The Real Buy

Another set of images from Milk Gallery and Gucci Ghost’s ‘The Real Buy’ instillation running September 6th through the 23rd at 450 West 15th St. Aside from the artwork, there’s an entire line of merchandise available for purchase, which I highly recommend grabbing up, there’s some great stuff! FYI, you can only purchase in person, product not available on line, sorry! Enjoy the flicks, Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Milk Gallery BTS

The Real Buy behind the scene images during the final days of set up, the celebration, the tattoo parties, skating the NYC streets and beyond. If you’re in New York City, you have to stop into Milk Gallery and peep the work, the final product turned out incredible, thanks to all of the good people at Milk, Jim Warrier, the Trouble Gang and Trevor putting in triple shifts each and everyday.

Milk is located at 450 West 15th Street with gallery operating hours of 10:00 > 18:00 weekdays and 11:00 > 19:00 weekends. Enjoy, Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Gucci Ghost X Milk Gallery

Stop into Milk Gallery on 450 West 15th St (NYC) between September 6th and 23rd to witness the Gucci Ghost Instillation, a massive collection of canvas, clothing and items created, painted and curated by Trevor Andrew.

Jim Warrier and crew have been busy for months preparing the presentation and bringing it to life at the famed Milk studios, it’s something you shouldn’t miss if you’re visiting (or living) in New York City in September. Dozens of canvas prints will be available for sale, along with a limited number of prints, t-shirts and stickers, grab something while it’s still on the shelf!

I’m proud to say Trevor is featuring my photography in the show as well, a massive canvas print from our travels during the Gucci FW16 launch campaign where he added his acrylic paint touch over the printed image. The image is in line with the photos on these Milk press releases, captured in Brooklyn, Tokyo and Mexico City.

I hope you have the chance to check out the gallery, it’s looking really nice as we’re nearing the 48-hour countdown to opening. I’ll write a follow up blog post with the BTS images of the gallery set-up after the show goes live. Blotto

 

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto

Nova Scotia Mission Part Three

For the final leg of my Nova Scotia tour I decided to drive around Cape Breton on the famous Cabot Trail, which runs along the west and east coasts of the island, and features a massive national park spanning the two sides. I was told by Liam Griffin and Scott Doucette that I couldn’t visit Nova Scotia without touring the trail, so I took their recommendation, after all, they ARE locals to this area, born and raised!

I disembarked the PEI ferry at Caribou around 17:00, took the 104 east, crossed over the causeway at Port Hastings and began the journey north via the Highway 19. My plan was catching afternoon light and sunset somewhere on the road north, which I managed after setting up camp in Inverness. The few hours before and during sunset were my first taste of the Nova Scotia epicness along the Cabot Trail, I was not disappointed!

The next morning I packed up the tenting gear at my campsite and continued north, passing along endless amounts of stunning coastline and small villages, eventually arriving at the Highlands National Park entrance gate. Taking a moment to gather information about the park and hiking trails from the gracious staff, it was back in the car and into the park to explore this amazing region.

Departing the Cheticamp Visitor Center you’re immediately greeted by the sheer size and strength of this mountainous region, this place is big! One might not think of giant mountains in this part of the world but I was happily proved wrong right out of the gate. The Cabot Trail hangs onto the side of the mountain much of the way, placed above huge cliffs that drop into the sea below; we’re talking beautiful roadway people! Holding myself back from stopping every half-kilometer to take in the beauty and snap a pic, I made decent time to the Bay St Lawrence Road, which would bring me to Meat Cove, the northern-most point of Cape Breton. If I was touring this part of NS, I might as well take it to the tippy top of the island, which I managed and wasn’t surprised at all by the sheer beauty of the landscape.

Peeling myself out of the Gulf of St Lawrence waters I began the journey east to take in the other side of the Cabot Trail, which certainly did not disappoint as I moved across the top of Highlands National Park leading into a southerly direction at Neil’s Harbour.

As the sun was starting to set I made moves to catch a night’s rest at Broad Cove Campground, a gorgeous plot of land within the national park sitting on water’s edge. Squeaking into one of four remaining campsites, I set up my Durable Goods tent in a hurry, and then hopped on the bicycle for a tour of the area, eventually settling down on the beach to watch the sun disappear beyond the horizon.

Waking up the next morning refreshed and energized I took my time in packing up and getting back on the road as I knew journey’s end was in sight, so it was important to take in as much of Cape Breton as possible. I did so with two cups of joe, a bike ride around the area, a beach chill followed by a quick hike, not a bad morning! Back on the road I meandered along the coast, but who wouldn’t, this place is amazing, had to see any and everything I could before eventually finding my way to Highway 104 and back to the Halifax area.

