An Incredible Street Art Tour of Shoreditch, London

A Street Art Tour of Shoreditch

At the weekend I experienced a street art tour of Shoreditch with Tiffany, the creator of A Girl and Her Passport in London.

She was back in the UK for a little while, and it was the perfect opportunity to catch up as it’s been over a year since she was last here. I  still find it amazing that I get these sorts of opportunities – we connected via the blogging community a few years ago – and she is someone I would never have met otherwise as at the time she lived in Qatar and is from Texas.

She booked the tour through an Airbnb experience and it was something I had been really looking forward to – I’ve seen some of the street art in the Shoreditch area before when The Bloke and I had an inexpensive trip down to London – but I was really interested to find out a little more about the artists and see some of the things I had missed.  Continue reading

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The One That Got Away…

The one that got away

In 2010 I was lucky enough to supervise a trip to America. With 58 students and 7 other staff, we visited three cities – New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. and as we were only there for a week our itinerary was jam packed with as many sightseeing opportunities as we could possibly could manage. (We actually ended up being stranded in D.C. for an extra week after the volcanic explosion in Iceland grounded all flights, but that’s another story).

In New York, we went to the Museum of Modern Art, which I was really excited about. During our visit we saw that there was a retrospective taking place, during which Marina Abramović, a Serbian artist performed a thought-provoking piece named ‘The Artist is Present.’ Sitting in silence, she invited viewers to sit directly opposite her at a table. Anyone and everyone could participate, but nothing would be said if they chose to do so. Intruiged, some of our students joined in and sat down for a few minutes. I noticed that after each person left the table she would close her eyes until the next sat down.

A few weeks ago, a story about the performance appeared on Facebook, and I instantly clicked on the video because of the memories I had of it. What I saw moved me very deeply… Continue reading

My Ultimate Bucket List

I posted my original Bucket List a few months ago, and then reblogged it the other day. However, when I re-examined it I realised that, in fact, it was actually quite lame. I’m normally quite proud of what I post, but I felt that I hadn’t done it justice, so I’ve decided to do another one and spend a little more time on it. The resulting list is a combination of the list I set myself ten years ago and further goals that I have set myself.

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Life 

1. Get married.
2. Have a child.
3. Work part time (I start this in September).
4. Even if it’s just once, I’d like to get down to my ideal weight and wear a dress from Karen Millen.
5. Learn sign language fluently.
6. Learn to drive (I’m 31, it’s about time I did!)
7. Make some money through blogging, however small.
8. Take a photography course.
9. Accept the past, come to terms with it and move on (although if an opportunity presents itself to tell her what you think of her, take it).
10. Volunteer at an animal sanctuary.
11. Complete the London Marathon.
12. Complete the Birmingham half-marathon.
13. Find a pen-pal.
14. Volunteer at a hospice.
15. See dolphins swimming in the wild.
16. Go to a PostSecret seminar.
17. Ride a Segway.
18. Spend a day with animals at the zoo.
19. Donate money regularly to charity.
20. Play on stage at the Albert Halls. (Achieved 2000)
21. Get highlights.
22. Buy a house.
23. Spend the weekend at a spa and have lots of treatments.
24. Learn to speak French fluently.
25. Sleep in a castle.
26. Get a manicure.
28. Take a boat ride down the Seine, Paris  (Achieved 2010) 

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Artwork, Artefacts and Objects 

30. Alexandros of Antioch: Venus de Milo – Louvre, Paris  (Achieved 2010)
31. Gheeraerts the Younger – Queen Elizabeth I, National Portrait Gallery, London (Achieved 2013)
32. Da Vinci: Mona Lisa – Louvre (Achieved 2010)
33. Vermeer: Woman Holding a Balance – National Gallery, Washington. (Achieved 2010)
34. Hogarth: Shortly After the Marriage – National Gallery, London (Achieved 2012)
35. Van Gogh: Flowers – National Gallery, London (Achieved 2012)
36. Van Gogh: Wheat Field with Crows, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Achieved 2010)
37. Picasso: Les Demoiselles d’Avignon – MOMA (Achieved 2010)
38. Matisse: Dance 1 – MOMA (Achieved 2010)
39. Pollock: One:Number 31 – MOMA (Achieved 2010)
40. Da Vinci: The Last Supper – Milan
41. Van Eyck: Portrait of Giovanni and His Wife – National Gallery, London
42. Van Eyck: Man in a Red Turban – National Gallery, London
43. Whistler: Arrangement in Grey and Black: The Artist’s Mother – Musee d’Orsay, Paris
44. Degas: L’Absinthe –  Musee d’Orsay, Paris
45. Renoir: Luncheon of the Boating Party – Phillips Collection, Washington
46. Manet: A Bar at the Folies – Bergere – Courtauld Institute of Art Gallery, London.
47. Seurat: A Sunday on La Grande Jatte 1884 – Art Institute of Chicago.
48. Degas: The Tub –   Musee d’Orsay, Paris
49. Munch: The Scream – National Gallery, Oslo
50. Klimt: The Kiss – Österreichische Galerie, Vienna.
51. Kandinsky: Composition VIII, Guggenheim, New York.
52. Hopper: House by the Railroad – MOMA, New York
53. Hopper: Nighthawks – Art Institute of Chicago
54. Wood: American Gothic – Art Institute of Chicago
55. Picasso: Guernica – Madrid
56. Wyeth: Christina’s World – MOMA
57. Antennae from Twin Towers, Newseum, Washington (Achieved 2010)
58. Berlin Wall, Newseum, Washington  (Achieved 2010)
Bayeux Tapestry (Achieved 2006) 
59. Greyfriers Bobby  (Achieved 2013) 

