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Noe Todorovich is a Washington, DC based lifestyle photographer, and this is her blog. She shares musings, travels, photographs, tips, suggestions and more.

Filtering by Category: life

The Five Year Plan

Noe Todorovich

I always dreaded the question. No matter how prepared I was or how much I wanted a job, I never could answer that one question well.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I never knew. I could only ever attest to the quality of life I hoped I would have, not what exact job duties I expected to have or position I would hold. I've never been the type to have a detailed itinerary for a trip, let alone my life. It's not that I don't like having a plan, I just learned better than to expect to be able to dictate where life will take me when so much is outside of our control. 

Self portrait, circa 2010

Self portrait, circa 2010

Now, I find myself looking back five years to see how far I've come. It was five years ago this month that I decided to turn photography into more than just a hobby. And it was last May that I decided to pursue photography full time. 

So. Here I am. Five years later, making a career out of my passion. I have learned and grown so much over the past five years and can now see that I wasn't ready to make photography my career back in 2010. It took time to build up to this transition, and I'm so grateful for each experience that prepared me along the way. And it turns out that doing the thing I love does require doing some things that I do NOT love (hello, taxes and such!), but it is indeed rewarding and invigorating.

I still can't say exactly where I see myself in five years, but I am ready to see what lies ahead. It'll be full of ups and downs, challenges and opportunities, and, of course, oh so many pictures. I'm ready. Are you? 

Here's to a happy and prosperous new year!

NovaSalud: Working to Break the Stigma of HIV

Noe Todorovich

On August 16, 2014, NovaSalud, Inc. hosted a fashion show at the Mansion on O Street featuring designs by the Peruvian fashion designer Juan Jose Saenz Ferreyros. The theme of the event was to "Break the Stigma of HIV," and each of the models are either living with or otherwise affected by HIV/AIDS. 

I had the pleasure and honor of working with NovaSalud to document the event and talk with the models about how HIV has affected them and what they want people to know about HIV and NovaSalud. Working on this project enlightened and educated me, and I hope it will do the same for those who see it.

About NovaSalud, Inc

Established by and for the community, NovaSalud, Inc's mission is to improve and strengthen the health and well-being of our diverse Northern Virginia community through culturally-competent and language-appropriate HIV/AIDS services and prevention education.  NovaSalud works to effect the change necessary to instill understanding and compassion, and strives to mitigate the discrimination and stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS. Find out more at www.novasaludinc.org.

The Artist's Way

Noe Todorovich

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I've heard about the impact The Artist's Way  can have. The book came highly recommended to me by a friend of a friend in talking about indulging our creativity and being an artist. I ordered it shortly thereafter.

And it sat on my bookshelf. And it sat. And it sat.

A few weeks ago, I woke up earlier than usual on a chill Sunday and decided to pick it up. I began writing my "morning pages" (an integral part of the experience, along with artist dates).

Thus began my journey.

Within a few days I already felt a difference, as I started to take my art a bit more seriously and toy with ideas for how to take things to the next level.

“We've all heard that the unexamined life is not worth living, but consider too that the unlived life is not worth examining.”
-Julia Cameron

To be honest, I have mixed feelings about sharing my experience. It feels so intimate and incredibly introspective. It's definitely enlightening, so I want to share some of my revelations. But I also feel like this experience wasn't really meant to be shared. That doing so would dilute the very experience. I don't want to broadcast introspection. In this day and age of social media, blogging and ALL THE SHARING, don't some things remain personal and private?

But I do want to share how much I'm enjoying the book and how excited I am to keep at it and see where it leads me. I may share a few gems gleaned along the way. But even if I don't, I trust my life will reveal the impact. At least I hope so...

 

Reducing the Clutter

Noe Todorovich

The more things change, the more they stay the same. There’s nothing new under the sun.

And other cliches.

All that to say...I’m circling back to a topic I’ve written about before.

I’m stretched too thin.

In many realms and in many ways, I simply can’t keep up. There is so much I want to do, so much I want to learn, so much I want to say. Yet I find myself at a loss for words and at a loss for time. One day runs into the next and at best, if lucky, I maintain status quo. But I don’t feel like I’m making progress. Without feeling like I’m making progress, I lose motivation. Losing motivation, I make less progress. The vicious cycle continues.

STOP.

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It’s time to simplify. As I wrote before, it’s time to do less, so I can do more. So, I ask myself...

What am I doing?

Time is a commodity. You never “find time” to do things or see people. You make time. Where is it that all my time (and maybe more importantly, energy) is going?

What do I really want to do?

If I’m really honest with myself, I don't have enough time for all the things that I'm interested in. There simply isn't enough time in the day for it all, so I must prioritize interests and ideas. If I eliminate things that are of a lesser priority, I can increase the time I have for my top priorities. So, if I can’t do everything—I can’t—then what makes the cut?

What needs to be scaled back or even cut entirely?

Something’s gotta give. I may joke that I want to have my damn cake and eat it too, complete with ice cream. But at the end of the day, I know there are limitations on what can be done and done well. Where can I trim some fat off my day? What do I need to just let go of so I can remove some clutter from my life and better focus on what really matters to me?

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I think this post is a cathartic activity with a bonus of accountability. Writing helps me better formulate my thoughts and think something through. I figured I’m probably not alone, so I decided to share these thoughts in case it might help you. I’ve also put it out there. Now what will I do? Stay tuned to see what photography ideas and projects make the cut and become my focus...

Happy International Women's Day

Gina Todorovich

A few years ago, I first heard about International Women's Day. Apparently it isn't as widely celebrated in the United States as it is in other countries. I think that may be changing, at least slightly, as I've begun to see more and more posts on Facebook and twitter celebrating women every March 8.

In 2011, I shared some pictures I'd taken of women who I considered myself blessed to know. You can see that post here.  In the past two years, I've gotten to know some more amazing women (and also take some pictures of ones I have known and loved for years), so I want to share a few more pictures. A supplement to the original post, if you will...

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I also wanted to give a special shout out to the most awe-inspiring, incredible woman I've ever known: my mother. My mom never ceases to amaze me. She handles everything with such poise, grace and humor. She's the most resilient, strong person I know. And she loves me unconditionally and teaches all those around her about just what true love is. I can't thank her enough for all that she's done for me and for helping me become the woman I am today.

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Happy International Women's Day, everyone!

The Importance of Setting Goals

Gina Todorovich

Some say it takes around 21 days to form a habit. We're just over that far into 2013. And we all know what happens every new year...

Resolutions.

The start of a new year is a time of reflection on the year that just passed and on ideas, hopes, aspirations for the new one. Many resolutions are goals that we hope will become good habits. 

Now I've strayed away from doing this myself mostly, in large part due to my belief that ANY time is good to aim for improvement. Then again, I've struggled to really define my goals any time of any year. In fact, at the close of 2011, I wrote about my goal...to set goals.

Someone came across that post and got in touch with me recently about the topic of goal-setting and the impact it can have on our lives. They shared an infographic on the topic, posted below. It really puts things in perspective and makes me want to set some concrete goals for myself and my photographyand write them down.

I want to create ambitious, attainable goals and then hold myself accountable in pursuing them. This will go beyond anything that can be accomplished in 21 days, and I hope it will motivate me to go even further than I previously imagined. 

Setting the goals is just the start, of course. Then comes the action...

Graphic provided by OnlineEducation.netSetting Goals Infographic

I definitely plan to brainstorm and really focus on just what my goals are exactly. Maybe I'll share them once I do. Maybe. :) In the meantime...

What are your goals and how are you working to attain them?