Boarding Pass – Chelsea Watson

Chelsea Watson is a graphic designer. As long as she has her laptop, sketchbook and internet connection from time to time, she can work anywhere. And hence she can finance her trip around the world. She documents her travels on her wonderfully titled blog, Aesthetic of Lostness. In addition, she keeps up There & Here, a collaborative design project with her best friend Charlotte, from design school, who is now based in South Africa. The project is designed to share explore the differences and similarities of their lives in their own part of the world. Thanks, Chelsea!
rare self portrait on Aesthetic of Lostness, Dresden

home town:
Calgary, Canada

where you live now:
on the road, currently in Vienna, Austria
Laax, Switzerland

Last trip taken:
So far on this trip I’ve been to London, Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Edinburgh and throughout Switzerland.

next trip on deck:
I’m continuing on this trip through Eastern Europe, Ireland and Scotland. After that I will be in South Africa for two months this spring.
Borough Market map, London

posters, Berlin

one place you would go back to again and again:
What I love about this country is the…, comparing South Africa & England on There & Here

place you’d most likely recommend a friend go visit:
detour on Aesthetic of Lostness, Edinburgh

preferred method of transportation:
To travel between places, I love taking the train. That’s one thing we don’t do too well at home so train travel is quite novel for me. To travel within places, bicycle whenever possible.

place you’ve never been but dying to go:
Andrea Heller’s work in Helmhaus Gallery, Zurich

place you’d never go back:
Las Vegas
Luzerner Theater, Lucerne

most memorable trip in 2 sentences or less:
Sitting on an airplane next to my ex for over 15 hours of travel to Australia on Christmas Eve. Not my best trip, but definitely the most memorable (don’t worry, it went up hill from there!).
Christmas traditions, comparing South Africa & Czech Republic on There & Here

how do you prepare for a trip?
Read blogs, look up people in the city I might know, creep Facebook photos of friends who have been there, ask recommendations of those friends…for better or for worse I generally do very little prep.
Souvenirs, comparing South Africa & Switzerland on There & Here

how do you record your travels when you’re traveling?
Photos and my blogs. On There & Here I compare wherever I am with where my best friend Charlotte is through snapshots and designs. On Aesthetic of Lostness I post projects I’m working on, design inspiration I find and messages about my trip. Recently, instagram has also been great for recording snapshots and sharing them with everyone at home.
sampling of instagram snapshots (clockwise from top left: Francouzska Street, Prague; Monmouth Coffee, London; Laax ski resort, Switzerland; street art, Berlin; Vaclav Havel tribute, Prague; haggis, Edinburgh)

what is your favorite thing to photograph in a new place?
I mostly take random photos of design inspiration I find in a new city, posters, signs, street art, architecture…that sort of thing. I am also totally the person who takes photos of my food!
mincemeat tarts and mulled wine, London

spätzli & applesauce, Flims, Switzerland

currywurst: Berlin

on an average, how many pictures to you take on a trip?
I am likely the worst at taking travel photos. When I was in Australia my camera broke about halfway through the trip. It was a blessing in disguise as it was so nice to just experience the trip rather than seeing it through a lens. Since then I don’t take nearly as many photos when I’m traveling.


what’s in your “designer travel kit” ?
macbook, iPhone, Canon S95 camera, pencil crayons, pens and a few small notebooks.
along the Vltava Christmas morning, Prague

street art, Berlin

student poster exhibit, Lucerne

what do you do after a trip? how long after a trip does this happen?
I try to blog as I go but everything else likely won’t happen until after I’ve been home for some time and can separate myself from the experience a bit. I usually go through and edit my best photos to post online and print a few for myself. This time I hope to do some sort of design series of all the cities I end up visiting. Might be too ambitious…we’ll see.
I bought a ring made from a spoon from this sweet man in Tacheles Art Space, Berlin

favorite souvenir/thing to bring back?
As this is a long trip and I don’t have much space in my bag, I am trying to collect a piece of jewelry from each country I go to. It’s something I’ll actually use and I also think it will be a nice way of starting conversation about my travels if anyone asks me where I got any particular piece.

Design portfolio
Aesthetic of Lostness
There & Here
@chelseawatson on Twitter

Boarding Pass is a weekly column exploring the creative ways people travel.

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