Sunday, 24 February 2008

New York, Day Three and Four

So, Day 3 - Tuesday - was my day to be pretty much all alone. Raphael had to go to work, and I had an entire list of things that I wanted to see before I left. I was pretty glad that we had done a lot over the last two days, so I knew how to navigate the subway system, and was pretty confident that I wouldn't look like one of those idiot tourists that everyone hates!

Pretty as a Postcard R & I stopped to grab a coffee on the way in, and then went our separate ways at Grand Central Station, with plans to meet for lunch. I took the train down to the City Hall stop, because my first task that I wanted to accomplish was taking pictures from Brooklyn Bridge. After I got down there, I quickly managed to find the pedestrian lane, turned on my iPod and began to walk. It was such a rush - first off, because it was a really windy (but sunny, though somewhat chilly) day, and also because of the cars zooming by below me. It was pretty breathtaking, the view from up there. Definitely recommend doing this if you happen to find yourself in NYC.

Ground Zero After I was satisfied with my shots, I decided that there wasn't enough time to head up to Greenwich Village before lunch, so I stuck around the area. I walked down to Ground Zero, because I didn't really get to see it last time. Still made me overwhelmingly sad when I thought back to September 11, 2001. I felt like a bit of an asshole taking pictures... I took a couple because I wanted to remember it... but then I put my camera away, and just reflected for a while.

Then, I found Century 21 - another must see shopping place on my list! I strolled around the womens, juniors, and shoe departments, but I was actually kinda disappointed because it wasn't really a place that you could just browse. It seemed slightly disorganized (plus they were doing inventory or something, so that could have something to do with it) ... Didn't end up buying anything.
Then I walked into Sephora for a little bit and browsed around the store until R. called me to tell me it was time to start heading up for lunch.

Departures The train ended up being right on time (he called me a little earlier, to allow for delays), so I ended up walking around Grand Central station (another thing to check off my list) ... and then I walked out the completely wrong door, and was a little disoriented for a few minutes until I found my way back to where we were going to meet. Strolled into the GAP for a little while, and ended up buying a new GapScent that I love - DreamOn.

Met R. for lunch... we went to this little pizza place, that was absolutely DELICIOUS. mmm, New York Style Pizza!

From one home to another...Then we went for a walk to this little street that offered up a great view of the UN Building, and a little further down, the Chrysler Building.
Walking back to his workplace, we stopped into the Daily News building (where they filmed part of Superman)... they have a giant rotating globe in there, and mileage to major cities around the world. Oddly enough, the first one I found was Toronto - 348 miles. Thought that was kinda coincidental and neat :)

So then we parted ways again, I headed down to Astor Place, trying to get to St. Mark's Place. Raphael gave me directions from the giant cube... but I totally forgot them, and this was the only time that I was actually kinda lost. I ended up finding maps on the wall around the NYU Campus, and 20 minutes later, I eventually found my way to St. Mark's. Totally eclectic neighbourhood, I loved it. I stopped into the CBGB's store, and picked up the cutest guitar top, a pink guitar pick (that I have visions of turning into a necklace... should've bought more!) and a bib for my niece.

Bananas At that point, it was around 2pm, so I called up my friend Kate so that we could meet up. We wandered around all over the place... Stopped into a little cafe in Little Italy... saw a movie being shot (and quickly got shooed out of the way when the principle actors were ready to come out... wonder who it was!) ... stopped into a random art gallery - not sure who the artist(s) was, but it was pretty cool... first thing I noticed was an overwhelming smell of bananas (which I HATE with a passion), but I couldn't figure out why... then as we got further inside, one of the pieces was a huge WALL of bananas. Like, there were at least 1000+ of them. CRAZY.

*edit* Here's a link to the gallery's website about the show:
Turns out that the artist was Stefan Sagmeister.

Cupcakes at Magnolia Then we headed over to Greenwich Village to a bunch of record shops, including Bleecker Street Records, which I was dying to browse around in after driving by there last time.
Wandered around SoHo... Kate pointed out the building that Monica Gellar & Rachel Green supposedly lived in on Friends... and we stopped for cupcakes at Magnolia, the SATC Hotspot and ate them in a little square, where birds were at our feet and people were playing chess. It was lovely!
Then we walked through the little boutiques... stopped in at Marc by Marc Jacobs... bought an awesome ring for myself, and a cool metal cuff for my sis-in-law. Saw a gorgeous sunset, looking down Christopher St (I had no idea that we were that close to the water!) Then walked up to 8th Ave, where we found some great shoe sales (I managed to control the shopping urge - mostly because my back was breaking from carrying around my camera, wallet, iPod, tripod, etc all day)
Then Kate and I parted ways, and I went to meet Raphael to start heading back to Queen's.

