Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Road Trip for Cameras: Arizona National Parks & Monuments

When it came time to retire my beloved Canon 5DMII, I decided to take it out for one more spectacular road trip, so I could fill its sensor with colors and textures through one last journey. It deserved a proper farewell tour, and it was time for another "road trip for cameras."

Although it had traveled to over 50 countries with me, my 5DMII shutter had never opened upon one of the most photographed places right here in the US, the Grand Canyon.

In fact, I had not been there myself since digital cameras appeared on the scene....or iphones for that matter! With an annual National Park pass in hand, I was ready to update my digital stock, and my instagram feed, with the beautiful protected parks of the American southwest.

A photo posted by Kymri (@kymri) on

Arizona has so many parks, well beyond the Grand Canyon, so it made perfect sense to visit my next-door-neighbor state with camera and iphone (and family and dogs too) by car. Starting at the Grand Canyon's South Rim, we worked our way top to bottom through the state, all the way south to Arizona's border with Mexico.

Here's my instagram gallery of the trip highlights:

And here are the National Parks and Monuments that we visited, as seen through the lens of my 5DMII:

Grand Canyon

Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument

Wupatki National Monument

Walnut Canyon National Monument

Painted Desert National Historic Landmark

Petrified Forest National Park

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

I hope you enjoyed this edition of Road Trips for Cameras. Check out these other Road Trips: California's Central Coast, Nova Scotia's Eastern Shore, and the Guysborough Galleries.

This post is shared as part of #InstagramTravelThursday - here are some other Instagram blog posts featured this week. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Farewell to 2014, Farewell to Hiatus

Yeah, I know. Long time no words. I've been on hiatus.

A well-earned moment of downtime in Cuba. Not pictured: mojito.
Oh, if only hiatus looked like this!  While this picture tells a story, there is a much bigger story which it doesn't tell.  That scene and moment lasted only 5 minutes, but felt like an eternity. Beside me is a folder of paperwork, in the next chairs over lounge some of my clients, er, guests, relaxing with their mojitos and thanking me for "another amazing day" of our People to People journey through Cuba. They were happy, relaxed, and gracious - that was reward enough to grant me these 5 minutes with my feet up. This was a rare moment in my job. I snapped this photo with my iphone to immortalize it. Then I gathered up my paperwork, and left the mojito - which a kind person had just ordered for me - sitting in the sand. Had the wordless story this photo tells been the reality, I may very well still be there, lulled to sleep by the sun and sea, lost in an eternal moment of bliss.

 I know, it's odd - while most people travel when they go on hiatus, I did just the opposite.

I took a hiatus from travel.

Truth be told, I didn't stop traveling altogether, I just stopped doing it for others. I traveled for me, and with people who care about me.

I took a hiatus from blogging.

I left my blog alone, and wrote more than I had in years...on real paper, with a pen. There is such an impermanence about writing on paper - all those words can be lost in an instant. That makes every word meaningful. Life is also impermanent - so make every moment meaningful.

I took a hiatus from photography.

No, not really.  But I only picked up the camera when I truly wanted to, and took better pictures.

I took a hiatus from "not acting".

I stopped traveling long enough to return to the stage for a full-length production run - the US theatrical premiere of Tim Firth's "Calendar Girls." I re-learned that I feel just as "at home" on the stage as I do anywhere my travels take me. So yeah, I went on hiatus and did the opposite of what Hollywood actors do on hiatus.  I acted.

I didn't take a hiatus from social media, but I did it all by phone.

I defaulted to staying connected in ways which I could share easily from my phone - photos on Instagram, and videos on Vine.  Oddly enough, using only my phone during my hiatus has led to greater opportunities as a travel photographer, blogger, and writer. 

So happily, I head out of hiatus and into 2015 with new projects, contracts, and partnerships - all doing exactly what I'm meant to be doing, and that's everything I love.

So, farewell 2014, farewell hiatus, and welcome to a new year! Wishing everyone peace, joy, and moments of bliss that last an eternity.  Make every moment truly meaningful.

That's all the words I can squeeze into the remaining hours of, without further adieu, Happy New Year! Cheers!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Ten Photographs I Never Knew I'd Take in Norway

1) Abundantly Blue Skies. Like, 12 days of them. Seriously. (Varden overlook, Molde)

2) Naked human body sculptures. (Frogner Park Vigeland Installation, Oslo)

3) Fish eggs packaged as lip gloss. (Fish Market in Bergen)

4) A glacier that had significantly melted since the brochure photo and caption suggesting "Hike on a glacier!" (Briksdal Glacier, Olden)

5) A Norwegian Groom waiting as his Norwegian Bride is photographed on their Wedding Day. (Stavanger, old town)

6) A car stuck to the side of a building. (Stavanger, not-so-old town)

7) A print photograph of reindeer stuck to a utility box with tape. Street art? (Oslo)

8) A tiny starfish in my daughter's hand. (Lysefjord shoreline)

9) Hot, tan beach volleyball players. Really? Yep. (Stavanger, every year, apparently)

10) A selfie with a goat....and not with a hot tan beach volleyballer :( (Flam)

More writing:
Ten Things I Never Knew About Norway

More photographs:
Norway Travel Photos

More #IGTravelThursday Posts: