Photos of my Asia Trip: Hong Kong Part II

Written by Nathalie Kalbach. Posted in Photos

Some more photos of my stay in Hong Kong. If you missed the first part- you can find it here.



We went to the Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery. 430 steps towards the monastery .



Flanked on both sides by Buddhas in different poses and with different face expressions.



Pretty impressive..don’t you think?



The funny thing is …the buddhas outside are not the ones that gave the monastery the name.



12 Thousand+ mini buddhas in one of the temples are responsible for the name. (no photos allowed)



I loved stopping and looking at all those different buddhas. This one reminded me of a very close friend ;) She tends to make this expression every time you want to shoot a photo of her.



We were accompanied by monkeys that jumped around like crazy- all photos of them are blurry – such a monkey business ;)



The closer to the top we came the more elaborate the statues became. I wish I could read the signs – I wonder if they reveal names of them or meanings.



What strikes me most are the colors and the patterns. Just looking at this makes me happy- the colors so bold and so many details.



I loved those little pavillions.



This place was actually built in 1949 and is not really a monastery because no monks are living here. But it seems as a lot of celebrations were going on there.



It was well worth a visit and funny enough it wasn’t part of our travel guide… I would make it part of my personal travel guide. It is a bit hard to find, kind of like…ride to the end of the world , exit, follow this and that street, go to the street with the parking house and just go left up a beaten path that looks as if it leads to a dumpster…and then it doesn’t ;)



I would also recommend an early part of the day… good thing I have been working out a lot lately but the humidity and heat is making the hike up a bit hard.



After this we made our way to the Chi Lin Nunnery. Or lovingly called Chilling Nunnery by us.



While strolling around the temple we could hear the nuns – yes they were actually living there – chanting in a hall – the sound was carried throughout the temple – which was just amazing. We later saw them coming out but I referred from snapping photos. It felt not right.


In front of the Nunnery is the Nan Lian Garden – again an oasis in the middle of high risers. I love how the garden was laid out. Lot’s of small details again



and an awesome rock garden…with interesting signs. I have to admit I didn’t have the idea before I saw the sign…It made me wanna try it ;) I did not – no worries.



I loved these areas paved with these neatly stacked stones. Awesome texture and so interesting to look at.



Hope you enjoyed the monastery-nunnery tour in Hong Kong. Tomorrow some projects but then there will be more ;)

Have a Chilling Day ;)




Photos of my Asia Trip: Hong Kong Part I

Written by Nathalie Kalbach. Posted in Photos

I just came back from my workshop trip to Malaysia. I stopped for a couple of days in Hong Kong before the workshops and had a couple of days of sight seeing in Kuala Lumpur. It was so much fun and I learned heaps. Plus – I am so inspired by this whole trip. You know what this means, right? Photos…be aware…there are loads for the next days :)


The first thing I noticed was the unbelievable amount of signs



Making this the “City of Lights” at night – sorry Paris- you are just not bright enough ;)

See the little bus? These little beaners seat 16 peeps and were fun to ride…



the more important a sign is…the smaller it appears…or so I think ;)



Most signs were in English and Chinese but signs like this made me realize how important visual hints are when you cannot decipher the writing. Actually…I don’t even know half of the terms of the stuff on the sign in English – so I might be actually better off in China when going to a hardware store…LOL


Speaking of public transportation – Hong Kong must have one of the best public transportations I have ever seen as a European. (sorry America…you are a very developing country when it comes to public transportation!). Not only little beaner busses, but also huge modern public transportation busses, these fun trams and a subway system that was the best ever. Every 3 minutes a subway, clean, safe, fast and CHEAP aka Dirt Cheap. Speaking for a longer trip for about 10 US-Cents. And you can pay with your Metro aka Octopus Card in Grocery Shops like in the one below



Which makes you scratch your head…because of the sign. But oh WELL



Significant is also the amount of high risers in Hong Kong. You will find clusters of 12-13 high risers 40 stories high and then all of a sudden you have a pocket with old houses or gems like this beautiful temple built in 1847 – the Man Mo Temple.



