POI– a Trendsetter, a Wordslinger, a Super diarist , an Ardent documentarist , a Mesmerizing literist , an Amazing visual artist , an environmentalist, a traveler , a wanderer .Meeting Tarryn is like meeting God’s wholesome creativity , a gigantic natural wonder , a mystic creative endowment the God of creativity gave us. Her photo -artistry is mind spinning , while the story inside the visual is thought provoking. Jolly’s outpouring passion to nature ,its crawling beings and the wonderment interred in it , is quite mesmerizing.If Tarryn is not a creative angel sent on this mother earth to awaken us from slumber, she is the remaining artistic disciple of this natural mystery called Earth. Meet Tarryn Jolly , a story of stories in stories .-( Mbizo Chirasha POI EDITOR)
It’s funny how we never see it coming, those moments, those moments and choices that change your life forever. These incredible Beings came into our lives – and changed the course of history for our family tree.
Pictures speak a thousand words, and even more – they are moments in time that are captured forever… So no words need be said – Tarryn Jolly
WHEN NAMES CARRY GOLDEN TRAITS
Otherwise known as Tazz. Tazzy. Tarryn. Ta. Tarry. Tee. Jolly.
(Mom’s maiden name is Jolly, so I decided to take it as my own)
‘Tarryn’, valleys, mountains, and meadows. ‘Lee’, rugged rocks.
So this is me – born 1992, 02 December. Sagittarius and year of the monkey!
I have always been an inquisitive explorer out on barefoot adventures!
It has been the oxygen to my blood ever since I was a youngling – from collecting all shapes and sizes of shells and different varieties of rocks, to bringing home snails and often ants in my lunch box (much to my mothers delight!), as I was intrigued with how they built their homes, worked together, and carried loads 10 times heavier than themselves! Nature. Crazy. Beautiful. There was never a dull moment when I had my hands touching the earth.
Getting older, and growing up in the environment I did, with mom and the kids, as well as her baby home, and living on the land with the Zulu community in Oakford, I saw and have always been part of, a completely different life than many others know of or have experienced.
The rough. The raw. The scary. The frail. The poverty. The vulnerable. I have seen death. I have seen growth. The community. The culture. The history. The lands. The unconditional love. The endless service, the selfless service. The spiritual. The religious. The lives that were given second chances. The changes. The transformations. Those in need, those giving, and those receiving. I have seen the broken and weak progress to vessels of strength and purpose. I have seen hundreds of individuals and families sharing their time, laughter, and love, with these abandoned babies. I have seen volunteers from all over the world, come into my home as foreigners, and leaving as South Africans.
I have seen courage. I have seen growth. I have seen perseverance like no other.
I have seen families being bonded through love, and not just blood.
All these synchronistic happenings over my 24 years of existing on planet earth has really opened my heart to real moments of Africa, leading to my current passions and ever unfolding purpose.
CREATIVISM and CONSCIOUSNESS (Siamese Twins)
“We ask, what is it about Africa that unites us?’
GOLD DUST is a short documentary, narrated as a poem by various characters across the diverse landscape of South Africa, portraying their personal stories rooted in the rich heritage of South Africa, which ties us together as a country as well as unites us with the continent as a whole. We are Africa!
As we travel barefoot through South Africa, and eventually Africa, we allow this documentary to unravel itself as we go, using the locals and foreigners captivating love stories and experiences of Africa as our narration.
These interlaced interviews and moments that we string together to form a whole, express the boundless beauty of our extraordinary lands through the visuals of iridescent sunlit skies, evergreen valleys, rugged mountain terrains, the endless stretch of the ocean, and a multitude of other places and spaces. The traditions, the cultures, the musical melodies that beat through the feet of the people, the families and communities, the individuals, the languages, the sounds, the colours, the majestic animals,all intertwining and collaborating together to form the epic poem called, Africa.
We unite to act as catalysts in creating a ripple effect of moving Africa to the space of the heart, and portraying the raw, real, and pure beauty of Mother Africa, through the footprints that have been, will be, and are going to be, imprinted within her forever, and released as Gold Dust.
As a documentary film-maker, Barefoot Traveller, Inquisitive Explorer and Ambitious Adventurer, Travelling Toes orbits around the documenting of my journey, the interesting people I meet, the magical sunrises and landscapes of Africa, and all I create and manifest along the way.
From photography, videography, editing and writing, to my travels, stories, unique moments with fascinating characters of Africa, and my unconditional love for communities and local people, I combine these passions together to create short inspiration videos and stories of all I become a part of, as well as the ways in which I pay it forward to others through giving and creating – with little to no money – proving how simple it is to be a giver and of service to others… “The more you have, the more you need, the less you have, the less you need.”
I am inspired and deeply moved by all Mother Africa has to offer. Her ‘in-your-face’ attractiveness as well as her hidden, rough and raw realities which still shimmers with this majestic beauty, buried beneath the surface of her soil if you dig a little deeper…
Each piece of my travels, of my puzzle, is a fleeting moment in which I am able to capture and share, from her exquisite skies, her rugged mountains and infinite oceans, the evergreen valleys and different textured soils, to her mass diversity of cultures and people, as well as her visitors from other lands who become so deeply intertwined with Her, so much so that they feel they cannot leave.
