‘Asking for help’

If you are anything like me, you also have a hard time asking for help. Maybe you think people are too busy to make the time for you, or maybe you are afraid of being told ‘no’, or maybe you are just not sure what to ask for. Sounds too familiar to me, and I’ve been stuck for a while because of that. But I feel juices are flowing again. And the main reason for that is me asking for help and taking decisions even though I was not 100 percent sure of what I wanted.

So, by reaching out to people for help, this is what I have achieved in the past three weeks (things I’ve been procrastinating in the past one year):

  1. Submitted photos for iStock and Adobe Stock, I had a one image approved for sale on Adobe. Still waiting to hear back from iStock.
  2. I finally ordered a signature logo. After one failed attempt – note that this hasn’t discouraged me – I went on and tried again, and now I am the proud owner of my own professional signature logo (see on pics below).
  3. I am working on two photographic projects with two fellow bloggers, thanks to Ines Monnet. (thank you for the inspiration!)
  4. I finally asked a friend photographer to help me with feedback on my portraiture so I can work on my online portfolio, and not only she helped me to choose some images, but her feedback helped me understand important things about curating my own work.
  5. Above step gave me the drive and material to finally work on my website and online portfolio. I am halfway there and the website will be on air in about one week.
  6. I identified a friend who could teach me Photoshop basics. One on one tutorial is now done and I feel so much better knowing those basics. (I still prefer Lightroom for editing, but sometimes you just need Photoshop for things Lightroom can’t do). It makes me feel smarter and more confident. 🙂
  7. There are more things I am working on, but the overall feeling is that now I am one step closer to understanding who I am as a photographer. And all this is due to me asking for help.

So, if you ever feel stuck, don’t get trapped in your little world and suffer, reach out to people, friends, family, strangers, anyone really. I’m here if you need me 🙂

And my entry for the H2O WordPress challenge. For some reason ‘fish schooling’ seemed like an appropriate metaphor for the theme of this blog. These were made at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, with my Fujifilm cameras at very high ISO, from 12800 to 25600 (at this ISO, the camera only shoots in Jpg format).

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For the love of Gilmore Girls

I try to keep this blog as curated as possible, but I have a crush on ‘Gilmore Girls’ and I want to share this with the world :). A combination of iPhone photos / Hipstamatic and Fujifilm x100 images from today’s Gilmore Girls Revival stunt in Dallas.

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Make a wish

For y’all dreamers out there 🙂

Seen in Grapevine, Texas.

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Low key flower portraits

I’m not such a big fan of speedlights, but sometimes there is no way around it. When I switched all my camera gear to Fujifilm, I kept my Nikon Speedlight SB-700, without really knowing if it’s going to work with the Fujifilm system. I wanted to put this one out here because I looked this up online a lot and I only found vague answers. I had to figure it out myself (and I’m not a geek at all!). So, the answer is they work together, but only having the speedlight on the manual mode – which is fine by me. Today I used it for the first time to produce some low key flower portraits. I used a black dress as a background 🙂

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The future of architecture

I am still editing and sorting the last month’s travel photographs, and this week I really wanted to enter the WordPress photo challenge, Quest.  To be honest, because the theme is so subjective and vast, I could have posted anything – the very act of photographing, for me at least, is a quest.

Architecture always fascinates me, but architecture, even if it’s impressive and photogenic, it’s not always responsible. Not the Moesgaard Museum (MOMU) in Aarhus, Denmark. As you can see, the building, designed by Henning Larsen Architects, is an extension of the landscape, how every building in the future should be, in my humble opinion.

Seeing this gave me hope that our quest for being in harmony with nature, while still living an urban life, will be answered by urban planners and architects of cities of the future.

The last image is an iPhone pictures of The Graubelle Man, the world’s best preserved bog body from the Iron Age and the ‘star’ of the Moesgaard Museum.

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Stock photography

Nothings shows I am ready for rejection quite like submitting my first images to iStock. I’m looking forward to their feedback though, since one of the most difficult things to do as a photographer is to curate my own work. No, this is not what I submitted, I’ll keep you updated with the process :).

Below patterns and textures of Denmark.