That night, R cooked us all an awesome dinner - his special House Rice, with chicken cutlets. Spent the night hanging out with good friends :)

The next day, I only had a couple of hours before I had to head to the airport to catch my flight. Ended up going to Roosevelt Ave in Queens, and browsing in a bunch of little stores for some souvenirs to bring home to the rest of my family that I hadn't bought for. MAN, I was not expecting the extreme TACKINESS of some of these stores!! LOL... there were like, glowing Jesus statues!! And those really tacky moving scene fish-tank type things... R kept trying to convince me to bring one home to my bro-in-law. Thankfully, I managed to find a couple of shot glasses instead.

I couldn't believe how overwhelmingly sad I was to leave the city that day. It was such a heavy feeling, I was seriously sitting at the airport with a super pouty face, probably pretty close to tears. I can't even begin to describe how much I love that city. It's like I belong there, and every time I leave, I leave a part of myself there to collect upon my next trip. I must find a way to live there one day. It's calling me.

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Friday, 22 February 2008

New York, Day Two

Asian Bakery Monday was all about the shopping in New York City. It was actually really unseasonably warm. I think it was like, 65 degrees or something... and all I had with me was my winter coat, which sucked. We started out the day at Filene's Basement. First I went down to the juniors section, but I thought it was disorganized and difficult to find things... then I went up to the ladies wear, and I found the most AWESOME DKNY jacket. I struggled with the purchasing decision for a few minutes, before convincing myself that I HAD to have that jacket. After I bought it, I promptly ditched the coat and wore the new jacket :)

After that trip, we were actually much further ahead of schedule than we expected to be. We ended up going for more Gray's Papaya Hot Dogs, and then took the subway down to Canal Street.

Ties Canal was awesome... completely filled with random crazy ladies that yelled at me for taking a picture/wasting my film on a picture of ties with skulls, because God was watching... and following random men on street corners into alleys where they took us up multiple flights of stairs to buy purses, and Raphael buying a pastry in an Asian cafe - green tea and black bean - that was quite possibly the most disgusting dessert I've ever seen. LOL.

While we were out on Canal Street, we met up with our friend Victoria. She definitely made the purse and random shopping adventure more fun - sometimes you just need a girl friend! LOL. Also, at some point that day, I realized that I forgot my cell phone charger in Toronto, and I was all freaked out, because the next day, R would be at work, and I would be on my own in the city, and I had no idea what I was going to do with out a safety net. We went into this random store that had electronics, purses, and other random souvenirs... asked the guy if he had any Sanyo chargers. "Yup." For the Katana phone "yup." "Ten dollars" and he whips out a random box. "Can we try it first?" "Yup." ... and it totally worked! LOL. I was so not expecting to find a charger, but it was so awesome that I did!

Afterwards, we headed back to the downtown area and met up with Charlene and Fred, and went to this awesome Mexican place called Chipotle's for dinner. I had this super huge fajita burrito that was absolutely delicious.

The gang, after shopping Then we all headed over to the Manhattan Mall for a real look at Steve and Barry's... followed by a quick stop at Macy's for Raphael to buy a hoodie.

Met up with another one of their friends, and then we headed up to Times Square, which was absolutely gorgeous after a bit of rain had fallen.

My booty for the day:
- From Filene's: DKNY Jacket
- Souvenirs from Canal Street: Pashmina for Mom, Coach purse for Sis-In-Law
- For me from Canal Street: cute little purse with paisley birds, cell phone charger, photo album, new hat, cool postcard
- From Steve and Barry's: jeans, pencil skirt, and two NY kids t-shirts for my nieces

I think that was it! Here's the pictures :

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New York, Day One

Welcome Well, I arrived in New York on a Saturday evening. Was met by my friend Raphael, who's place I was staying at. Went back to his place & settled in... then weighed the options for entertainment that night. LOL. We ended up deciding on dinner at the Jackson's Hole diner with Charlene and Fred (one of their regular hangouts), and then that night, a party upstairs at R's sister's place. Good times all around! and... mmmm... jager.

model pose The next day, we had a pretty jam packed day ahead of us!
We started out with a traditional Columbian breakfast with his parents in Queens, then headed into Manhattan for a fun-filled day of adventure. We started out with some random shopping... Went into the Manhattan Mall because I wanted to see what Steve and Barry's was all about... and saw a sign that said EVERYTHING in the store was $8.98!!! I was so overwhelmed! But we decided that we should probably just have a quick look around the store and then go back the next day, because the next stop on our to-do list was Skating at Wollman Rink in Central Park! It was amazing, even if the skates were really stiff and I hadn't been on skates in like, at least 5 years, if not more. Raphael had a little bit more trouble, but he had fun anyway :)

After a little bit of that, we strolled around Central Park for a while... saw some familiar sights, as well as some things that I didn't have a chance to see last time. And I've realized that no matter what time of year, it's always beautiful.

