A summer tour – a travel diary from Aegina to Poros

A magic summer 2016.

I was gifted to travel with my friend Vincent from my home here in Athens via a ferry to Aegina and later on to it’s neighboring island Poros.

It’s always exciting and challenging to see and travel to new places.

Questions such as “Where will I stay?“, “Where will I eat?”, “What to see?” and “What to photograph?” will come up and start to push me far from my comfort zone here at home in Athens.

In the end these questions simply don’t matter – it is far more important to enjoy the trip and let things happen, grow and develop them in their own momentum.

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It’s easy to rush yourself and your photography to the main touristic attractions. You can find them on any map, tourist guide and they pop up within the first few searches on google.

It’s even easier to capture them, apply an Instagram filter, upload them and wait for the likes and social approval to come.

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What’s far more difficult – in my humble opinion –  to get lost during your walks, if you try to see things as the local sees and if you stay off track the main attractions. What lies beneath the main attractions on a small greek island ?

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Are there any hidden gems to see and to photograph?

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Not the likes or your followers decide.

It’s simply you.

If you enjoy your journey, others will do so, too.

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That’s why I found the most pretty cat here in Greece. It’s the cat from my friends at Vagia hotel. Such an adorable creature.

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Sometimes you have to wander around and find little items that have a story to tell, in somebodies backyard.

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Sometimes the only thing that you can photograph will be an old olive press, that’s been abandoned for years.

You can’t always find the one-million-dollar-shot, but do you really want to hit the shutter for such a photograph?

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To me, photography is about freezing a moment into eternity. To make a memory become tangible throughout a photograph.

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And of course to capture sun, colours and this mediteranean feel that I’ve been chasing since the last 10 years.

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The only setup that I had at this trip was my Hasselblad 503CM with a 100mm 3.5f and Kodak Portra 160 film.

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And many hours of walking in small alleys, neighbours backyards and hidden paths, that are far away from Egina and it’s port.

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A surprised guardian.

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And calm alleyways.

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It must be heaven to live here. I always imagine a calm place to live, far away from the stressful urban cities I’ve lived in. To contemplate under blue sky. No pressure from employers, no pressure from social validation on social media and no pressure from our western concepts of consumerism.

Wouldn’t be heaven?

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And it seems as if I’m attracting these little fellas on every on my tours. Maybe a friend from another life ?

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In past trips I got quite unsure about what to bring for my journey. Do I have enough gear, such as lenses and filters? Can I capture everything that I see? Will I make photographs that will hit the taste of the audience?

Through time these questions began to stress me out and I lost the joy in photography. I started to sell many of my cameras and lenses and now I really can enjoy a walk with the  one camera and one lens setup in my mind.

If I need to get closer for a shot, I get closer. If I can, I’m happy and take the shot, if not – I just don’t take the shot. No need for extra lenses that add extra weight and pressure to my setup.

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If a lens is not wide enough, just make the best out of it. No need for extra precautions. You won’t  be able to cover every case and situation anyway.

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Go with the flow and enjoy randomness and imperfection. Life will never be perfect and so shouldn’t be photography.

And I’m always speechless when I see the final outcome of one of my film negatives. I just add some minor colour corrections and remove some spots of dust, thats it. No change of contrast, saturation or further work in photoshop needed.

Definitely a workflow that vibes perfectly with me.

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And sometimes you can capture these magic moments. A butterfly landed on Vincent’s hand.

Analogue, Agfa Portrait 160

Poros from above.

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A place to rest, near the clock tower.

Even if it was a short trip, it was worth every minute. We walked a lot, we talked a lot and we enjoyed our time a lot.

Analogue, Agfa Portrait 160

Ευχαριστο πολι.

xxx

Michel