‘Preserve your memories
keep them well,
what you forget
you can never retell.’
Louise May Alcott
You know that feeling, when a holiday is so good, when moments are so profound & time so well spend, you would like those times to last a lifetime. That incredible moment when dreams come true & those dreams turn out even better than you had hoped or imaged. And the end of all this beauty makes you a little sad, despite all the happiness it brought you.
‘I’ll remember this forever’, I told myself, as I descended the steep slopes one of the many impressive hills the Beara Peninsula (Ireland) has to offer. ‘This will stay with me the rest of my life’, I ensured my dreamy heart, as I filled my lungs with the fresh mountain air. I passed sheep with a variety of different colours painted on their mud covered wool, captured them with my camera & my mind. Panting, I climbed a mountainside & stood staring at the world below; the breathtakingly beautiful grasslands & the endless Ocean at my feet. ‘Surely life will never be the same for me’, I thought, as I witnessing brave gannets dropping down into the deep blue water. Because when dreams come true, how can life possibly go on as if nothing ever happened?
But time went on, like time tends to do; hours turned into days, days turned into weeks & before I knew what was happening, a sea of time appeared between me & those windy days I spend in Ireland. Moments fell, like autumn leaves, from my mind into my memory. The vivid colours of the grass & the Irish wildflowers started to fade around the edges. The slippery paths we hiked upon, disappear bit by bit behind me. I looked back & I feared that I soon would start to forget all the little things, some of the larger things & maybe even the momentous things.
Yet, deep in my heart, I know I will not forget. I know that, no matter how much time will pass, part of me will always remember those cherished moments under the wide Irish skies. Because, as it goes when travelling to unexplored places, I believe part of my soul was altered right there & then. I believe that the mysterious blueprint in the midst of me was transformed, as I fell deeply in love with the country I have always had a crush on.
Today, as I finally turned the theme of my website into a responsive theme, I understood that once again I was a little late to the game. I don’t have an iPhone, you see, nor do I have an iPad or any other electric devise with an ‘i’ at the start of it. I have a phone that makes phone calls and that…well, that is it, actually.
So, how was I supposed to know that a large group of people out there were unable to read my blog properly; a whole bunch of potential followers who never started following me, because my blog was simply unreadable on their appliance of choice. It was only since I started designing a website for my sister, that I came across this neat little feature called ‘responsive’, opening a whole ranch of new options to me. So, from now on, my blog is responsive & can be viewed on the whole variety of devises you might have collected throughout these modern times 🙂 Just thought you would like to know!
What a beautiful day this is; Ingrid from the lovely blog http://365-miles-to-paris.blogspot.nl/ wrote a blogpost about my postcards! She liked the cards that Astrid (from http://www.cardcetera.com/ ) & I made so much that she decided to write an entire post about it; how amazing is that!
And she has even turned the post into a nice giveaway. Unfortunately, the blog is written in Dutch & you can only participate in the giveaway if you have a Dutch postal address, which is a shame for my English readers. But, if you speak/read Dutch & you have a Dutch address, all you have to do is tell Ingrid which card you would like to receive & who knows, you’ll might be the lucky person to get some snail-mail with your favourite card in it. It is as simple as that:) The lucky winners will be chosen on Friday, the 25th of September. Good luck!
I’ll be off now, enjoying the rest of this wonderful day…….
P.S As you can see in the menu bar,I have added a special page for the Words postcards to my blog. Here you find the link to the Cardcetera webshop & some information about my postcards:)
August Theme: Eye on Ireland
As I was growing up, I remember my father had this nice collection of National Geographic magazines, all neatly arranged on the shelves of his office. We had restricted access to them. Browsing was fine, reading was encouraged, but under no circumstance were we allowed to ever cut or rip any of the alluring pictures from these beautiful, yellow coloured books.
So, we browsed, we read what we understood & tried never to be tempted by the amazing photos, staring back us from every single page. And we succeeded. At least, most of the time, we did.
But every now and then a magazine would end up in our hands with an issue about Ireland in it. Pages filled with pictures of wild, rugged coastlines, deserted fields full of wildflowers, limestone houses & rolling green hills stretching far and wide. Pictures so grand, so inspiring, so very very tempting…..
