Wednesday, June 15, 2011

fashion photo series

Long time, no blog!

It's not that I haven't been riding. I have. Every day. Everywhere.

It's that my camera is heavy and I haven't been in the mood to carry it everywhere.

However, it is conveniently located in my apartment, so I've started a photo series there.

In addition to gradually incorporating bicycles into my lifestyle over the past two years, I've also started to incorporate fashion. I call myself a "recovering frump". For years, I didn't dress very well. This isn't to say that there was anything wrong with the way I dressed but that it didn't make me feel very good about myself. I made clothing choices based on what I thought I should wear (or what I thought I wanted to wear). Now, I'm working on expressing on the outside a visual representation closer to what I feel like on the inside and dressing in a way that makes me feel great and confidant and ready to face the world every time I walk out the door.

I'm also not very good at posing for photos and not good at taking self-portraits, so put all these factors together and you get a self-portrait fashion & bicycles photo series. Be prepared for the same dusty mirror, red lamp, and wacky angles. Practice, practice, practice, they say!

Getting there. Far from the common image given of bicycling where you have to give up your visual identity in order to ride (case in point: the ubiquitous yellow/blue reflective rain jacket)... who knew you could start cycling and actually get more fashionable?

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

uvic and gordon head

For the first time since my family and I started riding bicycles together (again-- as adults), we didn't ride the Galloping Goose.

Instead, we took a leisurely roll to UVic, where I spent my post-secondary years before graduating in 2005, and then around calm, suburban, flat, impeccably-paved Gordon Head. (Pothole? What's a "pothole"?)

UVic has made some serious bike rack investment since I was there. The "centre" of the University, a fountain/green area in front of the library, is now ringed with racks. And not those out-of-vogue squishy hanging triangle racks that waste space because you can only fit one bike in each "slot" and one misplaced speciman can cut the capacity in half... (deep breath)... but much more spacious models. Some covered. After all, if there's one thing a campus like this has, it's plenty of space.

All in all, it was great to travel by bicycle to places that I normally associated with car, bus, or foot travel. I did ride to UVic my first year there, but after one frustrating flat I just... stopped. Lost interest, I think. (My parents house is also at the top of a serious hill. And I mean serious. That might have had something to do with it.) Riding to a familiar place is like recalibrating the distance-memory in my brain; I begin to perceive that place in bicycle-terms instead of by other modes. I believe we all do this as we expand our "I've ridden there" vocabularies/mental maps, destination by destination, neighbourhood by neighbourhood. UVic, Gordon Head: check!