinking game here where they acted out a movie and the audience (and cast) had to drink every time specific words were said. Clueless was such a fun movie to see here, highly recommend attending whenever you get the chance. Drinks are also cheap!
Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club: This place is such a gem and I’m surprised it took me almost 2 years to finally make it down here. A large venue with a fun decorated kitschy summer theme, Royal Palms is such a great spot for a game night or day drinking.
Mural Art Walk: Along the Gownanus canal on Bond Street you can find an endless array of graffiti, street art and murals. That is where I shot all of these featured photos! It was such a great day exploring amongst the warehouses. Grab your bestie and head down here for a photoshoot among the art.
What To Eat
Pig Beach: This BBQ joint boasts some serious good eats. I love how they have a huge outdoor garden, it would be amazing to attend in the middle of the Summer. Try the
Ample Hills Creamery: Ever since Ample Hills opened this two story palace of ice cream it has secured it’s spot as one of my favorite ice cream places in the city. Come especially during warmer weather so you can sit on the rooftop deck with lounge chairs complete with green turf! My favorite flavors include Salted Crack Caramel and The Munchies.
Where To Shop
Gowanus Souvenir Shop: This little store right next to the canal features tons of stuff by local artists; hats, T-shirts, you name it they have it.
No Relation Vintage: What would a warehouse neighborhood be without a good vintage thrift store? No Relation has a huge selection and definitely makes the trip worth while.
We have been so lucky to have such warm weekends on our hands. Though I’m headed out for a tropical vacation soon (so I won’t be around to post!) I was able to spend some time exploring and shooting in the Upper East Side.
This city has always been my favorite due to it’s accessibility. You hop on the train for a cheap rate and it can take you to a whole new neighborhood you have yet to visit. The Upper East Side has always been the neighborhood that I work in so I have hit or miss feelings about it. I think New Yorkers agree: you don’t spend free time in the neighborhood you work in. Just brings back too many memories. There are also so many other amazing places in this city to spend your free time. Of course there are exceptions to this rule as always. (My friends that live there of course!)
These are a set of some pictures I shot while wandering the Upper East Side!
With the passing of a new year comes new goals and new aspirations. Though I haven’t upgraded the tech aspect of my camera, photography improvement is not just about the camera. Here is my list of ways I want to improve my shooting in 2018.
Find a New Subject
Though your style may focus on one medium in particular breaking out from that mold is the best way to build new skills. If you are constantly shooting outdoors, take the train into the city for the day and have at it. Breaking out of your comfort zone is a sure-fire way to photography improvement.
Start a Portfolio
A portfolio can be a motivating project in that it gives you an end goal. Starting to curate your best work or focus a portfolio on a certain medium can not only boost your confidence but also spark new ideas and creativity.
Experiment with Night Shooting
Night shooting is one of those topics that some people will tell you to never attempt. Some of the best photography I have seen has been shot around dusk. Take your camera for a spin at sundown and see what happens! Again, breaking out of your comfort zone is the best way to improve.
Ask for Help
One of my favorite things to do is to take my bestie (who isn’t a photographer) with me on my days of shooting. She not only helps spark my inspiration but she provides honest advice about what she likes and what she doesn’t. I took her as my travel partner to Mykonos, Greece and was especially excited about the pictures I snapped there.
Don’t Be Afraid to Fail
Keep working, take your camera everywhere, and shoot, shoot, shoot. Most of the stuff you may take could be junk, but in there when you find the few gems it is going to be such a reward.
When I first started blogging almost officially a year ago, I was nervous about the possibility of people actually looking at my work. I had read and seen so many great blogs I couldn’t imagine trying to jump in. But like all things in life, the way it turned out was nothing like I imagined! This is the story of my inner voice.
Over this first year I really started to learn a lot about myself, and about the work I bring to the table. Photography can be daunting when you are first starting out. You don’t have the best camera on the market or the most expensive lenses. But as an art form, all photographers have something else that doesn’t involve equipment. Style helps put your ideas and inspiration to your own test. Style makes your work unique and your own.
I knew I wanted to do something different with my blog once I came back from my trip to New Orleans. I wouldn’t stand a chance between these lifestyle and fashion bloggers with their own professional photographers and whole team of support behind them. But I did know I could bring something special to the table.
That is when I decided that I wanted to be photoshop free and really develop my own style as down-to-earth and raw. This blog isn’t the story of competition, it’s the real story of the places I go and the things that I see. I am to capture life’s little beautiful moments. Having a style driving me and goals to aspire to are really helping set the tone for 2018. I want to make even greater strides this year
Here are just a few tips to help you develop your own personal style this 2018.
What do you want your readers to know?
All bloggers have an end game. The message that you want to get across is also the message you want your work to speak. Some people want to help manage money, document fashion, showcase a certain portfolio of work. Once you have determined you’re final end goal your set up for success.
Incorporate your personal taste.
People like to read work that is passionate, honest, and true-to-self. If you want to make your site full of bright pink lettering and images, go for it! If you think using a very minimal site to house your photos is the way to go, all for it. Find what works for you!
