Archive for the ‘Travelogue’ Category
The first time I saw pictures on the web of the Ice City in Harbin, I nearly lost my mind. I had never seen so many vivid colors contrasting against the night sky, and I couldn’t believe it was real.
I made my first trip in 2007, and I recently returned from my second visit to photograph the city, this time in 3D. Harbin is a mid-size city (relative to mega-populated Chinese cities, anyway) in northeastern China. Each year, they hold an Ice and Snow Festival which boasts lifesize castles, cathedrals, labyrinths of caves and tunnels, and even a few heated(!) restaurants where you can stop to eat. I was particularly fascinated by the “___ on a stick” cart, because, as I quickly discovered, there is no discernible taste difference between subzero meat on a stick and subzero fruit on a stick, or anything else subzero and on a stick for that matter.
Even if you’re not into frozen meat-sticks, traveling to Harbin still comes with it’s share of adventure. The temperatures hover around minus 25 degrees Centigrade, and each time I removed my gloves to attempt a Twitpic, I found my hands instantly numbed by the cold. Condensation also formed regularly on my camera lenses, making these long exposures even trickier than usual. Here a preview of my trip, though these images can only attempt to convey the sheer scale of the structures. Look for a few tiny people silhouettes in the shots. Enjoy!
1-7: Ice City!
10: Dragon Fruit!
11: Starbucks lesser-known Chinese counterpart, USABucks.
12: Frozen meat on a stick!
Recently, Sony invited me to join a panel of speakers at PhotoImage Brazil. The PhotoImage convention is the largest photography and image expo in Latin America, showcasing top photography-related gear and unveiling innovative new technologies. Over 30,000 attendees turned out at this year’s show, held August 14-16 in São Paulo.
Saglimbeni3D post-production supervisor Joyce Park joined me on our Brazilian adventure, and we gave two presentations at the Sony booth on the latest advances in 3D photography. I had the pleasure of meeting and working with a brilliant group of photographers, including digital pioneer Pedro Meyer, National Geographic photojournalist Reza Deghati, and UK-based rising-stars Palmer & Pavel and Andrew Scriven. We also met many aspiring photographers in the audience, several of whom came out to see us after we announced our appearance on Twitter and Facebook.
After the convention ended, Joyce and I headed north to Rio de Janeiro for some beach time and to see the sights. I fell completely in love with the city within minutes of arrival. Beaches surrounded by lush jungles are my version of paradise, and the preponderance of fruit markets and natural juice bars made me feel instantly at home. We walked the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema on Friday night only to discover what a physically active city Rio is: the bike lanes were filled with night-joggers and rollerbladers, and the sand was packed with locals running obstacle courses, slacklining (you’ve got to see it to believe it) and playing midnight beach volleyball. On Saturday we made our way to the top of Sugarloaf mountain to take in the jaw-dropping views of the coast. Far too short a trip for such a vast and beautiful country, but a perfect introduction to all that Brazil has to offer.
My sincerest thanks go out to Sony Brasil and creative director Astrid Merget of the World Photography Organization for inviting us to spend time amongst such esteemed company. I will never forget the sights we saw, the friendships we made, nor the wisdom we picked up along the way. I also cannot wait to get back to Rio. Vou sentir saudade, Brasil!
CREDITS: Photos by Nick Saglimbeni & Joyce Park
TOP A: The stunning view of Rio from atop Sugarloaf mountain. Note the Cristo Rendentor (Christ the Redeemer) statue illuminating the sky from the mountaintop in the distance.
TOP B: (Left to right) Pedro Meyer, Astrid Merget, Nick Saglimbeni, Joyce Park, Reza Deghati, Jared Palmer, Pavel Vizner, Andrew Scriven
On Thursday evening, April 26, the Sony World Photography Awards were held in London, part of the month-long World Photo London event at Somerset House. My fashion piece Nuclear Summer (featured above) was nominated in their 3D category.
I always appreciate a good excuse to travel to one of my favorite cities, so I headed to London on Tuesday to show support for both the event and our nomination. All of the nominees’ work for all of the categories was displayed at Somerset House, in a remarkable gallery exhibition. It was thrilling to see so much amazing work from so many talented and varied artists. (My particular favorite was Mitch Dobrowner’s stunning black-and-white storm photography, which ultimately won the L’Iris D’or prize. Check out his site here.)
