Coral Mermaid

Taking a break from my regularly schedule posting program to be a narcissist and show off my new hair.

I wasn’t happy about the way it looked after having it dyed dark ginger last month. I wanted something fresh and different from what I’ve done in the past, so I went with Pravana colors and had my stylist follow the color structure we had on my fire hair.

He dyed the top Pravana red, and the rest of the hair was bleached, to which he added Pravana red to the middle and it came out hot pink, and the bottom has Pravana Pastels coral. I’m relatively certain the coral will fade quickly. It didn’t take easily to my hair. BUT! during washing, I think the red will bleed into it well.

DSC_5289copy2

Advertisements

Sunroom

I did a fashion photo shoot this morning for one of my friends, Kristine, and I wanted to share a few pics with you guys.

Her and her husband live in this really neat house down in Highland Park with badass vintage wallpaper, amazing interior architecture, and the cutest little sun room, where we staged the shoot. The purpose of the shoot was to capture the ensemble she made, but as you all know, I’m always more attracted in capturing people’s faces when I have the opportunity. So after the clothing part was done, I put my portrait lens back on and took a few shots of the model’s face.

The first couple shots are taken with my 18-105mm lens, and the last one is my 50mm portrait lens.

I’m always grateful for opportunities like this to get me out of my comfort zone and play with light and different people. I think these photos came out well, although I’m still learning.

P.S. Don’t forget, you can now follow me (professionally!) on Instagram, @vivianapodinaphotography

DSC_4382copy2DSC_4388copy2DSC_4430copy2

Steel Panther x Samsung

Hey babes! This past Sunday was absolutely incredible and I’d like to share a bit of it with you guys.

My friend Eric preemptively invited me out to see Steel Panther a few weeks ago and then sent me a real invite to the show a week prior. To be honest, I hadn’t ever heard their music before, but I had watched their YouTube videos (via Eric) and kinda fell in love with them.

They’re a hilarious group of attractive middle aged men who make semi-parody style 80s glam rock music with lewd lyrics and put on an AH-MAZING live show.

My favorite band member, Satchel (real name Russ Parrish) is 10/10 super mega hot and an incredibly talented guitarist. And I clearly spent all night trying to get good shots of him. Oh yeah – we were front row which was pretty badass – and my friend Cat got pulled on stage (check it out) and afterwards, her and I got backstage VIP passes where we spent some one-on-one time with Michael Starr & Stixx, and were later invited out to the bar. Needless to say, we went, and got drunk. And then PASSED OUT when we got home.

Additionally, I should mentioned this photo were taken with my Samsung Galaxy Note 5 phone. I opted to leave my Nikon at home because I just didn’t feel like lugging it around with me all night. Plus, I wasn’t expecting to be front row. I think they turned out really well. This phone’s camera continues to prove itself amazing and I’m so glad I noticed that off the bat when I was shopping for a new one a couple months ago.

Screenshot_2015-12-19-13-54-32-2

20151213_214846

20151213_213330

This is not the best photo I've ever taken, but I really like the way it turned out.

This is not the best photo I’ve ever taken, but I really like the way it turned out.

Corupția Ucide

For today’s Blogvember post, I thought I’d share an important topic with you all. For anyone who hasn’t watched the news lately or heard anything about it, there is currently (what I’ll call) the beginnings of a revolution occurring in my home country of Romania.

It all started with a fire at the nightclub Colectiv, in the nation’s capitol city of Bucharest, on the night of October 30th. 32 people died and 179 were injured in the incident. It sparked outrage with the nation, which has taken to protesting in pretty much all of the major cities, and the protests, which are still ongoing, have resulted in the resignation of Prime Minister Victor Ponta and his government. (Click for more info.)

DSC_3638copy2

Personally, I find this to be incredibly impressive and inspirational. It’s amazing what people can do when they finally wake up and smell the roses and let that straw finally break the camel’s back. I am heartbroken, proud, amazed, and so much more, at the unity of the Romanian people in dethroning a corrupt government that has gotten by since the Communist revolution on the piggybacks of nepotism and systematic corruption.

