travel

A Week in Portugal

I had the pleasure of spending Easter in Portugal this year, hosted by my Portugese friend Claudia and her family in the Catholic pilgrimage town of Fátima, about an hour north of Lisbon. We spent Easter Sunday at her Grandparent’s, a modest farmhouse in the tiny village of Cercal.

Whilst the family prepared a feast for lunch with fresh produce from the garden, I spent the morning exploring with my Canon AE-1 and some rolls of Agfa Vista 400 in the spring sunshine, playing with lambs and chickens, exploring the old farm buildings and corn storage, and picking the sweetest oranges I’ve ever tasted from the bountiful trees.

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After lunch, the deck of cards came out and I learned to play the family favorite, which is fairly tricky when the suits and values are in Portugese and you’re not sure what everyone is yelling about. Later, her cousins and I drove around the neighbourhood looking for Claudia’s dog Putchie who had run away to his girlfriend’s house, took a walk down to her grandparent’s pine forest to check out the natural spring and well, and visited Castelo de Ourém high up in the hills overlooking the countryside.

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After three days in rural Portugal I headed south to Lisbon for a solo city break. Staying in a hostel in central Baixa, I was perfectly positioned to explore the city on foot, making my way up and around Alfama to the Castelo de Sao Jorge and all the viewpoints by day, and wandering through Barrio Alto by night, getting hooked on traditional Fado music and dining in back alley restaurants.

Other highlights were trips to Sintra and the Palácio da Pena, a tram ride to historic Belém to taste the original pastéis de nata, and picking up a good amount of Portugese and confidently speaking to locals. I’d love to go back and visit Porto next!

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Print Store Launch & Life Update

Launching a print store whilst unexpectedly migrating across the world has been a hectic experience to say the least.

NEW: Fine-Art Print Store -  www.ellenrichardson.bigcartel.com

NEW: Fine-Art Print Store - www.ellenrichardson.bigcartel.com

Leaving Australia

You may or may not know that I've been living down under in New Zealand & Australia for the past three years. Unfortunately my visa was up in March, which meant I had to find a new place to call home.

I vaguely planned to travel South East Asia for the next six months, heading north through Indonesia and Malaysia and into Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos, hopefully taking wonderful photographs and basking in island life.

To help fund this trip, I decided to launch an online print store to sell a small selection of pieces as beautiful fine-art prints, something I feel is becoming less and less appreciated as we consume all of our media on a screen.

I spent weeks researching drop-shipping services so that I could efficiently ship orders to customers without having to physically visit a lab which would be impossible whilst travelling. Once I'd narrowed in on a suitable service and started designing the store front, it was time to pack up my life again and head to new shores.

A stressful couple of months trying to organise my life, get my to-do list to a minimum and also actually enjoy the Australian summer meant I hadn't really put any time into my SE Asia planning; I knew which direction I wanted to travel and I had a one-way flight and accommodation booked in Bali, but that was it. It turns out you should probably put a little more thought into these things because when I tried to check-in for my flight, they told me I needed a flight booked out of Indonesia as well for visa reasons, and I ended up missing my flight!

That's all very easy to write down in a paragraph, but this was one of the most challenging and draining months of my life. So many things were going wrong instead of right, and being stuck at the airport with my life in a backpack and not being allowed on my flight really took it out of me. So, in a complete frenzy, I booked the next flight to London, spent 16 hours waiting in the airport contemplating what I'd done, and then sat on two planes for 24 hours across the planet. 

Giclée prints are available in 4"x6", 8"x12", 10"x15"

Giclée prints are available in 4"x6", 8"x12", 10"x15"

Back In Blighty

I arrived back to a cold, grey England at the beginning of April and I'm still trying to adjust to my unexpected migration. I decided to move to Brighton which was absolutely the right choice, and I really can't complain about life here; I'm living with three talented female artists in Hove, working four days a week at a great coffee shop and I'm surrounded by a thriving art scene, bustling beaches, and Summer so far has been fantastic.

This energising city has enabled me to locate top print lab Spectrum Photographic who will be Giclée-printing all of my works on Hahnemühle Fine-Art paper which look incredible on the wall, as well as launch the online store front to browse and purchase prints. The selection is currently limited to a few photographs whilst I send more film negatives away to be drum-scanned, but will be expanding very soon. 

Print Giveaway

To celebrate the launch of my print store and mailing list I was so excited to host my first print giveaway! Congratulations to Holly and Natalie for each winning an 8" x 12" print of "When Will I See You Again"! 
(Watch the draw here.)

Don't worry if you missed out; you can still get your hands on a beautiful print over at www.ellenrichardson.bigcartel.com

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It feels great to get all that off my chest - thanks for being here! If you want to to stay up-to-date with important news and offers, you can subscribe to my new mailing list at the bottom of my contact page. I'd really love to hear your thoughts in the comments below too, or any images you'd like to see available as a print!

 

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Australian Road Trip

Back in October, Mark & I left Melbourne to embark on a 5-week road trip around Australia in Stanley the Mitsubishi Verada. This was one hell of a journey; we covered massive distances across 5 states, visited some ridiculously beautiful beaches and magical sites, and best of all Stanley didn't break down on us once.

The road took us from Melbourne up through Alice Springs to Kakadu National Park, across the Northern Territory to Broome, down the coast of Western Australia and back across the Nullarbor Plain to Melbourne - 14,000km in 5 weeks and hitting temperatures of 45ºC.

Highlights have to be taking a dip in natural swimming holes and pristine oceans, befriending wild kangaroos on the beach, and sleeping amongst the gum trees under the stars every night. I took waaay too many photos on both 35mm and 120 film which you can find on my Travel Portfolio and Australian Road Trip series respectively, or head over to my Instagram for every photo and video!

Here's a small selection of favourites, I hope you'll enjoy the journey.

Australian Road Trip Photos: 35mm & 120 Film