Dec 31, 2011

2011 Travels In Photographs: What Makes You Want To Go?

The aim of travel photographers is to capture a destination in a way that instantly takes you there and makes you want to go. Beautiful scenery is an easy way to achieve this but travel photography is also about what makes a culture unique. Below I chose a single photograph from each place I traveled to in 2011 that defined my experience. Easier said than done.

In March I traveled to Mexico City, Oaxaca and Puebla. The above photograph was taken in a food market in Oaxaca. To me it defines the artistry seen throughout Mexico in many contexts. Here everyday food items in plastic bins are arranged in a way that makes them look like vivid art. Note the absence of commercial logos.

The Golden Gate bridge would have been easy to illustrate San Francisco. But I would never want to bore you. Pictured here is a photograph taken in April of a mural in the Mission District. It is a memorial to a San Francisco rap artist.

This was taken in Cozumel, Mexico in the off season in July. There is a reason why a beautiful empty beach with white sands and azure water never goes out of style.

Idyllic and insular these Victorian gingerbread cottages are on the grounds of the Camp Meeting Association in Oak Bluffs, Martha’s Vineyard. Methodists who every summer would camp and worship here originally occupied the grounds in the 19th century. The cottages, privately owned by camping descendents and members of the Camp Meeting Association, eventually replaced the tents of the original worshippers.

A place of privilege the French Riviera is no place for bargains except for the public pedestrian scenic coastal path which stretches from Cap d’Ail to Monaco. It is lined with Belle Epoque villas perched in the mountains and along the Mediterranean. Early October, when I was there, was a perfect time to go. Beautiful weather and no crowds. The local wines are a bargain also. But you already knew that.

Puerto Rico brings to mind a proud heritage and the beauty to back it up. This photograph of the Paseo de La Princesa (Walkway of the Princess) and the Old City wall, a Unesco World heritage site in Old San Juan, was taken in November.

Wishing you a happy, healthy, prosperous 2012. Where will your travels take you in 2012?

Dec 12, 2011

Offbeat Eats From Around The World

Nothing can highlight a cultural divide more than food. One person’s delicacy can be another’s horror.

Chapulines, fried grasshoppers, have been on the menu for thousands of years in Mexico. 

These dried seahorses were on display in the fish market in Tai O Village in Hong Kong. Would you sprinkle them on a salad like sundried tomatoes? Or are they a standalone food?

No doubt great artistry and care went into making these donkey sausages, which were on sale in Marche Forville a market in Cannes, France. I wonder what wine you would pair with them and if they a bit stubborn to chew?
What are the strangest foods you have been brave enough to try when traveling?