Tag archive for "Photography"

Dear Bobbi: 21st Century Pen Pals

Blog, Online Goodies, Other, Photography, What I'm thinking

Dear Bobbi: 21st Century Pen Pals

4 Comments 27 August 2013

For anyone who has ever had a pen pal or random travel partner they met in foreign lands who became their best friend – this website is for you.

Those who have been reading my site from the start (LEGENDS!) will know that almost four years ago I was in the running for “The Best Backpacker Job in the World”. There was a YouTube video that involved me scuba diving in a hot tub, which I bothered loads of people to watch to help me win. Sadly – I did not, but weirdly – another girl named Bobbi did.

I went to Australia – where this “best” job took place and ended up “working” it anyway with the other Bobbi (her name is Bobbi-Jo by the way and you can check out her blog here). After surviving shark tanks, monstrous spiders and wild cow stampedes – we parted ways, but never lost touch. In fact, not only did we correspond through emails and Skype over the following years, but we also managed to live in the same countries (New Zealand and England) and even the same city (London) again.

Now that we have the big bad Atlantic between us – as we did when we were just strangers with the same name entering random YouTube contests long ago – we’ve decided to keep in touch as pen pals of the 21st century.

May I introduce – Dear Bobbi.

A tale of two Bobbis. To the left is my photo of the New York skyline, to the right is Bobbi-Jo's of the London skyline.

A tale of two Bobbi’s, to the left is my photo of the New York skyline, to the right is Bobbi-Jo’s of the London skyline.

The website is a transatlantic correspondence between me and my name twin. Twice a week we’ll post photos with the same theme, such as self, skyline and fruit. Follow along as we send photographic love letters across the pond.

Have you ever met a great friend on your travels that you still keep in touch with? Have you ever had a pen pal?

Share your stories below!

If you want more Bobbi: Follow Dear Bobbi on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Seeing icons through Man Ray’s Lense (Review)

Destinations, England, Favorite Things, The Arts and Cabaret

Seeing icons through Man Ray’s Lense (Review)

No Comments 18 April 2013

It was Lee Miller that led me to Man Ray.

I stumbled upon a small exhibit dedicated to her life and work in the Philadelphia Museum of Art years ago and immediately idolized her. Model and muse, turned avant-garde photographer, turned war correspondent? Obviously I looked up to her considering my love of all things 1920s and interest in becoming a foreign correspondent at the time.

Solarised Portrait of Lee Miller, c.1929 by Man Ray
The Penrose Collection
© Man Ray Trust/ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2012, courtesy The Penrose Collection. Image courtesy the Lee Miller Archives

I learned about her love affair with Man Ray at that exhibit, how she trained under him and how, together, they created solarization. Infatuated with her and her life, when I found out about Man Ray Portraits at the National Portrait Gallery I had to go for Miller’s sake, but left with a whole new love for Man Ray, which seems to be a common occurrence amongst women who come in contact with this photographer.

The exhibit, which is broken into five time periods between 1916 and 1976 displaying over 150 prints by the artist, kind of felt like looking into the best tabloid magazine possible. Before you roll your eyes and think, how is this girl comparing Man Ray to tabloids, let me explain.

This collection features one of the world’s greatest documentation of two highly romanticised periods in art and film, modern art in 1920s Paris and the Golden Age of Hollywood in the 1940s, by a single artist. It includes portraits of Duchamp in drag, Hemingway in the stoic manly look you’d expect of him, Ava Gardner on set, Picasso young and old but just as intense and countless other performers and artists from both periods.

These were the people of the time, the crowd everyone wanted to be apart of, dress like and bump into and Man Ray photographed them. Plus he had a unique glimpse into their lives, because he was one of them. He captured these two eras and the prime players involved in them so honest, yet gracefully, I almost felt like I had entered a time warp at certain points of the exhibit.

Man Ray Self-Portrait with Camera, 1932 by Man Ray
The Jewish Museum, New York, Purchase: Photography Acquisitions Committee Fund, Horace W. Goldsmith Fund, and Judith and Jack Stern Gift, 2004-16. Photo by Richard Goodbody, Inc
© 2008 Man Ray Trust / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY / ADAGP, Paris 2012 © Photo The Jewish Museum

One of, if not the, most famous portrait featured in the exhibit is that one of Coco Chanel that’s been used time and time again. Black and white, hat tilted above her eyes like some sort of gangster as she looks to the side, countless layers of pearls draped on her neck and chest. I always thought because I’d seen this photo so many times in ads and images with quotes about fashion that when I finally saw the real thing it wouldn’t affect me as much.

I was wrong.

I’m not one of those people to get up close and stare at photos or paintings for ages, but I did with this one. In those few minutes of looking at the perfection of this image and getting sucked into a slightly blurry bangle, I became completely lost in time, having a Midnight in Paris moment.

While Man Ray is known as a lot of things, Dadaist, experimental artist, surrealist, casanova, this exhibit explores his life and his work for what photography is most important for, capturing history through small moments. Man Ray Portraits features vintage photos, magazines and more from Man Ray’s career. You’ll see Ray as a documentary photographer  through the work on display at the National Portrait Gallery, but also learn about all his other contributions to photography and see the techniques and characteristics that made his work so unique then and now.

