BCN / X-Pro3 / Classic Negative

X-Pro3 / XF35mmF1.4

Back in October I flew to Barcelona with my friend Gabriel for a 73 hrs layover, the idea was to let go of work a little bit, shoot image and skate a little bit.
I ended up skating a lot and shooting a little bit, which, was fine as it got me moving and remembered me how intense skating is on your body.

Now flying with your best friend has it’s perks but also gets you mean looks from the other passengers, but really, wouldn’t you do the same for your friend or wouldn’t you appreciate it if it was you? Anyways I digress. We land at the airport and I move along with the crew to the shuttle. The in-charge shows us footage from the day before at the airport… Crazy riots. I don’t know what to expect when we get out… We get outside and all we can see is police with AKs posted at doors, crazy stuff. We get into the shuttle and to the hotel, all is normal. Gab decided to take a nap until dinner time as he worked all night, I only have 73 hours here so I head out to re-discover Barcelona (I’ve already been but about 10 years ago)

Came back to the hotel around 5pm to get Gab, we then headed out for dinner.
We hop in a cab an head to this place Gab and Omar knew and really liked. Tapas, sounds great right? I thought so too. We get there, crazy line to get in, we sit at the ”bar” area to wait. Gab and Omar order drinks, I don’t drink so i’m good I’ll just wait. The guy behind the bar decides though that I want water, i’m like ”aight cool”. I then see a water bottle and right before I can say ”nooooo” I hear the seal break and in my mind i’m just like ”There goes 5 Euros…” and I was right. We order food and nothing seems really appealing to me… ordered shrimps and potatoes… tiny portions, high prices. that was disappointing but life goes on. Omar’s friend who’s originally from Montreal but moved to Barcelona was with us and at some point went out for a smoke.
When he came back he was like ”WTF the streets a burning and people are running in all directions” we were like really!? But just kept eating and chatting. We finally came outside the restaurant…

We didn’t expect this to be honest, we were all kind of nervous, in an other country in the middle of a riot it was definitely getting the adrenaline going.
We stayed on the sidewalk close by the restaurant’s door in case we would need to find shelter. After about 10 minutes we got a little bit more (maybe a little bit too much) confident and started walking towards the fire. I was mindful to not get inside the crowds as I didn’t was to be mistaken for a protester having a camera in hand. Walking through the streets you could see down the road all the fires at every street corners, it was quite impressive.

Now this is where you realize how the media amplify stuff, we were right in the middle of it and never I was scared for my life or witnessed any violence towards people, what we saw on the news were isolated cases. For sure police eventually had to push people and people might’ve gotten hurt but what I mean is that it wasn’t dangerous being there. Obviously don’t walk right into it if you don’t need to but to give you an idea people were eating on the terrasses while it was happening, drinking their wine as if nothing was going on. finding a cab to get back to the hotel was a bit of a challenge but we got out of the epicenter and we were able to find one and get back just fine.

The next day we headed out to skate and shoot a little bit. Skated down the beach was definitely a good feeling. Using google map was a pain, we spent the entire day looking for MACBA (famous skate spot in Barcelona). We went the wrong direction a couple times but that led us to discover cool places so it’s all good. Got to bring out my skateboarding skills and feel again how it hurts to skate haha.

On our last day we went out downtown for dinner, around 10:30pm they got a call saying we needed to go back to the hotel for 11pm as we got transferred to a different hotel for our safety and to increase our chance to get to the airport the next morning. At that point we didn’t even know if we were able to get to the airport to fly back home as a general strike was planned and the airport was targeted for a riot. we were kind of bummed that we needed to go back and cut the night short. We hopped in a cab and headed back hoping to make it in time as the streets were about to be blocked with garbage in fire like every night at 11pm. We ended up making it and transferred to a hotel in the suburbs.

We woke up around 9am and decided to go out an explore the surroundings as we didn’t have much time since the shuttle would pick us up at 11am.
We got to the hotel pretty late the night before so we didn’t really see what it looked like. as we go out to the balcony we witnessed an incredible view.
We had to get out. Go dressed and went out for a coffee and sandwich.
This place (Sitges) was beautiful and we kind of hoped our flight would get delayed to the next day.

11 am came and we got into the shuttle, got close to the airport and we could see thousands of people marching towards the airport… We finally got to the airport and everything was fine, the airport just seemed very… empty. Got to the door and… it opened ! I was kind of relieved as I needed to get back home for work but most importantly I was missing my love. Flew back home safely to a bumpish flight. The trip was short, filled with action and amazing.

