Picture 6: Paths


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Paths I’ve Walked 

“Paths hold memories.” -Kerstin Giannini

This post is dedicated to all the roads I’ve walked.

The final post in The Challenge section is extra special. It is a little more abstract than the other photos, but if anything this should be a fun project to do! Paths I’ve walked is about me documenting some of the paths, or roads, or alleyways, or hallways, that I’ve roamed.

The Reasoning:

As I have talked about in Picture 3, I have moved around quite a bit in my life. So that’s quite a bit of ground to cover. In this photo I want to recreate the memory of traveling a path, that I was once familiar with. I want to try and capture a moment  I experienced daily in the past.

I find that walking an old path can trigger memories just like photographs do. In this project we can recreate that path with photos, or create a video like I did! One of my favourite places to visit and reminisce is the park that I would walk through to get to my middle school. Hollah Fallingbrook!


The view on the way home from school

For six years I roamed and raced down this path to school. Six years is a long time. The path was right across the street from my old home; it crossed through a small park, then was pretty much a straight road all the way to the school yard. Watch the video I made down below. It’s step for step the route I would take. Plus, the music is what I wish the track to my life sounded like.

In The Challenge page I talk about, how important it is for me to reconnect with what is around me, and to appreciate the place I am in at that moment. I think this was the perfect way to do just that.

paths 2

The park

Thinking back, I walked this road through rain, snow, ice, hail, and SUNSHINE. That is some dedication right there.It was also one of my favourite parts of the day. I would get to walk home with all of my friends, we would gossip and hangout. That park was really convenient for that. I often got in trouble for loitering too long and not coming home straight away. My eldest brother would come looking for me and well, let’s just say, you don’t want your older brother showing up when you got your flirt on.

This picture is meant to inspire nostalgia. It’s meant to take you back in time to a place that you are very familiar with. For me, it really could be a number of places, so for now I will document the route I would take to school.

This video was filmed by me and edited with the help of John Varnava.

Some Other Nostalgic Routes:

  • The route you tend to take in the mall. I worked in retail, so I had a specific path to get to my store.
  • The route you take when you go for lunch break. Maybe trying to bump into that cute guy or girl that works with you?
  • If you live somewhere more tropical you can do your favourite shoreline. I am an island girl, and walking by the beach is just the most relaxing experience.
  • Your neighborhood path. I’ve walked from the beach, across town all the way up to a girlfriends house. Of course said girlfriend was with me, and she suffered the heat and blisters with me! In Canada, I would always be visiting my bestest friend down the street! 
  • Behind the scenes of an office or hotel is also super fun to document if you can get away with it. It feels like a secret world.

Again it is about capturing memories. When you pour so much time into a place, I feel like it becomes a part of you.

Making the Video!

For the final post of The Challenge I decided to make a short video of the path I would walk to school. It is more interactive than just still shot photographs, but photographs work well too. I had a close friend of mine Johnny Varnava, teach me how to do some basic things on an editing program called Adobe Premier.

He helped me add:

  • music
  • still photos within the moving video
  • captions for the images
Mini Tip and Trick

For those of you who don’t have a Johnny nearby, check YouTube for walkthroughs! They have a lot of How To videos for using all types of programs.

I started filming in front of my old home, and crossed the street to where an old friend used to live. Then I continued on my daily route past the park, along the soccer fields, all the way to the back entrance of the school!

And So.

On my way there,  [2:45] I pause in my walk and direct my attention to some trees. Those trees have a great story behind them.

notice the slope downwards!

Notice the slope downwards! I SWEAR IT’S THERE!

Side Story: One icy winter day, I was walking to school with my best friend. Where those trees are located it is a downhill slope. AND, that decline was covered in ice. So me and Suzanne decided to walk over the hill, because it had grass and the snow would be crunchy not slippery like the walkway. Boy were we WRONG. We start walking over the hill, I slipped, I grabbed onto Suzanne, she slipped, and went BAM! Face first into one of those pine trees in the video.

Sorry Suzanne!

I laughed so hard I almost fell over. Poor girl couldn’t get off the tree because she was sliding on the ice. Once we had stopped laughing, I helped her out and we continued on our way to school! I may have told a few dozen people about it that day. 