The Nova Scotia tour was officially completed, twelve days of exploration, road tripping, bike riding, skateboarding, hanging with friends, picture taking, camping, you name it, I attempted to do it! Put Nova Scotia on your radar, it’s an absolutely wonderful part of the world, magnificent people, great sight seeing, outdoor opportunities and beyond. Thanks to the Doucette and Griffin family for the knowledge, guidance and hosting, you made my trip that much better! Blotto

All images by Blotto @deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Nova Scotia Mission Part Two

Finishing up on the South Coast with a shipwreck discovery in Lunenburg Bay, I made my way north to the Kejimkujik National Park to have a look around, hike a couple of their well maintained trails and scope future camping opportunities. Canada is promoting their one hundred and fifty year anniversary with complimentary entrance to all national parks so things were popping, lots of enthused patrons setting up camp, hiking, biking, loving it.

Back in the whip I made my way northeast in the direction of Prince Edward Island, the smallest of the Canadian provinces, which sits east of New Brunswick, north of Nova Scotia.

PEI commonly referred to as ‘The Garden of the Gulf’ boasts a max elevation of 152 meters (498 feet), averaging around 35 meters (114 feet) above sea level surrounded by the relatively shallow water depths in the Maritime Carboniferous Basin. How does this translate? It’s a small landmass sitting in the Gulf of St. Lawrence that has a reputation of outstanding natural beauty mixed with farmland covering the rolling hills from shore to shore.

Wanting to see a good chunk of this wonderful province in two day’s time, I drove in over the Confederation Bridge, took an immediate left and began the journey up PE-14 along the coast with intermittent photo stops to walk the western red sands and take in the atmosphere of this foreign land. Arriving on the North Cape amongst the giant wind fans just in time for sunset, it was perfect timing to be on the very tippity top of PEI to enjoy the pleasantry of day’s end.

The next morning I continued around the top side of the North Cape Coastal Drive stopping into a couple of small provincial parks, then moving along into the Central Coast Drive and up to Cavendish National Park. Cavendish is a spectacular park that spans a good chunk of coast line, making for endless adventure opportunities on foot or on bicycle (the bike path system: two thumbs up!), so I chose both methods of transportation to see as much as possible in this area.

After completing a nice sweep of Cavendish, I continued onto the Points East Coastal Drive, which takes you around the eastern most third of PEI. My area of focus would be the Greenwich National Park, which boasts well-maintained bicycle paths and white sand beaches (oddly enough), an area high on the priority list. Spending time in this area chipped away at complete tour around this section of PEI, but I was OK with that, the water, the wind and the sand was just perfect!

With a ferry schedule to keep in mind, I packed up the goods and headed to the rural community of Woods Islands to drive the car up the ramp into the boat and take a float back over to Nova Scotia, and start my journey to Cape Breton. PEI was nice, straight up. Really chill residents, beautiful beaches, warm water, pedaling opportunities galore, a place I’ll visit again for sure, thank you Prince Edward Island! Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Nova Scotia Mission Part One

I just returned from a great driving mission around the Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island provinces, mixing in camping, hiking, biking, skateboarding and chilling with old and new friends in the pleasant country of Canada.

Packing up the car in Burlington, Vermont and heading directly east, I soon ran into the Maine coast just below Bangor to continue up US-1, reaching day’s end destination at Cobscook State Park. The overall drive time from Burlington to Halifax is approximately thirteen hours, so I was happy to break it up and grab a quality night’s rest on the coast of Maine. Waking up to a pleasant sunrise, I busted out The Ship and The Whale coffee beans, got my grind on, poured over the hot water and enjoyed some time on the rocks while tide was out.

Packing up the Durable Goods camping gear, I began the journey east past the border, through New Brunswick, crossing into Nova Scotia over the Missaguash River. At this point in the mission, my final destination on the south coast is now within three hours reach, juggling the anticipation in seeing a new and uncharted zone for this traveling fool, while still sitting in the driver’s seat.

Upon arrival, I was greeted with perfect summer weather and open arms from the crew at The Ovens Natural Park, the perfect way to end a lengthy drive! The Chapin Family are the proud owners of The Ovens, a one hundred and ninety acre pristine reserve of coastal forest, where you’re more than welcome to set up a tent, grab a cabin or pull in your trailer and call the Atlantic Coast your spot for a few days or weeks. It’s a marvelous home away from home as you start your Nova Scotia journey of sightseeing, exploration and discovery around this part of the world.

The Ovens garners it’s name from the sea caves that line the property, an unreal collection of caves jutting under the landscape where you hike above, in and alongside, it’s really unique! The walk takes anywhere from forty minutes to an hour, depending on your photo gathering rate (hehe), but don’t sleep on a kayak tour of the caves, which can be set up at reception. I walked the Sea Cave Trail in the afternoon, but also made it a point to catch the sunrise as the caves face directly east; it was certainly a beautiful way to start the day! Moving on into the park, I set up on Tenting Site 138, which sits on the water facing west, boasting a perfect sunset and a nice compliment to the sunrise possibilities you’re presented out front.

