Dakota Adan

Visual Poet | Storyteller #tigereyes ♥️my #tigertribe

What brings you joy? That special kind of joy that just pulls your whole being into a smile? ~ So if you missed my stories, I was enjoying an afternoon on the boardwalk in Atlantic City with my friend @gakenia3 (it's her birthday by the way!) and as was eating my fill of cotton candy (I friggin love sweets) I saw they had a helicopter ride. ~ Now if you've ever met my mother you know exactly where I get this from... I will always be the one to tell you: Get the cotton candy, buy the bright colored shirt, take the trip, and in this case ride the helicopter! ~ Squeeze joy out of every experience you can. Like liquid gold, it's in every moment, if we are willing to look. ~ I'm never going to deny the sad times, they happen, they are real, and so is pain. But if only for that reason, or maybe because deep down you know that life really is for you; I want to give you permission to leave your worries with me and live. ~ I want to give myself that kind of permission. ~ To pull the pin on my heart and laugh till I cry, and to stop waiting for the perfect moment, perfect plan, perfect shot, relationship, job, circumstance, or even the perfect version of myself; before I tap into the sea of joy that we get to swim in every day. ~ Accepting the beautiful, the tragic, and the deeply poetic sense of life fully leaves me with but one option: to laugh. ~ I hope you'll join me. ::::::::::: Taken on my @sonyalpha A7riii 50 1.4 lens : Come join me in my stories and answer the question of the day!!!
Who is someone that inspires you? ~ Today I wanted to honor someone who continues to remind me that there is beauty in the unapologetic journey, in the ruthless pursuit of simply being who you are. ~ Instagram and social media has seen the rise of many storytellers and visual artists that have a passion for sharing pieces of the world. But what has always impressed me is the brave souls who go beyond and always find the courage to share a piece of themselves in their work. ~ I have seen the same sights, and am not impressed by how many luxury bungalows populate a feed. If that is your truth then live it, but I too have been guilty of hiding behind an aesthetic. ~ No what impresses me most about this incredible woman is the authenticity that she barely manages to squeeze into her 4 suitcases or her 15 second clips from the road. ~ Whatever it is you call your occupation or calling; or perhaps the pursuit of something you hope to one day be... I hope you share real stories. I crave them. I crave something heavier than a paper thin feed, of photos mimicked from someone else's journey. You, dear reader, have a story worth telling. Own it. ~ I'm ready for it, the world is ready for it. And the truth is, in a saturated online space, we absolutely need it. ~ So whatever your hustle, here's to living out an authentic story. :::::::: Thank you to @glographics for coming to India with me! I adore you and am inspired by so much of what you do. : See the epic landscape version on my story! And join me for my questions of the day! : Shot on my @sonyalpha A7riii edited on fcpx and the music is called Mercury by @sleepingatlast
How would you describe yourself in one word? ~ It's been a few months since I've kissed these waters but I can still feel the Philippine ocean on my lips, and I swear sometimes I still find salt on my skin that refuses to return home. ~ To me the biggest miracle of the ocean is the way it connects us. She refuses all notions of fences and any line we draw across her is purely imaginary. Anytime I stand on the shore I am at the doorway to the rest of the world. ~ I hope to live like that one day. Beyond party boundaries and ethnic lines; to giggle at all the ways people try to divide me in pieces that are easy to label. ~ Go ahead, give it a try. ~ Call me the traveler, call me the dancer, call me the poet, call me the photographer; call me brown, call me male, call me mixed, call me Christian; draw whatever lines you need. I am all of it, I am none of it. ~ Because at the end of the day, all I am trying to be, all I want you to be, is who you are. ~ So leave the lines and the labels my friend and lets dance on this great ocean of life. :::::::::::::::: Shot this on my Nikon D5500 using a kit lens. Edited in lightroom
Can you paint with all the colors of the wind? ~ I know I can be serious a lot of the time but I cannot help but look at this photo and feel like I almost successfully emulated one of my life idols: Pocahontas. ~ While I was exploring on my own (which maybe wasn't the brightest idea when you don't have cell service) I actually ran into a bear too. And this forest is only an hour and some change outside of Los Angeles. ~ I love nature, I love forests and animals. It is in our humanity, that we are the only inhabitants on our planet who complain about who we are. The bear looked like she was enjoying being a bear, and I spoke with the trees and they told me they quite enjoy being trees. ~ I love sneaking away to natural places because in them I see divinity at its finest. The grass doesn't question whether it is good or bad, the rivers never argue over who's flow is best, and the birds never seem as anxious as I am. I want that. ~ I want to live without questioning the beauty of who I am, to enjoy, being me. Right here, as I am. ~ Existence is such a gift. Perhaps we should all stop frowning at our reflection. :::::::::: Come join the conversation on my stories! I love hearing from you! : This was shot on my @sonyalpha A7riii and edited on mobile lightroom
