Finally. Since 4 years I wanted to go to the Angkor Photo Festival but for one reason or another I never made it until now. But this year I planned my trip already months ago and put it as a fixed date in my calender. I should have done this in earlier years too. For sure I will do it for the next year. There is for sure no better event in Southeast Asia for anyone seriously interested in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography.
For a bit more than a week the small town of Siem Reap in Cambodia which is usually know as a basecamp for tourists to visit the spectacular temples of Angkor Wat gets flooded with Photojournalists, Photographers, Editors and other media people from all over Asia and the rest of the world. Besides a yearly photo workshop for young Asian photographers there are a lot of things to do. Every evening there are different exhibitions opening all over town and after that there is usually an evening of slideshows in the nice Garden of Siem Reap’s Foreign Correspondent’s Club (or short FCC) followed by beers and talks until early morning @ Laundry Bar which became the late night hang out of the festival. During daytime there are also lots of possibilities to catch up with likeminded people and speak about current projects or do portfolio reviews.
For me it was simply a mind blowing experience to meet so many photographers from all over the world, some I heard of before, some I met in the social media before, some were new to me, some were old hacks who have been in Southeast Asia since the Vietnam War and others just recently came here. But all conversations were great and inspiring. Especially it was a great pleasure to spend a lot of time and silly chats with the Vietnam Expat Photographers Crew (Kevin German, Aaron Joel Santos and Justin Mott) – now I finally know how to master Photography and what these scarfs are for!
the first stop on my trip up the Mekong earlier this month was Kampong Cham Province in Cambodia. While the similar named town does not really have a lot to see it is a relaxed area of rural Cambodia. With a local guide I visited an island in the middle of the Mekong, and while there was a big Khmer population we also visited a Cham village. The Cham are a Muslim ethnic minority and their language is much closer related to Malay than Khmer.
Here a few portraits I took in the Cham village.
For the last 10 days I had the chance to travel along the mighty Mekong from Phnom Penh to Laos and take quite a few good pictures. In the next few weeks I will slowly publish a selection on this blog.
First two pictures from the very beginning and almost the end of my trip. As you can see, quite a Juxtaposition.
This Video was shot on a recent roadtrip from Saigon, Vietnam to Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Even though shot 2011 I intended to create a nostalgic feeling through color grading and the soundtrack by Khmer singer Ros Sereysothea (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ros_Sereysothea) who is believed to be killed by the Khmer Rouge after 1975.
This is the first video I shot on a Canon 5D Mk2, but for sure there will be more to come!