The blog of photographer Kim Ayres

12,000 miles just to see me

I met up with Australian artist and regular blog commenter, Katie Roberts (and her son, Kirra), yesterday.

The strange sight of bloggers without a computer

Of course I didn’t expect her to travel the entire distance without some effort on my part, so I said we could meet up somewhere in between for a coffee and blether. I suggested Weatheriggs Pottery, just south of Penrith, about 80 miles from here.

Despite discovering it’s no longer a pottery and is now Weatheriggs Animal Welfare Rescue and Conservation Centre, it didn’t stop us having a good coffee with plenty of blether.

Unfortunately it was a cold, wet and miserable day. This didn’t spoil the encounter, it just meant photography turned out to be much trickier than expected.

Katie has hair of great texture. With wonderful dreadlocks flowing from the back of her head and curling ringlets at the side, I had hoped to add Katie’s face to my portrait exhibition in May, especially after she’d flown and driven over 12,000 miles for that cup of coffee with me. But in the end it wasn’t to be. I did get some reasonable photos, just not ones suitable for the darker theme of the exhibition

Hair of great texture

I did feel a bit guilty that it had taken her several days of long and arduous travelling from literally the other side of the world, just to spent 2 hours chatting about blogging and life.

However, she’d decided that as she and her son were now in the UK anyway, they may as well spend a few weeks seeing family and friends, and take in some of the sights while they was here. In fact they were off to drive through parts of the Lake District right after we parted company.

So that took of the pressure off a bit...


Jacqui said...

How wonderful for you to meet up, unfortunately the English weather can never be trusted to do as you want on a specific day.

mapstew said...

What a journey!

Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip Katie. :¬)

savannah said...

i would love to meet as many bloggers as you have, sugar! and doubly great to now put a face to katie's words. xoxoxo

Carole said...

So cool. Of course I think most of us who read "Ramblings" on a regular occasion would want to see you if we were going to travel 12,000 miles.

And I agree with savannah. It is nice to put a face to Katie's words.

Pat said...

That photo shows off Katie's lovely Titian colouring. I wonder what part of Oz she hails from? I must pop over and visit. I hope she isn't appalled by the awful weather.
Very gallant of you to drive through it:)

Anonymous said...

Ha ha! For a while there I was actually like, "Surely she didn't travel all that way just to see Kim!" until the end and I was like, "Ah yes, that makes a whole lot more sense!" (what can say ... I'm very tired!)

Charlie said...

80 miles (you) versus 12,000 miles (Katie). Yes, I believe you did your part. And what's with "miles" anyway?

Anonymous said...

Very cool!

Another beautiful portrait, beautiful woman.

Looking rather good yourself, O' Bearded One. Must've just had your coffee, eh?


Lynne said...

she looks to happy to be "dark and brewing" My oldest daughter tried to wear black all the and be "emo" but it didn't work when you smile a lot and have a twinkle your eyes all the time. Glad you got to meet up with a fellow blogger. Hope the coffee was good.

Katie Roberts said...

Thanks Kim, nice photo.

Sorry you couldn't use them. Maybe I'm just not dark enough for you! I was feeling pretty happy that day actually.

But just to correct you, if any of your wonderful readers/commenters are not under any illusions. I am actually here in the UK due to a serious family health crisis, and spending most of my five weeks deeply involved in family business and personal matters of the hardest kinds.

But in between my son and I are visiting my fabulous family scattered about the countryside, some of which took us temptingly close to Scotland.

So when the possibility of linking up become real it seemed perfect to offer you this face as a subject :) (esp seeing as you had 23 or your 24 desired ones)

I was great to hang out with you and myself and my son really enjoyed raving with you, about everything from teenage testosterone to religion.
It seemed that our continuing conversation dipped into physical reality for a couple of hours.

There were great photos though Kim, thanks for driving all that way (even if we ended up in a kids farm in uncontrollable weather, lighting and studio conditions) It was really fun! Maybe another time I will show you my darker more intense side.

