I love the mountains, but for some reason I don’t get to visit them often, even though I live pretty close to the Alps. Maybe it’s because the people I hang out with are not lovers of high altitudes, but I miss them a lot. It was therefore a great pleasure for me to chat with Bethany Llloyd this week and to admire her beautiful photographs of the Alps and especially of the Dolomites.
BethanyLloyd is an outdoor enthusiast who takes her photography with her into the mountains. Winter or summer, feet on the ground or seat in a harness she endeavours to find her view from a new angle.
A few weeks ago I was visiting Photokina, the world’s largest photo and video trade fair, held every year in Cologne, Germany. As I was leaving the exhibition’s floor at the end of my last day there, I happened to pass by Fujifilm’s booth and I noticed there was a talk about to start on the stage. The photographer that was going to present her work was Saraya Cortaville, who I didn’t know previously.
I decided to stay a little bit more to attend the presentation and I am happy that I did, because her work was truly inspiring and her personality captivating. At the end of the talk, I introduced myself and invited Saraya to be my guest on the show and she graciously accepted, so we recorded an interview a few days later and here it is.
Saraya Cortaville is an award winning portrait and social documentary photographer. She has received two fellowships (one of only two women in the UK to have achieved this) one for studio portraiture and most recently social documentary for a project she completed in 2015 whilst living in Africa. She was awarded the Peter Grugeon award for the best fellowship portfolio of 2015, and a gold award in Visual Arts in the professional photography awards 2016. Saraya’s passion for travel and people has pushed her career into a more adventurous phase and she has recently lived and worked abroad for various international NGO’s documenting social issues in countries as far as Tanzania and Nepal. Saraya skilfully manages to draw out her subjects emotions and feelings, in a sensitive and empathetic nature, her portraits are an observation and moment of connection, between two people, rather than photographer, subject. When not abroad Saraya shoots primarily location portraiture specialising in children and documentary weddings.
This episode of the podcast is all about giving. Whether it is giving life to a new human being, giving help to disadvantaged communities in developing countries or giving education to aspiring travel photographers and travel writers, my guest Kate Siobhan Mulligan certainly knows what it means to give.
KateSiobhan Mulligan is a freelance travel photographer and photo-educator from British Columbia, Canada. She is COO of The Giving Lens, taking teams around the world on photo workshops that also partner with local NGO during the trip to document, teach photography, and leave an impact on a community. She also is Lead Photo Faculty for MatadorU.com teaching both fundamentals and advanced Travel Photography courses. When not doing these, she freelances in many other areas, or often turns everything off to explore beautiful BC with her husband and their baby girl.
We started my conversation with Kate talking about what a travel photographer must give up, when she has just given birth to a beautiful baby. We then discussed the work she does with The Giving Lens and with MatadorU. I just love the energy and the hope Kate brings to everything she does and I am sure you will love it too, if you listen to her interview.
Susan Onysko is a travel photographer who has devoted the last decade to the art of capturing evocative stories from some of the most remote and extreme locations of our world — from Bhutan to Death Valley to Romania to Vietnam. Because Susan has an eye for both the unexpected images that evoke a locale’s purest essence and the relatable moments that unite us in our similarities, her well-rounded, professional work has garnered numerous international awards and exhibits.
To Susan, people are the best representatives of a location; and their exotic, rugged, or smiling faces are the first to flash through the memories of her trips. Catching people in unguarded, genuine states requires patience, something of which she has an abundance as a mother of four. In locales with few people, she has reflected seemingly human emotions in wildlife. With the luck of being unaffected by jet lag, flexibility in toting family along for adventures, detailed use of digital editing tools to convey intended mood, and freedom from technical “rules,” Susan has proven she’s always ready for opportunities to create something not seen before.
It was a great pleasure to discuss some of Susan’s most beautiful photographs with her, to understand the thought processes that led her to capture that specific scene, the conditions in which they were taken and the equipment she used. If you want to know what makes a great travel photograph, as opposed to a vacation snapshot, you should definitely listen to this interview.
For the second expert roundup on travel photography, I asked 18 friends the following question:
“Aside from cameras and lenses, what is the single piece of equipment that you always carry with you, wherever you travel?”
You can read their answers after the fold. I am sure there are some items in the list that will surprise you and that you never thought would be an indispensable complement to a travel photographer’s tools of the trade. Maybe you will consider carrying some of those on your next trip.
What does it take for an image to go viral and be shared on dozens of websites? Is it a matter of chance or does luck favor the prepared? What can we do to make our pictures more shareable and popular? Would you be ready to handle and exploit the unexpected interest?