This was me.

This was me.

These are the type of memories that walking an old path can recapture!

It was a lot of fun revisiting my old neighborhood.  It brought up some great memories. I definitely urge you to try this challenge. It is a great way to re-connect with the past, or if anything a good opportunity to take some nice outdoor photographs!

Extra! Extra!

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Picture 5: Photo Memory Series


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 An evolution in time:

Another cute version!

This photo-idea marks a new phase in my life. This is a series of photographs as well. The basic idea is to visit the same setting once a year, and take a picture in the same spot. It is partly inspired from the transitional photograph [Picture 2]. Usually from the examples I have seen, a number is being held up.

BUT, because I have seen so many great approaches on how to do this, I will include examples with different approaches in the Milestone Photo Ideas down below. Marked in this colour.

Depending on the purpose behind the photo, the number can represent an anniversary, for example the number 1 would be your first anniversary. Or a year, for example 2012 can be the year the picture was taken.

This is a great photo project for:

  • Lovers
  • Documenting a child’s growth
  • A growing family
  • Even for siblings that want to do something fun together once a year

With transitional photos this is a nice theme and I believe it’s because photographs are treated like memories. Looking back at a happy time is always a great experience.

I know this may end up being a Challenge, but hopefully the next year you can look back at the picture, and have a meaningful memory. This is something that kept coming up in my search, but in different ways.

I may be philosophising but, I think the reason we are so intrigued by photographs is cause they capture a moment in time. And as we all know, time is something very tricky.

For example who can agree with these statements?

  • We have no control over time.
  • But, we schedule our lives around it daily.
  • It can feel fast and slow, or both at the same time.
  • But it always moves at a constant speed.

I think it’s because we have a limited amount of time, that we treasure memories the way we do. This is a fun little project to capture moments in time that have a sentimental meaning more than anything else.

Like mentioned before, down below I will include a breakdown of the process, plus Tips and Tricks. This is advice, for anyone who might venture out to take their own photo memory series.

The Reasoning:

I am not sure what exactly inspired this photograph. I think it’s the combination of celebrating an anniversary and also watching a close friend get married.

It was so strange attending a childhood friends wedding.

I am 21 so this was the first time one of my close friends got married. Her engagement was shocking and exciting and just a joyous occasion. I really started to feel my age when my friend told us, “guys I’m getting married.” 

It was like life telling me,

“Tina, put that push-up bra on girl, and get your shit together, life is about to change and get a little more serious.”

Words like,


Never applied to me before. I was simply too young. But, in a couple of years that is going to change too. I think this is something that everyone must experience in their lives. The sudden realization that, YOUR CHILDHOOD IS IN THE PAST. Makes me want to crawl into the fetal position and cry.

Melo-drama aside. I realize that a new chapter is beginning. This photo is therefore dedicated to that friend Jovanna and her husband Steve. And also to my guy, four years and running.

Events like, weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, and graduations, are common things we take pictures of. This is because they are milestones in life. They are memories we photograph anyways, so why not find a fun or interesting way to do so?

Milestone Photo Ideas: here we go!

1. Taking a photo in the same spot, annually. This is great for anniversaries, or for family pictures. In the example that I found on Pinterest, the couple has chosen a great out-doorsy location. It creates a nice backdrop for the pictures and nice natural lighting. They are holding a little chalkboard with the number 1 written on it. It indicates their first year of marriage. The idea behind this image is that every year the same spot will be re-visited, to take another photo with the next number written down. This series will grow over time.

https://i0.wp.com/media-cache-lt0.pinterest.com/upload/190206784232004015_1HDB4FUj_c.jpg    I have taken this from Pinterest! I thought it was a great photo and example.

—All great examples from Pinterest!

It would be an amazing photograph to include new family members as they come along.One year there may be a puppy added to the picture. In five years, children. Fifteen years, children’s friends, nephews, nieces, boyfriends, girlfriends etc. Fifty years into the marriage and photos, there may be a little old couple surrounded by their extended family. This photo idea doesn’t have to be for couples only. It can also be done with siblings or close friends!

