Just over the halfway mark this year, I embarked on what has got to be one of the most memorable jobs & trips of my career to date. When you say, “Hey, let’s go to China” I didn’t quite understand what that entailed. Sure, we went to China. What I didn’t know is that we would travel over 10,000km in China in just over 2 weeks. Looking at the map of China, we started on the East side. We then went North, West, South & back East. The Great Wall of China? Yep. Border of Tibet? Yep. Xinjiang, Urumqi, the list goes on. I even found myself in places so remote that I had random teenage girls come run up to me & ask to take photos with me. While my ego might have felt very well lubricated at this point, the rest of the local crew couldn’t stop laughing. Apparently, I’d be the ‘fake Western white boyfriend’ to their friends. So yeah, I’m pretty big in China. 😛
Everything about China is beautiful. They have the kind of natural diversity we have come to love about South Africa. The amount of travel is just a little larger. Which makes sense when you look at the kind of land mass that is China’s borders. If you ever do get a chance to visit China, I’d highly recommend it. But don’t stay in the major cities if you can help it. It is very easy to get sucked into the cities because there is just SO much to see. Either way, you’ll have your mind blown by the oddities, curiosities and spectacular vast scenery. Oh, I might mention it is a good time to NOT pack your grammar nazism. English isn’t as common as we’d like to hope for. So you’ll enjoy a great tasting “Ice Ceram” on a hot day. You bought “Tickest” for shows. Restaurants served “Pan Fried Smoked Pork Lion”.
The job itself was incredibly rewarding. Creating a wide range of images & angles per location wasn’t difficult with the kind of visual canvas we had to paint on. With huge restrictions on the amount of gear we could travel with, I had to make sure I took the essentials: camera(s), tripod, small lighting kit and good old fashion sunrises & sunsets. Taking my large SIRUI R-5214XL carbon fibre tripod might have seemed an odd thing for a trip that required light packing, but when you look at how many times I needed extra height for shots or really awkward positions to lock off camera, I’m bloody glad I did take my SIRUI carbon fibre legs & K-40x head.
Behind the Scenes