Wednesday, 31 October 2012
I'm not that into Hallowe'en... ever since the candy part vanished when I was a teenager, it's just that annoying holiday that always requires you to have a costume when you can't be bothered. Although looking at these pictures from a circus party night I went to, I'm not sure what my problem is with costumes exactly... Face paint forever! There was a woman moving through the crowd and I think I was the last one she did... clearly she was saving the best for last!
jugglers and dancers
I want to be a trapeze artist now
Amandine has her arm painted... maybe a wiser move for taking the metro home at the end of the night!
Anyway, Hallowe'en or not, tonight is the first day of a four day weekend round these parts, so I'm off to let the celebration find me. Trick or Treat to the rest of you!
Monday, 29 October 2012
Oh corduroy... may favourite of all autumn/winter fabrics. I love its softness, its comfort, its working-man connotations, and the fact that my dad was usually wearing it all winter when I was a kid. When I was a teenager, I imagined my twenty-something self living in squalor in London, as an about-to-be-famous theatre actress, and me and all my actor friends would wear corduroy trousers and practical wool sweaters (not sure why, but there you have it). Reality: after a few brushes with total broke-ness, my aim is to keep squalor to a minimum, I've rerouted my artistic interests to writing, where they should have stayed in the first place, and I spent much of my twenties not wearing corduroy, or trousers for that matter, because I was insecure about the shape of my legs. I've always been a basically thin person but a bit heavier through the legs, and I've always hated how trousers looked on me. Which is unfortunate, because I actually love the ease of them. Anyway, due to stress and upset back in June, I ended up losing about 10 lbs. I'm not saying I needed to, or that it was particularly healthy the way it happened, but it would be a lie to say I'm not thrilled with the result, which is that I'm now comfortable in these perfectly fall-coloured corduroys at the moment!
Apparently I'm also comfortable with bird motifs... I'm wearing four of them! My mom had the ring custom made in the late 70s/early 80s. Our family friend has one by the same guy (a first nations designer) that looks very similar, but features a turtle. (Actually, you can see it in my "festivities" post)
P.S. check out the last time I did a shoot in this lovely little square... in the springtime.
Thursday, 25 October 2012
My cake said "Age is only a number" and had little animals, a reference to my new favourite TV show...
Allison (an old, close friend from elementary school) and Eva.
Last of the Canada posts. But I couldn't leave without showing a bit of my 29th birthday, aka, the first one I've spent at home in four years. Not that I'm complaining. For my 26th I had a party in Mexico that included a Lucha Libre piñata, my 27th was spent climbing trees in Greenwich, 28 was a bit lame since I only really knew one person in Barcelona at the time... This year was awesome! Albert was visiting from England, and my friend Eva from Germany, so I felt extra-special! After being fussed over at home by my family, I went to The Railway Club in downtown Vancouver, which is one of my favourite venues. They have live music, a comfy space with louder and quieter areas, and warm colourful lighting... which is, however, kind of a nightmare for taking pictures.
Middle sister Morna, who was nice enough to flirt with the barman to get me a free shot I really didn't need. ;)
Youngest sister Shona (frequent photographer for this blog)
Sean, who I basically had to be friends with after we were in four out of five classes together at university one year. Obviously we had something in common, but he resisted friendship for a while thinking I was a "goody-goody." He's taken it back. Behind is Boris from Germany, who I don't know at all, but you gave me a $15 gift card to Tim Hortons, so is clearly an awesome human being.
Yassi and I met in high school and she tells everyone that I was her "first friend in Canada." I think we actually get closer the older we get, even though we hardly ever see each other...
The next day was Thanksgiving, which I was even more excited about than my birthday, and meant to take three million pictures of, but then got über-sick, took every kind of cold medicine known to mankind and drank half a bottle of red wine (my dad says it has "anti-drip" properties) so yeah... kind of dropped the ball on that one.
But it was Eva's first Canadian Thanksgiving:
Monday, 22 October 2012
God, Vancouver feels like a hundred thousand years ago now. Since I left two weeks ago today, I've been in three places, didn't document any of them, had a couple of my (usual) crises, and am now contentedly ensconced back in Barcelona... for the moment.
Anyway, I still wanted to share some pictures that were taken the last week, wandering around my usual haunts. Above are some shots in North Vancouver, where my family has lived since moving out West. I blame a lot of the "hate" side of my love-hate relationship on North Van, even though I have to acknowledge it's a pretty decent place to live. But it definitely dilutes your enjoyment of urban life having to trek in and out of a suburb, even if it is by scenic Seabus. I'm such a city person... (Albert, above, was kind of loving the tokens of suburbia around us... but then he grew up in a city).