If you could not bring your camera, would you still go there? ~ This photo was taken moments after I saw and photographed a wild tiger in India. A major bucket list item for me, and truly a complete joy seeing these beautiful creatures as they were meant to be. ~ In my personal journey, I recently decided to take a week off of social media. And I'm not coming back on to tell you how much I hate it so don't worry there is no rant coming. I love it for all the priceless relationships it has given me and the community of people who have surrounded me. ~ But I will say this. I needed time. Time to be truly free, and to see what my heart wanted to do when no eyes were on me. To live my days when the only opinion that mattered was my own. ~ I needed to see how much of myself was a performance for the cameras and how much was truly, and genuinely me. And I will say that's a scary question to ask when you're 90,000 followers deep. ~ But even if it was 100K, 500K, or a million, there is no price worth paying for you to lose yourself. ~ I want to call this body home, and fill every space with the most authentic version of myself. Not some dreamt up version I saw on someone else's feed. To go places because I love them, to photograph things because they're moments I want to remember, to write words that are simply as honest as I can stand. That is what I ask of myself. To live fully into the gift it is to be me. ~ Because no matter what you decided to do with your one life, let me share this one irrefutable secret: You are already enough. :::::::::::: This photo was taken by @glographics my traveling and general human being inspiration. . Come join the conversations we are having on my stories, things get pretty real, and I can't wait to hear from you!
Today's post is a little different. I took this photo doing a bucket list trip to a tiger reserve to see one of my favorite animals in its wild home. And no I am not in it, but it means the world to me. ~ I don't have any tattoos. Which may come as a surprise to anyone who has been following me for a while because I love fake ones 😅 but that doesn't mean I would not get some. Everyone in my family has them and as I sat with them yesterday thinking of different things I would get something really important to me came to mind. ~ I have always loved tigers and although I've been to Thailand many times I never wanted to see them in captivity if I could help it. And what I'm realizing is the same way I love these wild creatures is the same way I want to love in general. ~ And thus my idea for a tattoo was born off three words: as you are ~ I want to look at myself and be able to say I love you, as you are. I want to look at the people in my life and say I love you, as you are. I don't want to tame the wild humans in my life any more than I would tame this wild beauty. ~ But if I'm being honest, too many times I've tried and missed out on what makes people (myself included) really quite special. You not meant to be like everyone else, and no one was meant to be the watered down version of themselves I've kept in my head. ~ Life is beautiful, because life is wild. ~ And the irony is, I don't think one goes in hand without the other. As we can love and accept ourselves in our beautiful uniqueness, we can love others, and stop taming tigers and start setting them free. ::::::: Shot on my @sonyalpha A7riii Check out my story to see the original photo and how dope it is to have all those megapixels! : Thanks to my boo @glographics for always being down to chase tigers with me
Are you comfortable when things get quiet? ~ A quiet morning with some tea does wonders for my soul. My mind used to be an alley that I didn't want to walk alone, and when you have a phone that works almost everywhere in the world and an app like this one where escaping is as easy as a double tap, it's easy to avoid that street entirely. ~ But I've been looking for answers in all the wrong places. In church pews, and self help sections, in far away countries and in the opinions of everyone else but my own. ~ What I wanted was an escape from all the pressing questions and fears life presents. What I needed, was to simply come home, to myself. ~ I want to trust myself. To be honest about how I feel and to walk paths that feel like my own. ~ And it starts in the quiet spaces. The places me and my entire culture, generation and time refuses to go. Without the chatter and without the need to do anything. ~ I'm looking for the places, where I can finally, just be. ::::::: Thank you to everyone who has been joining the really beautiful conversations on my stories! I love hearing from you guys, and if you haven't joined yet please come share your piece of the puzzle that is life. : @glographics took this brilliant photo on my @sonyalpha A7riii and I'll show you how I edited it on my story!
What are you most proud of in your life? And if you're really brave, comment back to other people's success and show some love! ~ In my room I have a dragon fruit plant my mom gave me. It started as one fleshy piece (kind of like a succulent or cactus of sorts) and when I was got it, I was about to leave for a while on a trip. So I set it in a vase in water and left it by the window, completely unsure of the fate of my new plant. ~ I came back weeks later to find it had grown vines and entirely new fleshy arms and over the last few months has continued this pattern of growth while I'm not looking. ~ Day by day nothing seems to change, but the moment I stop to catch my own breath I can see how life beautifully finds a way. ~ Today's post is a collection of memories; of adventures past and present. And it is also a reposting of something that makes me really proud to look back on my journey. ~ As a writer, photographer, and videographer, documenting a love letter to creation this makes me proud. And I hope you will not take this tree and forget that it started as a seed. ~ I hope you will approach your splendid life the same way. ~ I'm tired of comparing highlight reels, today I want to enjoy the garden. Today I want to simply be enough. ~ I hope you will join me.
