Post 51 of 52

Yesterday was the Winter Solstice in the northern hemisphere. In honor of that fact, I ventured out into the darkness and made some images amongst the glowing lights of the city.  To do this, a new tripod purchase was necessary. No matter how cold the temperatures may feel, you are not “freezing” enough to stand perfectly still and capture a clear image at a low ISO (I tried to deny this reality for months).

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Shooting in low ISO is new to me, but I had such a great time capturing the whirling lights of the trams and vehicles. The city was still surprisingly busy, being the last couple days before Christmas. Traffic was significant, by Finland standards. More fun than capturing the images was finding new angles to shoot from. With my new Gorillapod, I can capture images from perspectives which were not achievable before now. Plus there is the added bonus of cracking vlog jokes with my husband and doing my best Casey Neistat impersonation. Where is my Boosted Board?

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As my muse, the holiday lights keep the city bright. Although I have not technically seen the sun this week, and have not felt the warmth of its rays in months, twinkling lights keep spirits bright. This is one thing Helsinki does beautifully! With the downtown area in nearly uniform white lights, the streets feel all the more magical during this special time of year.

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This season marks my third holiday in a row here in Helsinki. To be honest, I did not know if I would stay here this long. To be even more honest, I do not know if I will endure this third winter. It is true Finns have an incredible sense of survival, even against all odds. Yet, I am not a native, and my discipline has been challenged this year. Since moving, I have found gratitude to be a critical lifeline.

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Counting blessings and maintaining personal practices and hobbies are crucial. Thus, I am beyond grateful for these images. My new tripod allows me to continue to feel the joy of creating content even when conditions are not ideal. So unless the temperatures turn too cold to keep my camera on, I will continue to capture the night.

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xx – nasty trash

Post 49 of 52​

December 6th, 2017 was the 100th anniversary of Finlands Independence. While I have been living here, this has been a huge celebration all year long. For those of you who may not know, here is my rendition of the celebration.

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Finns have a different mood towards December 6th, compared to other Independence Day traditions around the world. It is a solemn holiday here when citizens take time to remember those who lost their lives. Similar to Veterans Day in my home country.

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Fortunately, the centennial celebration brought a new mood. Blue and white themed the streets, shop windows, and light displays. Hundreds of thousands of people were out enjoying the day. As my third time in Finland for this holiday, it was a rather shocking detail. In years past people tend to keep to themselves. Stores close and the community stays rather quiet. I am hopeful that those traditions are in the past, and now the people have taken a new attitude to their achievement.

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Although hard times were faced so many years ago, I feel a positive celebration is what sustains progress. In my experience, celebrations bring communities together, verses mournings that tend to separate individuals. Among the fireworks, festive lights, and a whole year of pride leading up to this moment, Finland has a lot to be thankful for! As for me, I am thankful to be witness to something so special.

xx – nasty trash

Post 47 of 52

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Last Saturday, Helsinki Metro opened its brand new metro line extending from the city center into the large suburban area of Espoo. This has been a long-awaited moment for locals after a year of delays in construction. Commuters finally get to enjoy the new and beautiful underground line.

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In true Nordic fashion, the visual design did not go without deep consideration. As you can see from the abundance of content I have this week. there was a lot to look at. My husband and I began with a morning ride to the very last stop and checking out each station on the way back to the city center.

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Each metro station had its own unique appearance, and these images are simply my favorite moments captured. What I failed to capture, but thoroughly enjoyed, was the number of families, photographers, and interested locals out and about riding the new transportation.

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At one point I turned to my husband and said, “This is one of my top favorite days in Finland, ever!” As a suburban kid, metros, subway lines, and general urban transportation still fascinates me and ignites magic movement into any city. Although, Finns do not feel this same giddy sensation about local transportation. A normal commute, at rush hour, would usually consist of a full ride and not a single sound. Everyone tends to keep to themselves or maintain whispers of a conversation. No smiles, chit chat, or excessive expressions.

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In stark contrast to that stereotype, the metro grand opening was a happy affair. A family event none the less, and one that left smiles on faces of all ages. Crowds dressed in all orange to commemorate the moment. No groups appear in this particular collection of images, but it is still a memory I will cherish of the Finnish people. Knowing the citizens of Helsinki and Espoo do truly enjoy their community amenities, and it is something of a celebration to participate in this collective experience.

