“What is Vegas Evolve?” you ask. Alright, I’ll tell you…
Nearly two years ago, before I even decided to take photography seriously, I had an idea for a lifestyle blog. The vision came to me shortly after falling in love with Southern Nevada. I envisioned the blog as an inspirational lifestyle blog that would help people see Las Vegas and the surrounding area in a different light. But, not only that. I wanted the blog to open others’ minds about their own hometowns.
Now, before I go further into the “what” of my blog, I need to give you the “why”…
A Little History
I was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada. While I’d never hated living here, I definitely dreamed about living somewhere else. Maybe London with its close proximity to Paris. (Oh, the amazing Euro trips I could take!) Or New York, the ultimate bohemian dream. Or, perhaps, San Francisco with its abundance of art and culture. Or, maybe I wouldn’t have a home-base, and instead travel from place to place like a little hippie. The options were endless. There were so many cities that seemed far more interesting and fulfilling than this place known as “Sin City.” (Or, so I thought!)
In January 2011, I decided that I was spending way too much time watching CNN… and figured I needed to make a better effort at being active. One day, my boyfriend, Dave, and I decided to take a leisurely drive through Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. I’d been there plenty of times before, and thought it was okay but nothing like the Mediterranean Sea or Chichen Itza. This time, however, something was different…
Not sure if it was the Travis CD playing in the background, or the way the light illuminated the peaks and valleys… but something opened my eyes, and sparked that feeling of awe and wonder. I no longer saw Las Vegas as a second-rate Los Angeles, filled with shiny disco balls and silicone. But, instead, a giant treasure chest of adventure.
Hello, Inner Child
Suddenly, my inner Indiana Jones (the same spirit that dominated much of my childhood) was reawakened. I wanted to explore any and everything I possibly could. I wanted to check out every petroglyph, hike every trail and know the detailed history of the place I had called home (and taken for granted) for over 25 years. A new passion was born!
It was thrilling to know that there are so many amazing places within just a daytrip’s drive away. I was so excited that I hung a huge Nevada highway map in my office at home, and placed a pin in every spot on the map that Dave and I had visited. I made a 2011 goal to visit every state and national park in Nevada. Seeing all of the pins in the map felt so empowering (even though we didn’t reach our lofty goal that year). It reminded me of the feeling I had while studying abroad back in 2005. Back then, I had felt like the world was my oyster, traveling wherever my little heart desired. Who’d of thought I’d feel that again six years later in lil’ old Nevada?!
One Thing Led to Another
Through my passion for the great outdoors, I made a soulful realization. And, this was that I needed to live in the moment. Getting outside and exploring certainly helped me to live in the moment. And, quickly, sparked a new passion – photography!
Now, let me be clear – I have ALWAYS enjoyed taking pictures. But, it wasn’t until this obsession with exploring Nevada that I really embraced a calling that was within me all along. Nothing brought me more into the moment than photography. And, being in the moment seemed to slow down time. How perfect!
Having opened myself up to the beauty of the place I called home, I opened the door to many possibilities and passions. I can’t believe I used to feel like Las Vegas was a tourist trap filled with nothing but smoke and mirrors. All along, there’s been this dazzling desert just waiting to be embraced.
Are you bored in your town? Don’t think there is any excitement? Do you dream of faraway lands filled with adventure? If so, I encourage you to start exploring the place where you live. Throw everything you know – or think you know – right out the window. You might just find that it’s the most amazing place you never knew existed, even though it was there all along.
I can almost promise you that if you give it a little love, it will love you right back!
So, that sweet epiphany I mentioned above? That’s precisely what prompted me to launch my blog, Vegas Evolve. This has been two years in the making. I even purchased the domain way back then. But, I couldn’t launch it until I knew its purpose.
Vegas Evolve represents my personal evolution… and YOUR personal evolution (should you decide to join me in this “movement” of sorts). To “Vegas Evolve” is to realize that the moment is now and the beauty is right in front you, and it doesn’t matter where you are. I believe everyone can open their minds and hearts and stop taking their towns and their lives for granted. I want everyone to “Vegas Evolve!”
For me, photography plays a big part in this evolution, so it only makes sense that – at least for now – Vegas Evolve be a part of my Gina Mizzoni Photography website. It’s part of my story. It’s part of what makes me, well, me… and each passion (photography AND Vegas Evolve) fuels the other.
What I Hope to Accomplish Through Vegas Evolve:
- Help people realize that Vegas is about more than just casinos, gambling and nightclubs
- Help people realize that their own hometowns are about more than the stereotypes
- Open others’ eyes to the beauty that exists within them and all around them
- Inspire others to live their lives to the fullest
- Start a movement of like-minded individuals who care about the planet and their lives
- Show people that you can evolve anywhere, even in a place like Vegas
- Share my art and perspective with others
- AND MORE
What You Can Expect From Vegas Evolve:
- My personal experiences
- My photographic knowledge and best practices
- Pretty pictures, memes and infographics
- How-to’s and tips for hiking, photography, travel, vegetarianism, day-trips, spirituality, Vegas lifestyle, and more
- Interviews with evolved Las Vegans
- Special posts from Guest Bloggers
- Reviews of places and experiences in Vegas (and other places, from time to time)
- Poetry (Maybe…)
- Contests and giveaways
- Regular inspiration to help you live in the moment and honor your surroundings (whether in Vegas or Timbuktu)
- And plenty more!
So, stay tuned! And, thank you for joining me on this journey.