PHOTOGRAPHY ADVENTURE VACATIONS
The World’s Most Creative and Inspiring Photo Adventure Vacations
Aubrey Stalnaker hails from Colorado, and has just started on her photographic journey recently. She began shooting in 2013, and it’s grown into a strong passion that has taken her around the world in search of the perfect scene. Aubrey joined us on one of our Thailand Adventures, where she became completely engrossed in the culture, people and landscapes of that beautiful country. Aubrey brings an energy and enthusiasm to her photography that shows through in her work. When other people in the group were ready for a rest and a cocktail, Aubrey would still want to stay out until the last minute, exploring every opportunity to get ‘the shot’. At one point, during the incredible Yi Peng Lantern Festival, Aubrey had to shoot through tears of joy as she was so emotionally overwhelmed with the experience. But she pushed through and came away with images that will always bring back strong memories for years to come. And isn’t that what we all hope for? Aubrey has recently completed a show of her work, at a Gallery in Fort Collins, which covered her trips in Thailand and Italy.
© Aubrey Renee | Thailand | Photo Workshop Adventures | Nikon D7200 | Nikkor 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 ES at 13mm | f/4.5 at 1/320th sec | ISO 4000 | November 2016
This photograph of the Yi Peng Lantern Festival in Chiang Mai, Thailand is the one that is most dear to my heart. The Yi Peng Lantern Festival itself was a truly life-altering experience. I was so overcome by the beauty not only of thousands of lanterns being released into the night sky, but also by the beauty of thousands of people from all over the world and all walks of life joining together in a celebration of life. I was quite literally sobbing as I took this picture from the pure joy I was feeling. This photograph always brings back the memory of that joy, and so it has become my favorite photograph from my Thailand adventure. (see more photos below)
Like most people my age, I have been “taking pictures” my whole life, but I only started my journey of truly learning the art of photography about four years ago. Initially, I just wanted to learn how to take better pictures of my knitting work for a blog I was running. But, during my first class (“The Fundamentals of Photography” by John Greengo), I became more and more drawn to landscape and travel photography. As I began to practice it, I realized that landscape/travel photography had lit a fire in my heart that I hadn’t experienced for a long time. So, I kept learning more and more (and still am!) and finding as many ways as I can to get out into our beautiful world. My hope is that I can capture that beauty and inspire others to get out and experience new people and places. Someday, I hope to make this my “real” job, and am currently taking some baby steps in that direction. Some of my pieces were just recently featured in a gallery in Fort Collins, CO and I have opened up my own Print Store on my website (www.aubreyreneephoto.com/prints). I also keep practicing, learning, and traveling as frequently as I can!
A CONVERSATION WITH AUBREY
Why did you choose Photo Workshop Adventures?
I knew that I wanted to travel more and that I wanted to be very focused on photography when I was traveling. I didn’t want to inflict a photographer’s schedule on any of my non-photographer friends and none of them really had the time or the money to travel with me anyways. I also knew that I didn’t want to travel alone, so I started looking into photography workshops. I specifically chose PWA for my first photography workshop, because they seemed like a very reputable and well-organized company. PWA also had the widest selection of workshops all over the world to choose from. The photographs that accompanied the workshop descriptions were the final nail in the coffin, so to speak.
What did you enjoy most about the adventure?
This is a tough one. The experience of being in Thailand itself was truly amazing, but I think what made it even better was the group of people I was traveling with. There were two other ladies in my group as well as our guide, Ian Robert Knight. Being able to travel through such an amazing country with such fun, kind, and adventurous people made the experience truly fantastic.
What do you enjoy most about photography?
I most enjoy the ability to capture a moment in time and share it with others. Photography, specifically travel and landscape photography, can reflect the beauty of a place and its people and then draw others out to that place so they too can experience their own beautiful moment. I think that is just magical!.
What are your goals and ambitions as a photographer?
My most fervent ambition is to take photographs that inspire others to get out and experience our gorgeous world themselves. Sometimes, in these days of social media and constant floods of information, it is so easy to be afraid or only focus on the negative aspects of the world, and this can make people want to stay safe in their own bubble. I used to feel this way, but then photography opened my heart. I hope that my photography might open a few hearts as I truly believe one of the best ways to heal our world is to get out into it, meet people, and therefore understand each other more fully. Someday, I hope to be able to make this my true, full-time job as I can’t imagine a more fulfilling way to spend my time!