Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Stepping foot on ground after many hours of flying was both relieving and overwhelming. Having never traveled­­ in my life, I was not sure how I would feel after spontaneously deciding to do study abroad. One minute I had been home and the next I was saying "ciao" to Italy!

Walking down the streets for the first time left me speechless. I could feel goosebumps forming up and down my arms as I looked up at all the buildings. Never have I felt so small in comparison to my surroundings and yet, it felt amazing to be dwarfed by such a gorgeous city. I was actually in a foreign country, specifically in one of the most influential and inspiring cities in Europe! With over 2000 years of history to share with a primary focus on its achievements during the Late Middle Ages, I couldn't imagine having picked any city other than Florence. I had studied the Middle Ages in multiple history classes, I had memorized Renaissance artwork on flashcards for art history, but little had I known, I would one day be living in the country my textbooks talked about.

Within the first 4 weeks of being here, this trip has presented its wonders and its flaws. I am no longer a 40 minute car ride away from home, a quick phone call to a friend and many things here are unfamiliar. But I have been given the opportunity to learn a new language, try new things and explore a culture I am naive to. Setting aside my American routines, I have begun my new Italian lifestyle. I am optimistic for the rest of the semester and am ready to absorb the artwork around me and grow as an artist.

First walk down the street from my apartment. Embarrassingly enough I didn't even realize what the Duomo was when I took this photo! Now it has become the focal point of my life in Florence.
I am getting used to speaking Italian everywhere I go and interacting with cashiers. I'm discovering people here prefer exact change and would rather wait for it than just give you change back for a big bill. I have been regularly confusing euro coins for quarters.

A shot of the Ponte Vecchio. Despite growing up along the Connecticut River, I never truly knew how beautiful a river or even a bridge could be.

I took my first trip out of Florence over to the beautiful coast of Cinque Terre. Spoiled by absolutely beautiful weather and beautiful colors, I enjoyed a very relaxing day trip with friends.

Enjoying the new landscapes and the tall, skinny trees. Very different from the maple and oak trees back home. Taken in Chianti.

Stumbling upon beautiful churches while exploring Florence on my own. From outside you would never know how unbelievable the interior of the Basilica della Santissima Annunziata is.

And last but not least, the main reason for this trip, going to classes and doing art. A quick painting in Professor Dancy's class after an exciting morning in the Central Market.


  1. Wonderful views of the city and your new experiences. Brava!

  2. Thank you, a great snapshot for all of us at home! Awesome!

  3. Great post! Appreciate your photos- makes me miss Florence. Also, nice sketch from the Mercato Centrale! Ciao!