Where do you have trouble letting go? ~ My amazing, beautiful and talented friend @alliemichellel thinks I try too hard (she's right). And I'm beginning to think that maybe I do too (told you she was right). ~ And I'm not telling you to not go after your dreams or put in the hard work necessary to become the healthiest most beautiful version of yourself, but maybe the whole process isn't one of becoming, but of coming home to who we were always meant to be... Of letting go. ~ Of letting go of the need to have the answers, of letting go of needing to have my life figured out. Of letting go of trying in 10,000 different ways, to be good enough... for myself. ~ What if I already am enough? What if I already have enough? What if I already do enough? ~ I've spent too long defending a position that one day, I will look back and say "I've done enough." But that's a lonely hill, that at its core says, i am not enough already. And that's not where I'm going to spend my days. ~ Because life is meant for honest colors, and I'm starting to see that, as I loosen my grip. ::::: Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone! Remember today that you are enough (thanks @neekida for the mantra) . I wasn't sure how I wanted to crop this photo, it's pretty beautiful close up too, I'll show the close version and how I edited it in my story! @glographics took this and should be pretty dang proud okurrrr : Taken on my @sonyalpha A7riii 24-70 2.8 Edited in lightroom
What helps you stay present? ~ For the past week I've been making a point to stop whatever I'm working on and go find a place to watch the sun set. It is my outward reminder, of my inner commitment to be present. ~ It doesn't matter what country, or what day, whether I'm at home or on an adventure; I want to show up for my own life. To breathe in those roses just a bit longer, hold their hand just a bit tighter, and laugh as if to remind every cell I own, that joy is the color we will paint these walls. ~ But it also means hugging for one more full breath than needed, letting the tears fall, exactly where they may; and thanking whatever power you believe in for the blessed opportunity... to love. ~ Because my thumbs are tired of scrolling past the days and weeks; and there's no filter for a life well lived, no matter what app I choose. So for now, I'm just going to show up for the one I've got, and fill every chamber of this heart to bursting; with epic journeys and perfect loves, till it no longer fits in my chest. :::::::: Happy Monday everyone! Hope to see you on my stories, come by and answer my question of the day i will be posting in a little. I love hearing from you! : Taken on my @sonyalpha A7riii with a 50 1.4 edited in lightroom
What part of your life do you wish you had completely figured out? ~ I have been trying, to leap past the experiences that grow me. To avoid the things that would open my eyes and the people that would open my heart. ~ Because the truth is growth is a painful process, and so much of me does not want to be present for the shedding of old skin. I'm trying to just breathe. And see if something about oxygen can teach me how to sit with the fear and be present for process. ~ I don't like being wrong, I don't like being scared, I don't like being unsure; but the truth is I have been. I am. And will likely continue to be in times and places for the rest of the journey called life. ~ No one told me living honestly with myself could be such a trial as well as a treasure. ~ But in that wild word "and" I find solace. I am not perpetually brave friends, nor am I immune to failure; I am visibly imperfect, unquestionably flawed, chronically late, I am the last person who wants to admit I don't have life (much less myself) figured out, For all my successes, I am indivisible from my "uglier" strokes of humanity... and I still am worthy of love. ~ And I want to stop running from myself, and be present long enough to hold hands with the glory and the dirt, because somewhere between, is the recipe, of my life. ::::::: Photo by my amazing friend and fellow traveler @glographics (who if you aren't following you should be!) Also don't forget to join the conversation on my stories with my question of the day! I love hearing from you guys and featuring your responses.
What bugs you the most about yourself? ~ The very thing some people find most admirable about me, is the very thing that makes me impossible to date sometimes. I am constantly striving to reach for the light and pull the best out of every opportunity, moment, and project; including the most important one, ourselves. ~ But this same compulsion is what drives me to neglect rest, and when I'm not at peace with myself I don't let others find rest either. ~ But I'm trying to love the person over the performance. And find a way to accept and love what's real rather than this ghost of what could be in my head. ~ I want to fall in love with the person I am, and stop having affairs with the person I think I should be. ~ The thought of waking up and actually being satisfied with who I am today (for better or worse) quite literally mortifies me. But that's the thing about unconditional love, we don't get to make our own conditions. So I'm trying to walk a different path. ~ One where I seek to love first and let fixing worry about itself. Where I can look at myself honestly and laugh at all the ways I run around looking for approval; when the thing I really needed, was really just my own. ~ They say truth weighs more than fiction; well I am trying to find my own gravity. ::::::: I read an amazing story that really speaks to this, I'll put it in my story so check it out today when you get a chance!
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