It was a beautiful temple with a lot to see especially when looking up. Like these wish lanterns



or these incense coils – the light coming through the roof made it all the more serene. And calm places were really needed as visual and commercial overflow was getting us hard :) I know a lot of my online friends were excited for me that I was going to Hong Kong mainly because of the Shopping. Well…to be honest… that wasn’t my thing. And not because I do not like to shop – oh no ;)  It was a parade of super expensive no-real bargain show-off stuff. Name any designer label and you find one of their stores there. I am not very keen on brand fashion, and everyone tried to up-sell and and looking at things was not possible since you were hassled down right away and almost forced to buy. On top after being approached 1 Million times on the main shopping streets if I want to buy a fake Rolex or a nice handbag which was rather stressful, I turned into a total anti-shopping person during our stay in Hong Kong. No worries though – that changed in Malaysia  ;)



Besides public transportation – food was pretty cheap too – and so we ate a lot of very good, yummie soups and dim sum .


In fact we sometimes had dim sum for breakfast, lunch and dinner…and the worst thing is…I am craving it today.



Of course a visit to the Hong Museum of Art was on the to do list. Besides a wonderful permanent exhibition of Calligraphy and Ancient Chinese Watercolor Art (no photos aloud) there was an amazing special exhibition ”Ju Ming – Sculpting the Living World” .



Most impressive were Ju Mings sculptures made out of bronze, stainless steel, painted wood, foam rubber and cast bronze.



The sculptures are showing a collection of little moments in modern life.



I love how the pose and just some little carves in the face can express so much.


I loved how spacious the museum was….giving each piece of art a lot of space – even in the water color and calligraphy exhibition. It made the art really stand for itself and you were able to focus just on the one piece. I also loved the fact that calligraphy was received as an art form and the exhibition was rather big on it too. The water color paintings dating hundreds of years ago were just stunning and since some of the techniques used were translated in english I wish I would have had more time to take it all in.



If you made it to here…wow ;) You will be rewarded with even more photos in a couple days – LOL. I will try to mix it up with some project posts and other stuff so you don’t get too bored ;)

Have an amazing day



Stroll Through The Hood

Written by Nathalie Kalbach. Posted in Stroll Through The Hood



A lot of times I get asked what inspires me. And one of my key answers is always “a stroll through the hood”. It might be street art, it might be thoughts or feelings connected with certain sights, it might be stuff I find to buy…in one way or the other you might find the photos, the thoughts, the feelings, the colors or anything from those strolls in my art journal, a mixed media project or a scrapbooking layout.

I would love to show you once a month what inspired me while strolling through my neighborhood. I hope you like the little insights into my daily life where I live . This is also a wonderful way for me to remind myself on the inspiring things in the hood. Maybe you get inspired by those posts and even invite ME to a stroll in YOUR hood – feel free to grab the logo and leave a comment for me on the post and share!

It has been a while since I did this….why? Because of this:



and this



perfect days to stay inside and work in the studio…or travel (NOT!) but sometimes it looked like this:



and then I bit the bullet and bundled up to go outside ;)



It was COLD- but I was rewarded with fun stuff like this



Who could have PERDICTED? And then with a friend visiting you – it is even more fun to stroll through the hood :)



Especially when said friends likes the same grungy stuff as I do …btw- I do love the background to this- it already inspired me to something :)



And since they are big here on Security cameras…this is a good advice me thinks :) :) :)



I do love this building- It will be in one of my canvases some time- I am sure.



And a little view over to Manhattan…YES…we are the Sixth Borough…so there Hoboken…don’t even try to claim this…LOL (I figured a bit of local patriotism doesn’t hurt ;) )



And an insane walk through snow and ice and wind chills in Liberty State Park rewards you with this view…


I mean…all in all it is all about



And as for Spring…well…gotta make your own spring at home I guess ;)


Hope you had fun strolling through my hood – until next time…in J.C. :)






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