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A town of too many tales

I don’t know how I feel about my native town. I was born there, but because my parents had to work and I had no one to take care of me, I lived almost my entire childhood (up to 6yo) with my grandma, 400km away in the countryside. It may not sound too much 400km today, but at the time, when cars and gas were a luxury and there was only one overcrowded train to get you somewhere nearby, it was like an ocean apart. It was not a bad childhood, but I know for sure it was one of longing. I don’t want to get too deep into this topic, but I clearly remember two episodes: one when I was sniffing on one of my mom’s dresses because it smelled like her, and one when I was sick crying for few days after my mom visited and left back. I came out ok, so no big deal, but I can’t pretend the feeling of abandonment was not there.

Anyway, back to the town I only came to live in when I was about 6yo, Targu-Jiu, I think I loved it back then, but it is hard to explain to someone from the Western world how was it like living in a Communist country as a child. Every day I was spending probably a couple of hours in queues to buy bread, oil, sugar, chicken or, in the special days, oranges and chocolate. It didn’t bother me, everyone else was doing it, so it was a kind of a ritual. The rest of the time, when I was not at school or doing homework, I was playing outside, reading books and my obsession, arranging books in my parent’s bookshelves. I don’t remember I felt like missing on anything, but at the same time, truth be told, I didn’t know what the alternatives were. Where food is concerned, I know we didn’t have all the choices the western world had, but we were probably eating better and healthier than other kids in the world. Every family in Romania had a farm at the countryside, and we always had fresh food straight from the farm.

To cut this long story short, my parents built a house and moved from the apartment we lived back then, so I didn’t get the chance to see that neighborhood for a very long time. This time we made the time and went back for a little walk down the memory lane. The place seemed so small and crowded, but still full of life. I don’t imagine is a bad life for kids living there, but I would imagine is a life everyone would want to escape at one point or another, even if it’s only moving closer to the city center (it’s a small town, so it would’t be that far anyway). I have no idea how to describe this place, but it’s like anything else I’ve seen in my travels.

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The one on the left was my building. When we were kids and stupid, we had unrestricted access to the rooftop, and we were jumping from one building to another! Thank God I’m still alive.

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Our apartment was on the 4th floor, on the left, where the blue balcony is now. I spent many hours on the balcony watching the world pass by or secretly watching my crush passing by while my heart was pounding out of my chest. 😀

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Some of the view from my balcony.

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Same old building in the neighborhood, except that there were no AC units back then.

And a different part of the city, one that wasn’t touched by communism as much. One part where you can get an idea of what this town could had been had the plague that is communism never existed. Many times I wonder what if… 😦

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Time travel. Den Gamle By

‘Den Gamle By’ is one of the most impressive museums I have ever visited. It is an open air ‘Old Town’ museum in Aarhus, Denmark, where staff are working in the roles of town figures. Everything it’s so well staged to the finest details, that I would call it a mind-blowing time capsule – at least from what I’ve seen so far. Below is a collection of black and white images from the oldest part of the museum. I noticed how houses in Denmark are built to let the light in and the museum buildings didn’t disappoint. I’ve left out from this post the part that was to me the most touching and inspiring, the 1970’s – I think many countries are ignoring their most recent history missing out on a significant way to connect with their younger population. I am particularly thinking here of Romania – but hopefully I’ll come back to that topic and with few images in a different post.

More about the museum here.

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9/11. Reflections

When I checked this week’s WordPress challenge, Mirror, I immediately knew what I want to share. I would say reflections are my ‘speciality’, I have so many photos on this theme that would be difficult to choose if we weren’t so close to 9/11. Plus, this picture has never been shared on the blog, so this is the perfect opportunity.

This photo was made in New York in December last year, while visiting the 9/11 memorial. What really stroke me that day were the many people who were taking funny selfies at the memorial, forgetting somehow the place’s significance. I wanted to make an image that was different from everything else you usually see from the memorial, when I saw the reflection in the memorial’s pool. I knew this was the shot.

I clearly remember the day in 2001, because 9/11 it happens to also be my sister’s birthday. We were eating birthday cake in my hometown, Targu-Jiu, when we heard the news on the radio. I barely knew what the World Trade Center was at the time. Almost 15 years later I’m writing this post from an airport in Berlin.

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Copenhagen Nyhavn

Bucharest is just 3.5h flight away from Billund Airport in Denmark, but my travel arrangements added a total a 10h layovers in airports 🙂 Meanwhile enjoying some soul music, and looking at pictures from my first trip to Denmark. Here Copenhagen Nyhavn, probably the most photographed placed in the country.

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