Blog

SYMBIOSIS GATHERING 2016

It was good to be back at Symbiosis. The festival has grown incredibly since the Eclipse at Pyramid Lake in 2012. It's now a world-class production, and the heads running the show deserve a lot of props. They've managed to capture the essence of community that makes Burning Man so special, but in their own authentic way. I can't wait to see where they take it next year for the Global Eclipse Gathering.

I was fortunate to be on the media team and learned a lot about shooting events.  Shout out to Alexa Rae for giving me the chance to be on the team! There was so much to capture, with all the art, the stages, the beautiful people dressed in all the crazy outfits, and of course the scenery. After over 2000 exposures, and truthfully, I felt like I could have gotten a lot better shots. Crazy, huh?!

But that's what experience is all about. There are guys out there that do this for a living, and I respect them more than ever after this. You have to be on your A game and not sucked into the actual enjoying of the festival, and find the balance that works for you. I definitely made plenty of rookie mistakes, but being a photographer at the festival allowed me to connect with people in a new and more exciting way.  In the end, I am just eternally grateful for the opportunity!  

Enjoy the shots, there are quite a few... Bluebyrds and Sweaty Betty's were reppin' hard out there.

-SM

BURNINGMAN 2016 - DA VINCI'S WORKSHOP

PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND

The only thing I knew about Prince Edward Island before deciding to go there was that Malpeque Oyster’s were very desirable. Being a West Coast Oyster man myself, that didn’t mean much to me. Nonetheless, that’s all I knew.

But DAMN. Prince Edward Island is easily one of the most beautiful heavenly places I have ever visited. It is literally endless vistas, rolling hills, epic shores, manicured farmland, and again, super nice Canadians. We started off in Charlottetown and dined at the Gahan House, the local brewer’s restaurant.

After exploring the charming city, we hit up Prince Edward Island National Park, which was literally miles of pristine beaches with little forests and sand dunes. Apart from a few designated swimming areas you could explore the beach and feel like you were in Interstellar or something.

The other thing about Prince Edward Island is the food game is on point. Since they produce so much of their own food, there is an abundance of dining options. Highlights are obviously seafood, but also the dairy! Best Gouda of my life, followed by Gouda Pizza!

Every stop along the way has been incredible, and in their own way. Prince Edward Island takes the cake for being the most official hidden gem.

New Brunswick, Fundy National Park, and the largest tide in the World

I never paid much attention to tides until this trip. New Brunswick borders the northwestern side of the Bay of Fundy, and in addition to whale watching and some of the freshest seafood, this body of water is known to have the longest tides in the world. The tides are so drastic here that it was always something to notice every day. We rarely think of these natural cycles that occur for every ocean, and how it affects us, being over 70% water ourselves!

We walked out on the ocean floor for what seemed like miles to where the water was pulled back during low tide. We splashed through the little pools of water left behind, admired the perfectly shaped seashells and watched as crabs dug their way into the sand. As we revisited some of these spots where we witnessed low tide, we were amazed to see the ocean floor we had previously walked on, completely submerged as the tide was in.

As much of as there was Ocean, there was plenty of Forest! Filled with Red Spruce, Oak, Maple, these forests were once one of the largest lumber resources in Canada.

The people were warm and cheerful, and love their land. It’s a great vibe!

-S+K

ACADIA

When Kristin and I began talking about some sort of extended traveling, we had many options. Costa Rica, West Coast, living in Granada, and the list goes on. In all of these places there was always one simple core desire: to commune with Nature.  

Three weeks, and half way through our road trip, we finally pierced through the layers of commotion in our hearts and minds, and found the fountain of infinite inspiration within ourselves at Acadia National Park.

Environments pull forth ways of being. The mixture of the physical aspects, the people, the energies, all combine to have us be certain ways. In New York City, people tend to be a certain way, in California another, and so on. For many, when we are with our friends we are one way, with our families another, and co workers even another. We show up how we think we should, and how we think we should show up is many times dependent on how others and the  environment want or expect us to show up. This makes transforming ourselves seem challenging, because we are often unaware of these forces.

In exploring oneself and the world, one can find which environments truly bring out their best natures. For myself, I am my best when I am able to meditate, be physically active, and be with nature. In New York it was hard to be that ultimate version of myself. So I took extreme action, backing out of an extremely lucrative career, in search of something more valuable.

Spending a week on the majestic Mt. Desert Island has affirmed what I have known for a long time.  Sometime it takes immense courage, and stepping completely into the shadows of the unknown, to know yourself deeper. Spending time here, I have found what I was looking for. Which I knew was always inside of me, but needed a new environment to help pull it out.

Now we have three more weeks to play in Canada before I am off to a long awaited return to Burning Man, and then a lifetime of constant exploration!