Saturday, November 30, 2013

Great Barrier Reef

"In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous"

I had an the opportunity to travel to Cairns, Australia with Miles and Kendall, who is from St. Norbert College. Our weekend consisted of white water rafting, celebrating Kendall's birthday, and seeing the Great Barrier Reef! 

We began the weekend by waking up rather early and drove up the mountains to the Tully River. Here we ventured down a level four river (the largest level is a six). We jumped off rocks and trees, flipped several times, and floated down the river. I think this is the most adrenaline pumping experience I have had thus far in life! We ended the day with an early birthday celebration at 'The Jack' awesome bar/restaurant which had live music. We then hit the hay for our next day.

The next day we travelled down to the Marina and hopped onto a boat which took us out to the Great Barrier Reef!! Here we snorkelled and scuba was my first time ever scuba diving! At first it was terrifying having to breath normally under the water, but eventually I got the hang of it. I guess I was the lucky one because I never had to equalize my ears...go me! We ventured about three stories down into the reef as a little group. The reef truly was breathtaking! Despite the fading colors due to pollution and global warming, I can see why the Great Barrier Reef is one of the seven natural wonders of the world. I would have never imagined in my life that I would have been able to experience what I did. 

In addition to my journey to Cairns, I also surfed for the first time at Broadbeach. It is rather hard to get the hang of, but it was really fun! I was definitely exhausted and sore the next day...I have no idea how professional surfers do it! 

Since then, I have been finishing end of the semester assignments and projects, and attended the end of sem Res Dinner. The res dinner was fun as the residence building I live in won the sports award for Res Wars (a weekly sporting competition between all of the residence facilities on campus). This dinner also counted as out 'Thanksgiving Meal' in Australia!

(Winners of the Sport Award for Res Wars)

Today I finished my photography portfolio! This week is the designated study break which will be filled with some studying for my three finals, but also some souvenir shopping and some beach time before I go home. 

 (Had a little fun while doing the studio session for my photography portfolio)

Before I know it, in a short 14 days I'll be home in cold 'ol Wisconsin once again!


:-: Katie :-:

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Study, Study

"It always seems impossible until its done"
                                                     -Nelson Mandela

Due to having two large papers due for my psychology classes, I haven't been able to travel much. Within the past two weeks I spent a total of 30 hours working on these two papers. I am extremely happy I'm done with these papers as they were are the hardest ones I have ever had to do thus far in my college career.

I did submit my first photography portfolio! Despite the technicality associated with the camera and terminology, I really do enjoy this class. My next portfolio has to display an ongoing theme throughout the photographs. I'm thinking about focusing on landscapes, however, I'm still working with some other ideas. Instead of having my lecture, tutorial, and lab for photography the past two weeks, we were split into small groups and were able to get some studio time. We were able to experiment with portraits and light painting. Here are the photos taken during those sessions!

The photo I took of Miles (A true Abercrombie model)

Light painting (Miles did mine and I did his)

This past week I did take a break to celebrate my friend Thomas' birthday (he's from the Netherlands)! We had a small get together and had an amazing BBQ cooked by my friend Jonathan.  The present I gave him was a nice handmade card...from notebook paper. He really did like it though...he said it was so original. It was nice to take a break from the constant studying to spend some time relaxing with friends. 

I also received a little care package from my mom filled with a little taste of America! I requested both the candy corn and Reese's. One, because Australia doesn't have candy corn and two, a big bag of Reese's which normally costs $4 in the States would cost me $11...thanks for a taste of home mom :)

Some of the Australian lingo I've heard:

brekky - breakfast
sem - semester
uni - university
tutes - tutorials
mate - friend
toilet - bathroom
cheers - thanks
lollies - suckers
maccas - McDonalds
chips - fries
crisps - chips
rubbish - garbage
how going? - how are you doing?
jumper - hoodie/sweatshirt
thongs - flip-flops
note - dollar
pre-drink - pre-game
zed - the letter "z"
power point - outlet   

Random things:
  • No I haven't seen a wild kangaroo, but I have seen two wild Wallabies
  • The toilet flushes in the opposite direction as it would in the US
  • I have gotten used to driving and walking on the left's going to be difficult when I go back home to change back to the right side
  • Since Australians don't celebrate Thanksgiving, they go right into Christmas...there are Christmas decorations EVERYWHERE!! This makes me super happy :)
  • Australia is smart and doesn't have a penny so everything is rounded up or down...most of the time in your favour
  • Certain  words are spelled differently...colour, favour, behaviour, realise, is really difficult when writing papers with these words
  • The birds here are in the phase of having baby birds...this makes for sleeping in impossible 
  • AND yes, I have started a countdown (37 days) to go back to the's hard to admit it, but I'm starting to miss my family and friends...HOWEVER, I also made the countdown because Christmas is ten days after I get back in the US (47 days!!!).

Here are the pictures I used for my photography portfolio...

Accentuating Movement

Freezing Movement

 Black on Black

White on White

Shallow Depth of Field

Wide Depth of Field

Portrait Using Ambient Light with the Window in the Photograph
(My Friend Maarit)

Outside Portrait
(My friend Thomas)

Inside Portrait Using Ambient Light
(My friend Jona)



:-: Katie :-: