ANGELINA HELIOTI

 
ABOUT
 

My name is Angelina Helioti and I recently graduated from the architecture school of NTUA.

 

After months of thinking, I took the risk of leaving life in Athens. The reason, the very quality of life of the metropolis. The fast pace, the pressure to “meet the deadlines”, the crowd of people and the lack of natural environment were things that led me to change.

 

I moved to a small, mountainous village in Arcadia, Stemnitsa. Although I grew up in Laconia, Arcadia is my place of origin and so in a sense, I feel like I have come home. I don’t know how long I’ll be able to stay here, but whatever it ends up being, I’ll try to enjoy it to the fullest.

 

Here I am enjoying everything I have been craving! Trees, rivers, lakes, quiet, everyday life at a slow pace. I have a simple lifestyle, but it gives me inspiration for my artistic pursuits, photography, painting, and video making. At the same time, I am studying the art of silversmithing in a public school located here. In this blog you will find journal articles about my life here.

 

I hope you enjoy everything I’m about to share with you.

F I L E

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Working days

In the last few days the classes at the school and the jobs that have come up are quite enough and now different opportunities are coming my way on what I love to do, photography and jewelry making. Below you see photos of the construction of a ring with an open caston and an amethyst stone. An order which made me especially happy as it is one of my favorite stones. And apparently it was well liked, as soon as I posted it I received more orders!

One of the previous evenings, it was past time, but I wasn’t too tired to continue on the counter. I get a lot of satisfaction from working with metals and stones and also the lit candles and soft instrumental music kept very good company…

Below you see images from the design class at the School of Silversmithing. Sometimes we have real compositions and with a free drawing we capture them on paper. But the last time we once again made shapes in sketch form, to which we gave shadows, treating them as three-dimensional objects.

A lot of thought has gone into it…😂

I summarized in a small video moments from the activities I do these days. As you will see, I have moved the study and work area with the laptop to the loft. It’s warm up here and this part of the house gives me inspiration to write and edit photos. All this, of course, until the moment comes when I will pick up the acrylics and the brushes again, because as you know the loft is my little painting studio.

A new circle of life begins

Good evening to you all! I hope you are well and that 2023 has entered for you with joy and optimism.

 

 

Lately I didn’t manage to write here on the blog and show you photos of everything I did during the holidays. Looks like I needed a break from the computer and social media. But I thought that even belatedly it is worth sharing with you some images from the first days of the year.

Two days before New Year’s Eve I visited the wider area around Asopos of Laconia, which has great naturalistic interest and is very close to the place where I grew up. My company and I wandered around on some hiking trails were there, which unfortunately weren’t very well marked. We were looking for a long time for a large cave that we had seen on the map, but unfortunately we never found it. In fact, we met a shepherd with his flock and he told us that this cave is quite hidden inside the mountain and that it is not easy to find. So the mystery has peaked around this place and we may try again in the future to find it.

Nevertheless, we managed to climb to Paleokastro (an old castle), which is preserved in a ruined state, on a mountain top southwest of Papadianika. After 1463, the castle came successively under the rule of the Venetians and the Turks. It was used as a refuge for local residents during pirate and Turkish attacks.

The weather has been excellent for the month of December, which makes the excursions pleasant, but has troubled me quite a bit. I’m looking forward to some snow or even rain and fog and the smell of crystal clear air… But that day we wore thin clothes and lay on the grass. The whole landscape reminded me of the Shire from Tolkien’s Middle Earth. The view from up there was unique. We could see the entire Laconic gulf as far as Gythio and Kythira. If someone wishes to visit the castle, he only has to head from Papadianika to Daimonia. After about 2 km an impressive steep hill stands out. The hike takes less than an hour and is not very demanding.