2. Taking a photo while holding another photo from your wedding day, or a childhood birthday. This is a really cute idea if you want to reminisce through the photo. With the birthday image you get to see the sudden age difference. It also captures your personality at different points in time. This is a good photo idea for those who don’t want to do annual pictures!


Click to be taken to the source!

3. A third idea is to hold the previous year’s picture in the new photo. This photo ends up looking like, looking at yourself in a mirror, with another mirror behind you. It creates a thousand reflections of the same image. If this made no sense just take a look at the picture below.

WHAT TO AVOID: or what I like to call, “The Classics.”

My Beau

  •  The boozed up wedding anniversary picture. That night was fun while it was happening, or should have been fun when you started drinking, but looking back at a hazy, eyes half closed, mouth hanging picture, perhaps does not capture the sentimentality of the event.

The School Photos

  • The school photo collection. This is so 90’s. I found a funny collection in my friend’s room when I went to take pictures for the Micro-Scopic blog post. The clear glass frame, should have stayed in the 90’s. There is a photo of each year he went to school, from grade 1 to 12. His frame was completed because he was the eldest. But, the younger brother’s were neglected. Not going to lie, I might end up doing this for my future kids. I’m cheesy like that.


  • The after-thought photo. Everyone should KNOW what I’m referencing.  It is the photo taken in doorways or cars, when we are dressed up to go out and celebrate. I have so many pictures, where I am dressed to the nines, but all you see in the photo is a coat. Not to mention, my bag, umbrella, car keys and whatever else I hold on my way out the door. Milestone picture. It took a milestone to get here so let’s take a minute to take a decent photo.
  • HOT-GLAM-GIRL…. need I say more?

Tips and Tricks

  • For anniversaries, the general rule of thumb is you can go up by five years at a time. That way you just focus on the major ones. If you choose idea three for your photo, then I wouldn’t suggest this. But, it can be difficult getting an annual picture going so this is a good alternative.
  • I would also recommend taking this picture somewhere outdoors. It can make it a more interesting experience. But, it can also provide natural lighting and less awkward angles and shadows that exist indoors.
  • Get a tripod out there with you. You can set it up the way you like, and avoid expensive photographers. That is unless you’re rolling in the dough and you can get a pro!
  • Try and be a little consistent with the photos. Either with the setting or the way the number plate looks. It should have some quality of a series.

Picture 4: The Candid Photo


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Candid Photos Watch Out!

Christina what is a candid photo gurl?

Well self. A candid photo is taken spontaneously, a non-poser-ish picture.
But why would you want that?

Because, making a duck-face to the camera is not always a good thing. 

Candid photos are sometimes magical, but often hilarious. They capture the most unexpected moments of life, which a pre-planned thought-out picture usually fails to capture. I’ve had some pretty hilarious candid photos taken, but sometimes a very beautiful, magical picture will just happen.

This summer I took a history of photography class. FUN FUN! No seriously, if you like history and photography, I highly recommend it. *pushes nerd glasses up* One of the things that stuck with me was how the creation of Kodak cameras—does anyone remember Kodak? Disposable cameras? One time 

You see, originally cameras were not very popular. They were huge, unreliable, rare, and freaking expensive. You had to pay a whole days wage just to buy one


picture of yourself. Well it is more or less the same for professional pictures today.

This price was all for a picture that faded over time.use—changed the way people behaved in front of the camera.

As a result, pictures were never spontaneous.

[*I will recommend the textbook I had here, I really enjoyed it*]

Imagine this process:

• Wearing your Sunday best, and traveling to the city to find a photo-studio.
• A controlled studio environment that provided just enough light.
• No night-time pictures.
• Sitting very still for eight to ten minutes, so that the picture would be clear and not blurry.
• Having a neck brace from behind that prevented you from moving.
• No jumping, no dancing, no throwing the bouquet, no waving or movement of any kind.
• Heck you are not even allowed to blink.

Often what the end result was, pictures where people looked miserable. I know I would look pretty pissed off too, if I had a metal rod in my back and couldn’t blink for 8 minutes.

Disclaimer. This photo does not belong to me but to Tobbyotter on Flickr. I am sharing his image, because I thought it was a good example of 1800 portrait photography.

