2018 In Review

I don’t normally do a review of the past year. On the odd times that I did intend to do it, I ended not going through with it because after further reflection, I felt that I didn’t want to look back. That happened during a time where I had a lot of things going on with my life. I just wanted the current year to end and to move on.

This year, however, it was a mix of ups and downs. Mostly ups with a dash of downs, but it was a great year, nonetheless. There were accomplishments that should be celebrated, and opportunities that should be reflected upon so that I might learn from them.

So, after being inspired by yesterday’s Instagram stories that had so much reviewing of the past year, here are some highlights…

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4 February

My friend, Chelsea, and I went to see the Murukami exhibit at the Vancouver Art Gallery for the first time. We went there during the Member’s Morning on a very nice Saturday morning. Art is one of the very few things that I share with my close friends.

16 February

I went to my very first paint night with my mom and aunts. I’ve never considered myself good at painting. As a matter of fact, I made it a mission in life to stay away from paintbrushes and pencils as they never really agreed with me. This night, though, proved that with an open mind and the willingness to learn, it’s possible to re-learn some things (though maybe not as adept as the artists I follow).

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19 April

Brenna and I went to Art! Vancouver at Canada Place. This convention happens every year in spring, showcasing artists from different parts of North America. This was a night of inspiration and a lot of gawking at art pieces that I can’t afford.

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27 April

On 22 April, 5 days before, I was asked to participate in a group exhibit featuring 10 photographers of varying styles. Now before all of this happened, let’s back up to March, where I first encountered Roll Call (if you want to know what this is about, click here), there was a call to find the 10th film. It just so happens that I was fairly close to where they’re hiding it. So I woke up at 4:30 in the morning, nimbled up, had my coffee, and waited for the exact location. I dashed as soon as I found out, only to realize that somebody raced me there seconds before. I still attended the event that night to see the photos that were done that day.

Now back to April. I was really happy when I got that message, partly because I didn’t have to wake up early to get the last film, and also because this’ll be my first time that my photos will be on display. For this, I enlisted my friend Brenna, which made this event our third collaboration.

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21 August

One of the best visit we’ve had from our Country Director. Yes I do have a day job, one that I truly love and would never give up (more on that later). This is during our special night out at one of our favourite places to hang out.

22 August

Being reunited once again with Charlotte Ahern. This took a while, but I would say that I was really happy to have been able to rekindle this friendship.

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12 September

My very first event night with another amazing artist, Bea Aspiras. We were at another event before this photo. Rain didn’t stop us from doing our art rounds.

1 October

A year and four months in, this became my store. Probably one of my biggest achievement of the year. Could have never done it without all the support along the way, including that of my old manager and closest friend.

26 October

Met this amazing person from France. Enjoyed a nice day at the art gallery and some portrait session.

26 October

The first of many activity nights with my team. This was my first time doing Lazer Tag since 2009. It was a fun night, and a hell of a workout!

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3 November - 12 November

After 9 years, I finally had the chance to see the Reyes side of my family in Florida. This was years overdue, and it made me reflect why I never made the effort to visit them or even connect with them properly. This time around, I celebrated my birthday with them, which was a welcome change.

12 November

Right after I landed back in Vancouver after my vacation, Brenna and I met up to plan our goals for 2019 and do a mini celebration of our birthdays (we’re 3 days apart of the same year). I may not see this friend of mine often, but I do love her.

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14 November

Went on to Seattle for my first work trip with Camper. It was also my first time taking the train instead of flying. I got to meet the fabulous team at the Bellevue store and learned a lot from my time there.

23 November

Post birthday celebration at (where else?) the Vancouver Art Gallery during our second Fuse Night. As always, I was in good company.

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27 November

I finally met this amazing soul that I have been following on Instagram since September. Michaela is an amazing artist and person. Very down to earth, very genuine, very humble. Yes, you could say that I’m a big fan of hers, but this are the kind of people that I gravitate towards.

Click here to see the full set that we did that night.

29 November

Met another friend over coffee and camera. Very European, very French (those who are familiar with me would know that most of my friends are European). I met her through Instagram where we’ve been following each other’s work for a bit. I stumbled across one of her Instagram highlights where she’s asking if anyone would want to meet for coffee. I did respond to it, but that post was made months before. She did say that she’s coming back to Vancouver to visit her boyfriend, Jessy (this is the guy who has beaten me by a few seconds during Roll Call in March), so we planned to meet when she gets here. I “babysat” her for two days and went on adventures, armed with our camera. Kimberley is an amazing photographer who I’m really happy I connected with.

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3 December

A month after we met over coffee, Ruchi and I finally did our semi-planned night shoot. It was freezing that night, but we managed to get some good photos. This set will be up very soon.

17 December

Another adventure day with this crazy creature. More nature, less rain (the last time was really pouring), and a lot of laughter.

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23 December

Christmas party with my amazing team! Good company, good food, good liquor. Definitely a lot of laughing involved (which usually happens when you play Cards Against Humanity).

31 December

And finally, what better way to end this year than to spend it with friends and family. Food, drinks, more food, and then of course, the almighty microphone.

Happy New Year everyone, and may 2019 give you lots of love, happiness, and prosperity in life.

J.