travel photography

Paris- Travel Journaling Pt 2

Galia Alena  Parisian travel journal
Walking in the Silage of Stories Past
Whispering through the alleyways
Written in the stones carved soft with moss,
Across oceans, through centuries,
The echoes of lives
and the layering of stories.
I can almost hear them.
Just beyond a corner
a hint of movement
a scent familiar and strange;
Stories collapsed in time
I feel them brush up against me,
Unhinged shadows.

Sacre Coeur Paris, Galia Alena travel photography
Months later and I'm still sorting through the thoughts of the trip. I didn't take many photographs on this time, partly because I broke my arm just weeks before the trip and the cast came off a week early so that I could fly without it. To lighten the load I left my SLR and lenses at home and took only baby and my iphone. I took some photos, but the trip was not about the photography, but more about the sketching and the art. There are some photos to add in, impressions, but the journal is filled with sketches and paraphernalia that I barely feel the need to add photos (and apart from a few spaces, there is no room for them anyway so I am going to have to get creative on how to add them).

Galia Alena  Parisian travel journal
The plethora of galleries in Paris is overwhelming- so much to gorge on in such a short period and now, sitting amongst the clouds and trees, listening to birdsong instead of the harmonies of church bells and sirens, I can only dream of those details- the colours, the brush strokes, the risks, each of those artists teaching something different. These paintings come to life in a way you can only imagine when you stand if front of them and let their energy speak to you. Oh that I could wander the galleries with my morning coffee before I head to my own studio.

Eiffel Tower Paris, Galia Alena travel photographyMum likes to tell the story of the man who hated the Eiffel Tower but continued to eat lunch there everyday. When asked why he answered "it is the only place in Paris you can't see it from" -boom boom.

Next stop: London where I head off on my own to meet a dear dear friend for the first time.

Part 1 of my Parisian Travel Journal is here


Galia Alena  Parisian travel journal

Some thoughts on travel journaling and pilgrimage (from the new website):
A journey to a new place or a journey through a journal page will both take you on a pilgrimage to the center of your own heart, to an understanding of your own truths, to a knowing and comfort with yourself. Both will bring you closer to the peace of home and still that wyld spirit that wants to fly freely on the winds of desires, of greener grasses and the whispers of dreams.
Journaling and traveling can both be a journey on which, if you are receptive, you discover a deeper connection with yourself and the conversation with life. Both can act as a pilgrimage from which you are forever changed, giving you both new awareness and knowledge of yourself and the world, journeying simultaneously out into the outer world and deep within the inner world.
There are as many ways and reasons to travel and to journal as there are people. For me the two are similar in that they both are a way for me to embody the journey. The journey to align with my inner world as well as my outer, a journey in trust, a journey in which on the middle of the path one is expanded and changed forever, a journey in which you can meet yourself. A pilgrimage.
Both require me to stay open and curious, to watch and notice attentively, to respond with trust and wonder at unexpected opportunities. Both allow me to engage fully in  the conversation of life with wonder and amazement. Both gift me with myself.

Galia Alena  Parisian travel journal
"Sometimes it takes a great sky to find thatfirst, bright and indescribable wedge of freedom in your own heart.” David Whyte
There are many ways to travel but when a woman travels alone there is a certain amount of trust that is required, especially when details have been left open to chance, serendipity and faith. A window is left open for spirit to enter and the unique state of wonder and awareness that traveling puts you in enhances your awareness of these moments.
A pilgrimage can take many forms, some structured and religious, some based on tradition. Sometimes one is not even aware that they are on a pilgrimage yet the journey they take will change them forever as they find themselves touched by things they didn’t even realise they were seeking.

