Farewell New York!

I’ve just recently moved away from New York City. It’s bittersweet. Even though such a big city was a large source of stress for me, there are some things I’ll miss about The Big Apple, Brooklyn especially. I thought I would post some old photos from one of my favorite days spent in Brooklyn. Cheers, New York. I think I’ll be back soon.

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Brooklyn Sun

For the first time in months, I was able to stand on my roof deck without slipping on ice. The sun is shining on Brooklyn today!

Brooklyn Sun

It’s time to start taking photos again…

I’ve decided it’s time to step it up with my photography…I think the last time I actually took photos for my own enjoyment was during my semester abroad. Unfortunately for many reasons, that was two years ago. It’s time to start taking photos again… 

So, here’s one to start of my boss’s dog.

Cinnamon

The Unheard

Well, it seems that I’ve fallen off the face of the earth again. After I wrote last, I was able to finish my thesis documentary, The Unheard. The film turned out really well and was part of the Official Selection at filmSPARK in Raleigh, N.C. Both the director and I are very proud. Anyway, here’s the trailer for our film. Enjoy.

In a short life update, I’m spending the year living and working in Brooklyn, New York as an editor and production assistant. I’ve had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects from documentaries, to online classes, to commercials. It’s been quite a ride so far, and now that I’m settled I’ll be taking and uploading more photos. So look forward to that! This is supposed to be a photo blog after all…

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New Documentary Projects

I realized recently that I haven’t updated my blog in a really long time, so I wanted to update with some of the projects I’m working on. I’m now a second semester senior at Elon so I’ve been trying to make a few short documentaries that I’m really proud of to take out into the real world.

The first one, tentatively titled “The Detector”, is about a man named Alan Stephens who suffers from chronic carbon monoxide poisoning. After loosing almost 200 pounds and recovering from obesity, he started having flu-like symptoms. At first he didn’t think much of it, but after his dog passed away and his wife started to get sick he knew it was something more serious. The documentary follows his story and tracks his recovery process.

The second documentary I’m working on is about the deaf community in Greensboro, NC. It’s still untitled, but it follows a woman named Rachel who is from Ghana and is also deaf. She came to the U.S. to get more education about deaf advocacy and hopes to bring her children to the U.S. to join her. She also aspires to improve the deaf community in Ghana by bringing back what she learns in the U.S.

So that’s what I’ve been working on this semester. The Detector is in the rough-cut stage and the deaf documentary is still in production, but I’ll update with stills as post-production progresses.

Last Day in Copenhagen

Yesterday was my last full day in Copenhagen. I took my mom on a canal tour and to walk around Nyhavn, which was pretty cool. The canal tours are definitely the best deal in Copenhagen. It was less than 200 kroner for two of us and the tours took us all around the canals.

At night we went to an adorable little cafe near Svanemøllen Station to have a final goodbye dinner. The restaurant overlooked the harbor and we could see a lot of sailboats. We ate a delicious meal (steak and potatoes) and talked until the sun went down. It was a great way to say goodbye to my host family, and everyone was there except for Frederik. I also finally got some good pictures with my host family.

Saying the final goodbyes this morning was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in a while. I don’t think I realized how much I’m going to miss this family until I actually had to leave. It’s been such an excellent semester and it definitely would not have been the same without my Danish family. As cheesy as this post is about to get, I’m so glad that I was able to have this experience this semester. It’s taught me so many things about myself and I cannot wait to continue travelling and living abroad. I’m hoping to come back to Copenhagen after I graduate to live abroad for a while. At least I’m counting on that to make the goodbyes less difficult.

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Bakken

I went to Bakken yesterday with a few friends. It’s supposedly the oldest amusement park in the world. It’s free to get in, but we also got the all rides pass so that we could try everything out. We rode the oldest roller coaster, and a few more modern rides that looked a little safer. Overall, it was really fun and I’m glad I finally got to go since I’ve been wanting to for a while. Here are some photos of the park!

