Emese Gaal

Interview with
Emese Gaal/Science Meets Art

Emese, pronounced A-may-shay, is a photographer in San Diego. Her blog is centered on her photos which range from people to places and things like the Urban Trees that can be viewed right now along the Port of San Diego and the San Diego fires from last fire season. Here is her gallery and her blog.

When is your Blog Birthday?

October 28, 2002

Why do you blog?

I’ve had a “personal” web site since college that housed pictures, links, and plenty of horrible animated gifs (spinning turtle playing the banjo anyone?). As I got better at taking pictures, I installed “Gallery” to help upload, organize, and share my photos online. When a few months later I stumbled across the concept of photoblogs, I thought a blog would be a perfect way to complement my galleries and let friends and family know when I’ve added new albums and photos to the site. It was only a matter of time before I got addicted to the feedback. There’s nothing more satisfying than knowing that someone has enjoyed your work. And mom and dad still visit to make sure I’m alive when I haven’t called home in two weeks. Hi, mom and dad!

What is the usual subject matter?

I post photos that I take.

What don’t you talk about? Why?

I used to write about what I thought were clever observations about the state of the world, work, my life or lack thereof. At some point I realized my words were not nearly as original or interesting as my photos and I preferred letting just the photos tell my stories.

And since I don’t use an alias, I don’t like to talk about work or very personal issues. Google is a big tattletale.

What is the best experience regarding something you wrote in your blog?

The best I’d have to say was when I asked for advice on making travel arrangements to Europe and I not only got recommendations, but offers to stay with complete strangers who only knew me as the girl behind the camera. That was amazing.

What is the best thing about living where you live?

Favorite: Location, location, location. We can drive to the ocean, the mountains, or the dessert in just minutes, and enjoy virtually year-round blue skies and sunshine. There are days I drive home from work with the windows rolled down, the music blasting, and as I catch a glimpse of the sun setting into the Pacific and I breathe in that first whiff of the salty, ocean air, I can’t believe I’m lucky enough to live here. Those days, I’d be happy living in a cardboard box with my camera.

Worst: We can’t really afford to live here.

What would you do if you were president of the US?

Is this question multiple choice? I’d choose “all of the above” or “none of the above”. Those are usually good bets. Especially when it comes to being
president. Insert some insights about how to achieve world peace and raise the collective IQ of the world.

One thing for sure, I’d fire a lot of people.

What actor would play you in the movie of your life?

Elijah Wood? I’m told he looks fabulous in a skirt.

Some severely misguided but well-meaning shopper at Victoria’s Secret three years ago made my decade by comparing me to Gwyneth Paltrow. Is that bragging or blogging? Anyway, I sometimes fantasize I could be like Jennifer Garner. This movie won’t have to be based on reality, right? Perhaps a little CGI magic? A little toy story action?

What is your favorite color?


What is your favorite food?

Hungarian chicken paprikas with homemade spaetzle and cucumber salad, but I hate picking a favorite. Eating is a very good hobby of mine and there are just too many flavors in the world to only eat one.

What are your other hobbies?

Photography, adventures (you can talk me into trying most everything once)

What do you want to tell other bloggers?

Don’t do drugs. Stay in school. Smile more. Maybe skip the first one.

What is your next aspiration or goal?

Pronounce v’s and w’s correctly. Seriously. Tell any Eastern European to say “weathervane” ten times really fast.

Give shorter, more meaningful answers to questions when asked. Definitely stop talking when audience starts walking away.

Use the word “stoked” at least once a day.

Seriously? I want to be get back to reading more and learn at least one new skill by the end of the year. I’ve thought about taking everything from glass blowing to knitting and to cooking classes. But perhaps wherever I am, I’ll just end up thinking “I wish I had my camera here to…”

My better half would point out I should slow down and simply enjoy life more. At our house, we call him the “Wise One.” Not to his face of course.

Fascinating facts about you:

Fascinating is quite a bit to live up to. Did you know that it is derived from a Latin word meaning an evil spell or a phallic-shaped amulet? As you can see “I don’t like peanut butter or root beer” only goes so far. I also think that etymology and entomology are awfully easy to mix up.

Good, bad, horse manure?

Thank you, Emese!

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