Istanbul Residency: Spontaneous trip to Cappadocia

by, Jaclyn Dooner (MFA 2015)

Spontaneous trip to Cappadocia:
Bus transportation in Turkey is hectic.

With an approaching national holiday, studio closure and city shut down, we decided to plan a last minute trip to Cappadocia. In a day's notice we booked a hotel, a hiking/hot air balloon excursion and four one-way bus tickets to Gerome, Cappadocia. We started our adventure with some peaceful and productive afternoon sketching then boarded a shuttle bus that would start the longest trek ever. Zero English, three bus transfers, bathroom/prayer-cleansing room confusions, crying babies, 3am highway gridlock, onboard chickens, no AC, 5 bags of peanuts, three-ish naps, multiple are-we-supposed-to-get-off-heres, 16 hours and TA-DA! Stunning Cappadocia! All worth it.

The time here has been unlike anything we’ve ever experienced before. It’s been filled with an unbelievable combination of drawing, exploring, learning, trekking and immersing ourselves in the local culture. Without a solid itinerary, each day has been filled with unexpected surprises and mystery. It’s been a valuable lesson on living in the moment and embracing whatever comes our way! I know we all feel incredibly grateful for this experience.

Daily Sketching

Devrent Valley, aka Camel Valley

Sunrise hot air balloon excursion

Simón’s midflight anxiety attack

Afternoon hike through the Red Valley, Cappadocia

Byzantine Frescos in a hidden Red Valley cave, Cappadocia

Sunset over the Red Valley, Cappadocia

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