Tag: ‘travel photography’



blind dude at chatuchak with serious bling

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

My 2013 Asia adventure has begun, and I’m a little behind on blogging, but I wanted to start off the blogging with the first frames I took in Bangkok. Taken at Chatuchak Weekeend Market.

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photography by nyc travel photographer erica camille. follow me on facbeook.

Last Stop | Tokyo Japan

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

Our final stop was Tokyo, to visit our friend Masahiro, who was our foreign exchange student in Wisconsin 10 years ago. We were exhausted, mom’s ankle had taken all it could, and we were ready to go home. But we made the most of our time in Tokyo, and mom even hobbled around for entire day seeing sites.

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Masa introduced us to a delicious local food called monja. There are monja restraunts all over Japan, but the best are in Tokyo. Basically imagine making your own pancakes on a griddle table, but with ingredients like cabbage and cheese. It’s better than in sounds, and Masa was a black hole when it came to consuming monja.

Masa wanted to take us to do something called “food samples,” which we naturally assumed involved eating various foods, but as it turns out, it involved making wax food models… or food samples. Though we were more interested in eating, making wax food ended up being pretty fun.

Too tired on our final day, we went over to Masa’s house to play cards.

As I’m writing this entry, it’s now Jan 10, 2013, and I’m about ready to start my second adventure in Asia…stay tuned.

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Bike Trip with Mom | Ubud Bali

Monday, January 7th, 2013

I think I’ll always remember walking through the door of our Bali hotel, wet from the rain, after 3 and half months of traveling, to find my mom waiting to greet me with a giant hug. It didn’t take too much convincing after I planted the seed in her mind about meeting me in Bali, and now, I had nearly reached the end of my first South East Asian, and there she was, across the world, waiting for my arrival. It was a great moment.

On our 3rd day in Bali, we decided to do a bike trip that a few people had recommended through Bali Eco Cycling, and it was one of the highlights of our trip. After we got picked up from our hotel, we ate breakfast with our cycling mates overlooking the active volcano, Mt. Batur and its crater lake. It was a stunning view. After breakfast, we started the bike route, which they had promised was 98% downhill. We cruised through country backroads where there was hardly any traffic, and the views were just amazing. Mom kept getting mad at me for trying to take pictures while I was biking, but it was worth it! Some of my favorite shots were taken one-handed while I was biking, with mom shouting “be careful!”

At one point rain started coming down pretty hard, and I must say, it was fun! It was magical biking through the rice feilds in the rain. We visited a family compounded, which is sustained in part by the Echo Bike Tours. I think my favorite stop was the Balinese plantation, where we learned about different local plants and sampled local coffee. We also sampled some “poop coffee,” coffee that is made with Luwak feces, an animal that looks like an over-sized rodent (see pictures below).

There is an optional uphill portion of the bike tour at the end of the ride. I think only 2 people completed it. Mom and I proudly traveled behind the bikers in an air conditioned van, exhausted from the very small uphill descent we completed at the end.

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Photographs by NYC photographer Erica Camille. Follow me on Facebook.

Hoi An | Vietnam

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

I didn’t get to spend nearly as much time in Vietnam as I would’ve liked. But the truth is, by the time I reached Hoi Chi Minn City, I was exhausted and my ankle was killing me, and one of my wounds looked infected. Thank God, I got to land in the air conditioned, washing machine-equipped apartment of my dear friends Jesse and Luisa. I ended up just literally chilling with them in their air conditioned apartment for almost a week. I didn’t take that many pictures around Ho Chi Minn, other than our epic engagement shoot, instead I did a lot of eating, hanging out, and knocking back BIG beers. We had a blast, and they were such caring hosts and friends. Love you guys!

Jesse and Luisa encouraged me to book a flight and see one of their favorite cities in Vietnam, Hoi An. Not only is it one of the most amazing little towns I’ve seen in all my travels, I also got to meet April and Zach, who have become long-term travel friends. I joined Zach and some other travelers in biking to a nearby beach, where we enjoyed a hot afternoon in the sun and sea. Heaven! I stayed at place called Lucky House, and across the street I met a crew of about a dozen Vietnamese men who took me in during my stay. Some ladies might be sketched out when a large group of shirtless foreign men start shouting and insisting she drink with them, but they didn’t have to ask me twice! I obliged, and I ended up hanging out with them every day. Thy sat outside drinking coffee and playing chess in the mornings, and sharing food and drinking (lots) of beer in the evenings. One of them even had me over to him and his wife’s house for lunch, which was DELICIOUS.

If you find yourself in Vietnam, you cannot skip Hoi An. It’s a little touristy, but for good reason, if you’re like me, you’ll find the locals and the town’s underbelly. Here are some of my favorite shots from Hoi An.

got a little turned around on a side road and chatted with this woman who sold me a cold drink

clothing shop, pajama party in the background

bought a couple bracelets from these nice ladies

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i freaking love these guys

if you want to shop, hoi an is the place to go, custom made everything

i stumbled upon this woman singing karoke by herself,  LOVE HER

the sandwich lady!! ate about 20 of these things

my friends who hosted me for lunch

one of the only shots i took in ho chi minh, the view from jesse and luisa’s apartment

Photography by New York City Photographer Erica Camille. Follow me on Facebook.

Muay Thai Boxing | Bangkok

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

In my final days in Bangkok, I joined my traveler friends Bridget and Zaf to watch a couple rounds of Thai Boxing, otherwise known as Muay Thai. It’s as popular (but more casual of an outing) as American football, and I must admit, it’s fun to watch. There are a lot of female Muay Thai boxers as well, so I was a little disappointed there were no female competitions while we were there. I managed to get myself in the special area marked off for photographers by flashing my camera, but when I leaned against the ring, an official approached me and said only male photographers could touch the ring. I was not happy!! And after pushing that rule a few times, they eventually asked me to leave the photographer area. I thought it was strange, because Thailand is quite progressive, but that’s what the man said. Here are some of the shots I got.

