Update from a twenty-something

Listen to the song "twenty-something" by Jamie Cullum. It's hilarious. It is an accurate description of where my life is at right now. Here I am, a twenty-something, living in New York City, trying to get my life together, to get it all figured out.

I don't want to over-analyze anything. I just want to speak honestly...to share my life, my thoughts from the past couple of months.
I returned from India almost 2 months ago. If you know where your life is going and you have a sense of direction, then don't travel, volunteer or go to a place like India. It will only change the entire course of your life... at least that's what happened for me (alright, maybe I'm being a bit dramatic...but seriously, leaving the U.S. tends to do that to you). I left hopeful that I would return a changed human being with an even furthered sense of direction in my life. I did return a changed human being, yet more confused then ever before.
I saw things and heard things I had never dreamed I would see or hear in my lifetime. I met so many amazing, inspiring, beautiful souls. There were moments when I was on overload...overwhelmed that I was experiencing so much in such a short amount of time. In these situations, only your fellow travel companions or those you meet along the road can truly understand your state of mind. Returning to the United States though, can be a really lonely experience.

After returning from traveling the world or volunteering internationally, I highly recommend taking some time OFF if possible. I don't recommend doing anything crazy...like moving across the country for one thing. If you are starting school again, then make sure you have a little time to process in between. I think part of my problem is that almost as soon as I returned from India, I wanted to go back. I started freaking out...what am I doing going straight back into school again?? Why didn't I just do the Peace Corps or something overseas-related? What am I doing with my life? Why am I moving to the most expensive city in the country? For me, I think the hardest part of wrestling through these questions is feeling alone. Feeling like everyone else around me has a purpose and has got it all together. But the more I talk to people, the more I am realizing that this couldn't be further from the truth. Nobody has it figured out.

Where does that leave me? Well, after an insane two months...I just decided to slow my life down a little bit. Lighten the class load, and learn how to budget my time and my money better. Go for runs in the mornings, read in coffee shops. But most importantly just having the time to think and to wrestle with life and to appreciate the people around me. Often I get panicked...like somehow I am falling behind...like i need to get things figured out. But I think I am realizing more and more every day, that there is absolutely nothing wrong with slowing things down, with learning how to be patient. It may sound counter-cultural, but I am a firm believer in the fact that as long as you are alive, there is always more time left. A Mary Oliver quote that I found posted on a friend's facebook status says, "Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?" For now this is my plan. I may go insane. But hopefully at the end of it, there will be self-discovery. Maybe not. But if so, I will keep you posted. :)
photo of NY by me.



My little sister is engaged to a great boy named Michael! You should check out their incredible engagement photos by another incredible photographer I admire: my best friend, Rachael MacPhee of RachaelHopePhotography. Her work is amazing...I swear she has the ability to make anyone look like a model! (not that Laura and Michael aren't already attractive or anything ;). Here's my favorite photos from this shoot! Aren't they cute? Enjoy them!

photo credit: RachaelHopePhotography


Survivor + The Monument of Our Hearts

A friend of mine from college, Brett Clouser, is a Survivor Samoa 2009 contestant!! In honor of the Survivor premiere tonight, which is just seconds away, I wanted to blog a little promo for his clothing company, The Monument of Our Hearts...something I have been wanting to do for a while anyway. Brett first started this company while he was still a student at Pepperdine. He's an incredibly talented designer and has recruited the brilliance of other artists and designers. As a company, TMOOH lives and breathes advocacy, challenging what society has come to accept as the norm. The mission of TMOOH is to "design apparel that creates conversations and empowers people to feel beautiful." On top of that, their clothes are 100% fair trade and "strive for environmental responsibility." Check em out.

Here's my favorite item...partly cause I own and love this piece and partly because this was a design collaboration with the incredibly talented artist, Dominique Ovalle (who was also one of my India traveling buds).

photo credit: The Monument of Our Hearts 2009


Photo&Life Inspiration

So I added a new little column over there to the right entitled "Photo&Life Inspiration." I feel like I have hit the jack pot lately discovering experienced, brilliant photographers all over the country, whose work I now absolutely ADORE. I love these guys because their blogs also hold amazing life insights. There is nothing I love more than a photographer (or blogger for that matter) who not only blogs about their work and clients, but also portrays and captures their own passions and experiences in an honest and engaging way.

And I want to share them with you...

Jonathan Canlas Photography:

This guy is a 100% film photographer, which is pretty amazing to me in this digital era. Check out this post on Watts to experience some of his brilliance. He is fearless, I LOVE it. He also blogs about his family a lot, which is grand.

Max Wanger Photography:

I discovered Max through A Cup of Jo (home to all things cool). Wow, his creativity blows me away.

Our Labor of Love:

So I came upon these people sort of randomly, but as soon as I read the bio on their blog I was sold (too cute). It also helps that their body of work is incredibly DIVERSE and freakin BEAUTIFUL.

Digital Photography School:

Ok, sooo this blog doesn't exactly feature one photographer...it's a community of many. It's a 100% FREE place for experienced photographers to share their insights and new photographers to ask any questions they want and to improve their skills! There are also weekly challenges and hourly (literally hourly) blog posts from writers on growing as a digital photographer in any number of areas. As a relatively new photographer, I have consulted this site numerous times when I want to try out a new technique, learn more about my camera, experiment with lighting or editing and the list goes on! It's perfect for me right now, since I don't have the money to take a class. It's almost overwhelming the amount of helpful information on this blog. Oh how I looove social media and networking. It's just fabulous.

And last but not least!

The amazing Natalie Norton of Natalie Norton Photography. I discovered Natalie through her articles on Digital Photography School. She writes about everything such as How to Become a More Confident Photographer or Photographing Your First Wedding. Natalie is fun to read...she is so witty. My favorite part about her though, is that she is unafraid to share her own photography secrets, skills, and history with the photography community. Her philosophy is ABUNDANCE. She does not jealously guard her techniques, but openly shares...and people love and respect her for it...as they should.

So there you have it. Enjoy these and happy photographing/blogging!
(photo of me by me :)...2009)



I still love these!!! Even after all of the hype and controversey :). This is Danny Boyle's take on India and then one on Destiny. So good, accurate and inspiring i think!


Photojournal: Manhattan Skyline

My new home!!! For those of you who don't know, I made the move to NYC a couple of weeks ago. And loving it! I shot most of these from a Circle Line boat cruise last Thursday around Manhattan island...except for the one B&W from inside Greenwich Village :). Enjoy!

yes, we were THIS CLOSE to the statue of liberty!! ahhhhh!!

(all photos copyright Lydia Supplee 2009....if you wanna use em...just link back to me! :)