Henry around the globe

It’s just me, my camera (who I have lovingly named Henry) and the Rocky Mountain wilderness of Palmer Park. I take a deep breath in and fill my lungs with fresh mountain air. I keep hiking along the trail, taking in every inch of the beauty surrounding me. I admire pine trees, big boulders and tiny, cute cacti. I’m absolutely content, alone in nature. My head begins to fill with thrilling thoughts of running into a black bear or mountain lion. Although this might make some hikers nervous, It makes me feel like I’m going to boil over with excitement. As I play out my reactions to such scenarios, my thoughts are suddenly interrupted by the stunning landscape of mountains. From this spot on the trail, I have a clear view of America’s Mountain, Pikes Peak. At 14,115 feet above sea level, Pikes Peak stands proud and majestic, overlooking the city of Colorado Springs. I pull out Henry and snap some photos. I stand and stare for a few minutes before continuing to explore the trails.

When exploring new places I often find myself in the midst of beautiful people or scenery. The beauty that I find overwhelms me and I try to capture and immortalize it so that I can hold on to the beauty forever. Going on adventures and capturing the beauty around our planet brings me so much joy. For me, exploring and creating pair up as nicely as PB and J. When I travel, I am instantly exposed to new ideas and concepts, which fuel my brain and inspire me. Just like with Pikes Peak, I get sucked into the paradises I adventure to. I have breathtaking moments that change the way I see the world, which affects how I create art.  

On one of mine and Henry’s adventures in Perth,  I was capturing the beautiful turquoise colour of the Indian ocean while its waves mesmerized me. Wave after wave rolled into the shore. I sat Henry down and let the ocean's beauty consume all of my thoughts. I could not handle how beautiful Australia was, I started crying which soon turn into laughter. I was standing on a beach in Perth in my UGG boots, crying and laughing like a crazy person. Suddenly, I had this strong desire to be in the ocean. It was almost as if there was a Siren trying to lure me into the sea. I knew that the water would be freezing, but I did not care, the ocean is my one, true love. I took off my UGGs, sweater, and pants and walked into the waves. I was right, the water was freezing! I decided that doing the polar dip probably wasn’t a good idea, so I sat on the beach, close enough for the waves to crash onto my legs. Every time the water touched my skin I would feel goosebumps and shivers take over my body, but the cold water made me feel alive. I sat and just breathed in the salty air. After a few minutes, I picked up Henry and started shooting. This time I wasn’t just taking touristy pictures of the ocean. After being mesmerized by its waves it had become alive to me. From observing how the ocean moved, and admiring its beauty and power, I had formed a connection with it that not only changed how I saw it, but also enhanced my abilities to create what I was feeling. The experience I had with the Indian ocean left me crying and laughing due to its beauty, and those raw and vulnerable feelings are what I was now trying to capture. 

This experienced taught me just how majestic, powerful and calming the ocean really is. I grew up in a landlocked province, so previous to this, most of my learning about the ocean came from books, the Discovery Channel or the internet. After having travel experiences like this one, I have formed a connection with the ocean, which has forever changed the way I depict it in art. 

Traveling and photographing all over the world has opened my mind, and taught me new ways to see the world. I now have all of these experiences that have stirred up emotions in me and inspire the art I create. All of these experiences, like the one in Perth, shape the way I see the world. When I create a photograph, I think back to an old traveling experience and I try to capture the raw feelings I felt.  All artists should explore, because from exploring, we learn to create.