Northern Exposure

A shinkansen leaving from Kyoto Station, 27th March, 2013.

A shinkansen leaving from Kyoto Station, 27th March, 2013.

I have been back in Australia for three days; certainly not long enough to feel normal yet.  I would like to share a few photos from my trip to the northern hemisphere.  There will be more photos than descriptions in this post because my brain is still floating out there in jet-lag land.  I am a bit fuzzy!

Kiyono on the day of her misedashi, 27th March, 2013.

Kiyono on the day of her misedashi, 27th March, 2013.

I was very fortunate to be able to witness a misedashi in Kyoto.  This is a celebratory day; the day when a girl becomes a maiko for the first time.  She has already worked long and hard to get to this point so a misedashi is an important milestone for her.  Kiyono is the name of this maiko from Gion Kobu.  Here, she kindly poses in front of the sakura (cherry blossom) by the Shirakawa stream.  Though there were many photographers Kiyono stayed composed and good-humoured from start to finish.

Taking the baby out for some fresh air in Saint-Petersburg.  31st March 2013.

Taking the baby out for some fresh air in Saint-Petersburg. 31st March 2013.

The Hermitage from across the frozen river.  Saint-Petersburg, 2nd April, 2013.

The Hermitage from across the frozen river. Saint-Petersburg, 2nd April, 2013.

From Japan, Matthew and I flew to Saint-Petersburg.  We also flew from spring right back to winter.  I have never seen a frozen river before.  Walking was a continual issue – how not to slip over.  Old ladies zoomed past me as I teetered on the ice.  They were well used to these conditions!  I did not know what I would think of being in Russia.  I loved it!  I had never been in such cold before and I was spellbound.

Spring time in Helsinki!  8th April, 2013.

Spring time in Helsinki! 8th April, 2013.

Poor Europeans!  I know that winter has been extra long for you.  For me, though, who lives in the perpetual summer of Perth, this was the biggest treat ever.  I adored the snow and every time it snowed (often) I went out in it.  (We went to Latvia and Estonia too but I will save some photos for other posts.)

First really warm day in Paris.  14th April, 2013.

First really warm day in Paris. 14th April, 2013.

Paris was raining as usual when I arrived.  I expected that.  However it felt quite warm after northern Europe.  Last Sunday, though, it suddenly heated up to about 25 degrees.  Everyone burst out into the streets.  Those ubiquitous black coats came off to reveal – short sleeves, dresses, shorts, skin on arms and legs.  There was a general air of festivity as people gratefully basked in sunshine.

Singapore with water lilies.  16th April 2013.

Singapore with water lilies. 16th April 2013.

To the other extreme, Singapore was BOILING.  These water lilies are perfect for the tropical conditions of Singapore.  I walked out a little and was soon panting with the effort even though I’m as fit as anything from so much exercise in Europe.  I just couldn’t handle the humidity.

Happy to be in Kyoto again. March, 2013.

Happy to be in Kyoto again. March, 2013.

It was the most wonderful three and a half weeks.  What is more, I have stacks of new material to draw from.  The problem will be knowing what to begin with…but what a pleasant problem!

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About juliepodstolski

I am a realist artist who works in coloured pencils.
Image | This entry was posted in Japan, photo portraits of cities, photography, travel and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Northern Exposure

  1. Camilla Loveridge says:

    What fun you’ve had, julie! Thanks for the sharing….the snow is soooooo magical!

    Lots luv

    Camilla x

  2. Tig says:

    How wonderful! Welcome home and I can’t wait to see where you choose to begin with your next drawing 🙂

    Regards,

    ~ Tig Hobcroft

  3. Eeva-Liisa Pukkila-Fraser says:

    Really beautiful photos and sounds like a wonderful adventure !
    Cheers,
    Eeva-Liisa x

  4. shirley winstanley says:

    I look forward to seeing more of your art and you certainly look happy and well! cheers. Shirley

  5. Virginia says:

    Happy to hear you are back home from your great trip. Although I missed your posts, I am anxiously looking forward to your new work.

  6. Welcome back Julie! I have missed your posts. I can see deciding on subject matter will be tricky, you have been through the entire round of seasons, not to mention cultures. Wonderful!

  7. I forgot to say that I wasn’t even looking forward to this trip. I was rather dreading it because it looked to be so gruelling ie seven countries in just over three weeks. I was tagging along on Matthew’s business trip hence the number of countries visited. I was trying to think of ways to get out of going! But as soon as we were leaving, the anxiety just fell away.
    It is absorbing to see new places. It certainly gets the creative juices flowing. I liked having no responsibilities and I felt a sense of freedom being away from home. My brain was happy to be seeing so much that was new to it.

  8. Di Kyle says:

    Hi Julie , looks like an amazing holiday with many different experiences, we are luxuriating in tropical far North Queensland at the moment, Port Douglas , my favourite place on earth.Loved your photos,please let me know if you decide to do a pencil work of the cherry blossoms in Kyoto as I would love it for my daughter.Anyday now they will find out where Woodside is sending them so they are leaving Tokyo v soon and Caroline loved cherry blossom time, Best wishes Di Kyle

    Sent from my iPad

    • Hello Di, it is likely that sakura will feature in new work as I took many photos of it. It really is quite magical stuff. I am happy that you follow my posts as you’ll be just as up-to-date with new drawings as I am! Since I began this blog, I have been showing each new drawing as soon as it is finished and I will continue to do this. Wonderful that you are luxuriating!

  9. Robyn Varpins says:

    Fantastic Julie! one extreme to the other…The snow and the water lilies!….how is your heel?

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