These are all questions that I discussed together with my guest of this week, Lorenzo Montezemolo, whose Fog Fingers photograph has recently and unexpectedly skyrocketed into the realm of viral images, having been published on the front page of Reddit, PetaPixel, Bored Panda, BoingBoing, Colossal, the Washington Post and others.
Lorenzo is a landscape and nature photographer living in the San Francisco area. He has owned a camera since he was six years old, but it’s only been in the last 5-10 years that he’s become truly “serious” about photography. Photography is not his main profession but it is most definitely his main passion. While he enjoys traveling to far-flung places with his camera, he considers himself fortunate to live in a place where natural beauty is so close by — often just a short drive away. Besides photographing landscapes, seascapes and fogscapes in and around Northern California, he has spent several weeks the past few winters chasing the Northern Lights in Iceland and northern Norway, with plans to return to both again this coming winter.
International Podcast Day is an event dedicated to promoting podcasting worldwide through education and public engagement.
If you want to show support for podcasters worldwide, there are many ways you can help, but the best would be to share this post in order to promote your favorite podcast (that would be this one) using the hashtag #PodcastDay.
As part of the celebrations, the International Podcast Day Gratitude Award will be assigned to the podcast that has the more internationally diverse set of reviews. We will be taking part in this friendly competition, but we need your help to propel us to the top of the rankings, by leaving us an honest review. You can do so using either of the following services (or even both, which would be awesome):
My guest for this week’s episode is landscape and nature photographer Varina Patel. This is what Varina says about herself:
There is nothing more remarkable to me than the power of nature. It is both cataclysmic and subtle. Slow and continuous erosion by water and wind can create landscapes every bit as astonishing as those shaped by catastrophic events – and minuscule details can be as breathtaking as grand vistas that stretch from one horizon to the other. Nature is incredibly diverse. Burning desert sands and mossy riverbanks… Brilliant sunbeams and fading alpenglow… Silent snowfall and raging summer storms… Each offers a unique opportunity. I am irresistibly drawn to the challenge of finding my next photograph, and mastering the skills required to capture it effectively.
With Varina, we discussed a number of topics, including:
Conveying a feeling, a mood through photographs
Combining family life and travel
Is getting it right in camera still important?
Working the scene on location
What does it take to be a great educator?
I am sure you will enjoy Varina’s take on all these issues.
Traveling is expensive. Photo gear is not cheap either. So what can a freelance travel photographer do in order to make ends meet, when he has to travel to remote locations to create work that, hopefully, some client will buy?
This is the question that Matt Moreland tried to answer in an article I recently found while browsing the Web, titled “10 Ways to Save Money as a Freelance Travel Photographer”. I though Matt’s suggestions would be useful to anyone who loves to travel and can’t count on a lavish budget, so I asked him to be a guest on the show.
Matt Moreland is a travel and lifestyle photographer from Toronto, Canada. After travelling to Peru to hike Machu Picchu he spent 3 months living out of a Jeep across Canada and the Western United States. His appetite for road trips and photography has him currently working on a number of ad campaigns for major car brands such as Land Rover and Toyota. He is currently planning his next adventure, an extended East Coast road trip through Canada and the US in the fall with his dog Lucy.
To say that my guest for this episode of the podcast, Luca Bracali, is a travel photographer would be too limiting, for he is also an expert TV director and a true explorer, having been to the North Pole, amongst other truly remote locations.
My interest in Luca’s work and personality, and the reason why I invited him to be a guest on the show, was sparked mostly from his commitment to the preservation of the environment and the deep respect and love he has for the Earth, its nature, and its people.
Luca Bracali has travelled to 138 countries, is the author of eight books and the winner of eight prizes in international photographic competitions. Since 2008 he is a member of APECS (Association of Polar Early Career Scientists) for his contributions about the environment published in the media. In 2009 he was the only reporter to reach the geographic North Pole on skis. In 2010 Bracali debuted in the world of fine-art photography and his pictures have been on display, as solo exhibitions, in museums and galleries in Rome, Sofia, Kiev, Odessa, Copenhagen, Akureyri, Montreal and New York. He directed 150 shows for the Italian TV network RAI 1 and was a guest on over 40 programs and daily news aired on RAI networks as an explorer and documentary filmmaker. The Minor Planet Center in Cambridge named after him the 198,616th asteroid discovered. Three of his latest reportages have been published on National Geographic.
Besides environmental issues, we discussed the special challenges photographers have to face when shooting in extreme climates, what it takes to be a TV director, ancient art as inspiration, and other topics.