The rest of the vacation time was spent relaxing and taking walks in the nursery and the garden around the house. It’s that feeling that comes over you when you’re in the place with most of your childhood memories, close to parents and grandparents and you feel like everything is safe. It seems very normal to wind down completely, wake up a little later than normal and enjoy simple everyday moments. I don’t know if you recognize this feeling too…

After a few days I returned to my base, in Stemnitsa. I made a small excursion to the Vrontos (=Thunder) waterfall, which is located somewhere between Karytaina and Andritsaina. Despite the popularity of the villages of mountainous Arcadia, the Vrontos waterfall remains one of the little secrets of the wider region. It takes its name from the thunder that its waters make as they fall from a height of 17 meters, in the dense vegetation.

And here you can see what it’s like when I go out for nature photography, a look behind the camera. I tried to roll up the legs of my jeans to keep them from getting wet, but that didn’t go too well in the end. By a misjudgment I found myself in a spot where the water was somewhat deep and so I got wet up to my legs. The water was so cold I could feel my exposed skin burning until it turned red. But now I’m used to making such sacrifices to get a good photo.

It was quite cold there as the spot doesn’t get much sun during the day, especially in winter. As I stood under the waterfall small drops of water rained down, bringing me completely back to the present. My ears were pierced by the sound of splashing water, that element without which there is no life on this planet. Harmony and sense of belonging… I had to be very careful because in some places the stones were sliding, but in some others it was not sliding at all, which impressed me…

Just before we left the spot, out of nowhere there was a huge group that had just finished a rafting trip. One of the teachers in our group solved the question about the spots where the stones did not slide. The answer lay in the fact that these brown masses were not stones but petrified wood (!) from the trees that had fallen into the stream and had been carved so perfectly by the water that it fooled you very easily.

And somewhere here this little mention of what happened with the arrival of 2023 comes to an end. A new circle of life begins and I can’t wait to see what it will bring! I’m hoping for something related to creativity, love and a little more self-awareness.


I send you my hugs. Have fun until the next article.

Christmas dusk

Good evening to everyone! I hope you are having a great holiday season so far. Although a little late I thought I’d show you some photos from my holidays on the mountain.

 

On Christmas Day, just before the sun went down, my two brothers and I were “running” with the car to catch the sunset. I was preparing the camera with the tripod in the car as we climbed to one of the highest points of Stemnitsa. Unfortunately, by the time we arrived and I closed the door behind me, the last sunlight was disappearing behind the mountain. We were a minute late. Although we didn’t enjoy the sunset, we were compensated with a beautiful moon dominating a clear sky with heavenly colors.

Stemnitsa looked lovely now in that pink shade. The village is located between hills and mountains, it is amphitheater but sheltered and from this point the view is wonderful because it also faces the village but at the same time outside it.

As we were enjoying the view at dusk, a friend who owns a guest house very close to the spot passed by with a group of three dogs. Roo or Snow White is an amazing dog, I’ve written about her before here on the blog. I’ve known her since she was a puppy, so she was very comfortable with us and played with my little brother, Drakoulis

As evening fell the colors became more and more magical. The blue hour produced amazing photos and I couldn’t help but shoot continuously, even with the battery in the red. These afternoon colors are kind of romantic, they make me smile even if it’s a nostalgic smile.

The time had passed, so we had to go back to the house to prepare for the Christmas dinner. We went to a very sweet village here in Gortynia, Valtesiniko, to a restaurant with live music.

Now, for the New Year’s Eve, I am in the place where I grew up, Vlachioti. So you have my best wishes for 2023 from here.

See you soon.

Hugs!

First flashes of my winter

Merry Christmas my dear readers!!!

 

I hope you spend the Christmas holidays somewhere pleasant with your loved ones and somewhere warm, or anyway, as you wish! I will spend the holidays here in Stemnitsa and the surrounding villages. The weather looks great outside the window, but it’s very cold!

With this article I just wanted to let you know that the new video about my early winter here on the mountain has been uploaded to my YouTube channel. It includes trips, simple everyday moments, creativity and the backstage from the “SAVE ME TO BE SAVED” video.

I hope you enjoy it.


See you soon.

Have a good time!!

Waiting for Christmas / A video in the works

Good evening!

 

The days are going smoothly now with sunshine, but very cold temperatures. This morning the thermometer read -3°C. It’s only a few days now until Christmas and I’m starting to get into that mood as I’ll be with my family here in Stemnitsa!

