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A Life Spent Documenting Things

A Life Spent Documenting Things

From a very young age, I started documenting my life through pictures, film, and writing.

Whether I was taking pictures or filming with a camera I was always capturing my surroundings and the people in them. You can ask anyone that's been around me and they'll tell you that most times, I'm with camera in hand (sometimes even with a mic), always trying to find a way to tell a story, or to ask them questions. A curious mind, my goal was to better understand the human condition.

I am fascinated by people's makeup and the events that shape who they are, which is probably why I ended up in hosting + production. It was never about making it in said career, per say, but more about continuing my exploration of people. Which is why Untitled Female makes so much sense. Essentially, it's a way for me to continue understanding people (especially via the UF podcast), but also acts as a sort of Life Review.

Along with my own documentation via film + photographs, I have countless journals of written material which date back to second grade. I've also collected things from my life which all sit nicely in my many memory boxes. These help me understand some of the personal issues I'm grappling with at the moment. It's a way to look back into my mind and to analyze why the certain patterns I've grown accustomed to, exist in the first place.

Of course, there's also the fact that a lot of my life has been documented by others.

First, because of my Father's career, I'm able to get my hands on old videos + photographs that pertain to my family's story.

My Mother, too, was an athlete, so I'm able to see her from a young age. Here she is at the age of 15, winning Gold at the World Junior Championships in London, Ontario.

Second, my sister and I, spent a large chunk of our childhood working towards being singers + performers. So that too, gives me access to certain chapters of our lives.

Third, my brother, Igor, has played hockey since a child and is currently playing in the Major Junior Hockey League (for the video, click here).

Lastly, my career, which has either been in front of or behind a camera, gives me access to the majority of my 20's.

Essentially, I have a dispersed library telling my story. Which is why I want to get it all into one place. The reason for this is because there is a bigger story that I want to tell but before I get to it, I need to set up the foundation. I need to provide some context. So that's what I'm going to do and that's what you're going to see.

One more thing. Characters!

In order for me to properly tell my story - this is going to be a production reference - I need to include the important characters who've played a part in my life. Some will be main characters, others will be supporting characters...and then there will be those who could have done a better job supporting. There will be heroes and villains. With each Character there will triumphs and defeats. There will be lessons-learned and lessons that took too long to learn (although, who's to say that they were in fact learned just at the right time).

The point is: I need to give context so that the story I'm looking to tell makes sense. Does that make sense?

Ok. Let's begin.


Here's what I know:

It's just a little after my 4th Birthday. We are in North Vancouver, Canada. I have lived in two apartments in Moscow. Lived in two apartments in downtown Vancouver. And now, I've moved to my family's first townhouse. If counting, which I am, this is Home No. 05.

I now have a sister. Her name is, Diana. She is named after the Princess Diana. I cry for two days when she is born.

At the moment, my father is a hockey player for the Vancouver Canucks. He has finally achieved his dream to play in the NHL.

My family has a dog. I name him Lucky. 

This summer, a boy named Pavel Bure arrives from the Soviet Union. I call him Pasha. He lives with us. He is like an older brother to me. 

Here's what I don't know:

Lucky will provide me with my first scar. It will be on my right elbow. I will be walking him on a leash, in a dress, down the street by our home. He will run. I will fly after him. My elbow will bleed. My scar will stretch as my arm grows longer.

On August 31, 1997, Princess Diana will die in a tragic car accident. I will be in Michigan at the time. My mom will cry. I won't understand her significance until much later in life. I will feel sad for her sons when they later reveal the severe depression they went through during this time, and the many years that followed. I will applaud them for raising awareness about mental health. 

My Diana will become the first human to really know me. She will be my rock on the numerous occasions I fall. She will break my middle finger in 1996 or 1997. It will happen after I beat her in a board game. There will be times in my life where I'm really mean to Diana. Somehow she sticks around.

Pasha will become a significant person in my life. Each time I see him later in life, I will walk away with immense life lessons. Once at a dinner in Florida, where my toddler brother accidentally spills wine on his then girlfriend. Once, at my best friends 13th birthday party soiree in Moscow. Once, when I find myself in a car with him, filming a television feature for the Canadian network, TSN. Each time, I will want to hug him. Each time, I won't. 

It is 1958.

It is 1958.

It is 1989.

It is 1989.