“Happiness isn’t hiding somewhere in some fantasy land” – Pharrell Williams’ creative director, Mimi Valdez Photo: Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard. f13 1/90s, f=63mm, Leica SL & Leica Vario 24-90 SL lens
Pico Iyer is a philosopher who looks at the world from the lens of a travel writer. His books have a certain poetic quality to them. And I have been inspired by his work to travel to distant places. His latest book is not about going somewhere. Instead it is about the journey within. The Art of Stillness is one of his shortest books — you can read it in less than an hour. It is ironic that I read this on a plane, going somewhere. The book is simple, devoid of pretense or pretentious prose. It makes you aware of the virtues of being still, going nowhere. Starting a few minutes a day, we can take this journey within. It is a way healthier addiction than that Xanax. Or as Pico Iyer says
In an age of speed, I began to think, nothing could be more invigorating than going Continue reading "The Art of Stillness: Adventures in going nowhere"
After a long week, I am on a plane again. Perhaps like monk Matthieu Ricard, “For me a flight is just a brief retreat in the sky.” Or at least that is the justification I make to myself for constantly flying from one place to another. I am leaving behind a curious weekend — one that took me back into time. Normally, I don’t look back; I usually find myself focusing on what’s ahead by worrying less about what could have been. But I listen to Nitin Sawhney, I lose sense of the control I have on my approach to life. He makes me contemplative, melancholic and at times wistful for a life that I know I don’t want or need. I realize that’s what music is supposed to do — make you feel special things you don’t necessarily desire to experience and deal with feelings that one has
Continue reading "A curious weekend"
Things have been silent around here! I went on a n expedition to the Arctic North, accompanied by my trusted Leica SL. I took off the watch, deleted all apps from my phone, turned off the network and got off the grid. All I wanted was ice, snow and the Arctic cold — to cleanse my mind of the ugliness that has enveloped the modern society and instead focus on the gifts of the heavens. It was a meditative experiences I am re-entering life, and you will hear a lot about the experience, places and things. Looking forward to sharing it with you. May 31, 2017, San Francisco Photo by Chris Michel.
I have the honor of taking over Leica USA’s Instagram account for two days — today and tomorrow. They are sharing photos made by me on recent trips to Iceland, Japan and the Pacific Northwest. Most of these are made with the y trusted Leica SL and Lecia M-Monochrome M246. As someone who has been trying to make sense of this hobby, it is great to to get this shot in the arm from a company whose products are my preferred tools. Thanks Leica USA!
If you are tired of the negative narrative around Silicon Valley ecosystem, then you might want to read this piece. It does what is missing in many of the news reports in technology — context and perspective. A lot of great things are happening in Silicon Valley — you just have to look.
The unique thing about Silicon Valley isn’t that it’s got overpriced status goods designed to separate rich people from their money. The unique thing about Silicon Valley is that it’s got anything else.