Long time no see. Long time no sea.

Blogroll, Finland, Picture a day, Traveling

No, there was not much sea lately, partly due to me being abroad and around, partly ’cause the spring has not really broken out in here.

MIU_5287

No, this is not Finland. Gotcha.

THIS, however, is. The picture is take about 3 weeks ago, the ambience prevails. The fence was full of wind-torn adverts, above all election posters.

MIU_5302

But the sun shines even in the north, about 23 minutes per day. Such moments remind me of the extra long golden hours we get here in the summer…

MIU_5319MIU_5322MIU_5329

… long time no sea? Time to travel to the archipelago then!

MIU_5402MIU_5374MIU_5378MIU_5383MIU_5389MIU_5403MIU_5412

I admit the following pictures was taken by mistake. Makes a perfect background material for further projects though!

MIU_5401

Dear burglars, we are in Lapland at the moment. Our flat is flat-sat though, so don’t get excited. Dear faithful readers, you can look forward to a lot of snow-covered pictures. It has been rather cloudy lately, so no winter wonderland I’m afraid.

February. Already?!

Blogroll, Helsinki, Picture a day

In case you were wondering why I have not posted anything for way too long (sorry), THIS is why:

miu_4916miu_4921miu_4949

Seriously, one gets so little inspiration from the absolute lack of light. Somehow I have been fighting the past weeks on autopilot, and as of February I feel I might… might finally be ready for bigger transformation. Another kick: as a matter of fact, today I received a new batch of business cards arrived today, with the new kitty/geometric logo.

viz_back.pngviz_front.png

I’m pleased with the result.

So. The idleness and lameness aside, I’ve been putting on weight, doing some artwork and writing up PhD related stuff. Finally I have some sense of direction I believe. Maybe my research is relevant after all…

I cannot even go for walks to get inspiration, and I’m not the kind of studio photographer (babies, budoir, nudes, meh, I’m not into staged photography. I hate when I can totally tell how unnatural the pose or the situation is), or the stalking kind taking pictures of people sipping their coffees or performing their acts. I need more spontaneity, more light (duh) and more life. I was thinking I might like to sneak into a closed world in its own terms, like, a factory or another kind of institution, seemingly independent on whatever is going on outside. The truth is, nobody likes photographers spying on them, or observing their work or casual movements, and the last thing I want to cause as a photographer is to upset people.

I cannot say my recent attempts to be photographically productive have been successful. Today, for example, I took a walk around the Töölönlahti bay to Kaisaniemi park. People were – with the exception of drunkards – rushing from building to building/vehicle, striving to spend as little time in transit or outside as possible. But then I saw the beautifully lit greenhouse of the botanical garden in Kaisaniemi:

miu_4948miu_4926miu_4943miu_4930

Nowhere near as interesting as an average botanical garden around Helsinki, but in the overall dimmed grayness the old greenhouses were shining far around. Next time I’m in Österbotten, and that shall be quite soon, I will take pictures of mink or fox farms and those huuuuge greenhouses shining like lighthouses. They contrast amazingly with the snow… should there be snow.

In order to compensate (at least on the paper) for my photo- and bloglaziness I already planned two and three halves of travels for this year. Some in Europe, some possibly beyond, depends on circumstances. No matter how much I disappoint my mummy, I think I will be going to Romania, to Transylvania and Danube delta to be precise. I have been wanting to go for ages, and I feel this could be the sort of a cultural holiday I need. And yes. Transfăgărășan road, aka another Ceaușescu’s mad projects, is indeed on the list.

What else is left to say? Keep calm and… huh huh… hope for the sun! Meanwhile, spend times with those who have you dear.

(frozen, drity ground compilation)

 

New Year, new year.

Blogroll, Finland, Lifestyle, Likes, Picture a day, SoMe, Traveling

I’ve been postponing writing this post for so long it has become proper awkward – but awkward to whom? To my few loyal readers, or am I just using this as a self-loath tool, to prove what I have not done? Either way, the post is being written now and another item on my to-do list is being checked. Ha!

Last week we got our new supercomfortable futon mattras and a reasonably good-looking bed, got rid of a few bagfulls of stuff that does not bring us happiness no more and while giving the flat a fresh start into 2017 I thought I would be original and come up with some resolutions for the coming 12 months, with a little audit around my birthday (which is conveniently in mid June).

So what kind of year do I wish for myself?

  • an active and efficient one, FFS. I’ll use my potential. I know what I mean, but telling the world makes it a bit more binding. Applies to both work and fun.
  • I’ll take a picture a day and publish it either here or on on Instagram.
  • every day I’ll sketch or be otherwise artistically productive.
  • I will take better care of myself. The body is asking for some particular care so it will get it. Includes some weight or proportion alterations.
  • I won’t buy a single item of clothing from a mainstream brand. Why? Because ethics, ecology and refusing to support fast-fashion. Because I’m sick of poor quality of clothes hidden behind (designer) labels.
  • I’m allowed to cheat a little bit on the previous and buy things such as undies, socks, ball gown should I be invited to the Independence Day Ball and – if I made it to London this year – a piece or two from COS or Jigsaw I know I will wear a lot.
  • I will save toward travelling and house.
  • do something I have not done before every week.
  • be a better person for myself and others.
  • Get that photo project going, dang it.
  • Survive the pipe replacement in the house.
  • And learn basics of a new language – and a foreign alphabet.