Galia Alena  Parisian travel journal
“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” – Martin Buber
Traveling allows one to strip away the usual masks that daily life demands which can bury the true self, it becomes an opportunity to get to know yourself without all the usual baggage. When you travel the normal linear day to day time is suspended and you step into a time where routine has been suspended in favour of the fullness of the moment. When you art journal there too is a suspension of time. Your hands set to work busy moving paint about, making marks, selecting papers while your monkey brain watches and hopefully is quiet and distracted long enough for deeper thoughts and awareness to come forward- a moving meditation where the heart and hand is aligned.
“and turning the corner at what you thought was athe end
of the road, you found just a simple reflection,
and a clear revelation beneath the face looking back
and beneath it another invitation, all in one glimpse:”
  David Whyte

Travel Journal- US13

Mixed Media Travel Journal, Galia Alena
Sometimes it takes
a great sky
to find that

first, bright
and indescribable
wedge of freedom
in your own heart. David Whyte
 
A journey to a new place or a journey through a blank journal page can both take you on a pilgrimage to the centre of your own heart, to an understanding of your own truths and to a knowing and comfort within yourself. Both will bring you closer to the peace of home within and still that wyld spirit that wants to fly freely on the winds of desires, of greener grasses and the whispers of dreams.
Mixed Media Travel Journal, Galia Alena

There are as many ways and reasons to travel and to journal as there are people. For me the two are similar in that they both are a way for me to embody the journey. The journey to align with my inner world as well as my outer, a journey in trust, a journey where on the path one is expanded and changed forever, a journey on which you can meet yourself. A pilgrimage.

Mixed Media Travel Journal, Galia Alena
Journaling and traveling can both be a journey on which, if you are receptive, you discover a deeper connection with yourself and the conversation with life. Both can act as a pilgrimage from which you are forever changed, giving you both new awareness and knowledge of yourself and the world, journeying simultaneously out into the outer world and deep within the inner world.
Mixed Media Travel Journal, Galia Alena
  Traveling allows one to strip away the usual masks that daily life demands which can 
bury the true self, it becomes an opportunity to get to know yourself without all the usual baggage. When you travel the normal linear day to day time is suspended and you step into a time where routine has been suspended in favour of the fullness of the moment. When you art journal there is also a suspension of time. Your hands set to work busy moving paint about, making marks, selecting papers while your monkey brain watches and hopefully is quiet and distracted long enough for deeper thoughts and awareness to come forward- a moving meditation where the heart and hand are aligned.
Both require me to stay open and curious, to watch and notice attentively, to respond with trust and wonder at unexpected opportunities. Both allow me to engage fully in  the conversation with life, with wonder and amazement. Both can be a home coming. Both gift me with myself.

One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.

Henry Miller

rnalrMixed Media Travel Journal, Galia Alena
To see more from this travel journal visit here
or more travel journals here 
and please pop yourself on my love letters list at the side there for some exciting news coming soon :)

Some Pages from Bali

 It's getting closer to Christmas and the January holidays, which in this part of the world mean Summer Holidays, and my heart is getting wistful for another wandering trip. January is traditionally a time to travel and explore, but for this coming one we have no trips planned because I will be spending most of April away from home (in Virginia for SoulFire Retreats and for some photographic shoots in Sydney). We will probably load up the car and hit the road exploring this country that we've land in less than 2 years ago, so much of New Zealand still to see (in fact most of it).
The yearning to travel has me perusing my last travel journal, from Bali this past February, touching the soft, gently used Batiks I used for its cover and flicking through the pages of the adventures we had and the beauty we saw. Seeing the marks made on our travel, and the paraphernalia collected along the way glued in and reading little vignettes and stories, sweeps me right back into that experience and my gypsy heart is glad I have these tangible memories which allow me to travel back from my armchair with.
Itchy gypsy toes.





Bali Travel Journal


I've finished putting together my travel journal from Bali, well as finished as you can ever be, I'm sure there will be more doodles and writing, but finished for now. I never know what to call them, half journal, half sketch book, half art journal, half memoir, and yes I know, that's a lot of halves. I guess really its a no rules applies way to process and sit with the experience of traveling to another place. Some is done there and some is done on return when photos are processed as are experiences. What I do know is that they are a very tangible memory, especially the marks and brush strokes laid down in a place. I need only rest my hand on the cover of my Canadian journal and I am swept back.