from the Poloroid Magic series
and hey, there’s Jeanine, doing what she loves!
I first got to know Jeanine Caron of Wonderings and Wanderings through her column on Gypsy Girls Guide. She’s smart, funny, well-traveled, and an all around cool person. Her blog is filled with her truly lovely photography and personal stories that tug at the heartstrings. Since I myself have many travel aspirations and admire her photography too, I was happy to invite her over for a little q&a session. To my great delight, she accepted!
Have you been formally trained as a photographer? (If so, where, and which degrees do you have, etc, etc?)
No, I have not. I wish I’d chosen the Arts in University but I studied Environmental Sciences & Applied Zoology instead.
I didn’t really pick up a camera until I started blogging. I needed something to complement my words and it soon became an addiction. And like anything, I got better with practice (I cringe when I look at my first photos).
Have you always loved taking pictures? What do you love most about it?
I seriously started taking photos in 2003 but it’s not until I bought my Pentax K1000 that I truly fell in love with photography.
I love that I am forced to slow down when I shoot film. It feels like a more conscious and intentional approach to photography. It makes me pay attention. I love the anticipation of getting a roll of film developed. And I love the sound! There is no better sound in the world than the shutter releasing on a Pentax K1000 and the clicking as you advance the film.
You’ve been all over the world. What calls you to travel?
Bill Bryson once said: “To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.”
I think that says it all for me.
Is there a place you never expected to go…then did? How was it?
I never expected to go to Iceland but I was in a long distance relationship with my (now) husband and Iceland was an island between the two of us. It seemed only apt that we should meet up there after months apart. Our rendez-vous, incidentally, happened to be in the middle of the ash cloud fiasco. It’s a wonder we ever landed. And it was one of the best trips of my life.
Iceland casts a spell on you within moments of arriving. The light there is silver and the landscape feels prehistoric, like it belongs to another world reminiscent of something out of a Tolkien novel. And time tricks you because the sun never fully sets in the Spring; its enthusiasm is contagious and almost seduces you into staying up all night. And there’s nothing quite as blissful as sitting next to your lover in a hot spring heated by the earth’s very core while there is still snow on the ground all around you. Or wading like a ghost in the milky waters of the Blue Lagoon on a cold misty morning with white silica mud on your face. And if you close your eyes for 5 minutes and open them again, you have turned a corner and entered completely new surroundings: a blue grey ocean, rolling hills (mustard colored in April, with the promise of green come June), rugged mountains cutting their niche in the sky, moss covered lava fields, small but mighty Icelandic horses roaming the land, geysers shooting up, waterfalls crashing down. Iceland leaves an everlasting impression on your soul; an imprint on your heart. So much so that many people have claimed it to be the one place they would love to return to. Myself included.
How would you describe your artistic aesthetic?
Light and still life. Little pieces of a whole. Glimpses of daily life.
Life is full of little wonders and there is nothing so mundane that it doesn’t hold a glimmer of awesome. I want to be in awe of the small moments, amazed by the light, the spoon on the counter, the crumpled sheets, the sun coming in through the blinds, the hot cup of tea — the little things that make up a day. When I am out with my camera I am, in fact, practicing the art of seeing things as if for the first time — with wonder. This is the gift of photography.
Are you working on a particular project right now?
I’m writing a book proposal about the serendipitous encounter and subsequent marriage of a British boy and a Canadian girl. I figure I was lucky enough to be handed this love story and it is my duty to write about it.
What music are you listening to these days?
The National, Bombay Bicycle Club, Arcade Fire, Bon Iver, Patrick Watson, Little Dragon. I am a music fiend, always searching for new sounds. I even have a tumblr account dedicated solely to music http://jcaron.tumblr.com/
Name three things that inspire you…
What are your hobbies and interests outside of your work?
Photography and writing are still hobbies for me but I hope to change that someday.
Ok, you’re stranded on a desert island. Which five things can’t you live without?
My iPhone (Instagram is like crack to me)
Anything else you’d like to add: Thank you.
Thank you, Jeanine, for spending some time with us. All images are Jeanine’s. Visit her at Wonderings and Wanderings. Isn’t that the perfect blog title? And please, feast your eyes on her portfolio. Her images are beautiful.