Not only does The Ovens offer up all the comforts nature has to offer sleeping next to the ocean, you’re also treated to a daily dose of live music while dining. I can’t explain to you how enjoyable it is having dinner alongside some incredibly talented (and award winning I might add) musicians doing their thing for your pleasure, completing your day bedding down under the stars! What a place, you should certainly plan a stay when visiting Nova Scotia. Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Endless Goodness

The latest camping mission with TheGoodLife! posse was out to one of our favorites we refer to as Endless Goodness, featuring two lakes, multiple waterfalls, an impressive rock laden river and adventurous hiking routes. It’s quite splendid how much natural beauty is packed into a relatively small area, so we do our best ‘to make the best of it’ over a few days of sleeping under the stars.

The swimming, hiking, relaxing, adventuring and food preparation moves were nothing short of amazing as the weather played perfectly into these outdoor plans with a mix of mild temps, zero humidity and plenty of that precious sunshine to sooth the soul, along with the epic vibes from all in attendance.

Summer is made for camping, get your gear together and take that trip asap, whether it’s a quick one-nighter or a multi-day adventure, you won’t be disappointed! Holler…Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Go Skate Day June 21

What a magnificent afternoon enjoying Go Skateboarding Day at the Andy A-Dog Williams Skatepark in Burlington, Vermont with a healthy dose of the East’s best humans! Skateboarders from all around the region converged on this newly built park to celebrate a great day for skateboarding while raising awareness of the A-Dog Foundation’s continued drive in pushing the art, music and skateboard culture, and campaigning for the critical need of bone marrow donorship.

Trina and Brendan from Maven Skateboard Shop were on hand to wrangle in the skaters for a three-feature best trick contest while Big Dog, KermiTT and Crusty Cuts kept the crowd moving with a solid selection of beats on the 1’s and 2’s.

These are the days of seeing the community come together that put a smile on your face knowing the youth is in good hands through skateboarding and positive mentorship. Enjoy the flicks, Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto 2017

Skating Around the Woo

Skateboarding around Winooski on a Saturday afternoon with Quade, LJ, Danny and Ben looking for spots, filming and hanging out was a great way to start the weekend. The weather was absolutely perfect for an activity meter based around creativity on structures not intended for urethane, metal and wood below two human feet, ala skating cement curbs, angled metal and concrete.

I often catch Quade and LJ around the Burlington streets while they’re out with Danny stacking clips for various edits; these fine folks are a comedic group always down for a good time. It goes without saying their skateboarding talents are on another level, it’s a total treat to witness the trickery, while enjoying the byproduct of capturing still images of the madness.

We hit up a tall ledge to drop where Quade was locking in front 5-0 to big spin out, while LJ was in a battle with a backside tail slide. In between attempts we were greeted by many a passersby walking their dog, heading out to late lunch and long time locals sharing their tales of the early days of skateboarding around Burlington. After some makes and misses we headed into an area between a parking garage and building that offered up an interesting drop ledge arrangement, wrapped in metal, that oddly enough was still skateable. This area was ‘more of a photo spot’ than a ‘filming location’ so the boys consistently threw down tricks one after the other while I rattled off a few different angles within the tall walls.

Dusty, dirty and spent, the boys called it a day and asked if I wanted to hit up the local ramen spot, which I happily agreed to! Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017

Go Camping

The first camping mission of the 2017 season is completed, taking place out a local spot in the Champlain Islands (Vermont), featuring perfect weather and good vibes. The initial step into camping mode after taking the winter off from tent life is a bit of scramble, given you haven’t dug into the kit for a few months, maybe you acquired some new items that need tinkering with and the ‘ol “…shoot, forgot to bring that!

Not to panic people, a quick over-nighter will help all of us dial in the tent, the food and beverage, the board games and whatever else you find as a camping comfort while spending the night under the stars. I know I left the house without some critical items on this initial camping trip, but any good soul knows that camping is truly a ‘constant state of modification‘ so you’ll always work it out, and you have your pals to lean on as well to get the job done.

A few tips for camping in Vermont is bring a bicycle as many of the state parks have miles and miles of pedaling pavement in and around the park on top of the endless hiking opportunities (bring a flat kit!). Take a look at the Vermont State Parks website HERE for a well-organized peak into every camping location including exact descriptions of each site along with a photo of said location. Their website is super easy to navigate after a couple minutes learning your way around, you can also reserve and pay for your adventure at that time. Another great item to pack in or tow behind the car is a boat. There are boat launches at every park, in addition to many of the camp sites having their own waterfront accessibility, increase your fun factor that much more!

I’m over and out for now, off to the next mission, will update asap…Blotto

All images by Blotto ©deanblottogray/blottophotto2017