2011 was “the year of travel” for me. And wow, what a year it was. Looking back, if someone had told me everything that would have happened, I wouldn’t have believed them.
At the beginning of the year, I had just moved out of my old place and was on the cusp of a new lifestyle as a result of a breakup with Sherry, my ex-girlfriend of 3 years. I felt a new sense of freedom and eagerness to get out & explore. I decided to just GO with it. Sometimes I incurred a little damage from doing some stupid stuff, but hey – that’s all part of the process. Here’s my list of highlights & regrets from 2011, and what I learned from each of them.
January & February – explored Spain, France, and England. This was a solo trip during which I was working with an advertising agency based out of Madrid. Each weekend, I picked a new spot to explore and took the train out to another city. While I met up with a few friends that already lived out there in their hometowns, some of the trips were spent entirely on my own. From this, I learned A LOT. ’You’ are responsible for planning the trip, ’you’ are responsible for getting from place to place, ’you’ are responsible for your own “good time”. You can really make whatever you want out of these kind of trips, and it’s a completely free feeling. Came back with some amazing shots from these trips.
April - This was a big month of highlights. I did a workshop with Jasmine Star, one of the industry leaders I have learned A TON from. Another big highlight was covering a 100 girl trip to Vegas party moving from club-to-club, pool-party to pool-party. I’m going to remember that trip for the rest of my life.
May - Shooting a wedding in the US Virgin Islands & completely destroying my $4k Camera (and my knees) the day after the wedding. Look for the wedding post within the next week or so. As for what I learned, be cautious on a scooter and don’t be an idiot.
June - All of my family came out to visit me in San Diego. It’s very rare to have everyone in the same city at one time, and it was really special to be able to show them the home I’ve made for myself out here in California.
July - Running of the bulls & getting $5k worth of camera gear stolen. The adrenaline rush from the running of the bulls was like nothing I’ve ever experienced, and not sure if anything will compare. Traveling to Berlin & Amsterdam was amazing, and gave me a new-found love for German style. What I learned – sometimes you get robbed, and there’s no point in crying about it or letting it ruin your trip. Just try to be safe, but don’t let the idea of ‘security’ consume your trip.
August - Trip to Russia. Invaluable lessons learned about culture & got some great experience with practicing photography.
September - Trip to Bali & Thailand. Best trip ever. Look for this post sometime next week.
Also saw one of the coolest visual displays naturally made on earth – by accident! This video of me kayaking in the bay in San Diego got over 75,000 views on youtube & has been the first “personal” publication I’ve achieved for myself at that stature.
November - Shot a wedding in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico & finally identified who my exact ideal clientele is. Will be using this wedding for all my marketing materials to promote more of the same type of client.
December - Met up with Jasmine Star & the J* Jets for some reflection time. Also started this 30 day challenge - which I have learned A TON from, but to tell you what I have learned – look for a guest-post on CreativeLive’s blog within the next week!