 

 

The Faroe Islands

Last weekend I travelled to the Faroe Islands (Føroyar) with three friends. The Faroes is a group of 18 volcanic islands, that are now self governing, but remain under the Danish realm. About 50,000 people live on the islands all together. Some towns were so small that they only had a population of 18! The trip was amazing and the landscapes were absolutely stunning. It was great to be able to see nature almost untouched by man and in its natural state. The Faroese people were very nice and the lifestyle was very relaxed, definitely a change from Copenhagen. We saw pretty much all of the islands, except for the southern island that you could only reach by ferry. Here are some of the best photos from the trip:

I guess that photo needs a little bit of explaining. When we went to the island of Mykines we went on a three hour hike. Half way through the hike this huge gust of wind almost knocked us all over. We though that it wouldn’t last long, but the hurricane force winds ended up lasting for about fifteen minutes. We could barely stand up it was so windy.

We also took a boat tour of the Vestmanna Bird Cliffs. The following photos are of the tour.

The trip was amazing, and I highly recommend the Faroe Islands as your next vacation destination. Just make sure you rent a car and are prepared to do some hiking!

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Iceland

I had such an AMAZING time in Iceland. I really want to go back. Immediately. I don’t even know how to begin to describe all the wonderful things I experienced there. One of our first days there we did the Golden Circle tour, which showed us some of the main site right outside of Reykjavik. We saw Thingvellir, Gullfoss waterfall, Geysir, and Skalholt. Thingvellir is now a national park, but it’s where the vikings used to meet to discuss and read the law code. It was cool to be in a place of so much history, even if there wasn’t much left to see. Although we did get to see the continental divide here. It’s where the tectonic plates of North America and Europe meet.

Gullfoss waterfall was AMAZING. It’s the biggest waterfall I’ve seen so far, although I haven’t seen many. It was so beautiful I stood there taking photos forever.

We also saw Geysir, yes the original one. We saw it erupt about 6 times and it was amazing. We also waited around to get a photo in front of it pretending to look terrified, but we waited so long that we were actually scared when it erupted. Here’s the best photo of the bunch:

The next day was mostly academic so it wasn’t at fun, but we were still able to see some cool stuff and learn some things. We had a bunch of presentations at the hotel then went to a few museums. In the evening we had dinner with a few Icelandic students. We sat near a girl named Olöf, who was in school but was also married and had 3 kids. It was interesting to hear about her life and how school was different in Iceland that in the US.

On Friday we took a Saga tour around the area, which was cool. We got to see some of the places where the sagas supposedly took place. When we returned to the city we had the rest of the evening on our own. Jessica, Imogene, and I found this cozy cafe that also served sushi. It played the best music and the food was delicious. I had possibly the best sushi of my life there. It had mango, bell peppers, avocado, cucumber, and lettuce in it, with spicy mayo drizzled on top. I know it sounds weird, but I’m in love. After our long, cozy dinner we went with our tour guide to try to see the Northern Lights. We got to see them a little bit, but not in full color so I’m not crossing that off my bucket list yet. We only saw a few white streaks in the sky, so it wasn’t too exciting. I guess I’ll just have to go back. 🙂

On Saturday we went horseback riding through the lava fields, which was awesome. Icelandic horses are so different from other horses. I’ve ridden a few times before, but I definitely wouldn’t call myself an expert. They put me on a temperamental horse, who really just wanted to run the whole time. It was terrifying. And when the horses picked up speed I could barely stay on because of how weirdly they ran. It’s not like riding a normal horse, at all. After that we took a short nap, and went out for lunch. We went to the upstairs part of the cozy cafe from before, which was just a sushi bar. We order tons of those rolls that were so delicious and had an awesome conversation with the two guys working there. One of them was from Sweden and the other was Icelandic. They were telling us all the good places to go out and asking us about Copenhagen and America. If there’s ever a time to use the danish word “hyggeligt” to describe an experience, its now. It was great to be able to meet some of the locals. Then we headed to the flea market. The market was huge and so awesome. There were a lot of secondhand clothes and book stores, which was great. I was able to get a really nice leather jacket for around $140, something that definitely would have been at least $500 in the States. I was really happy since I’ve been looking for a leather jacket for a while.  After the market we met for an incredibly painfully touristy dinner, where some inappropriate things were said by the men working there, which features a lamb leg and potatoes. The food wasn’t that great. You were definitely paying for atmosphere considering the waiters were dressed up in Viking gear. At night we went out in Reykjavik to experience the night life, since it’s supposed to be some of the best in the world. Definitely lived up to all of my expectations. Since Reykjavik is so small all the cafes turned into clubs and bars at night. They would push all the chairs out of the way and make it into a dance floor. I even saw a disco ball emerge in a cafe we ate in the day before. I went out with Jessica and Liz, which was an awesome time because we were such a small group. It made it so much more fun not to have to keep track of people. At the first place we went we met these three guys who were studying at the police academy in Reykjavik. Two of them were Norwegian and one was Swedish. They were pretty cool and we bar hopped with them the rest of the night. The bars in Reykjavik were so cool. I’m glad we went to so many. There was literally something for everyone in that city. We went to a few hipster/indie bars, a rock bar, some normal places, and I even saw a heavy metal bar but we didn’t end up going into it. We stayed out until 6am, and the sun started rising around 4:45 am. It was crazy. Needless to say, I got one hour of sleep and was pretty exhausted for our last day.