PASSIONS, TALENTS and PEOPLE.
The amount of love, understanding, and purity that these kids have brought to my life, I doubt anyone could ever comprehend. I didn’t just watch them grow, I helped raise them. I have been a part of their every move, their every step, their scrapes and bruises, their first words, their first swim, their every baseball game or running race, their secrets and their loves, their pain and their understandings of life. From burping and feeding them, to changing diapers and bathing them. From rocking them to sleep in my arms, to spending the weekends looking after them when mum was busy. Being a part of their journey, and them in mine, has been the most phenomenal experience that life has gifted me. And how honored I am.
I am who I am because of my family.
Simon is now in music school and is a radical drummer! Mary and Jake are both captains in various sport disciplines – with amazing leadership qualities. Sadly, with every fairytale story, there are many moments of pain and suffering. Siyabonga will always have a space in our hearts…
To see the journey of how my rather remarkable family came to be, and my humble yet very wonderful pioneer of a mother, Ruth, please watch this 5 minute, award winning documentary that myself, and two mates from varsity created, for a short film competition called Stories Lived, in the category of Personal Passions.
RAISING THE FUTURE
- TALENTS BLOOMING INTO CREATIVE NECTAR
TRENDSETTER (Honeycomb of Creatives)
A wanderer. A traveller. An earth lover, animals too, of course.
A spiritual individual who is deeply connected to and moved by our Creator, and all of Creation.
A ‘go-green’, passive, yet highly tenacious individual. An activist.
A rock jumping, ocean dweller, mountain climber, bush diver.
I thrive on being outdoors and being active.
A sunrise seeker and naturalist!
A selfless server of the people along my path – “The purpose of life is a life of purpose”
An artist in photography, videography, editing, and writing, quite candid! Inspiring and motivating people to see our daily joys in the simple elements of life…
“Never forget the importance of living with unbridled exhilaration. Never neglect to see the beauty in all living things. Today, and this very moment, is a gift. Stay focused on your purpose. The Universe will take care of everything else.”
My attitude to life is Sunny Side Up – always look on the bright side of life! Everything happens, as it needs to. Love the balance of life, the easy flowing times as well as the more challenging ones, there are always lessons to be learnt, choose to grow!
Through all my travels, endless wanderings (mostly a lone ranger with my camera), countless homes I have had the pleasure of embracing, and the curiously fascinating characters I have met along the way, as well as hilariously entertaining situations, I have realized my fulfillment in life comes from my filming, travelling to new and different places, being part of the lands, the different sceneries, interacting with people, sharing stories, and recording moments. This is my ultimate Passion that breathes life into my very existence – doing what I love, and through it, allowing me to share it with others – the ecstasy of following your own dreams, and believing in all that you are capable of.
I started dabbling with a camera in high school – I loved how one photo could capture the essence of a moment and unravel an entire story.
Because of my mom and the baby home, we had many international volunteers coming to stay with us over periods of time.
Cindee was one of these volunteers, our crazy Canadian! Also an incredible photographer, she showed me a 3-minute clip of these photos and videos she had compiled together of the kids and our family, with some background music to add that melody and set the mood.
This blew my mind, how you could combine stills, movement, story, and music, to create an expression of the world you see and what you feel.
She was using Mac moviemaker, and let me play around on it for a bit, showing me a thing or two.
I taught myself how to use Final Cut Pro and started messing around with videos and editing. I wasn’t a professional or anything, everything was self taught trial and error, with entry level equipment, but I did it because I loved it – my stuff was mostly about capturing and expressing the essence of different moments. My interest and style has always been documentary vibes, the ‘right now’ moments, not the staged productions.
I went to film school and graduated from AFDA – but my main focus was writing and directing… I didn’t take cinematography or editing, though sometimes I wish I had!
So that’s me, and how all this has come to be!
BEYOND IMAGINATION (Contact with Gods and Goddesses)
I have a connection to our Earth, a love for all people, and a story to tell. Although my style of work is RAW I feel this type of footage adds character to this process of revealing pieces of Africa. The perfection can only lie in the imperfection – as one can’t exist without the other – even in the word of ‘imperfect’ does it state ‘I’m-perfect’.
As I step into each moment with an open heart, a free mind, and one heck of a tenacious attitude – I seek to share my experiences with the people of the world, showcasing the infinite splendour that’s on offer and to stir inspiration within the hearts of people, to move them, to share with them my creations, and to show how simple it is to make a difference, to chase your dreams and to never give up or lose hope.
Through filming, connecting, communicating, living, capturing moments and service within and around communities, I am exhilarated by the change I witness and become part of…
As the traveller of these toes that walk barefoot through life, I embrace and step into the moment. “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
A DIARY OF DOUBT AND HOPE (Phumie/Zake)
It was an ordinary sunny day of adventuring in Durban for me when I arrived home to find our helper and my dear friend, Phumie, in tears.