Minnie Liberty Then we strolled around the city... had a hot dog at Gray's Papaya that was SO delicious... Lincoln Centre... random shopping... LOTS of walking... we ended up at 5th Avenue... sadly, by the time we got there, Tiffany's was already closed :( ... but the World of Disney store was still open, and I bought myself the cutest shirt with this logo ... super cute.

I think after that point, we were pretty beat.
On the way home, we ended up stopping at this super cool Columbian place in Queens called Xtasis to bring home food. I wish I had taken pictures in there - it was all done in neon pink and crisp white, super modern looking. Here's a blog post that someone else has written up about the place: click ... Unfortunately, I totally did not have the taste for the "Xtasis burger" ... a burger with ham, some kind of pineapple mixture, crushed potato chips... and some other mystery ingredients.... so when we got home, Charlene and I indulged in some McDonalds, while the boys ate their special burgers :) Definitely an interesting flavour though... I'd be willing to try it again at some point when I'm not so tired that I need comfort food. LOL.

Okay, there's day one... photos are below! Stay tuned for blog posts about the rest of the trip :)

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Thursday, 7 February 2008


So, yesterday we taped the show that I've been working on for the past few weeks: Canada's Next Great Prime Minister. It was a pretty crazy day, because we were hit with one of the biggest winter storms of the season. It was very crazy.

The show went pretty well. I got lots of compliments on my work, which is always nice :)

Here's a few shots from the show. I can't post too many (unfortunately, most of the good ones!) because I don't want to give away which contestants made it through to the final round.
The show airs on March 23 on CBC. Find out more about it here:

Driving home last night was another matter all together. It took me 2 hours to get home. I was going 40km/h on the highway, and sliding all over the place. A bunch of idiot drivers kept passing me on the left... and then next thing I know, they're doing 360's across all 4 lanes of the highway. We live in Canada - how have people NOT figured out how to drive in the snow yet?!
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Sunday, 3 February 2008

2007 Flashback: New York City

So, after I finished up working on the CCMA's, I had less than a week off before I started my next job. I had been so busy the past little while, so I thought I deserved a vacation. My mum and I decided to take a 3 day trip to New York. It was fabulous. We had never travelled just us by ourselves before (always with either my dad, or dad and siblings) and it turned out to be a great experience.

Broadway Us at Mary Poppins

Flat Iron   How did he get me on that...?

I bought a brand new camera just before we left on our trip. A Canon Digital Rebel XTI. Plus a 200mm zoom lens. I was very happy with my new toys. Here are the pictures:

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2007 Flashback: CCMA's

welcome to Regina! In the summer of 2007, I was working on the Canadian Country Music Awards. Our production offices were based in Toronto, and at the beginning of September, we took the show on the road, and flew out to Regina, Saskatchewan, where the awards (and Country Music Week) took place.

It was my first time in Regina, first time travelling to a different time zone for work... lots of firsts in one week. It was fabulous!

Here's some of my shots from that week:

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Flashback: 48 Hour Film Challenge

In the summer of 2007, myself and 8 other fabulously talented people came together for 48 hours to form Team Vegetated Circumstance, to participate in the 48 Hour Film Challenge. And a challenge, it definitely was. But also one of the most rewarding events I've ever participated in.

We came up with a bit of a gameplan beforehand: on Friday at 8pm, Trish, our producer, and Amanda, our writer would go pick up our challenge package. They would then go back to her place, where Amanda was planning on writing until around 2am, and Trish, along with Tish (our art director) and Marie (our PA) invaded Amanda's living room and would begin to organize locations, props, and make calls for the next day's shoot. Saturday would be our filming day, and Sunday would be our editing day.

Here's how it actually went:

Friday - while Amanda was busy at work... I was busy at a Billy Talent concert. A friend of mine offered up some passes + backstage access during the show & for the afterparty, and I couldn't resist. I had checked with the team well beforehand, and everyone was fine with me not being there, since they didn't need an audio person (ie me) until shoot day anyway. The concert was brilliant. I ended up getting home around 1am. Sleeping for a couple of hours, very restlessly, and waking up before dawn to make it to our location (which was one of our actor's apartment) on time. The script wound up being emailed out at around 4:30 am. Which means Amanda & the crew at her place got even less sleep!

