This has been quite a winter for this recent Phoenix transplant. Though I lived in Philly for 11 years prior to moving to AZ, it’s still an adjustment. For example, what shoes do you wear when it rains? Not really a problem in a place where it only rains maybe 5 times a year (seriously). So, even though I’m loving the snow and thrilled to be working from home, I’m navigating new wardrobe decisions and digging up long-buried driving skills. No complaints from me, though. After spending what feels like five years of one continuous summer, I’m just happy to no longer be sweating! Let it snow!
Have you heard of Movember? I hadn’t until earlier this year. It’s a movement of men who spend November growing mustaches to bring awareness to prostate cancer. It’ll be no surprise that my office is participating. We had a contest for our team name complete with mustache-themed prizes and I was able to score free hot foam, straight-razor shaves for the guys. The girls, not wanting to be left out of the fun, had a chance to show off their mustaches when I did a recent portrait photoshoot for our new and improved company website. Check them out, I think they are so much fun and full of amazing personality!
The Last of the Mustachicians – Mo Sistas:
A few weeks ago, my guy and I joined the local AZ MINI club on a rally to the Coolidge Airport for a “fly-in.” The local Lion’s club cooked breakfast and we walked around and checked out the planes. It was a great morning motoring with other MINI owners and a fascinating up-close look at the aviation hobby that seems to be so popular here in Phoenix.
Karyn and I added an extra day to our Alt Summit experience and planned a day in Park City, UT to attend the Sundance Film Festival. A few weeks before our trip, I bought tickets to a remake of Wuthering Heights in the ticket lottery, so we were all set to enjoy the festival experience.
On Sunday morning, we hopped into the rented Subaru and headed north. It snowed the night before, so the scenery was beautiful.
Snow-covered mountains, dry roads, and hardly any traffic. It was enough to make me giddy with excitement.
As we were parking just off of Main Street, we spotted Paul Giamatti walking along the road. First celebrity sighting and we weren’t even out of the car yet? This was gonna be good.
We decided to find the main box office to pick up our tickets first. Our film was set to start at 3pm and it was getting close to noon. The line at the box office moved pretty quickly, but I was disappointed when I discovered that our film was moved from a Park City theater to one in Ogden, about 2 hours away from Park City. There was no way we’d make it AND we had just arrived to Park City.
The friendly ticket agent happily exchanged my tickets for a film showing later in the evening back in Salt Lake City (literally around the corner from our hotel) called Hello I Must Be Going. With that sorted, we had the whole day in front of us. It was actually way better that we didn’t have a movie right in the middle of the day. We decided to do some exploring and have some lunch.
On our way to lunch, we popped into a bookstore so that Karyn could pick up a book to read on her flight home. I was up front checking out the journals (Hello, I have a paper addiction!) and behind me I could hear her hissing my name. I walked back to see what the commotion was and, hey look! It’s Paul Giamatti!
As we made our way to a little French bistro for lunch, we spotted Jon Heder from Napoleon Dynamite chatting with a friend, John Krasinski being interviewed on a balcony above Main Street, and Olympian Shaun White taking pictures with fans.
The energy and excitement was palpable and you never knew who you might run into.
After lunch we walked down Main Street doing a little window shopping and browsing the boutiques. Karyn was keen on making some contacts to see if anyone wanted to carry her jewelry and I was keen on more celebrity sightings.
We found the Sundance Channel Headquarters and were presented with a pass to get in.
They had a bar and a coffee shop with a lounge where you could sit and watch the live interviews happening in the studio right next door.
Or you could be lucky like us and have Univision conduct an interview right next to you on the sofa. Fun!
Not long after, I heard a very familiar voice say, “What’s Up!” As I turned towards the entrance, Ice-T was being whisked to the studio to be interviewed about his directorial debut at Sundance.
We watched some of his interview before it was time to make our way back to SLC for our film.
We made it to the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center, tickets in hand, and waited in line to enter the theater.
The holding area was packed with people, but we only had to wait about fifteen minutes before the doors were opened and we were allowed into the theater.
Once everyone was seated and right before the lights went down, the theater director announced that the film director and screenwriter would hold a Q&A session. I was super-psyched!
The film was adorable and quirky. Set in Connecticut, the story follows a happily married thirtysomething woman who is dumped by her husband. She moves home to sort out her life while dodging the advice of her family. At a dinner her parents host for her father’s client, she meets the client’s son and they strike up an unlikely retationship. Hilarity ensues. The audience really loved it. There was a lot of laughter at all the right moments.
After the credits rolled, the director, screenwriters, producer and two of the main actors came on stage and answered questions asked by the audience. It was a cool experience to hear why the writer added a specific scene or why the director chose the music for the soundtrack. It was really fascinating!
As we exited, we were encouraged to cast our ballot for the Audience Award. We voted by tearing the corner that best represented our opinion. Though the film didn’t win any festival awards, I hope it gets picked up by a distributor so more people can enjoy it.
The festival was a great experience and something that I would like to do again. In Park City, there were events happening all day and well into the evening. Talks, screenings, seminars and parties, there was always something happening. I would love to go back and spend a few days in Park City really soaking in the whole festival experience… maybe if I go to Alt Summit again next year I can add a few extra days to the trip now that I know what to expect.
Saturday at Alt was a really cool day. There were so many things to do. From a photowalk, to a foodie tour, to a thriftshop tour or a trip to the ski slopes in Park City, you could choose a sightseeing adventure or take a day filled with hands-on classes. I chose to take three classes, Bookbinding, Printmaking and Food/Tabletop Photography.
The morning started with a bookbinding class with Alison of Igloo Letterpress. We made three different projects but my favorite was the actual bookbinding where we sewed paper signatures together with waxed linen thread.
The second class, Printmaking with Eva Jorgensen of Sycamore Street Press was really cool and really messy. I only have this one picture of Eva giving us instructions before it was gloves on and paint flowing.
In the afternoon, I was thrilled to take a food photography class with House of Brinson. William and Susan were super amazing. Susan spoke first about styling a shoot and using what you have as props.
Then William went through some of the more technical processes.
Before the light was completely gone, they set up four stations for us to practice on.
Here are some of the pictures that I took.
All the beautiful food inspired me to take more pictures at home after grocery shopping. I want to really expand my portfolio of food images this year. I think these few shots are a good start! I honestly think I learned more in that two hour session than I did in a year’s worth of photography school. Amazing what a little hands-on learning can do!
Just as the class was ending, it started to snow giant, wet flakes on the gorgeous courtyard. I stepped outside to take a few pictures, but the best one that I took was a quick snap with my iPhone through the window:
Classes ended around 5:30 and I headed back to the hotel to hang out with Karyn. We decided to stay in and chill in the room. We watched a few movies and relaxed since the next day was a big day in Park City for the Sundance Film Festival!
Also in this series:
Alt Design Summit: Day 1- Wednesday
Alt Design Summit: Day 2- Thursday
Alt Design Summit: Day 3- Friday