Her home was one bad gust of wind away from crashing ontop of them in their sleep!
There was this instant moment of connected compassion, understanding, and this surge of faith, when I told her I would help her build her home.
It was as if I had connected to the depths of her emotions, felt all she was feeling, and my spirit just knew – We can do this!
I started by creating a Facebook page for the project.
I then created a rough video edit introducing people to Phumie so they could know who she is and what’s her story.
I needed money for actual bricks, so I decided to create virtual ‘online bricks’ that each person would receive when they donated money towards the bricks.
(R100 per person, per ‘virtual online’ brick. If 100 people take part – we have enough funds to buy the batch of bricks needed)
The photo was so Phumie could see the face of each wonderful soul participating in this project. The inspirational quote was a personal choice of their own – so you lose never hope, and continue to believe in the infinite possibilities that life holds for each of us.
I promoted this daily and shared the status and FB page with every one I knew! Family and friends were very responsive, yet the process was slower than I anticipated.
February. March. April. May. June. July
It started getting tedious after a while, constantly trying to probe and plead with people just to share my status, never mind buy an actual brick.
Not enough people were responding.
I have 1900 friends on FB – and you’re telling me its taken this long – to get 100 people to each buy one brick? To rebuild someone’s home? Really?
I started to lose heart and drive, uncertain if I could do this. I felt annoyed with the world for seeming so disconnected from making a change in someone’s life.
It was in this flustering moment of doubt that I received a call from my dear friend, Gonda. “Tarryn. I have a guy with bricks. They are damaged, but strong and usable! Are you interested?”
Finally, a way forward! I accepted with gratitude, and moved into the next phase. The delivery of bricks!
How am I going to transport these bricks?!
Facebook – Friends – HELP!
And of course, help came to the rescue through my beautiful friend, Julian Leighton, who put me in contact with a gentleman who manages a truck business.
An incredible human, whom I have yet to meet, Avinash, completely opened his heart to this project, providing a truck to fetch and deliver the bricks, as well as workers to offload them (myself included!).
I ran into a brick wall – face first.
When I originally asked Phumie what she needed in order to help fix her home, all she said was ‘bricks’. So, bricks are what I arranged.
Some bright spark then asked me
– “Tarryn, who is going to build this house once you deliver the bricks?”
To be honest, I hadn’t even thought of that.
So I asked Phumie…
Her response was priceless and rather light-heartedly humorous.
“The man who delivers the bricks.”
Wham! And that’s when I realized – what on earth have I gotten myself into?
Clearly, this was not viable, and I was in quite the predicament.
I had two choices.
Leave the bricks with Phumie and casually walk away… Knowing that she can’t afford to build her home, and that the bricks will slowly disappear one by one.
Finish what you started.
Bricks – took 5 months.
Imagine trying to now build an entire home?!
Pensioners discount please.
Well, mum raised me to never give up, and I’ve never been one to back down once I’ve set my mind to something.
So with no knowledge of building a house, and managing this all alone, I agreed to continue, with love in my heart and faith as my drive. My next step was to find a builder – so I chose a local builder from the community as a way of supporting the locals.
I underestimated the challenge of the language barrier between us! But we made it work. (Hand signals, body language, and the combination of broken up English and Zulu) Since the bricks were donated, I used the money we raised to pay Zakes for his labour. All his friends from the community laughed at him, saying how he can’t build a home with broken bricks.
It was even funnier for them because I was the umlungu (white person).
Yet much like myself, he was also turning the seemingly impossible – to possible.
We started jotting down the materials we needed to build the home:
Cement. Sand. Windows. A door.
Money for petrol. Tools. Lintels. Brick-force. Damp-course. Wall plates. Corrugated Iron. Etc etc.
Many of which I had absolutely no clue what they were! (Thank you Google images)
Still in need of funds, I kept sharing the journey with people on Facebook, through my photographic documentation and inspirational descriptions of the process.
Thanks to my cousin, Jerri, she sent my link through to East Coast Radio for their ‘Heart Stuff’ section.
I received a phone call from them, wanting to interview Phumie and me, and to have us on air in the morning while everyone is driving to work – how unfathomable the synchronicities are! Everyone knows someone who knows someone who can help.
East Coast enabled us to reach more of the Durban population, sharing our list of needed materials.
Such a blessing, the Independent on Saturday heard our story and drove all the way to Phumie’s home to come and interview us and snap some shots. We were on a roll, and seemingly unstoppable! Special thanks to Tanya Waterworth and Zanele Zulu.
One Brick – The Short Story
I arrived home to find Phumie, a staff member at Sinakekele Children’s home, in despair. After one of our freak storms, her mud hut home took its last beating and was crashing in on her and her two kids, fearing for their life every time the wind blew. I decided to help her buy bricks towards the building, gathering funds through various methods, starting with a Facebook
Tarryn Jolly webiste(http://travellingtoesafrica.co.za)