Okay, crossing the water now...
Pizza on Seymour St.
Another day, we went to Granville Island. It's a big public market on a peninsula just across from downtown. I worked there for two or three years making jewellery, and all my best friends worked or studied there too, and I absolutely love the place. It's full of creative people, the Art University is just down the road, there are theatres and galleries and best of all is the market, home to some of my favourite things to eat in the city. On this day we took the unhealthy route: a burrito, chai teas from the tea shop (the best chai teas on the planet incidentally, with a recipe that includes butter) and doughnuts. Then we went to see a documentary at the Vancouver International Film Festival, and walked back to the Seabus down the Neon wonderland--or wasteland, depending on your view of falling-over-drunk-people--that is Granville St. at night.
The aquabus taxis are soooo cute (but such a rip off)
eyeing my doughnuts
Wednesday, 17 October 2012
This was originally a guest post over at The Hummingbird Girls while the lovely Annalise is off getting married... if you head over there you can read the heart warming story about this jacket and weddings....
Monday, 15 October 2012
These days I'm really into comfort, but the kind of comfort that's hovering on the brink of new adventures. It's about simultaneously embracing the old and new. In clothes for example, I've found myself stripping back, retreating to things I've had for a long time, or buying something new and then wearing it every single day. And mainly, just not worrying about it too much. I feel like I'm conserving resources, because I'm gearing up for a major shift in thinking, and I feel like it's going to be reflected to some degree in how I dress, so I may as well take it easy until I've figured it out.
Another aspect of comfort is my daily (okay, thrice daily) tea or coffee. A lot of people say they can't function until they've had their coffee, and I guess after at least a decade of caffeine I am that addict, but strangely it's never really been about the stimulation for me. I always turned to hot drinks because they're comforting, because they're something to hold onto that's warm (I'm usually cold), because their comfort is a reward when you have to study or work, because sipping them is something to do when you're stuck in a boring class. I could probably extend that metaphor of change somehow and say that I'm thinking of switching to green tea or something, but actually, after years in Europe, the only change is there's no way I'm paying $3.50 for a cappuccino, so I'm forcing myself to like drip coffee.
If you're ever in Vancouver, go to Trees on Granville by the way. The drip coffee is surprisingly nice, and they are routinely voted Vancouver's Best Cheesecake.
P.S. If I'm a bit rambly, that would be the jet-lag. ;)
Thursday, 11 October 2012
Look who came to visit!
Long-suffering Albert made the expensive and 15 hour (with stopover) trip to Vancouver to spend a week in the sunshine and celebrate my birthday. His first night, we stayed downtown in the Skwachàys Healing Lodge (pictured above), a hotel-meets-first nations art gallery and retreat right downtown (they were really nice and gave us free dinner). Although my family lives within a 20 minute journey of downtown Vancouver, it makes an enormous difference to actually wake up there, and simply step out the front door to start a day of urban wandering. Possibly one of the reasons I have a bit of a hatred for my native city is that I never lived downtown and everything was always a commute. Anyway, on a glorious, sunny day, there seemed nothing better to do than swing by the literacy festival Word on the Street downtown, and then head to Commercial Drive (a bit of a hipster paradise, but with normal people, families, and simply inoffensive hipsters mixed liberally in) for brunch at Café Deux Soleils. This café/restaurant/venue is one of my favourite places in Vancouver, and one of two similarly named places on the Drive (I spent an hour waiting once while my friend waited down the road in Café DU Soleil, bah). The food is amazing, and sitting at an unpretentious table by the window with slats of sunshine across your table feels at once normal and luxurious.
Smoothies and Nanaimo bars, which I had a nibble of before taking the picture...
A hummous burger which I can still taste in my memory
Reflected behind me: the cavernous space with local artwork hung on the walls, and a stage for even shows/poetry slams.
Farther down the drive, a "picture frame" had been erected in front of a public bench, for enjoying an in-perspective view of the North Shore mountains.
Monday, 8 October 2012
In honour of my birthday yesterday, I thought I'd share some pictures from when I was smaller and cuter. :) I found a "brag book" that had been put together for my grandma when I was at my grandfather's house this summer, which proved that I once had chipmunk-worthy humungous cheeks, was more photogenic back then, and that my mother was basically obsessed with putting hats on her babies. Now I'm kind of wondering if I could still pull off that pixie cut from picture number 4....
With my maternal grandparents
Hanging with the band (my grandpa played drums)