So, as a part of my something-new-every-week, today I gave a good beating to the flokati wool rug I’m in a love-hate relationship with. I can still taste the dust and gunk but the relationship has shifted toward the love axe.

And for the visuals amongst you, I have some memories of Prague. Was it indeed a great day ❤ so great that I don’t mind that about a million tourists and locals will have exactly the same pictures. Kitch is good in smaller doses. Who knows where the compressions went wrong and made the pictures into bitmaps…

miu_4614miu_4623miu_4629miu_4637miu_4663-2miu_4667-2miu_4679miu_4681miu_4698-2

I’m particularly fond of the following photo, taken after the sun had disappeared behind the Petrin Hill:

miu_4713-2Nice. Noise. I know. Not completely my fault.

I returned to 894,781 shades of grey in Finland – and to -20°C! I don’t understand why people dislike lower temperatures, I mean -15°C is so much more bearable than -2°C. Or +1°C and a foot of slush and wet snow sliding from the roofs behind your collars.

miu_4724-2miu_4721

And two random thoughts for the end:

  • woolen socks I got from grandma rock. Roses and wool and lanolin cure and the smell of beeswax. 
  • do you know what is the best christening present? A Google account in the baby’s name, or close to it at least. Soon Google will run out of domaines, so be creative when naming your baby. 

And keep well.

Savonia.

Art, Blogroll, Finland, Lifestyle, Traveling

I realised that I would probably burn out of life if I skipped all the travelling, walking, exploring, sitting in the car and observing the landscape. I know it is one of the thickets clichés out there, but travelling inspires me and calms me down so much. We went to Savonlinna this time to see La Bohéme by Teatre Regio Torino and it was awesome; the theatre group was unforgettable, the venue (Savonlinna castle) magical and the company great. Oh and we did take a little walk around the centre; it is not beautiful, but it is somehow genuine. Little businesses, market square where you could actually buy local produced goods – oh and the town is totally empty on Saturday nights!

The cultural life (opera) after that was neatly confronted with the wilderness of the archipelago and the summer cabin life. Small municipalities, a lot of water in all its elements. Green, lively and giving.

And in the end we had to stop in Parikkala and check out the local statue park. I guess everything has been said about the park and its father, local artist Veijo Rönkkönen – all left to say is that… try imagining walking onto one of those concrete statues in winter (note the teeth, eyes, etc.!).

A rather refreshing trip with an unexpected ending.

Saturday ping.

Blogroll, Finland, Helsinki

I’ve been feeling pretty emotional lately – too many upsetting things keep happening, some of them over and over again, and virtually all of them are so hard to change. If I could wish one thing for the humanity it would be for everybody to realize that although personal liberty is absolutely essential aspect in one’s life, the choices we make every day should be, well,  informed, or at least conscious. And not just informed in the sense that we’ve read an article on superfoods online, but more like… like that we all have a lot of responsibility to this planet and too the humanity. What we buy, what we say, what and how we dispose of, all this affects so many people.

Will we ever run out of excuses why not to take responsibility for out actions, for casting the blind eye?

*end of the melodrama nobody cares about anyways*

I’m well if you were wondering. Last week the weather was absolutely fantastic… Oh and I do know that I write about the weather in like every single blog post – but the weather affects me so much, and even so more since I’ve moved to Finland, quit all sorts of hormonal products, started listening to my body and appreciating living side-by-side with the nature. Consequently, my mental wellbeing has improved and I’m generally much more content. And don’t mind becoming “old” all that much.

Where were we… ah, the weather, the sun, the light, an absolutely wonderful week. And the two weeks before – since I last time updated my blog SHAMEONME – were not too shabby either, equally sunny yet slightly crispier. Either way: Finland in spring and summer equals paradise.

First, a set of lakeside pictures taken with my new-old camera. And I discovered my first shipwreck!

We, too, celebrated the May Day, and it was really nice. Spontaneous champagne tent invite extended to a circle of friends -> encounters of joy. After the celebrations in the Kaivoupuisto and after having suffered through 20 minutes in the toilet queue we proceeded to the market square (read: we wanted to sober up a bit and I craved some cotton candy). Just like in the previous years we found the guy selling iconic foam lizards, symbols of vappu/May Day for the previous two generations. The guy was still a bit reluctant to agree with an interview: “not quite yet.” – Well we will be back next year. At least I managed to take a sneaky pictures of him!

What else do we have here… ah, some snippets from Helsinki (Pasila concrete moments, Olympics velodrome and an somehow unexpectedly decorated window on the way to the city centre)…

… and from Turku. If you wonder what is so special about it, I’ll tell you: those were the first signs of leaves a couple of weeks ago. And scout lilies 🙂

From Tampere, with love:

 

The following set is from the botanical garden in Kumpula which I visited a tad too early. Most of the flowers are still waiting for the full bloom, but this magnolia seems to have already been through it a while ago. And that just added to its delicateness… those angles, those geometric shapes, those bright whites! I’m so incorporating these in my coming art/craft projects.

And what would a Finnish blog post in May be without a picture of blooming sakura trees of Roihuvuori? An obligatory social media haul, a cheesy background for your phone-portraits and selfies, well, at least I can say I did it the cool way – when *I* visited, around 9:30pm, there was only a handful of people, and a beautiful, warm evening light…