DSC_3671copy2

I found this comment on Reddit the other night that made me decide to do today’s photoshoot in solidarity with my people back home:

Although this has been repeated several times in the comments, its worth mentioning again for people just reading the story. This was never about the PM of Romania resigning because of a nightclub fire. It could have been any other event, a flood caused by a shoddy dam that was authorized through bribery, an earthquake brining the entire medical system of a country to its knees, or any other disaster that finally brings the message home. This was about a political system built on lies, bribery, influence trading and nepotism. A form of “democracy” where the will of the people is the least important factor in government.

The protests in Bucharest are against the entire system, the entire political class. Romanians, contrary to the unfortunate image projected abroad by some of our “less desirable” citizens, are actually a politically tolerant, law abiding and down to earth people. Most of us just want to get on with our lives, easy or hard as they may be, work for our dreams, follow our passion, and all the other things one would expect of a citizen of a, so called, democratic state. But we can’t. We can’t because the system was set up from the start to favour only those few who had the luck and connections to be in power after the revolution. And now, we are seeing the “trainees” of those people rising to power and doing the same things all over again.

This protest was not about a fire. It was about doctors who have to live with their families in a one bedroom apartment because they can barely afford food, let alone rent. It was about schools and universities where the amount of money you put into someone’s pocket is directly related to what’s printed on your diploma. It was about a crisis response system that was completely overwhelmed by 200 victims in a city of 2 million (having a heart attack on the night of the fire in Bucharest would have been a death sentence). It was about people dying in the streets because of lack of elementary services, while the Orthodox church is awarded 25 million euros to build a new cathedral (in a country that already has over 16000 churches). It was also about corruption leading directly to the nightclub incident, wherein the only way to do something in Romania is to either pay someone, or know someone who can waive the “fee”. But mainly, it was about the utter contempt and lack of respect that our “leaders” have shown us for the past 26 years since the anti-communist revolution.

Again and again, people have died (some examples can be read in the comments below), families have been left on the streets, young women have been raped with no one being held responsible, young people have left the country in droves, finding a place where they can pursue their dreams without fearing for their children’s’ safety. And through all this, the Romanian people have, for the most part, endured and went on with their lives, hoping that things would change. But each new election brought on the same political class, with the same contempt, with the same self-serving interest. Since the beginning of democracy in Romania, our ruling class, no matter their political colour, have gotten rich, while the rest of us have had to pay the price, for some unfortunate few, with their own lives.

The nightclub fire finally brought the message home. Because people have finally realised that it could have been them, or their friends, or their children in that fire. It could have been their elder parents dying in a hospital because there are no doctors and people have to, literally, beg for basic things such as Paracetamol.

No, the story was never “PM resigns because of fire”. Several other people responsible for that are currently in custody or about to loose their jobs. This was about a corrupt system and a failed democracy, and a population which has had about enough. The nightclub incident is not the reason this is happening, the gunpowder barrels have been stacking along quietly since the early 90s. But the fire in Bucharest was the one that finally lit the fuse.

This comment rang true with me in a few different instances, but probably most notably the part about how young people are leaving the country in droves in hopes of a better future. My parents uprooted our family 18 years ago for this exact reason. They decided that they wanted a better future for themselves and their children than our home country could offer, so they made the gut-wrenching and thrilling decision to move to America. I don’t know what would have happened if they hadn’t, but I like to think of myself as a revolutionary person who would be out on those streets with my people.

DSC_3666copy2

While I cannot be back home in the streets protesting, I stand with my people. I support your cause and I raise my flag high for all of you who are fighting the fight for a fair and just government that cares for its people and their well-being. In a world full of unfair politics where the poor get poorer while the rich get richer, I am thrilled to see a nation coming together to take down a system that has been cheating them for over 2 decades.  Corupția ucide!