(Oh and to credit my son Kirra who took the portrait of us both!)

Fay's Too said...

How fun! And I love that picture! It's amazing.

Katie Roberts said...

Oh and thanks for the lovely comments everyone! :)
PS Kim has smoother skin than you think he does!

hope said...

What beautiful eyes you have Katie!
Here's wishing you all the best with your family.

So Kim, does this mean that later on you can do a "Eyes being the window to the soul" series? ;)

Eryl Shields said...

Very sorry to hear/read that Katie is here, in the UK, due to a serious family health crisis; I hope this is resolved soon. Glad she managed to meet up with you at an animal rescue centre in Penrith though.

Sayre said...

Some faces just shine no matter the light. Apparently Katie's doesn't have a dark side. Which is actually a very nice thing - just not for Kim's exhibition.

I always suspected that Kim doctored his self-portraits to make himself craggier. He's younger than me by a good bit and I don't have that many creases!

Or perhaps he takes advantage of rather dramatic lighting...

Falak said...

Wow!Hope the two of you enjoyed your meeting:)

Patrick said...

Wow! 12,000 miles..
Enjoy your meeting..=)

talesNtypos said...

Aww lovely. :)

Gillian said...

What a brilliant adventure for both of you! Its always exciting meeting fellow bloggers and chewin the shite!

Thanx for sharing your pictures.

Will you be sharing your pieces that you'll be submitting for the show at the gallery?

Mimi and Tilly said...

How fab to meet and chat. What a journey... Emma :)

Ron Tipton said...


Look at that smile on your face! Nothing dark about that smile.

If I could I would travel the many miles required to meet you. I can guarantee you a dark portrait picture of myself. I might just do it someday. The UK is #1 on my list of foreign travel. I have to pay my mortgage off first.

Your portrait of Katie is excellent. I continue to be impressed by your talent Kim.


Kim Ayres said...

Jacqui - it can be trusted to rain...

Mapstew - you can't go much further without starting to head home again in the opposite direction

Savannah - I haven't met many that I didn't know outside the blogging world already. In fact, I can only think of Maroon and Pat, so Katie is my 3rd :)

Carole - you're only about 4,000 miles away, so I'll accept no excuse. Shall I expect you on Wednesday?

Pat - She's from Melbourne and has been complaining about temperatures of 40 decrees C. I think she's quite enjoyed the cool British winter

Danielle - is 12,000 miles for a cup of coffee really that unreasonable?

Charlie - miles is what we measure distances with here in the UK. What do you use? Cacti?

Barbara - They did serve pretty good coffee there :)

Lynne - I do like meeting other bloggers. It is an odd feeling meeting someone who you might not have a proper idea of what they look like, and yet you can have been chatting with them for months or years :)

Katie - I didn't feel it was my place to mention your family crisis. But it was lovely to meet up with you and Kirra - and yes, thank you Kirra for taking the photo :)

Fay - it was indeed fun :)

Katie - nah, it was just the soft, diffuse light of a wet grey day

Eryl - it was good to meet up with her :)

Sayre - I have no doubt Katie has dark sides - we all do - but they weren't on show that day :)

Falak - we did :)

Patrick - it was a long way for a coffee...

TaleNTypos - :)

Gillian - I'll probably post a few more, but I'm also thinking of creating a photo book on of the exhibition which should contain high quality versions of all the images, plus a few extra :)

Emma - so where in the world are you, and when do we get to meet for a coffee?

Ron - given you'll be 96 when you've paid off the mortgage, mightn't that be a bit late?

Mashlip said...

Wow, that's dedication for ya!

Kim, I left you an award on my blog :)

Saji Oommen said...

That was an amazing journey...Katie I appreciate u...

Kim Ayres said...

Mashlip - thank you :) I'll be over shortly to take a look!

Saji - you can't get much further away without becoming closer :)

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