I just came back from two weeks of vacation in Orlando, Florida – I learned how to sew, juggle, eat fire, cyr wheel (kinda), create broken bones out of instamorph, build angel wings– whole and burnt, create entire costumes out of nothing more than scissor, cloth, tree bark and hot glue, and most importantly how to balance two forks on two toothpicks on a salt shaker.

True story.

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I spent hours sitting and stressing next to Kelly making calls, sending out emails, bringing in all her friends to help toss together the reason for me coming to Florida in the first place: A photoshoot

From Chelsea & Frances– costume designers, to Shri – Videographer, to name a few… and on my end the Florida-based vonwonglings that scampered over from up to 3 hours away to come and help so that we could pull together a 7 model photoshoot in just under 10 days, complete with two set of angel wings, custom armor, mythical creatures with horns, resulting in her living room and kitchen turning into a full-fledged crafting studio.

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And somehow in all that chaos, I managed to fit in a free fire workshop for the vonwonglings on the beach, an interview with the folks over at SmugMug, an evening of “Cards Against Humanity“, got my hair dyed 4 different shades of red and purple, fire breathing while I let fellow photographer’s play with a Hasselblad H4D-40 on loan to me from BorrowLenses.com and a trip to Universal Studios where I got to taste butterbeer and hang out with my new friends.

How?

Well turns out that 4 hours of sleep a night and industrial quantities of coffee does a pretty good job of keeping the body going.

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But Ben, I hear you guys crying out: “Break? You clearly don’t understand what the word “vacation” means.”

And I beg to differ because I did – I let my computer go and took a break from this:

And though I definitely didn’t come back from Orlando rested and relaxed, I did take a break from “my job” of photography and focus on the part of photography I love: to collaborate with amazing and talented creatives, learn new things and make something epic.

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Everyone gets caught up in the hectic flow of life. The routine of unending things that need to get done that inevitably pile up higher and higher… and these responsibilities and obligations sometimes make us forget the things that are important to us.

I like to leave space for random occurrences that take me away from the routines of everyday life. (yes I have a routine in all my madness!) This trip to florida, was simply the result of two strangers calling each others bluff on facebook – Kelly saying that if I came to florida she’d build angel wings for me… and me saying that she’d better have wings ready for me if I happened to buy a ticket to Florida. What started off as a joke on the internet then exploded into a full-on epic shoot.

How?

By taking a leap of faith and choosing to take a break from our normal lives and just let life happen.

Of course, things could have gone terribly… but it turns out that Kelly’s a pretty awesome individual. And though my body didn’t get a moment’s rest during my break in florida, the mind did.

Try and take a break. It feels good.

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Oh right, and PS. Here’s a preview of the upcoming series.

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