When I was twelve I went to America for the first time, and I was amazed. Through my young, fresh eyes everything looked different and was a novelty. I wasn’t sure if I’d return, so at the time I collected everything. Ticket stubs, sugar packets, flyers and hotel notepads were all keepers. It was before I had a phone or a digital device that could record my experiences, so these scraps were to be my souvenirs and my way of documenting the trip of a lifetime.
Fast forward to 2014, and we document every day of our lives, let alone just holidays, through digital means. So when it came to my trip to California last month, I decided to revisit the paper way of doing things by documenting my travels in a scrapbook. After three weeks on the road, 1000 miles covered and southern California checked off my bucket list, I was left with a tattered book full of scraps and a plethora of memories to accompany them.
I got this sketchbook from Magma. It was the perfect size to carry around on my travels and durable enough to be chucked around in bags. It had the important job of holding together three weeks of memories for a lifetime. You shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but this one made a good start.
Diners every day. This sugar-coated page reminds me of the many American breakfasts we had. French toast and pancakes, with never-ending coffee: "refill honey?". This particular breakfast was on a Sunday and the comic books were my entertainment as I filled up.
Live on the sweet side. So states Red Vines, my favourite sweet of the holiday. This page was after an inspirational day photographing and filming some amazing American skaters for a project. Lacey Baker, Allysha Bergado and Lizzie Armanto were all instantly snapped in black and white polaroid. Inspiration.
Stay Wild. We camped all around California. It was hot out and easy to find wilderness away from the city to call home for the night. Here we were at Joshua Tree, one of my highlights from the trip. Surrounded by massive boulders, chipmunks and miles of desert, it was trippy. The Impossible Project polaroid film with animal skins was accidental but a fitting way to document the wild view.
While in Palm Springs we stayed at the Ace Hotel, and it was like going back in time to a 40’s vacation. We even won the bingo. Hotel stationary is great to collect for a scrapbook and the Ace vibe was particularly creative so worthy of a full page. The perfect place to stay for a true-desert US vacation.
On one day we headed south of LA to El Segundo Museum of Art for the opening of a street art exhibition. It was huge, with big-named artists painting indoor walls for once. Unprepared, I asked illustrator Gorgs, who was part of the show, to sketch something on a brown paper bag for me. He created this.
Palm trees are everywere in Cali, so you can’t fail to mention them. Providing daily inspiration and reminding you at all times that you're in California, I never tired of them. These particular ones line the takeout bag of the infamous burger joint, In-n-Out.
Californian dreaming; this scrapbook will keep the memories alive.