Close enough

Charlene journal Leave a Comment

Belgrade, Serbia It’s all in the wheels. Trains, buses, cars, bikes, skates… and trams. I can’t get enough of trams in Belgrade. The clank and sway of the half-century old tram cars on the No.2 line and the smooth contemporariness of the others, with their air-conditioning, free WiFi, and padded quiet. I often wonder why I’m so drawn to making pictures on transport. I can tell you about how it started (something to do on the way to work), and I can show you all manner of pictures made over the years when this became a little more than just that. But I think that there is also an element of recognition in all of this: the limbo between leaving and arriving. The point at which the past is left and possibilities abound, …

Belgrade to Bar, and Back Again

Charlene journal, vagabonding 8 Comments

May 2016, Serbia to Montenegro “Are you looking for something specific?” the big, craggy man sitting next to me wanted to know, having listened to my camera schnicking away since he got in from one of the small towns near the border. “No,” I responded. “Just the scenery. It’s beautiful outside.” “It’s beautiful to you because you’ve never seen it before,” he said, waving a hand at the vista rushing by. “But I see it all the time!” Two weekends ago, Flemming and I took a very long train ride from Belgrade (Serbia) to the port town of Bar in Montenegro, and back again. The Belgrade to Bar railway makes it to The Guardian’s list of 10 spectacular rail journeys … that you’ve probably never heard of, Business Insider’s 10 spectacular rail journeys to take in your lifetime, among many others. There was …

Belgrade in Transit

Charlene journal 6 Comments

I’ve been shooting from transport – mostly the public variety – for a long time. Travelling by bus or train has been something I’ve done my whole life, and the ebbs and flows of commuting are familiar, no matter where in the world I am. I’ve shot from buses, trains, planes, ferries, tug boats, and tuk tuks. In Belgrade, I get to add the trams to that list. The No 2 tram does a ring around old Belgrade. A ticket costs 89 Serbian dinars (just under USD $1), and is valid for 90 minutes within the zone. My ticket to ride.

On Writing Everyday

Charlene journal 2 Comments

So much for my experiment of posting everyday; managed to fail at that one right out of the gate. Truth is, I simply don’t do enough that is interesting to write about everyday. Take today, for instance. Utterly typical day. I got lost in a book for 3 hours without meaning to. I’m re-reading A Song of Ice and Fire, and it is still utterly riveting. Which means I’ve lost large chunks of my life in the past few weeks. Oh well. Valar morghulis. Then I sat at my computer for another couple of hours and worked. In keeping with my attempt to learn Danish in the least school-like manner possible, I wrote several bits of correspondence på Dansk, helped grammatically by an under-the-weather Flemming, so the person at the other end of the email has a fair …

Shadow and texture, Belgrade

Charlene journal Leave a Comment

Belgrade is all shadow and texture to me right now, a riot of geometry and hue with a thousand ever-changing facets. The old buildings with their patina of post-conflict grit are incredibly photogenic, if only to the guileless tourist. We’ve been doing little other than walking around in the past week and a half that we’ve been here (aside from that one glorious wet plate day). Getting lost in half a hundred different ways is the best way of orienting oneself in a new city, which also allows for enjoyment of the unexpected around every corner; light, folk, color, rhythm.  

Belgrade Day 3: The River & Other Things

Charlene journal 4 Comments

This is the start of… something. I’ve been thinking of getting rid of this journal on my site, as it’s been a long time since I’ve written anything I’ve felt good about publishing. I don’t blog consistently enough, and I haven’t for months. So much so that I often find myself wondering why I have one at all. I started blogging in 1997 and haven’t stopped, because I enjoy blogging. At least, I did until it became all about branding, content strategy, and hits and that kind of stuff. Flemming and I run a website business, so this is a bit of work bleeding into pleasure. I miss blogging being fun, and about writing. In a bid to bring that back, I’m going to try something different, and blog every day…. with try …

Day 2, Belgrade

Charlene journal 4 Comments

My Mum often asks me “what are you going to do there?” whenever I go somewhere new. “Walk around and look at things,” is the inevitable answer. (My mother probably thinks I’m mad, but is too kind to say so) Sometime last year, I had decided that I really wanted to go places where I could walk endlessly without worrying for my safety. Flemming and I have been in Belgrade for 2 days, and in addition to walking, it is also a feast for the eyes. It’s a world away from the color of Guanajuato, where we’ve been for 2 months, but on the morning of our first day here, I wake up to facets, out the window of the apartment we’ve got for the …

¡Hasta luego!

Charlene journal 2 Comments

Today is our day in Guanajuato City. In the two months that Flemming and I have been here, its color has intensified by the day, until even my dreams are washed in this glorious palette. Until we meet again.

Viernes Santo en Guanajuato, México

Charlene journal 12 Comments

Flemming and I found ourselves inadvertently attending Good Friday mass at the plaza of Templo de San Roque. This loosely triangular plaza in front of the crumbling church, has permanent seats and theatre lights in place for outdoor performances. It also happens to be a great place to hang out in the late afternoons, when the shadows lengthen and throw sections of the plaza into deep shade, without hampering the colour and texture of the rest. It was the first of many favourite spots which Flemming and I found to shoot in Guanajuato, and one we find ourselves going back to. It was on one of these returns that we found ourselves a part of the congregation during Easter mass, while a plaster Christ was being pulled up against the Templo walls during the reenactment of the Crucifixion. Being the …