Altered Travel Photography
Oh that is a beautiful sunset. Shutter click.
I love the way the light shines through the frangipani leaves. Snap.
Wow what an amazing view. Tap.
And thus my photo gallery app fills up on my phone with hundreds of really beautiful travel photos of plants, flowers and landscapes, that probably won’t mean much to anyone else.
Of course we can all appreciate a photo of a nice vista for sure. But later when I go back over photos that I have taken, it is always without a doubt the candid shots involving people that I treasure the most. I am sure travel influencers would also find that the engagement stats reflect this truth, that people find people more interesting than looking at a pretty photo of a breathtaking view.
So what to do with all the plant, flower and poolside vista pics?
It is hard to convey the entire sensory experience that is the real reason why I find a particular scene or plant a photo worthy moment. I decided to play around with digital collage to help express what is within. I have modified my photographs to encapsulate a new visual reality. In essence I have added in the intangible emotion and magic happening in my brain as I took the original photo. I haven’t used people, but rather abstract shape, patterns and colour. There is a universal language in these elements.
I have blended reality, skewed perspectives, enlarged key elements and added new ones to create an altered travel photography album. Centred around my travels in Thailand and Laos, this is my surreal summer jungle life rooted in reality.
Palms In Pai by Unratio | Capturing tranquil chill poolside vibes. I adored the sweet pastel colours contrasted against a vibrant blue sky. This secluded tropical garden had these amazing large fan shaped palm trees.
Temple Beauty by Unratio | Outside the many temples in Chiang Mai, Thailand is these intricate details along the walls and alcoves. Symbols of reverence, devotion, symmetry and tranquility seamlessly blend with the natural beauty of flowers in manicured gardens.
Colourful Foliage by Unratio | Tropical plants adorn little potted gardens with leaves that are works of art with stunning colours, markings and shapes.
Courtyard Dreaming by Unratio | In a space of homely privacy this courtyard offered a leafy backdrop with streaming afternoon light. The spaces between the leaves formed a pattern of their own and this idea of art created outside of the foliage is drawn down to continue along the wall.
Mekong Sunset by Unratio | Stunning flower gardens and edible herbs are planted along the riverbank. This natural delight is on the border between Laos and Thailand, where two seperate countries treasure the same water and plant bountiful harvests on fertile ground.
Sunset Palms by Unratio | The colours of dusk highlight the layers of foliage, while giant palms pierce the sky with a magnificent confidence.
Footpath Orchids by Unratio | The tropics enables the most elegant and wildly beautiful flowers to flourish in urban spaces. Decorating the trees along the path to the beach, spectacular living floral arrangements hang with artistic beauty.
Date Palms by Unratio | Enamoured by the reflection of exotic tall palm trees in a swimming pool on the island of Koh Samui in Thailand.
Frangipani Light by Unratio | Sitting under the tree looking up between leaves and urban structures, admiring dazzling rays of glittering golden sunlight and hues of green while the soft warmth of the setting sun kisses my skin.
Botanical Garden by Unratio | A blaze of orange flowers in full bloom pops with delightful vibrancy against a complimentary coloured wall in the Penang Botanical Gardens in Malaysia.
Carpark Blooms by Unratio | Stopping to admire the potted bougainvillea with two tones of peach and pink in a plain carpark. This is what I feel, why I stop, the amplification of the emotions and simple delight of flowers in full bloom in a space otherwise devoid of art.
Garden Canopy by Unratio. I make a habit of looking up in the forest. I always imagine that the intricate pattern of the underside of tree leaves and branches spreading across the sky is similar to a delicate underwater coral formation.
Garden Villa by Unratio. The way the sunlight penetrated this garden cast a separate colourful shadow garden on the wall behind.
Mountain Huts by Unratio. After monsoonal rain the whole landscape is awash with mud. There is this feeling after the sky erupts, that the water is carrying the mountain and the huts are a blend between the three spaces; sky, land and water.
Mountain Marigolds by Unratio. Up in the mountains of Vang Vieng marigold flowers on long spindly stalks grow wild around the cave entrances and spirit houses. It is an unexpected pop of colour along a path in an almost completely green world.
Infinity Pool by Unratio. Early post pandemic tourism had not picked up yet in Thailand. There was this feeling of empty beauty. In the absence of guests, the garden and jungle was starting reclaim the man made world.
Natures Fence by Unratio | At one end of the carpark these large palm spears stood strong and tall where even the light could not penetrate through to the other side.
Night Palms by Unratio. Laying down on a bean bag in the sand in Phuket and looking up at night. Fairy lights and the bright lanterns below illuminate up the trunks of towering coconut palms. It is a light show on foliage.
Poolside Garden by Unratio | It is the colours of sunlight on the palm leaves everywhere that stop me. Exotic tropical gardens are foreign to me and forever beautiful.
Poolside Magic by Unratio | An exaggeration of the awesome dome architecture that meets a pool that looks out to a coral filled ocean.
Streaming Light by Unratio | A layered natural space of shape, colour, light and shadow.
May these pictures speak more than words.
Until next time,