 

This week at school we are doing digital design lessons in a 3D program. It’s more relaxed than workshops, where there’s a frenzy of creativity and we go from one machine to another and back to our benches.

On Sunday I visited after a long time the little theater which is outside Stemnitsa and offers a wonderful view in the afternoons. I was there with my friend and graduate of the School of Silver and Gold, Sotiris Hatjinikolau. We talked, enjoyed the warm weather and played with the camera and the new tripod I recently bought! Yes, I finally made a small upgrade to my gear and I’m looking forward to some photo projects out in the woods.

The little theater is an open secret. A spot that offers seclusion when you need it, but direct contact with the village. So you don’t feel like you’re really far away. In the photo you see a construction, like a large armchair, made of wooden pallets. I made it with Konstantinos Kissas last summer, another friend also a graduate of I.E.K.. It’s comfortable enough to sit and relax, just if you ever come here bring a pillow or a blanket, it makes it more cozy.

On the way back we passed the path and not the asphalt road. It was very beautiful the afternoon light as it passed through the branches. It’s unbelievable that it’s December and nature has these colors. I don’t know what happens to the weather, really. However, they say that Christmas will be good weather here. Let’s see…

I also wanted to let you know that within the week I will be uploading a new vlog about how I spent the last two months here on the mountain. It will include excursions, daily activities and the backstage from the filming of “SAVE ME TO BE SAVED”. I put a lot of effort into this, so I hope you like it! I will also update you on socail media when this is published.

 

 

Until then have a great time!

 

 

Hugs!

Christmas tree

Today in Stemnitsa the weather was dreamy. The sun warmed the skin and the breeze was not so cold. When I went down to the square at noon I met a friend and sat at his table. We drank our coffee and a very interesting conversation ensued.

Then several of our acquaintances from the village began to gather, among them the Deputy Mayor of Gortynia, Nektarios Mparoutsas. We all started decorating the christmas tree under the bell tower. Many of the ornaments were hand made in various designs and colors.

The younger ones of us climbed the ladder for the ornaments that had to go in higher places. It was a strange feeling, like you absolutely had to put an ornament on the tree to make the holidays go well! Tourists driving by stopped and took pictures of us.

Here I am! My favorite decorations were the pinecones-balls.

The holidays start in one week! I’m not in the festive mood yet. I think for that to happen you have to feel close to your people. Sit around a table or take walks in decorated and illuminated streets with your loved ones. But the time is coming! Very soon the classes will stop and I will be able to enjoy some quiet and festive moments.


Until the next article, I wish you have a great time. See you very soon!

After the premiere

Good evening my friends.

 

It’s been a long time since I’ve written here on blog. The truth is that after the premiere of the video on my YouTube channel, a wave of positive reactions from people in the area and the press has started. Everyone who has seen the video has embraced it and raised awareness, which I’m very happy about, as that was the original goal.

Newspapers, magazines, radio and television shows have taken up the issue and hosted Zafeiris and me to talk more about this artistic action and about the topic of wind turbines in Mainalo. I really hope that this initiative contributes substantially to the wider struggle that the residents and agencies of Gortynia are doing. But even if we don’t succeed, I’ll know we tried.

In just five days, the video has exceeded 7 thousand views and has received many positive comments. When I first communicated my idea to friends and fellow students, I didn’ t imagine all that would follow. I want to thank the people who trusted this vision and participated in the video, but also those who, even if they didn’ t participate, morally supported the project. I also want to highlight the contribution of my friend and co-creator Zafeiris Zafeiropoulos, which was decisive for the quality of the video. Thank you for the beautiful comments you send and I hope this creation gives a hope for all the mountains and forests of Greece. After all, it concerns us all.

Yesterday I gave an interview to Tripoli Municipal Radio which you can listen to by clicking here: drt915.

 

Tonight at 21:00 you can watch the interview that Zafeiris and I gave to Angeliki Spyropoulou on the Ionian Channel, on the show “Entos Arcadias”.

 

See you soon!

Have a nice Wednesday afternoon.

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