Step into the real world...
Step into the real world...
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Adventure traveler, photographer, and storyteller. Come along with me as I share my encounters at the far reaches of the globe.
Transportation is a funny thing in Myanmar (Burma). Slow, loud and dirty are adjectives you could use to describe most of them, and safety is pretty questionable as well. But the sheer variety available makes for a fascinating combination of new and old methods you should check out for yourself during your next visit to the country.
I spent even more time sharing on Instagram in 2015. More than 20 countries were featured out of hundreds of images I shot and shared from around the world. So as 2015 turns to 2016, I thought it would be a good idea to look back and see what the cream of the crop (at least decided by good, old-fashioned "likes") rose to the top.
Last July, I had had the opportunity to speak in front of over 3000 people at the World Domination Summit in Portland, Oregon. Check out the video and see why you need to grab inspiration wherever you find it, and use it to do amazing things.
This guide contains several months of personal, on-the-ground research to help you enjoy your travels in Bagan that I've gathered on many trips between 2013 and 2016.
Interested in leveling-up your photography?
I'm back in my adapted home of Chiang Mai (Thailand) and facilitating a workshop on industry leading Adobe Photoshop Lightroom . During this one-day workshop, I'll be going through the process of establishing an efficient workflow to speed up your time working with your images, so you can spend more time capturing them out in the world.
I spent a bit of time sharing snapshots and other images from my catalog on Instagram in 2014. More than 20 countries were featured out of hundreds of images I've shot from around the world. So as 2014 winds down, I thought it would be a good idea to look back and see what the cream of the crop (at least decided by my followers!) was like.
Stories told with images from around the globe
Stories told with images from around the globe
While I'm most known for my travel, landscape, and cultural photography, one of my real passions is creating more abstract images with my camera. I'm looking to create moods, often by "smearing" or "melting" colors. I've been attracted by the more abstract in art and imagery for quite some time, and most of the paintings and artwork I've collected around the world for myself fit the same sort of mold.
Amongst a group of hundreds walking down the dusty street in Nyaung U (Bagan), you'd think the group of kids dressed as zombies and performing to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" would be the focus of this piece.
Sorry, not strange enough.
There are a lot of ways to pay the bills in this world. Some just choose more dramatic ways than others.
Take this man for instance. He's set up shop working the street in the center of Siem Reap is his own way, and he's about to put on a show.
He pulls his trailer down the street, and double-parks his trailer in front of a motorcycle and a minivan with his torturous tools of the trade an arms-length away. The trailer has the worst sounding horn loudspeaker you've ever let pierce your eardrums, and a
Clowns, brides, a pregnant women, an 80's rocker, even a chain gang. As it turns out, no one was immune. Hundreds of them shuffling down the street, reaching out at passengers in cars and moaning or growling at any humans they met in their path.
And I was at ground zero: Post-apocalyptic downtown Saskatoon.
Packed like sardines in a sold out club that has mediocre sound. It's hot... like sauna hot. The rain? It's coming from inside this low ceiling-ed building and is provided by the perspiration of the crowd. I'd dance like there was no one watching, but there's no room to move anyways. We all just sort of shuffle in place.
But the music is good, and that's about all you can ask for.
While most so-called "street art" is barely a hair more special than comic-sans is to the font world, on occasion you do stumble upon something special.
I carry around more than my fair share of camera gear, but sometimes a quick shot with my mobile phone is just what the doctor ordered.
As England is to pubs, Myanmar (Burma) is to tea shops. You'll find them everywhere, sometimes lined up one after another, with their little plastic stools and small tables spilling out onto the sidewalks and into the streets.
Let me introduce you to one of my favorites, Shwe Ya Minn tea shop. Located on the market block of the small "hill station" town of Kalaw (Shan State), it might be tough to spot without a readily visible English sign. Instead, you'll have to look for the crowds.
Although open all day, often from 6am until 10pm, the busiest times are early in the morning for...
*A warning to my more squeamish visitors, this story includes graphic images*
The drums: pounding. The crowd: dense. The colors: vibrant.
In a word,
It was after 5:00pm, and I had spent the day on nearby Bilugyun (Ogre) Island in the heat of Myanmar (Burma) summer. I was exhausted. So exhausted in fact, that when I caught a glimpse of a line of 150-odd monks walking toward us on the other side of the road my first instinct was to just move on.
Then, something I'd never seen before.A row of people walking on the other side of the road. Brightly colored garland draped over-top of an apparatus some were
Sometimes you end up somewhere you never expected.
I planned on traveling to Andorra to hike. Instead, I found myself at a skate pack in the center of Andorra La Vella, watching kids do tricks on a half-pipe... on scooters.
I realized quickly that any and all adventures in Burma are best left unplanned. It was a recurring theme during my entire time there in March / April 2012.
random mid morning stroll down Strand Road and towards a bit of commotion near the Pansodan ferry terminal along the Yangon river. Minutes later, I was on a ferry heading across the river, with a young guide named Joga (rhymes with yoga).
bike with a 20-odd chickens attached. Hmm...
A sea of orange pouring through the streets. 12600 monks, in their exceptionally bright robes like 12600 burning candles.
The occasion was the alms giving ceremony in Chiang Mai, with the public urged to bring donations of canned & non-perishable food. This year, the donations would be turned over to the victims of the disastrous flooding that has recently taken place in Thailand and made news headlines around the world.
On an early morning last month, I woke up to witness the ceremony.
See all of my Photo Essays...
Insights, images and travel tips from "The Golden Land"
"When a girl is educated, everything changes"
"We see things differently..."
Lightmoves Creative is the outlet for creative professional photography services in the travel space. Our talented group of photographers have worked around the world creating stunning visual work for companies and organizations looking for more out of their brand.
See more at LightmovesCreative.org
"Technology For Travelers"
Too Many Adapters is a leading source of technology news, information and resources for travelers. Our writers traverse the globe, smartphones in hand and luggage in tow, providing real-world accounts of the gear they use and the challenges they face.
See more at TooManyAdapters.com
Having been separated from much of the world for decades thanks to a corrupt military regime and economic sanctions from much of the Western world, the country and its government have begun to open up more recently.
The simplified version of this change that is portrayed in much of the media is just a thin slice of what's going on inside of the country. How the future of the people there will be shaped in years to come is what interests me, and is the focus of a long term project of mine.
The first of several gallery showings will be open in Canada in June 2016, with a book and public speaking engagements to follow.