Like with tabloids, seeing the photos in this exhibit will have you curious to find out more about the people of the times and where else you can find them captured on film.

Man Ray Portraits is on display at the National Portrait Gallery until 27 May 2013. Adult admission is £14.00. Visit their website to book tickets and learn more.

Banner photo credit: Catherine Deneuve, 1968 by Man Ray, Private Lender, © Man Ray Trust ARS-ADAGP / DACS

National Portrait Gallery granted me press admission to review this exhibit. All opinions are my own.

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Hump Day Photo: Big Buddha, Koh Samui

Destinations, Other, Photography, Thailand

Hump Day Photo: Big Buddha, Koh Samui

2 Comments 13 September 2012

This time next week Ric and I will be waking up in one of our favorite countries in the world, Thailand.

Since this weekly photo series is all about giving people a glimpse of some place magical to get them through the work week, we thought it only sensible to look back on photos from our last trip to Thailand to get us through our last week of waiting to get there.

Though we weren’t too impressed with Koh Samui at first (our first stop was Chaweng, which is overcrowded with tourists with the objective of getting pissed), we ended up having a good stay and one really incredible day on the island. Like many of our other favorite days in Thailand, this one involved us renting a motorbike and seeing where the day took us.

While our main goal was to visit the island’s Big Buddha, we visited just about everywhere else before reaching it. Some of our stops included Na Muang Waterfall, Grandfather Rocks and Wat Plai Laem, where we thought we reached the island’s Big Buddha, but realized we were wrong during our cruise home at sunset.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Located on the Northeast end of the island Big Buddha at Wat Phra Yai stands at 12 meters tall, its gold cover shining in the sun. We reached the statue at the last moments of day light. While I couldn’t keep my eyes off the statue on the way to it, I couldn’t keep my eyes off another breathtaking Thai sky driving away from the statue.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

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Hump day photo: Franz Josef Glacier

Destinations, New Zealand, Other, Photography

Hump day photo: Franz Josef Glacier

4 Comments 16 August 2012

It’s nothing I thought I would ever see in person, let alone walk on; a massive glacier, edged between mountains, rolling onto land. It was in Franz Josef New Zealand that I toured my first glacier.

Franz Josef Glacier is the world’s steepest and fastest flowing commercially-guided glacier. Located on the West Coast of the South Island, the town of Franz Josef is completely dedicated to the glacier. We visited in January and opted for a half day ice walk up the glacier with Franz Josef Glacier Guides.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

This photo, which was taken with my GoPro, is looking up at the glacier from close to the bottom of it.

The size of the glacier is what stunned me most. We walked up it from the ground, but people actually take a helicopter to the top of it to visit a more untouched piece of ice. When helicopters are involved to reach the top of something, it must be massive.

This was by far the most interesting tour I did in the South Island and it’s well-worth a stop on any visit to the country.

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Capture the Colour: Australia and New Zealand

Australia, Blog, Destinations, New Zealand, Online Goodies, Other

Capture the Colour: Australia and New Zealand

22 Comments 08 August 2012

Red and blue powder thrown at Holi in India, vibrant green forest of the Amazon in Brazil and even those purple mountain majesties in the USA; the colors of a land really stand out when traveling.

That’s why, I’m very excited to not be nominated once, but three times to enter Travel Supermarket’s Capture the Colour competition. Thanks to Pack Your Passport, A Pair of Boots and a Backpack and The World is Waiting for nominating me.

A contest started by fellow travel bloggers, to enter, bloggers must write a post including photos that show off the colours red, blue, yellow, green and white. The winner of each individual colour will receive a 32GB iPad and the overall winner will receive £2,000 towards their travels.

Though it kills my American self and spell check to have to spell “color” with a “u” for an entire post, here’s a look back on my colourful travels in Australia and New Zealand.


Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

This is my most recent colourful shot. It was taken during a boat ride around Tauranga Harbour on the North Island in New Zealand. New Zealand is well-known for it’s interesting skies. After all, the Maoris named it Aotearoa, “land of the long white cloud”. I’ve seen a lot of colourful sunsets in this country, but the sky was especially on fire this night. The fact that we were in a boat reminded me of the old saying “Red sky at night; sailors delight, Red sky at morning; sailors take warning.”.

We were lucky it wasn’t morning.


Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

From taking photos of the sky, to taking photos while in the sky, my yellow submission was taken during a hot air balloon ride over the Atherton Tablelands in Australia. This was one of many many firsts for me on that trip. We arrived at the launch site at about 6 a.m. and were in the air for sunrise. This photo was taken looking up at our yellow balloon from inside the basket. I can still feel the fire from the torch warming my face and rising sun warming my back.


Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

I’m sure with this photo you’re thinking, “How is the water that colour?” A mixture of fine glacial rock flour, clear glacier water and sun’s reflection produces the baby blue colour that fills waterways in this region of New Zealand. This photo was taken on the way from Queenstown to Lake Tekapo at a road-side lookout point for Mt. Cook (centered), which is New Zealand’s tallest mountain, on Lake Pukaki. Blue just absorbs everything it this shot: the water, sky and mountains.