Saturday - ran into a few problems in the morning - the first was issues with parking. It was super early AM on a Saturday in downtown Toronto. None of the lots in the area were attended, and none of them were accepting coins. So it took a good hour of scouring around the area to find a spot (I ended up scoring one for $5 all day, which was pretty sweet!) Then we had a couple of injuries. First was me... I discovered that the fasteners on the boom pole were stripped. I discovered this, sadly, when the pole slammed down on my finger after I had tightened it, turning it purple and bloody. But I wasn't the worst injury of the day - that honour went to Trish, who tripped on a curb & twisted her ankle. She was a super trooper through the rest of the day though, especially since, on Sunday, she went to a hospital to discover that she had 3 torn ligaments. OUCH!

Anyway, after we got started, the rest of the day seemed to go fairly seamlessly. Surprisngly, not ONCE did tempers flare, or anyone get upset or angry. We just completely gelled as a team, and got the work done. It was great! We also developed little inside jokes along the way, which is the true marker of any great production The one fairly big problem that we had to deal with was the disappearance of one of our members. We had originally started out as a team of 10... but we discovered midway through the day that one of our crew people (dp/editor) wasn't going to be able to make it out to the shoot or the editing day. We improvised, and made it through. Finished filming on midnight

Sunday - Amanda, Katie (camera op) and I headed over to Katie's place (with a pitstop at McDonald's), allowed ourselves 45 minutes to eat & clear our heads and then came up with a gameplan. Amanda & I would sleep while Katie would capture. At 6am, Katie would wake us, and Amanda would start editing, and as soon as she was done, I'd get to start with the sound edit sometime around 11am.

The execution wasn't quite as ambitious. I ended up starting my audio edit just after 2pm. (and I had never once used the software - Final Cut Pro - before, so there was a bit of a learning curve, but not much, because I had used other audio editing software before). I couldn't be too nitpicky about certain things (EQ, SFX, mixing) because there just wasn't the time. I finished some dialogue sweetening & SFX by around 3:30, and then had 20 minutes to do a very rough mix of the music selections that Amanda had been reviewing in the other room while I was editing. At around 4pm, Katie finished off the credits, rendering & dump to tape.

The most intense moment came after 7pm, when Katie was dumping to tape, and for some reason, using the exact same set up that she had tested earlier in the week, it just wasn't working. She was on the phone with an editor
friend of hers, while Amanda, Tish and I were shaking, and rocking ourselves back and forth, and cringing while looking at the clock. At 7:30, we were finally dumping to tape, though there was this crazy box around the screen... but we decided that submitting SOMETHING, boxed or not, was better than nothing at all. Tish and I ran to get my car, parked a few blocks away, and I pulled into an illegal parking spot, while she ran out to see if they were ready with the tape. I was shaking, nearly in tears, waiting by myself in the car, where I said a quick prayer and hoped against all hopes that after all this work, we would actually get it in on time. It was 7:40, and I still didn't see them coming. I gave Amanda a call, and she told me that it was dumping to tape, and they were watching it on tv, and it was PERFECT. There was no weird box, and it was 4:3 safe! There was roughly 3 minutes to go in the process, and then we could go.

It was 7:46 when Amanda finally got in the car. I had to do some ROCKSTAR driving to get us to Queen Video ... there was a wall of traffic on Bloor, once I got there, so I ordered Amanda to get out and RUUUUNNN! We ended up making it in with 9 minutes to spare!

And then it was time for tequila, dinner and bed. In that order.

Our team made it into the top 20, and then to the top 10. Unfortunately, we didn't win any awards, but it was still a thrill to be included in the top 10, and it was definitely a great experience, making a film in 48 hours!

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Starting up a new photography blog

So, I tried photoblogging on livejournal - it didn't last.
Then I tried using the blog that came with my website - I just got way too much spam.  
So now, I'm trying blogger.

I am Katie, and this is my photography.  

My usual subjects are:  work, bands, my nieces, vacations, my crafts.  Other things will occasionally pop up in here... there's no telling what you might see.

This blog will be embedded into my website,, or can be read through RSS feeds. 

I'm going to start off with a whole bunch of posts, of previous collections.  Most (if not all) of the shots can be found on my flickr page -

Also, I'd like to give big props to the creators of the PictoBrowser: This handy little tool creates a little photo slideshow from your flickr account, and I happen to think it is awesome.

So, thanks for stopping by and checking me out.  Leave comments, I love them :)

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