Life on a Roll

 

Wuhan University

Qiong Wang

Picture by June Wang

Wuhan University, founded in 1893, is regarded as one of the most beautiful university campuses in China. Set by the peaceful East Lake, surrounding the Luojia Mountain, the campus spreads over 900 acres in the city of Wuhan, China. The palatial buildings of the university, blending Chinese and Western styles, have witnessed over 100 years of Chinese contemporary history. Many extraordinary scholars studied, worked and fought there, leaving their individual marks on the walls and floors. Walking on the rooftop of the historical dormitory building, and looking at the golden sunset beneath the flying roof-edge, I can’t help but feel proud of the land where I had spent four years of my life.

Spring has finally arrived, and it’s that time of the year again. Even from across the hemisphere, I can just imagine the rumbustious scene of thousands of visitors pouring into the campus for the cherry blossom spectacular.

Life on a Roll

Pretty Old Carved Stones in France

Elodie Pauwels

https://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com

 

Don’t you like to observe the details of finely carved stones and try to feel the history behind it? Here are a few examples of those that I liked the most: the year of construction of a chimney in a modest house in a village in Corrèze, the shell-shaped motif on both sides of a door in a street of Beaune, and my favorite: a pretty young girl with braided hair on the tombstone of Philibert II, Duke of Savoy, in the Royal Monastery of Brou.

Life on a Roll

Qiong Wang

Las Ruinas y Las Piramides

This was my first visit to Mexico, and my first visit to the Yucatán peninsula, which must be a magical land. Despite a plan for every detail on the trip, things started to fall apart the moment I landed. However, all the adventures became so worthwhile when I finally saw the ancient Mayan civilization. Here is a peek at the great Chichén Itzá, the breezy Tulum ruins, and the magnificent Governor’s Palace at Uxmal.

Governor’s Palace at Uxmal, By Qiong Wang

Chichén Itzá, by Qiong Wang

Ruins at Tulum, by Qiong Wang

Winter’s Beauty

Elodie Pauwels

https://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com

Winter has come!

Winter is probably the best time of the year to take black and white pictures, especially when the sky is cloudy. Frost on a window in the utility room, frozen leaves in the garden or on the path of the north-facing slopes, and foggy fields are just a few examples of winter’s beauty. Enjoy it, until spring springs!



Pictures by Elodie Pauwels

Life on a Roll

Shaoxing—the Venice in the East

Qiong Wang

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All photos by Qiong Wang

During my recent trip to China, Shaoxing was a pleasant surprise. The city sits nicely over a complex water canal system, woven together by stone bridges. Until today, local residents inside the old town often used canal water for their daily life activities. Just like Venice, man-powered gondolas are the only vehicles that could fit and roam in these narrow canals, mostly for tourist purposes. Shaoxing was the capital city of the Yue kingdom over 2,000 years ago. Many important historic scholars and important figures were born there or had resided there, which left an incredibly rich cultural heritage in and around the city. Shaoxing is also geographically convenient to get to, only one hour train ride from Shanghai and twenty minutes from Hangzhou.  Don’t miss it if you happen to be in the area.shaoxing-2shaoxing-3shaoxing-4

Life on a Roll

 

The Vendée Globe

Elodie Pauwels

https://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com

Photo by ELODIE PAUWELS

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Photo by ELODIE PAUWELS

Les Sables d’Olonne is a French town located by the Atlantic Ocean and is particularly known for being the start and finish points of the “Vendée Globe.” This is a non-stop round the world single-handed boat race, which takes place every four years. François Gabart won the last race in 2012-2013, as immortalized by a plaque on the seafront.

Early November, about 25 skippers will travel along the channel from the large marina called Port Olona, crowded for the occasion, and then between both lighthouses towards the vastness of the ocean. The lucky ones completing the circumnavigation are expected to come back anytime from late January/early February 2017. Can’t you feel the call of the sea?

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Photo by ELODIE PAUWELS

Life on a Roll

Qiong Wang

One amazing thing about New York City is that it is never the same experience whenever you step out onto the streets. You will always witness different details, even if you are walking on the same street, at a different time of the day, on different days of the week, and in different seasons of the year, such as brand-new street arts that appeared overnight, new décor from fashion store windows or random moments of a New Yorker that fit beautifully into the city backdrop. It is like you are going on a date with a different city at different times. Here are just a few examples of these city moments on a roll.

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Life on a Roll

Magic over St Lawrence river

Elodie Pauwels

Summer rhymes with sunny weather and long days. It also rhymes with vacations and no tight agenda. No matter if you are an early bird or a night owl, you might admire a magnificent sunrise such as this one in Sainte-Anne-des-Monts. Many of you have already been struck by the warm colors of a sunset, here over Montreal.

All Photos by Elodie Pauwels https://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com/

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Life on a Roll

Qiong Wang

“My first visit to Venice was around this time last year. It brought back so many good memories just to browse through the photos. The city is one of a kind. Even though I had heard and read a decent amount about it before my visit, I still felt embarrassed for being so ignorant about the depth and richness of its art and history. I wish I knew the story of every bridge in Venice; I wish I had more knowledge about the work and life of Titian so that I could have an enhanced spiritual exchange with the talented artist in the Frari church. I wish I knew more about the Venetian Republic so that I could envision the prosperity of the medieval powerhouse as the motor sound of vaporettos synthesized into the sound of waves in the grand canal. However, I was not so impressed by the vibrant Burano island although it is a cute spot for photography. Spero di visitare di nuovo! ”

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All Photos by QIONG WANG

 