While the photo may give you chills, it was actually taken in Summer. The weather was warm. The water was not.


Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

I had a slight obsession with fan palms in Australia. I had never seen them like they are in the rain forest of Cape Tribulation, massive green palms towering meters above. Something about the way they lit up as the sun shone through affected me deeply. These trees stand tall in an already large forest, almost protecting everything below from the outside world, which an ancient forest like this needs. By the end of the day, my neck was actually aching from looking up for so long. I tried so many times to capture this shot and this is my favorite attempt.


Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

Maybe it’s cliche to use snow for my white image, but this snow is somewhat special to me. We have snowy winters in New Jersey, but for the two years prior to arriving in New Zealand last July (Winter), I had been chasing Summer in Australia, SE Asia and the USA. So to see what is a common Christmas symbol for the first time in two years was meaningful for me.

Plus it was the first real snow for Queenstown that year and it happened the day after I arrived in the country for the very first time. We spent the day driving half the island, taking in its beauty. We even had to rent tire chains, just in case. It was also my first time photographing with a GoPro. I love the South Island in the Summer, but it’s really breathtaking to see the way the mountains light up in the Winter.

Now that you’ve read about my colourful adventures-it’s your turn. Here are my nominations for Capture the Colour:

Sweet Dea’s Adventures

The Mellyboo Project

Canuckiwi Kate

Jandal Road

Today, I’m Bobbi

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Hump day photo: green skies at night

Destinations, New Zealand, Other, Photography

Hump day photo: green skies at night

2 Comments 30 May 2012

This has to be the most colorful sunset I’ve ever seen. Taken at Pilot Bay in Mount Maunganui, the clouds turned bright orange amongst a soft blue sky when the sun went down on this March night. The dark ocean below reflected the colors above.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon.

After a few minutes, part of the the sky then became a bit green.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon.

I’ve seen a lot of beautiful sunsets in New Zealand, but this is my favorite.

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Hump day photo: From Mars with love

Destinations, New Zealand, Other, Photography

Hump day photo: From Mars with love

4 Comments 23 May 2012

Okay, so I’m not actually on Mars in this photo, but I bet for a second there you thought I was! This photo was taken during my Tongariro Crossing at Tongariro National Park in New Zealand. Once reaching the base of Mt. Ngauruhoe there is a straight (and flat thank god!) walk towards Red Crater. At this point I looked up and just thought, “That looks a lot like what I would expect Mars to look like.”

I’m centered in this Mars-like photo at Tongariro National Park.

The terrain at Tongariro National Park includes mountains, forests, dessert, lakes and craters. That’s one of the reasons I liked this walk most, it just has so much to offer, even a bit of scenery that is out of this world.

Just to prove my point, here is a photo of the terrain on the planet Mars. Photo courtesy of CBC News

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Hump day photo: Pancake Rocks

Destinations, New Zealand, New Zealand, Other, Photography, Road Trip

Hump day photo: Pancake Rocks

2 Comments 25 April 2012

Pancake Rocks is a must-stop on any tour of New Zealand’s South Island.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

They were formed 30 million years ago from minute fragments of dead marine creatures and plants landed on the seabed about 2 km below the surface. Immense water pressure caused the fragments to solidify in hard and soft layers.-Department of Conservation

The natural roadside attraction is located on SH 6 in Punakaiki. It’s great to see at all times of day, but especially spectacular at high tide when blowholes in the rocks are bursting with water.

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Photo of the week: Church of the Good Shepherd

New Zealand, Other, Photography

Photo of the week: Church of the Good Shepherd

2 Comments 13 April 2012

Church of the Good Shepherd is a small, stone church located right on Lake Tekapo in New Zealand. One of the country’s most photographed churches, it was built in 1935 and is still operates today. Though it was closed when we visited, wedding services are a regular here and people can check the church’s website for dates of public worship.

Photo by Bobbi Lee Hitchon

I found out about the Church of the Good Shepherd and Lake Tekapo while researching for my trip to the South Island. The first photo I saw of the church included the Southern Lights above it. Lake Tekapo is a quiet, holiday town without much light pollution, so it is possible to see the South Lights from here.

We didn’t, but we loved visiting the town. The church is so adorable. On our visit, there was a bride and groom taking photos of each other in front of the church. It was kind of weird to see just the two of them doing this, no wedding party, but it is an ideal spot to photograph for a wedding.

The town isn’t very big, so the church should only be a short walk from camp sites located around the the lake.

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Watch this space

Blog, What I'm thinking

Watch this space

No Comments 07 April 2012

There are going to be some changes around here. Starting with this space, the Heels and Wheels blog.

But the whole thing is a blog, isn’t it? 

Yes…no…I’m not really sure. Over the past few months I’ve been doing a lot of things with this website. I’ve been thinking about it, I’ve been agonizing over it, I’ve been moaning about it and I’ve been staring at it, over and over and over again. In fact the thing I’ve been doing least with this blog lately is actually writing on it.

Let me explain. Continue Reading

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