I don’t know why my sisters & I were obsessed with Ireland the way we were as kids. I don’t know why we pretended to have curly, red hair or why we ran through the garden with ceiling mob-horses between our childlike legs, pretending to gallop over those grassy hills & mountains. I don’t know why we insisted on listening to dreamy, Irish ballads before bedtime or why our imagination ran wild every time we saw pictures of that faraway country. Maybe it were the stories; those famous, ancient myths which somehow found their way across many miles of land to reach our ears & crawl into our receptive minds. Or maybe it was the obvious contrast between the dusty, dry land outside of our window that made us take notice of that green country so far from where we lived. Whatever it was & whatever the reason; we were in love with a country we had never been to & where we, in all likelihood, wouldn’t go to anytime soon. And so our dream was born…..
Just this week, I apologized to my father for ruining his magazines, for ripping photos from the articles he might have wanted to read. In retrospect, I can see how all these half-finished stories about that green Island must have been a little frustrating for him.
So, to avoid any further annoyance, my sister & I decided that it was about time we would leave National Geographic magazine alone & start making some pictures of our own. Time to see it all with our own two eyes. Time to make a dream come true
And so, we booked a ticket to Cork, got onto the bus to a little coastal village called Glengarriff & set out into the vast, green world that is Ireland.
In the coming few photo- updates, I will share some of my Irish holiday stories & pictures with you. The pictures are, by no means, like those in National Geographic magazine that made us fall in love with this country in the first place. But they are my own pictures, taken while finally exploring the one place I have wanted to explore as long as I can remember. It’s a collection of images I took while climbing steep hills, dodging startled sheep & finding my way down slippery rocks. It’s Ireland through my eyes, captured while my sister & I were having the time of our lives, living the dream that started when that very first National Geographic ended up in our hands.
All pictures are shown at random & they were all taken on the Beara Peninsula, a beautiful, almost unexplored peninsula on the south-west coast of Ireland. Here we hiked a long distance walk, the Beara Way; an unforgettable experience, about which I will tell you more real soon…..
How long has it been? I cannot even remember when. All I know is that this crazy summer passed by me in an instance. I know I’m way behind with my photo project, I know I went on the most fantastic holiday one can wish for & more than that, I know I still haven’t shared the wonderful news I promised to share with you last time I was here. So, let’s not worry about all those many weeks full of photos still waiting to find their way onto my blog.
Instead, let me get straight to the good news:
About two months ago, I met up with Astrid, the face behind the wonderful postcard webshop Cardcetera. Astrid runs this beautiful webshop with love & enthusiasm. And after seeing some of the June & July photos on my blog, she became equally enthusiast about my photos. So, before long, she offered to use some of my photos for a whole new series of cards for her webshop……
I’ve been photographing & drawing my whole life, always silently hoping that one day someone would see something, even the smallest thing, in my creative work. In the weeks before meeting Astrid, something was happening to me. I suppose I was starting to feel a little deflated, thinking that all my efforts were in vain & that I was simply wasting my time trying to become the artist I would never be.
Now, a few weeks later, I have given an interview about my creative work, I’m a runner-up in a photo contest & eight of my photos have become eight beautiful, tangible cards, which are for sale in a real webshop right now! I don’t know what happened here; whether it was luck, faith or something different altogether, but all I know is that I simply couldn’t be happier. Happy to know that there are people out there who dare to believe in someone like me, happy to feel hopeful once again & generally happy with the wonderful life I get to live.
In the coming few weeks I hope to steadily catch up with my photo project again, but right now I will leave you with the interview I gave for the Cardcetera webshop & the 8 pictures which became the 8 postcards I couldn’t be prouder of. And while you’re in the webshop, don’t forget to check out all the lovely cards that Astrid has for sale. Cardcetera is a true postcard heaven; a great place for people who still enjoy sending & receiving postcards the old-fashioned way:). I’m sure you’ll find something of your liking there….
Oh, before I forget; on top of everything, one of my other photos has been selected as top 5 of Cardcetera’s photo contest 2015. If you want (and it would be highly appreciated, of course:) you may click on the link below & vote for my picture. You can vote once a day, every day, until the 20th of September. Thanks in advance & I will keep you updated about the result!
Well, that’s all for now. I do hope to update my photo project soon. Tomorrow I’ll be posting the last few pictures of July & we then we’ll jump right into August. But that’s tomorrow….have fun reading my interview & don’t forget to order a few of those lovely cards;)