Disclaimer. This photo does not belong to me, but to Tobbyotter on Flickr. I am sharing this image, because I thought it was a good example of 1800 portrait photography!

Thank-you universe! For inspiring some chemists and scientists, to develop the instant photograph. Kodak was the earliest version of instant photographs, that didn’t require a visit to a studio. Anyone could take them.

To make a long history lesson short, Kodak lead to this:

Slob/ Distracted  Jumping Images  Duck Face/ Drunk/ Just NO pictures

The Reasoning:

I think candid photos can really be something special. Take Instagram for example.  Instagram may not be the BEST example of candidness, but there is a lot of stuff on there that is spontaneous. I think it takes courage to live in the moment and just photograph what we want wherever. I do know some people that are very picky about pictures and want them to always be deleted right away if not pre-approved. That irks me a little bit, because life shouldn’t always be so serious.

I think candid photographs are also really amazing at capturing peoples personality. Usually, posed pictures just don’t do us justice. And unless you are a professional model that can project a narrative through SMEYES, (smiling with your eyes) than you ought to depend on the candid like I do. My point, BE FEARLESS, let people take pics of you. Personality photos are amazing in their own way.

Jessica shared this picture with me. This photo captures exactly what these friends characters and relationship is like!

Jessica shared this picture with me. This photo captures exactly what these friends characters and relationship is like!

Also sometimes we see something amazing, like the UTM deer families, and wish you had a camera to take pictures. Opportunity missed.

This post is for all the times we wish we had a camera. It’s for all the times we take photos, don’t think, look at them later and are pleasantly surprised at how funny or amazing they are.

Can you relate?

For this post I took a look through literally hundreds of photographs saved on my computer. The funny thing is certain types of images kept coming up. Coming up will be a segment of Candid photo types! Let’s see if everyone can relate.!



The number one photo that came up over and over again is, me eating! And usually it was pizza. This is one of the most common candid photos I think that exist ANYWHERE AND EVERYWHERE. People around the dining table at home, or at restaurants, or just random pics of stuffing my face, is what Foody candid photos are all about.



Clearly babies, and well house pets, are the easiest subjects for candid photos. Babies, like my cute-as-baby-pandas nephew, has done some pretty epic poses for me. He just does some EPIC faces when he is around lots of people. Of course I document it all. I’m bragging now but, my brother tells me all the time, my nephew took after me. So I can only imagine I looked just like this when I was a toddler.



No this is not about couples as in a dating couple. This is just generally about two people in a photo. No matter which folder I looked in, from any date, there would always be this photo. Two people, sometimes three, just completely oblivious of each other. Makes me wonder why people take these photos?! But, they are just a true image of what being out with friends or family really looks like.

_DSC0776Who dere?

PICTURE TYPE 4: ACTION… A photo in between an action.

These are always fun to look at. I think anyways. They are just the most random of random photos. As candid photos they capture an atmosphere. Like two friends playing battleship, grown-ass women looking ridiculous at Christmas. Or a sport shot,  rollerblading is a sport! For me. Or just funn reaction to something, who can say a reaction like the one below isn’t funny?


HONORABLE MENTION: Murder is wrong.


 Last but not least,


This is the rarest candid photo out there. If you have captured one of these than you can definitely relate to why I included candid photos in the top 6 of The Challenge. This picture is just worth having because it evokes memories and emotions that you want to remember. Or just connect with deeply.

khanasor 005

What comes to mind:

When I think of unexpected magical photos, the one image that comes to mind is the classic bride photo. Standing in her room getting dressed and her maid of honor or her mother is buttoning up her dress. The bride is not paying attention, and snap. They are usually pretty amazing. They capture the moment, the atmosphere, and the joy of such an important day. Wedding pictures are usually posed and fake, but there are exceptions. I wanted to talk about candid photos because they really are about capturing the moment. I encourage everyone to open themselves up to the experience of candid photos!

Life can always use a little spontaneity. Let your hair down, and take some pictures!

Picture 3: Micro-scopic


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Micro-scopic fun! ~no microscopes needed~


Seriously no microscopes needed!