Life on a Roll

Musical Fountains Show in Versailles

By Elodie Pauwels

ElodiePauwels_Apollo_fountain1Imagine the magnificent Palace of Versailles under a clear blue sky. Imagine spring has just sprung. Imagine strolling in that environment, going from one statue to a pond, then turning left to discover a mysterious alley. Suddenly, as if by magic, classic music is played, and water is turned on at each fountain in the vicinity of the Palace. Welcome to the musical fountains show, every weekend afternoon from Spring to Fall! Here is my favorite: the Apollo fountain, representing Apollo on his chariot. More pictures are available on my photo blog: http://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com/ElodiePauwels_Apollo_fountain2

Life on a Roll

By Qiong Wang

Rome is a living open museum. Every road leads there. It is impossible to tell stories about an ancient city like Rome. You just don’t know where to start. The squares, the fountains, the statues, the cathedrals, the ruins and the monuments… It is “La Grande Bellezza”, the great beauty. Rome wasn’t built in one day; neither is the visit to Rome. I tried to capture its beauty from the perspective of the locals using my camera. One picture doesn’t do it justice at all.FullSizeRender

 

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Life on a Roll

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By Elodie Pauwels

It is that time of the year when mountains are covered with snow. I took a few days off to forget all about the urban and stressful lifestyle. Walking for hours in such black & white scenery, with my steps and the distant echo of a bell or the barking of a dog as the only sound, is such a simple and relaxing joy.

 

Life on a Roll

By Qiong Wang

China2The winter of Beijing’s old town is magnetic, both day and night, especially during the lunar new year season. Walking in the hutongs (narrow alleys), every brick and stone has an engaging story to tell. The depth and richness of its culture and history is more than I could ever comprehend even as a native. During my short stay in Beijing this winter, I didn’t have to plan anything. I would set out for a culture treasure hunt every day to any random spot on the map, and found myself in serendipity and vast pride of my own culture. Looking at the festivus lunar new year temple fair vs the solemn Tiananmen square, the old style tea-house vs the modern dome-shaped national opera theater and that back-to-childhood lake-skating, I realized that Beijing is Beijing, like no other.

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Life on a Roll

By Elodie Pauwels

ElodiePauwels_Annecy by night ElodiePauwels_castle and dark sky Elodie 3Annecy is a very charming city in the French Alps, a few miles from Geneva, Switzerland. Annecy has given its name to a lake surrounded by smaller cities such as Talloires, Menthon-Saint-Bernard or Veyrier-du-Lac.

The Palais de l’Isle, built in the 12th century and lying in the middle of the Thiou River, is one of the most photographed monuments in France. The castle in the second picture, whose first buildings were also erected in the 12th century, overlooks the medieval city. Two parks are on the edge of the lake, the Gardens of Europe and the Pâquier, separated by the Vassé Canal on which the Love Bridge has been built.

As a kid, I used to stop by Annecy on my way to another resort, and I happily rediscovered the city a few months ago. This is to me a perfect place for vacations as there are several leisure possibilities, with many hiking trails, a few beaches on the lake, and of course a quiet cruise is an easy way to have a global overview of the area.

Life on a Roll

By QIONG WANG

The Diocletian’s palace is a truly amazing heritage site from the Roman Empire. It is located in Split, an important Mediterranean harbor city in Croatia. I was completely in awe, standing at the center square of the palace, feeling like a dwarf looking up at the magnificent palace pillars. The Gregory of Nin statue at the north gate carries an admirable and amiable charisma, and whose big toe through years of touching by visitors (for good luck), has become discolored and shiny, like bronze.life on a roll 1

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Life on a Roll

By Elodie Pauwels

http://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com

The building of the Louis Vuitton Foundation, in Paris, France, was designed by Frank Gehry (who also designed the IAC building and 8 Spruce Street in Manhattan). This boat made of glass was inaugurated in 2014. The building itself is worth a visit as its 12 huge panels of glass, sails of a peculiar sailboat, will make you dream of vastness compared to your tiny person. And if you ever come back to reality, go visit the contemporary art museum located inside!

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Life on a Roll

A Taste of Zagreb

By QIONG WANG

Zagreb Central Station

Zagreb Central Station

I cut through Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, a rather low-key European capital city. I did not know what to expect prior to arrival. I only got to spend a couple hours near the city’s central railway station. Across from it stood a palace-like building with an open plaza filled with pigeons. It was drizzling, windy and cloudy, not much color to see, except for the butter-like color used on many historic buildings. Somehow, this miserable gloomy weather casted perfectly an aura of solemnity, glory and hardships upon the surroundings, leaving a tone of melancholy floating in the damp air. There, I could savor a sense of age, power and past brilliance even without much knowledge of what it really was, probably an influence of the former Russian empire. I would really like to freeze everything I saw just the way it was at that moment, I thought to myself as I left.

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Life on a Roll

Roll 1psBy Elodie Pauwels

The pink granite coast is located in the North coast of Brittany, in the area of Perros-Guirec, France. This magnificent jewel stretches on only a few kilometers long, and is a bicolor beauty. The pink torn rocks contrast with the blue of the sky and the turquoise blue of the sea. And if you come early in the season, yellow Brooms add to the explosion of colors.

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Life on a Roll

By Elodie Pauwels

http://elodiepphoto.wordpress.com

Spring has arrived early in France this year. I was lucky to spend a few days outdoors with my camera to (re)discover three parks in the suburbs of Paris. While the Parc de Saint-Cloud allows the walker to enjoy a stunning view of Paris, quiet or crowded plots alternate in the Bois de Vincennes. Port-aux-Cerises is a huge recreational area where I however spotted some old photogenic rowing boats.

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