Peniche, Portugal | Third Stop

After Lisbon, I stayed in Portugal for almost six more weeks – mostly in Peniche, a small city about 100 km north of Lisbon that’s known for its surf. The surf was the why I came to Peniche – well, more specifically, the surfers. The breaks in and around Peniche, specifically at Supertubos, draw both amateur and professional surfers to its shores. I planned to photograph the amateurs until the professionals arrived for the 2016 MEO Rip Curl Pro Portugal, but as I explained in an earlier post, minutes before leaving the States, I decided not to bring my camera. So, what in the world was I going to do for five weeks in a place I booked to shoot surfers…when I can’t shoot surfers?

A lot, it turns out. Continue reading

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Saying Goodbye

So. You have this great idea to travel the world and make friends all over the world, and you do it. You leave everything and make the jump, and a few stops in you make a good friend. You have that connection. And you’re lucky because it keeps happening. You meet new people, you connect, you laugh, you share, you cook together, you eat together, you brush your teeth together, you’re in each other’s pictures, and eventually you say goodbye. Continue reading

Lisboa, Portugal | Second Stop

I expected Lisbon to be beautiful, and not only was I was greeted with beauty, but also with kindness, and an openness and warmth I hadn’t felt in other cities. I spoke none of the language but found the sound of it soft and welcoming as I wandered the winding streets. I want to go back.

Continue reading

Amsterdam, Netherlands | First Stop

I landed in Amsterdam last Wednesday around 10am. I was exhausted but grateful to get off the plane. Schiphol Airport was buzzing, and in the middle of a confused crowd heading (hopefully) towards customs, I met Amy, an artist from Portland. Her first words to me succinctly summarized the situation: “I am so confused.” Continue reading

Leaving the US…and My Digital SLR – a quick post with no pictures

So far, it seems everyone in Amsterdam is beautiful. And rides bikes.

I’ve wandered the canals, stumbled on the I Amsterdam sign, ran in the park, and visited the Van Gogh Museum. And I’ve taken a few pictures…with my phone. I left my incredibly expensive, amazing camera behind. In storage. Continue reading

The Best Surfer is the One Having the Most Fun – A Photo Essay

It’s 7:30am some May morning, and I’m knee deep in frigid, Pacific surf. Well, they’re in the surf, and they’ve probably been there hours already – the guys with the wetsuits and boards. I’m wearing shorts and a Vans hoodie, yelling at my camera to focus as the guy I’m tracking catches a right. After he makes the wave and dives off, I release the breath I’m holding and pause to look around. The sky is the same dull grey as the ocean that meets it. The May greys have a solid hold on the coast of San Diego. It’s between sets, and the almost still water is peppered with surfers who waxed their boards before the sun broke the horizon. Continue reading

Review: Balcon Del Lago Hostel Outside Otavalo, Ecuador

I awoke to the sound of children giggling as they skipped past my cabin on their way to school. I pushed my way out from under three heavy blankets, grateful for their warmth during the cold night, grabbed my glasses, and made my way to the large picture window.

I pushed back the curtains and looked out at the vista that would take my breath away this and every morning during my stay. I was on a hill overlooking the town of San Rafael de la Laguna, Ecuador. Just beyond the town, I could see the glassy Lago San Pablo, and towering protectively over its surroundings, the imposing Cerro Imbabura, the sacred protector of the region. The plan for today was Christmas shopping at Otavalo’s Saturday market. Another amazing day in Ecuador.  Continue reading