On Sunday (after taking a 1 hour nap) we got up to leave Reykjavik. We took the bus to the Blue Lagoon, which was amazing! It was so warm and relaxing, exactly what I needed after a long night. There were face masks you could put on there that made your skin feel amazing. But I did put my hair under water and I don’t think I will ever regain the right amount of moisture. My hair continued to fee like straw until today, but it’s still not back to normal.

Overall my experience in Iceland was AMAZING. I never wanted to leave, and I definitely want to go back someday. We didn’t get to see much of the epic landscapes because we stayed around Reykjavik the whole time, so I really need to go back and see that. Reykjavik was such a great city that I want to go back and see that too.

Also, check out my Facebook for more photos, since I couldn’t upload them all here. The landscape was beautiful it’s definitely work looking.

Travel Break, Part 1

I just got back from my first week of travel break with my friend Jess. We decided to only go to two cities so that we could properly see both of the cities. So, we spent four days in Vienna and three in Prague.

We arrived in Vienna really late on Friday March 31st and checked into our hostel. The next day we tried to sleep in some, but since we were sharing a dorm hostel with 4 other people, we woke up earlier and went sight seeing around Vienna. We saw:

Schönbrunn Palace. This is where the Austrian royalty used to live, although the country no longer has a royal family. When we went there was a Canadian youth orchestral performing songs from Pirates of the Caribbean out front, which was super awesome. There were also some easter markets in the courtyard where we got some delicious austrian mac and cheese and I bought an austrian pottery coffee mug.

Then we stumbled on this bike festival in the middle of the city. There was a bike jumping competition and everything right in front of the town hall!

We also saw some other iconic sites in Vienna like Hofburg Palace and the outside of the opera house.

The next day we went to a performance at the Spanish Riding School, which was amazing even though I know nothing about horses or dressage. Jess was really interested in this, so I’m glad that she got the chance to go, and it was definitely entertaining even if I didn’t fully understand the difficulty of some of the tricks the horses were doing.

On the last day we went to the Donaturum to see an aerial view of Vienna. I got some great photos.

 

And on our last night Jess and I met up with some other DIS friends to go to a traditional Viennese heurige, which is an old wine tavern. We ate a lot of delicious food and drank tons of wine. It was expensive, but totally worth it.

The next day we took a train from Vienna to Prague. The countryside was pretty, and the train was just enough time for some sleeping and relaxation. The first night in Prague we checked into our hostel (which was the opposite of centrally located, but with a really nice staff) and went for dinner in the city to a pub Jess’ friend recommended from his semester in Prague. It was really good food and I definitely needed it after the stress of navigating in a city where almost no one speaks english.

The next day we did a TON of sightseeing. We saw Prague Castle, the astronomical clock, the bell tower, Charles Bridge, Petrin tower, the John Lennon Wall, and the oldest synagogue in Eastern Europe.

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After an extremely stressful flight transfer in the Kiev airport, we finally made it home to Copenhagen earlier today. I have two days of resting then I’m off to Iceland and I literally CANNOT wait.

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