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Travel 

62. Philadelphia. (Achieved 2010)
63. Washington D.C. (Achieved 2010)
64. Amsterdam. (Achieved 2010)
65. Naples. (Achieved 2012)
66. Pompeii. (Achieved 2012)
68. Ben Nevis.
69. Gamble in a casino in Las Vegas.
70. Vancouver.
71. Rome.
72. Tokyo.
73. San Francisco.
74. Barcelona.
75. Prague.
76. Auschwitz.
77. Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
78. Florence.
79. Los Angeles.
80. Yosemite National Park.
81. Mount St. Helens.
82. Niagara Falls.
83. Bora Bora.
84. Travel on Route 66.
85. Machu Pichu, Peru.
86. Hawaii.
87. Barbados.
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Buildings, Monuments and Landscapes 

88. Empire State Building (Achieved 2010)
89. Statue of Liberty (Achieved 2010)
90. Times Square (Achieved 2010)
91. Ground Zero  (Achieved 2010)
92. Strawberry Fields (Achieved 2010)
93. Central Park (Achieved 2010)
94. Coney Island  (Achieved 2010)
95. Lincoln Memorial (Achieved 2010)
96. Jefferson Memorial (Achieved 2010)
97. Korean War Memorial (Achieved 2010)
98. Arlington Cemetery (Achieved 2010)
99. Philadelphia Museum of Art steps (Achieved 2010)
100. Eiffel Tower (Achieved 2010)
Sacre Coeur (Achieved 2010)
101. Notre Dame Cathedral (Achieved 2010)
102. Pont L’Archeveche  (Achieved 2010)
103. Trocadero, Paris  (Achieved 2010)
104. Arc de Triomphe (Achieved 2010)
105. Pere Lachaise Cemetery  (Achieved 2010)
106. Montmartre Cemetery  (Achieved 2010)
107. American War Cemetery, Normandy (Achieved 2006)
108. Disneyland, Paris (Achieved 1999)
109. Anne Frank Annex (Achieved 2010)
110. Edinburgh Castle (Achieved 2013)
111. Edinburgh Zoo  (Achieved 2013)
112. Trafalgar Square  (Achieved 2010)
113. Houses of Parliament  (Achieved 2010)
114. Westminster Abbey. (Achieved 2009)
115. St Marks Square, Venice  (Achieved 1992).
116. Tower Bridge
117. Harry Potter Studios
118. London Zoo.
119. St. Paul’s Cathedral
120. Tower of London
121. Neuschwanstein Castle.
122. Graceland.
123. Grand Canyon.
124. Hoover Dam.
125. Uluru.
126. Sydney Opera House.
127. Walk of Fame, Hollywood.
128. Rodeo Drive.
129. Go to Burning Man.
130. Petra, Jordan.
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Places Of Rest (slightly macabre I know)
140. Voltaire  (Achieved 2010)
141. Marie Curie  (Achieved 2010)
142. Pierre Curie  (Achieved 2010)
143. Chopin  (Achieved 2010)
144. John F. Kennedy  (Achieved 2010)
145. Jackie Kennedy Onassis  (Achieved 2010)
146. Bruce Lee.
147. Jimi Hendrix.
148. Frank Sinatra.
149. Elvis Presley.
150. Sid James.
151. Kenneth Williams.
152. Jacqueline Du Pre.
153. Audrey Hepburn.
154. James Dean.
155. Charlie Chaplin.
156. Shakespeare.
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Food
157. Eat at The Ivy in London.
158. Eat at Heston Blumenthal’s restaurant, ‘The Fat Duck.’
159. Cook a three course dinner party for my friends.
160. Learn how to bake cakes properly, without them collapsing or burning.
Books, Films and Shows
161. The Mouse Trap (Achieved 2013)
162. We Will Rock You (Achieved 2009)
163. Rocky Horror Show (Achieved 2010)
164. Grease (Achieved 2000)
165. Chicago (Achieved 2006)
166. Footloose (Achieved 2006)
167. Fame (Achieved 2006)  
168. Watch the entire Harry Potter films consecutively.
169. Watch the entire Lord Of The Rings films consecutively. (Achieved 2011)
170. Read ‘House Of Pi’.
171. Read ‘The Tenderness Of Wolves’.
172. Read the entire Lord Of The Rings Trilogy. I’ve attempted it three times and never got past the first ten pages.
173. Watch Back To The Future without falling asleep.
All photographs are my own and fully copyrighted, as is the article.
I’d also like to include this one, from ‘My Tropical Home.’ I found it really interesting!
Hope you enjoy – it’s taken me a while!