By Nick Weiss
Saluti da Firenze!
I cannot believe I only have two weeks left in the marvelous city of Florence, Italy. At the midpoint of my study abroad, I have had experiences and learned things that are amazing and life-changing.
I am disappointed to think that in two weeks, I have to say goodbye to some incredible people I’ve met—my amazing friends, the friendly administration, and the incredible professors I’ve studied under.
My classes are going great and I’ve learned a great deal that I’m excited to bring back and incorporate into my senior thesis work this year. I’ve been exploring new printmaking techniques, materials, and styles as well as a great deal of advanced darkroom techniques for my photographic works. My instructors have pushed me to break out of my comfort zone and try new styles and working methods that I’ve not yet explored or have simply neglected to try.
I’m currently pursuing a style of street photography to create a body of work that shows my travels in the city of Florence—a bit less touristy approach to photographing Florence. I’m very excited to see where these photographs will end up and how they will all come together to make a cohesive body of work.
When traveling abroad some students find that they may have different challenges or obstacles to face in their time and studies. Something I’ve found with myself is being mindful of currency and exchange rates. Currently, the Euro holds more worth than the American dollar. At first I found myself not thinking too much about item cost. “Oh, that glass of coke was only two Euros? I’ll have another!” Well 2€ is about $2.75. So, things were adding up quicker than I realized.
After about a week or so into my time in Florence, I noticed that my money usage seemed oddly high, and I started thinking more and more about the prices of things and their exchange rates. In an effort to be more mindful of my budget, I ask myself, “Do I really need that?” or “Is there a better deal elsewhere?” Which there always seems to be!
The closer to the Duomo you get, the more expensive things tend to be—sounds obvious right? Well, now that I am constantly more and more aware of things like this, I am able to make smarter choices and walk a block off the beaten path and find really, really great deals on items and food. It’s also a great way to become good friends with store owners and get discounts time to time.
The clock really is counting down with only two weeks left, and I still cannot believe that this much time has flown by already.
Grazie e ciao!
Whether for a few weeks or a full semester, CCAD students are studying off campus across the nation and around the world. Read about their experiences here.