Photography by New York City Photographer Erica Camille. Follow me on Facebook.

Old Church | Kampot

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

On my final full day in Kampot, I decided to venture up Bokor once again, this time on (the back of) a real motorcycle with a crazy guy named Steve (I think) who was also staying at Olly’s place. I didn’t get a chance to explore the creepy church while I was up there the first time, and I really wanted to because everyone kept saying the place was haunted. Though my ankle was killing me at this point, Steve and I hiked around the eerie grounds of this old Khmer Rouge hold-out, taking time to inspect the bullet-ridden, graffiti-marked walls. I’m thankful I visited during the middle of day and not anytime near sundown because this place truly gave me the heebie jeebies.

Check out this crazy youtube trailer to get a full picture of what I experienced up there.

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An Afternoon with Mao in Siem Reap Cambodia

Saturday, June 2nd, 2012

If there’s one word of friendly advice I have to travelers it is: get to know the people of the place you are visiting.

Don’t just show up, hit the tourist trail, hang with English speaking travelers, take a bunch of pictures of local people (and not talk to them) and then fly home. That would be such an epic fail! One of my favorite aspects of traveling is gaining perspective of those living a completely different life than I am, and remembering that so many of the “problems” I face daily are indeed “first world problems.” I wish I had spent a lot more time hanging with locals on my trip, but it’s also important to find a balance. It becomes exhausting and difficult to try to communicate and initiate conversations with strangers… but it is so rewarding, and more often that not, down right funny to try to communicate.

I met Mao at the Siem Reap airport when I hired him to be my mortorbike driver. Though I had initially planned to find my own driver and not book through the airport, I couldn’t resist Mao’s smile and charm. I paid $55 for 3 days of driving. On our fourth day, after three days of climbing up, down, and around the temples of Angkor Wat, I asked Mao to take me to meet some of his friends and eat at his favorite restaurant. We played volleyball and played games, and I drank some icy beers and played with the kids.

I learned a lot about Mao’s life, and I was somewhat surprised to learn of the hardships he still endures, despite having a regular job. In order for Mao to be a member of the airport’s association of motorbike drivers, he must pay $500 a year in fees! I couldn’t believe this. This is huge money for Cambodians; he explained that only some months does he make a profit, the rest he just breaks even. Furthermore, he has to take turns with many other drivers, and as a result, some weeks, he only works one day. He explained that had I not hired him to be my driver, he wouldn’t have hadwork that week, as it would have been someone else’s turn to try to get hired. In addition to paying this crazy fees and taking turns with other drivers, he sends most of his money to his mother, whose motorbike he borrows (the fees do not include a motorbike). He would like to save up to buy a tuk tuk, because then he wouldn’t have to work through the airport, but tuk tuks cost over $700.

Despite the fact that Mao barely can make his own ends meet, every time we were approached by beggars, he generously gave what he had. I’m so sad because I actually LOST all of his contact information. I had a plot to start a kickstarter campaign to help him buy a tuk tuk, but without contact information, I can’t. Please, if anyone is traveling to Siem Reap, especially if you are flying there, request Mao to be your driver at the airport (you can even present a picture of him, from the photos below). Just tell him Erica from Okay 1 Villa, sent you. I would love to stay in touch with him, and help him raise funds for a tuk tuk. I was truly humbled by Mao’s generous and curious spirit, and I hope that this post can help him find more work and put us back in touch.

My Favorite Temples | Angkor Wat | Cambodia

Tuesday, May 29th, 2012

Angkor Wat is a massive complex of archeology, architecture, and forests from the 9th to the 15th century. It contains the remains of various capitals of the Khmer Empire, including Angkor Wat and, at Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple. Angkor Thom and the Bayon temple were two of my favorite temples in the complex. Bayon is also known as the Buddah temple because it has over 200 Buddah faces carved into it. The detail is stunning. Angkor Thom is believed to once have a population of over 1 million. As I wandered through the endless temple walls, I kept trying to imagine what life was like during Cambodia’s golden age. It’s truly hard to envision. Though Cambodia is known mostly for its temples and heart wrenching history, Cambodia is so much more than this, and absolutely fell in with it and the warmth and kindess of the Cambodian people I met. While I was descending upon one of the temples for sunset, I met a young girl named Sunday (she was born on sunday), we were both by ourselves in a large crowd of people, and she began making conversation. Sunday helps take care of her family following her mother’s death, (her dad has another family now and doesn’t live with her and her sisters). She hopes to one day be a tour guide around Angkor Wat and Siem Reap. Though our sunset was hindered by clouds, we had a lovely evening chatting about Cambodia, culture, and our aspirations.

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Angkor Wat Photos | Siem Reap | Cambodia

Sunday, May 27th, 2012

I’m not a serious history buff, but I must say Angkor Wat is one of the most spectacular pieces of world history that I have witnessed. It is the largest religious structure in the world, and to this day, is one of the most sacred sites for Cambodians. Over the next few entries, I will share with you a bit of Angkor’s history, beauty, and magic. With over 1,000 temples, this formerly thriving city is one of the most intricate wonders in the history of architecture. It’s hard to accurately convey the sheer size of Angkor Wat, and those who visit with the intention of spending a day, are often in shock of its grandeur. I spent 3 full days exploring Angkor Wat on motorcycle, and though utterly exhausting and painfully hot and humid, it was an experience of a lifetime.

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