Determine your dislikes.
Self-examination can be the true key to just starting. You know what you want to do with your space, but what you don’t want to do can be just as revealing. This helps keep truthfulness to your work and helps take the stress out of competition.
This may be the most important lesson of all. No one is going to get it right the first time. Finding personal style is an ongoing journey that can take time. If something doesn’t work for you, change and change again. Sometimes the hardest failures are the best way to learn.
I knew on a recent day off that the West Village was the perfect place to explore for some low-key Christmas magic. This holiday season there is a lot to celebrate, and I can’t help but feeling each Christmas gets more special. Hope you all have a wonderful holiday and can’t wait to see what 2018 will bring!
I know, I know, you guys have missed me. The good news is I’m almost free of my studying and free of Christmas shopping responsibilities! Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are ready for a few more months of cold. Winter in New York City can be brutal, but is saved by one thing … SNOW.
The recent snow (which I’m surprised happened so early) reminded me of some gorgeous pictures I shot last year of a snowy East Village I wanted to share for you all. The best part about New York City in the snow is how the whole atmosphere seems to slow down. No racing traffic, no angry pedestrians, parks full of people. Last year my friends and I braved the cold of Central Park amid a huge snow storm for some amazing pictures. I can’t wait to see what this year brings.
When glancing at the last time I posted on this blog, I feel ashamed! Over a month ago?! Time definitely gets away from me at moments.
It has been a busy fall for me. The heat has been distracting since it still felt like early September for most of October, so maybe I’ve almost forgotten what season we are in. Work is ramping up as I am studying for a new certification which will not only make me more knowledgable but hopefully springboard me into the next big opportunity.
Luckily I was able to get away and visit my brother who is currently a California resident for the semester somewhere near Sacramento! We got to explore San Francisco, Sonoma County (wine country) and some of Northern California.
I definitely would recommend the places we went to for wine tasting: Kendall-Jackson, Clos du Bois, and Francis Coppola winery. Kendall-Jackson had beautiful gardens and a gorgeous tasting room. Francis Coppola even had an outdoor pool and bar with an inside museum (he’s a really famous movie producer).
Northern California is beautiful and it’s so sad to know that so many people were hurt and lost their homes in the fires. As we drove we could see scorched hills and burned trees. Employees at the wineries spoke of stories of losing their homes, or their neighbors homes. There are many ways you can still help the victims, now that the fires are contained (but still burning). Visit this page to learn how you can help!
Despite the mixed reviews we had from others, Athens was a nice surprise at the end of our Greek vacation. The Old City which is where the Acropolis sits directly in the middle of is full of beautiful white washed houses with terra-cotta plated roofs. Graffiti lines the streets in the most beautiful arrays of color. Cafes and tavernas dot the streets and keep it loud enough to not feel empty.
The National Gardens are a nice shady respite from the blaring heat of the sun of this city. The neighborhood of Monastiraki which lies close by has tons of restaurants, and a huge outdoor market.
Here is a sprinkle of some of my favorite photos from Athens. Hope you enjoy!
After we headed out to Mykonos, our second stop on our Greek journey was to the island of Naxos. This gorgeous island is the largest in the Cyclades island group and is only a short hour ride by ferry from Mykonos. It ended up being the perfect balance between the lively and super touristy island we had just left.
You step off the ship to see the Temple of Apollo sitting there on the hillside, its arch watching over the entire town. It sticks out from the mainland into the water on this little peninsula surrounded by beautiful blue ocean. It’s no wonder the ancient Greek’s picked the spot! It made for amazing pictures, and crowds lined up to see the sunset from the top at night.
The town of Naxos is so fun! Though much smaller than Mykonos and quaint, it really had a lot to offer. The road that runs along the water is lined with shops and restaurants, cafes and cocktail bars. Families wander through the downtown every night of the week. Soccer (football) plays on outdoor screens at cafes, with lounge chairs and couches and strong espresso. Octopus hang on strings outside the restaurants just waiting to be picked by you to eat. It really is amazing.
Head up the side roads, and you’ll soon find steep narrow winding alleyways and quaint shops leading up to the castle of the town. It has been renovated into a walking museum of sorts and has some beautiful architecture hidden away inside.
It’s safe to say we were enchanted right away by this island. The hotel we picked ended up being perfect here also. Aeolis Boutique Hotel was situated just outside of downtown which made us feel like we really lived amongst the Greeks for our two short nights here.
Naxos luckily has a fully functioning bus system, and for 3 euro we were able to jump on for a short drive over to Plaka beach which was highly recommended. These beaches are much less touristy than Mykonos. We went around 6pm to a mostly empty beach and stayed to enjoy our own private sunset on the water. Couldn’t have been more beautiful!
Naxos was the perfect compliment to Mykonos and I would highly recommend. You could even spend more days here than we did and do some of the bus tours or boating excursions the island has to offer. The quaint but lively town offered us the perfect view into true Greek island life.