On the night of the awards show, the photographers appeared one-by-one in black tie—a stark contrast to the American photography award shows I’ve attended–and celebrated each other victories and work throughout the night. I was honored to receive the Grand Prize in 3D, mostly because it stood as a testament to the hard work of my brilliant Saglimbeni3D team, who has spent the last two years in the trenches with me, developing new 3D cameras and post-production technologies and launching 3D projects such as WMB 3D: World’s Most Beautiful. I’d especially like to thank Saglimbeni3D post-production supervisor Joyce Park, director of operations Kevin Savarese and the entire production team at Slickforce Studio.
My sincerest thanks also go out to Sony and the good people at the World Photography Organization for recognizing our work. We look forward to producing many more exciting 3D projects in the future.
Press photos © 2012 HoneybunnPhotography, Robert Leslie, Duc Le
Nuclear Summer © 2011 Nick Saglimbeni
This past Saturday, I was in Las Vegas photographing Paul Oakenfold’s show at Marquee. By magical coincidence, it also happened to be Earth Hour at the exact time our shoot was scheduled. So Paul, Christian Arias and I all watched from our balcony as the landmark lights of the Las Vegas strip went dark one by one. (Well, every major casino except Treasure Island.) It blew my mind how much ambient light remained from the street and surrounding city, but it provided the opportunity for some wild exposures. Enjoy!
Just before the holidays, I had the pleasure of returning to one of my favorite places in the world—Kenya—for issue 2 of WMB 3D. I reunited with my good friend Ali at Vumbi Jeep Safaris, and we embarked on a whirlwind tour of the country. I visited my Maasai friends in Oltepesi village from my first trip to Kenya, and then we explored the wild, capturing breathtaking sites in stunning 3D. For the full gallery in both 2D (ex: elephants above) and 3D (ex: Maasai tribe above), grab your copy of WMB 3D #2, and check out the video above for a behind-the-scenes look at my adventures.
I can remember growing up, watching the Miss Universe pageant, and thinking “How is Miss Venezuela always so hot?” It was fitting, then, that my first trip to South America was to Venezuela.
I didn’t know much about the country before my trip, other than that I was likely to find beautiful scenery and even more beautiful people. And I was right on both accounts. The Venezuelan people were extremely friendly and welcoming, and the weather was…well, I’d say perfect…but when you’re right on the equator like that, sometimes it’s actually so hot and humid that your eyebrows sweat. So let’s just say almost perfect.
Though the country itself was breathtaking, I found a few things to be absolutely magical. The first, was that there were secret beaches, like in that Leonardo DiCaprio movie The Beach. We took a boat from the coast and headed out to sea, in the general direction of Puerto Rico. On the way, we passed an eerie bird sanctuary on a huge island where humans are strictly forbidden. Try to picture this: thousands of birds circling an island, all types and colors and sizes. And there are mean-looking aggressive vulture-like (sorry, I’m not an ornithologist) birds working guard-duty around the perimeter of the island. And they just look at you, like, “You know you can’t come in here, right? Keep moving.” But if you look past the evil guard birds (pictured above), it’s like Jurassic Park inside. Birds just playing, chasing each other, without a care in the world.
So we move past the bird kingdom and continue to boat out to sea for another 30 minutes. And then, a tiny dot on the horizon appears. And soon the horizon becomes an island. And as you get closer, you see people partying in the ocean surrounding the island. Again, not on the beach, but in the waist-deep crystal-clear ocean. And they are drinking liquor and serving food and selling jewelry and sunglasses from styrofoam trays in the ocean. A guy even ran my credit card from a floating tray! How does that happen?? It was an entire community at sea…like Atlantis, minus the mermaids and underwater castles. So maybe if Atlantis had a small college town, it’d be like that. Still…magic.
The next visually-stunning event, which happened completely by chance, was an amazing lightning storm, the likes of which I’ve never seen in my life. It started around 2am, so I scurried to the roof of my hotel and took some long exposures. In hindsight, I wish I could have gotten closer (with lenses, silly), but then again, you never know where lighting will strike so I covered the shots pretty wide.
I had hoped to visit Angel Falls, the tallest waterfall in the world, but alas I discovered it was a weeklong round-trip with lots of trekking involved, and I didn’t have the time on this journey. So, I’ll look forward to coming back for sure.
Special thanks to the wonderful Daniela and Dayda for taking care of me in Valencia, and to Roberto for the stay in Tuacacas. I am blessed to have so many wonderful friends all around the world.