Across The Globe.

Shot by Gabriel

For two years we (My girlfriend, Childhood friend Gabriel, his girlfriend and me) were supposed to go on a trip to Portugal. Gabriel works for Air Canada so we fly standby for really (I mean really really) cheap.
But flying stand by has it’s downside, you have to get on a flight that has empty seats and it could be challenging at time.
So a week before the leaving date, we look at the flights for Portugal.
All open to go but very tight for the return date. Gabriel and his girlfriend we working on the 22nd, 23rd so we had to come back to Montreal for that date.
We looked for other destination, Madrid was open, Berlin was trickier but was an option.
Then Gabriel said: ”Why don’t we go to Japan?”
For me the 13 hrs flight was a big turn off and in my head it would give us about 5 days so I was like… ”No”. So Madrid and Berlin was the choices and we were getting close to the departure date. We changed our money to euros.

Gabriel then came to my place the same day so we could look up everything and finalize our choice. We looked again at Tokyo and how many days we would get flying there.
We realized it would give us 7 days… That’s when my mind changed.
I was all hyped and it would only cost us 30$ more that Europe. So we settle for Tokyo. right after changing our money to euros!
I got to admit after Gabriel left I was thinking about the 13 hrs flight going and back and I was stressing. I love flying but being trapped for 13 hrs straight was bugging me.

The next day (Two days before departure) I had to do a round trip to Quebec city. I was thinking about the flight and realized I had a wedding to edit, that would keep me occupied for a few hours. Then on the way back I would edit my shots from the trip, I was hyped up and ready so I messaged Gabriel: ”Japan?”. he responded with:

”Yessir  13705243_10210543436881053_1470024574_n  13695743_10209582304931572_517604474_n ”

Then the same night we face time to finalize everything and he tells me he has a pass he will use that makes us pay what he pays and if there is seats we are automatically upgraded to first class… IT IS ON!


We got to Japan and it was so humid, hot and raining. We knew it was going to rain but we didn’t really care since it ain’t a ”sunny, beach” destination but let me tell you it was HEAVY especially after a 13 hrs flight but we were in Japan!
We took the subway from Haneda to Asakusa and our first cultural shock kicked in when the subway stopped at the first station… Complete silence… you could hear a fly passing by.


For the first night we stayed in Asakusa where our hostel was located. Walking around in the unnamed streets. An other shock hit us: The streets are so clean you could lick them.


Now this trip wasn’t a ”photography trip”, we were going on vacation to enjoy and visit not to take photos but I had to. So I was just snapping shots as we walked around trying to balance vacation/photos. I brought the X-Pro2 as my main camera and the X70 as a backup. After the first day I couldn’t stand my bag anymore so I went and bought a fanny pack to bring the X70 only with me. I ended up using the X70 for 90% of the trip.

Breakfest in Japan is different I guess… on the menu there was rice, beef and pork.
We also saw a meal that was kind of close to what we are used to with a sausage and egg but still rice and soup. I was fine with it. I love rice!


Finding your way around Tokyo is a real challenge. Gabriel and Lilla had they data plan so we thought we would use google map to find our way around but it seems that our data plan somehow didn’t like Japan because it kept turning around and it was a pain to use. We had to try to find by ourselves or ask.
Which brings me to an other shock: Japanese people are extremely nice.
We were looking for a Uniqlo (my new favorite store, we went to about 5 different ones in japan and brought unique stuff back :D) and the GPS wouldn’t get us there.
Annie then asked a random guy on the street, business dude going on the opposite direction. He tried to explain but his English wasn’t exactly on point plus the streets are so random it would’ve been hard even if he spoke perfect English. So he says ”Ok, follow me”. He then brought us about 5 blocks away to the store and just smiled, bowed as we said  thank you and left.

Tokyo is by far the safest place I’ve ever been to. I forgot things in stores / restaurants and people ran to give me back my stuff. Also an other interesting thing is that there a almost no cars in Tokyo. Everybody is walking, riding a bike or taking the subway.
The subway is an other amazing thing, it covers every possible places in Tokyo and has so many stations, it’s overwhelming at first. By the end of the trip we were starting to find our way around.

We visited the touristic attractions like the Tokyo tower, Skytree and Shibuya but also went to random places to walk around and shop. We also visited the Fujifilm Square in Roppongi which was awesome.

Shot by Gabriel

The trip was unplanned but amazing. Lots of great memories and goodies brought back.
I will leave you guys on my favorite images from the trip.