I love to look at old photos. It’s like a treasure hunt. It’s like Alice falling into the rabbit hole. Or no, it’s like a treasure hunt.

When I do find old pics, I tend to look into the background. This is because I find the most unexpected things in the background. I am not talking about photobombs! Photos taken at home are my favourites! Around the house my mom would always be buying new throw pillows, or cushions, or RUGS. Can anyone relate?

For me it’s fun to spot the little changes in my surroundings. But also, it can be strangely nostalgic seeing small things that don’t change over time. So, for Picture 3, I am going to creep out a friend’s house, with his permission of course, and find the things that make his house a home. But, also capture some things that are likely to change.

This part of The Challenge is about capturing the microscopic little things we easily forget, when we move on.

Tips and Tricks down below! Check them out for a better idea of what to photograph!

A definition that may be useful:  the macro setting on cameras is in fact for taking close-up pictures. I am aware that macro means BIG/WIDE, but for cameras it is in fact for small close-up photos. I am going to be saying MICRO instead of MACRO just to avoid any confusion.

My Reasoning:

In my 21 years of life, I have moved at least 4 times. Now I’m sure this doesn’t break any records, but to me it feels like a lot. I have lived in at least three different homes, and in two different countries. I tend to feel envious of people who tell me, Hey I’ve lived in my house my entire life.”

Some of the 90's furniture I was talking about.

Dean John and Reno (from left to right)

Like my friend Reno for example, He has lived in the same house since he was born. That gives the place a ton of history. I’ve seen old pictures of his house, BUT, I’ve also seen old videos. Home videos are another way that one can capture the past and the microscopic pictures. I got to see his family home before it had grass, before the extra block of houses were built behind his home, and with hip 90’s furniture. I loved every minute of it! The pictures down below are from his family home as it is today!

For me it all comes down to making roots.

When I was younger I hated moving, I didn’t want it to happen, but I had no choice. At the same time, now that I am a bit older, I don’t regret moving so much. It made me who I am, and trust me before I was pretty stupid. I was also like 7 and 15 so that probably had something to do with it.

When I was thinking about The Challenge and what I would want to remember, I naturally gravitated toward memories of living in my old house in Mississauga. I pretty much remember playing office with my sister. I would be under my desk and it would be my office, and she would be under hers next to mine. Anna and I, age wise, are almost two years apart. When my parents bought our bedroom set back in the day, it was twin-PINK-everything.

We had good times in that room. Unfortunately not very many pictures exist of that space.

I do remember having:
  • Stickers on my desk and bed. I was a sticker fanatic!

Old desk lamp I fished out of the closet.

  • Stuffed animals (Beanie Baby Collection). Mostly presents.

Toto -Bear- Poo!

  • A  fruit-basket portrait, that sat on top of the fireplace. I always hated that thing. Now it’s in the living room of my apartment. BLEH


  • I never had posters, but printouts of my favourite stuff. Sailormoon!

Side story: The first time my family bought a colour printer. It was a dot-matrix printer that took a good two minutes to spit out the page. Well I don’t know about your family, but in mine, to use the colour ink was a special privilege. I remember one day when my parents weren’t home I snuck onto the computer and printed a bunch of pictures that I liked, mostly Sailormoon and the Powerpuff Girls. <- I provided links to their theme songs, reminisce with me! 

They were my treasures. I kept them hidden for a couple of weeks and then I pulled them out and blue-tacked them all over my desk. Last deviation I swear.


So enough of my childhood misadventures, there is a point to all this somewhere.

And So…

The reason I want to focus on the micro pictures is because they are the types of memories that can be easily forgotten. For me especially, moving around as much as I have, I do tend to miss my old homes. I believe it’s the little things that make a place a home. Like the scratches I discovered in the family room floor, which Reno made when he was a toddler. Or even, the herb garden that their mama planted in the backyard. The mint in their garden was taken from my mom’s old garden! tear! Or the weird dent in the fence that John the youngest brother made when he was messing around with their dad. Photos are memories so why not keep those memories alive?

Here is the end results of my adventure at the Varnava’s home~

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Who knows, taking micro pictures might inspire another photo to be treasured, or my case a new post for The Challenge! Also, I am always open for any ideas of what must be photographed, as different things are important for different people.

