Such a vibrant city with incredibly friendly locals and so many things to discover!
My time in Istanbul was short, so I have not said goodbye… Görüşürüz Istanbul! See you soon. 🙂
On January 26th, I joined seven other young changemakers at the Impact Hub in Istanbul for the Humans for Change Summit. The aim of the Summit was to share personal stories about how each of us initiates and creates social change in their local community and to engage the attendees in workshops that will help them develop their own ideas locally.
Below is the live video of the changemaker stories. Each story is very unique and inspiring, but if you’re curious to hear what I had to say about how photography can contribute to social change, go to 31:30′. 🙂
I hope you enjoyed it and that you were even a tiny bit inspired to contribute to your local community as well.
The #bOObs project is live on Instagram!
Follow #bOObs on Instagram for tips and insights on self awareness and breast cancer awareness, share your personal stories, and get to know awesome women through their photos and their journey. Be sure to tune in for Instagram Stories with behind the scenes pics and to discover other cool accounts.
If you’d like to be part of the #bOObs project, contact me via email.
Alberto and Caterina’s love story could be something out of a Hollywood script. A young and beautiful Italian actress travels to Barcelona and meets a successful young lawyer. They fall in love and Caterina decides to take a bold step and move to Barcelona. Over time their love grows and the bond becomes stronger. During a trip to the USA, Alberto proposes to Caterina in a National Park and the rest is history! ❤
These two love birds took their vows at the beautiful church of Sant Feliu in Alella, a few kilometers from Barcelona. Friends and family from Spain and Italy joined them in celebration at the magnificent restaurant of Mas Coll, followed by a vivid party. The attention to detail and exquisite taste filled the entire evening with charm and elegance.
Take a look at the graceful Caterina and the handsome Alberto on their special day… as they lived happily ever after.
You might remember the lovely couple, Nikos and Maria from their traditional wedding in an urban setting.
Well, the day after their wedding, they invited all their friends to brunch. Many of them had come from far away for the wedding and they might not be able to meet again soon, so this was a perfect opportunity for some good laughs and group shots before I got my private time to photograph the happy couple.
One of the most beautiful things about being invited to your friend’s wedding as the wedding photographer is that you get to live the entire day very close to the couple, living every moment with them. This August I traveled to Ptolemaida, an industrial city in mainland Greece, where I got to know both the couple and the area a lot better. By the way, I can’t wait to go back!
The day started off at George Hair Club where Maria was getting her hair and make-up done. After some champagne and a few make-up induced tears, the bride rushed off to her family’s house, where nearly the entire village of Olympiada was waiting for her, with live brass music, dance and treats. The wedding dress was rushed on and the traditional ceremonies began before we all ran off to the church.
Nikos was patiently waiting on the church steps with his wide smile, bouquet in hand. The ceremony took place at Agia Triada, a large, beautiful church in the centre of Ptolemaida. The priest united the couple, spoke some beautiful words and it’s love ever after. ❤
After an urban stroll through the city with the couple and the best man, we arrived at Flo Cafe Bar where the pedestrian street was filled with the guests. Music -by friends and the groom himself- and dance, drinks and laughs!
Enough said, I’ll let you see some of the highlights.
Kalymnos may be an island known for rock climbing and scuba diving, but it’s also great for hiking! During my short stay on the island I managed to hike a few of the paths, but there are still many more to discover.
On the day I was trying to find my way to Sikati cave, I took a path that leads to a beach. All along the descent, I was saying how wonderful this bay is, how amazing it would be to camp there and how amazing everything looks. Unfortunately, once I arrived on the beach, I quickly changed my mind.
This beautiful landscape, that’s actually a natural fjord with crystal clear waters, was completely covered with garbage! I was absolutely shocked and appalled with the amount of trash that lay there! There was all sorts of discarded objects in the sea, on the beach and even in the bushes behind the beach! I was devastated.
This is a beach close to a frequented spot, Palionisos Cove, and it’s also on the way to a climbing sector (for those of you who have the climbing map, I believe it’s sector 5). During the time I was there, several tourists passed through. Imagine the disappointment after the 30 min. hike.
Why isn’t the administration of Kalymnos doing anything about this beach? Why isn’t there a yearly beach clean up event, calling on volunteers to help collect the trash? Local fishermen can also volunteer by bringing out their fishing boats, loading the garbage bags on them and taking them to the designated garbage disposal area. Imagine what 5, 10, 15 people can accomplish in only a day. This beach can be reclaimed and enjoyed by all. Shame on you Kalymnos for turning a blind eye!
It makes me so sad that every year I find a beach similar to this one. Remote, beautiful, full of garbage. Last year it was one of the less accessible beaches in Mali, on the island of Tinos. You can see what it looked like here.
No more excuses, we all need to pitch in.
Summer holidays are about discovery, exploration, fun and relaxation! I found all that in the Dodecanese.
The island of Kalymnos was put on the map thanks to the long tradition of sponge diving and more recently, rock climbing.
In fact, the reason the island first attracted attention on an international scale was because of the diving-related accidents and illnesses the sponge divers suffered. Thanks to them (and quite unfortunately for them), international diving standards have been set in place in order to avoid such diving injuries as decompression sickness.
Nowadays, Kalymnos is best known for its rock climbing and bouldering. Climbers from all over the world come to the island for its marvelous sectors.
And since it’s an island in the Aegean sea, many come for the beaches! One positive little surprise about Kalymnos was the island of Telendos, separated from Kalymnos by an earthquake, now lying at only 800m. across the channel.
But I’ve already said too much. Take a look for yourself!
Now, there’s an easy way to do things and there’s a hard way.
Choosing the “hard way” to reach the highest point of Greece is what we did with my team, but I can assure you that it was rewarding.
Here’s the breakdown
Wake up call: 5:00 am
1 hour drive from Litochoro to Krevatia Refuge
Starting point: Krevatia @ 1000 m. altitude
7 hour ascent via the Barbalas path to the Plateau of the Muses
This is what that looked like:
Arrival at the Giosos Apostolidis Refuge @ 2700 m. altitude.
Quick snack, warm beverage and concerned discussions about the weather forecast.
The weather conditions would definitely be worsening over the course of the weekend, so we decided to make the ascent to the Mytikas peak (2918 m.) on the same day and return to Prionia on the following day.
This is what that final stretch looked like:
I dare to confess that those final 300 m. (of altitude) ascending to the peak were the scariest thing I’ve done in my life. And those of you who know me would probably wonder about that statement, but it boils down to a high risk factor and a lack of a safety back-up.
As for the photos… My trusty Canon G10 is getting old, but I was immensely grateful for its 390 grams of weight compared to the 1.5 kilos of my DSLR!
The next day, we had a pleasant return via the Koftó path to Prionia.
Here are a couple of friends we met on the way:
Admittedly, the path did have its own set of challenges, especially if you factor in the strenuous ascent of the previous day, but it seemed like a piece of cake compared to what we encountered at Mytikas.
Overall, it might have been tough, but I can’t wait to go back!