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I hope you enjoyed these images as much as I enjoyed making them. To any travelers, locals, or modern marvels, the Helsinki Metro is a must see! Not only will you get a break from the frequent cold and winter winds, but it is a unique way to explore a more intimate part of the city’s veins.

xx – nasty trash

Post 38 of 52

As I have mentioned before on the blog, my love for leather goods runs deep. The smell, the texture, the way every piece tells a story, I don’t believe there is another material like it! So when a local Finnish designer asked to do a collab, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity!

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Luava is a little company with big dreams. Established only a few short years ago, the designer has evolved a few simple goods into a full-fledged lifestyle!

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Impressive as that may be, the ideas just keep flowing. Which makes sense when the name itself is a play on words. In Finnish, luova means creative, and adding the extra a simply creates a more charming dialect to a beautiful word.

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One huge perk from this collaboration is my new outstanding camera strap! Customized with a cheeky personal detail, it is easily my new obsession and just the right detail to boost my photography inspiration. Cause let’s be honest, these generic straps scream tourist! FullSizeRender.jpg

Huge thanks to Luava for this collaboration, and even more gratitude for my killer new camera accessory. Check out all of their creations here, and follow on Instagram here. Until next week,

xx – nasty trash

Post 26 of 52

For some of you, it may have not been apparent the summer solstice just passed. For many of you, it may not ever register when a solstice occurs, but in Finland, it is the ultimate celebration of the season. The sun is visiting for the longest period of time all year, and it is the climax of the year for most civilians. From a photography perspective, that means you have to wait till about 10:00 pm for golden hour content.

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I have enjoyed living here and celebrating this special occasion. Mostly, because it is always a contradiction to what it should be. It should be sunny, warm, and absolute euphoria in the air. In reality, my memories oh Juhannus (Midsummer in Finnish) are anything but! Grey skies, chilled temperatures, and multiple layers of clothing tend to pass the day.

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Another story about Finnish Juhannus is the empty city streets. Everyone packs up around Thursday and by Friday evening the city is left with only unknowing tourists and younger people living by the dusk light and catching a glimpse of a local bonfire. Although I did not get to make my ultimate midsummer photo, these sunset streets sure kept things entertaining until midnight.

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 The final image was that last on my SD card. It was the last image I took, just before turning off my camera and soaking it all in. The midnight sun, the beginning of summer and the end of spring. It is bittersweet to think about the days getting shorter again, but we will leave that thought for a future post. Until then, hyvää juhannusta!

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xx – nasty trash

Post 25 of 52

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This week I was blessed with a couple visitors from out of town, so when I was pressured to provide the most Helsinki experience ever, my first thought was to share the beautiful space that is the Kaisaniemi Botanic Gardens.

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I became familiar with this space after reading about it in Helsinki People Make The City and felt the images shared were some of the most understated and iconic scenes from around town. For botanist enthusiasts or people just seeking a couple good Instagram posts, this space does not disappoint.

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All photos here were taken with my usual Canon set up, excluding the first image. My wonderful guest and step sister waved her wand and made the most stunning image to emulate my favorite cover photo of Kirsikka Simberg.

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There are not enough words to express the beauty and detail this space contains. I plan to spend many more afternoons wandering these glass rooms. It is my prediction that varying weather would only make the experience, and the images, more stunning and unique. Until next week,

xx – nasty trash

 

Post 23 of 52

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Today was the Helsinki Air Show. In fact, it still is. As I write this the sound of jet engines can be heard from outside my window. It is a unique spectacle and this show in particular attracted tens of thousands. To be honest, I haven’t seen a crowd this large in the two years I have lived in Finland.

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Although I have never had much interest in heavy machinery, it is hard not to stop and be in awe of these man-made marvels. Not to mention I love geeking out with my Canon around a bunch of mostly old men with massive set ups just trying to get some cool pictures.

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The combination of the airshow plus all the other vendors that came out, and just the massive crowds, made the Friday vibe perfection. This year is the 100th year of Finland’s independence, so the season is packed with tons of different events. This bit was just a taste of all the events in store for the weeks ahead.

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Kippis Suomen kesälle!

(Cheers to the Finnish summer!)

xx – nasty trash