jueves, 6 de octubre de 2016

How to become a National Geographic photographer for 11 days.

If there’s one image that is present in every photographer’s mind, professional, amateur or otherwise, is that of the bold and adventurous National Geographic photographer.
I for one, have dedicated many years to commercial photography. Nevertheless, it has always been with one eye on the horizon, anticipating the next trip to a far off place and day-dreaming about those moments of discovery accompanied by my camera: new cultures, connecting with people on the other side of the world with whom often times you need to communicate with via sign language and having that experience that transcends the material plane.

Travel transforms people for the better, if on top of that you add the joy of documenting it photographically and the people that you meet, the traditions you encounter and the overall aesthetics, to name a few, you’ll no doubt be having one of those unique and seldom lived experiences…well, unless you’re a photographer for National Geographic that is.

It is no easy task, becoming a National Geographic photographer I mean, and besides, perhaps not everyone aspires to it as their full-time job. What I am certain of, is that the grand majority would love to get a taste of that experience.

A great way of getting a glimpse of that lifestyle and learn everything that you want to learn about photography without having to renounce your actual life, is by going on a photo tour. There are many to choose from, all offering a combination of travel and photography. Some with a strong focus on landscapes or on astronomy and others with an emphasis on the experience of documentary photography, which I personally find more interesting. I want to be that bold and adventurous photographer.

Photosynthesis Photo Tours, for example, offers an 11-day trip to Nepal. It starts in the chaotic and exciting streets of Kathmandu, passes through a little- own Buddhist monastery with the opportunity to document the lives of monks (something quite difficult to do unless you have a friend there) and ends in a tiny village tucked away in the Himalayas where clients get to experience and be a part of the authentic rural life (moreover, part of the proceeds go to buying a water purifier for the village in order to help with its development). This tour also clarifies that there is margin for some improvisation, an aspect that I find really great since many tours are so strict that they loose the charm of travel. In fact, there are some interesting anecdotes on their web showing how they travel and what kind of experience you can expect to have with them.

It's the kind of adventure I want to have, and to be able to do all of it while practicing the kind of photography that I fantasize about all the time, makes it a perfect fit for me.

Can you imagine the kind of photographs that you'd be able to be make from then on out?
I might be an experienced photographer, but i´ve signed up anyway!

Robert Martin.

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