I would love to see or hear about any of your micro memories!

And as promised…

Tips and Tricks

1. Look at your camera settings. Most cameras, even the regular point and shoot cameras, have a settings menu that lets you change the mode for close-up photos. (macro)

2. Try and take pictures of the little things that have meaning for you. Like the baseball you broke playing with your friends, but never threw away. Or that spot in the wall where you wrote lightly in pencil Mrs. Christina (fill-in).

3. Take pictures of things that you wouldn’t normally think to capture, like your favourite flower in the garden.

Remember you are trying to capture the essence of your home.

Picture 2: The Seasons


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The Seasons + Transitional Photographs

The hills are alive, with the sound of music ahhhahhahh...

That song always puts me in a good mood. It must be all the majestic oohs, and ahhs.

On to the photo!

So knowing me, of course—I like to think of myself as an old soul—my next choice in  The Challenge would be a nature photo.The hills, and the alive, and the music. Oh no wait, that’s the song again.

Does anyone else share my love for The Sound of Music? 

Nature photos or photos of nature can be powerful and calming all at once. At times I realize that I am taking for granted the natural environment around me. Then my grandma personality comes out and I say, “I remember back in the day, when the splash pad in the park used to work, and it got us kids out there, splashing and playing in the sunshine. Those were the good ol’ days.” Mind you that was maybe 8 years ago.

Going back to nature for picture 2 makes sense to me. It’s a nice way to get reacquainted with my natural environment.

nature 1

A majestic tree!

Also, one of my favorite types of photography is when it transitions through time.

But, wait Christina whatever could that mean?

Well self, (yes I just talked in third person) usually photos are printed in a series. A series can be made over time, and even, in different places. An overarching theme lumps them all together usually, so it works out in the end. Transitional photographs are all about showing the changes that occur over time.

Try it!

    • Find a special spot that you think is photo-worthy. For example, the big oak tree in your back yard.
    • Take a photo of the tree, but at different times of the day, month, or year.
    • Try different angles.

Once you are done, you will have a series of transitional photos. The magic of it all is how different the same oak tree can look. Picture number 1 compared to picture number 458,520 can convey a completely different feeling. Please don’t take 458,520 pictures of the same tree. This world is full of stuff, like the squirrel sitting on the tree?

Landscape+ Transitional time = Photo 2


Inspiration struck, during a cozy brainstorming session.The hot cup of Pumpkin Spice latte got the gears going.

Cheers Starbucks.

It has something to do with changing my setting. It leads to bursts of inspiration here and there.

Combining a nature photo with transitional time was decided for picture 2 in this way. Therefore, if you attempt this photo, you should photograph something that inspires you. Not just an old oak tree. Unless there is something majestic about that tree!

Some people may think, oh it’s Mississauga, calm down, there is nothing there. It’s for young families and old people. But, I BEG TO DIFFER. British accent.

This is an opportunity to explore the place we are living in. Part of my personal challenge is to appreciate more of what’s around me. Force myself to disconnect from all the images that are forced on me every day.

I mean how many times have you seen the travel agency billboard? Aqua-blue water, golden sand, and bright sunshine? How easily can I, living in a city, access this tropical paradise? Well hop on a plane, wait a few hours, get off the plane, take a cab/bus/bike and find the nearest water. Simple right? In terms of getting inspired, I don’t have the time or funding necessary for that level of inspiration.

How I Feel

How I Feel

I find nature is really inspiring. There are some great parks in the GTA.  A good friend of mineJoanna Iossifidis, has provided the examples posted down below. A beautiful set of four.

See how each picture was taken during a different season?

Joanna has already taken up this challenge. This group of four can be a little piece of inspiration in any room of your home. Make into your instant pick-me-up.

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Just remember inspirational places can be anywhere. It was with Starbucks that this idea was formed. So, maybe a group of four pictures of your favorite coffee shop, can act as your inspiration.

Do you have any ideas of other inspirational photos or places?

If you want to see more of Jo’s beautiful pics, this is her website: http://joannai.wix.com/portfolio

Send her some love!