Browsing Tag


Photography Tips: How to Avoid Imprisonment in Dubai

I skipped down the road in Old Dubai, camera slung over my shoulder, chatting to my friends as a video crew trailed behind us. We were in high spirits, exploring the city without smartphones, on our way to the Dubai fish market. We passed a man sitting on a ledge in the morning sun, drinking tea from a styrofoam cup. Sami stopped to ask the man for directions. “May I please take your photo?” I asked the man. He nodded shyly. I snapped the picture, showed it to him, and continued along my merry way. My last photo before “the incident”. We reached the fish market, a large warehouse that smells like fish from half a kilometer away. Men hurried in and out with carts. My heart raced; local markets are my favorite places to take photos. I pulled out my GoPro camera to record the scene as I walked into the market, as I’d been doing everywhere we went for the last two days. I spied a stand just to the right of the entrance, where a man hacked open coconuts to sell to thirsty customers. Coconuts! I love coconuts. I turned toward the coconut stand, GoPro outstretched. As I approached the stand, a woman walked away […]

Continue Reading

Discovering Hidden Dubai, Without a Smartphone

I’ve just returned from a five-day trip to the United Arab Emirates. That sentence has a nice ring to it, don’t you think? Look, it’s Heather on a train in Dubai. I’m not sure how to begin to explain this trip. Let me start from the top. I was invited to the UAE by a company called Qualcomm, to participate in a blogger/Instagrammer campaign promoting Qualcomm’s products. Before this invitation, I knew Qualcomm only as the title sponsor of Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego. But it turns out that in addition to sponsoring a football stadium, Qualcomm is one of the oldest and most innovative wireless technology companies in the world. Among many other things, Qualcomm developed the first GPS for mobile phones, it invented airplane mode (for some reason this really impresses me), and it was the first company to develop apps for use in smartphones. For the purposes of this campaign, the most important fact is that Qualcomm produces chipsets: the tiny machines inside smartphones that make smartphones smart. (I dare you to say that five-times-fast.) Qualcomm’s “Snapdragon” chipsets are inside many of the world’s most popular smartphones. If you’re a techie person then you probably understand what I’m talking about. If you’re an […]

Continue Reading