My Photo Box - Bangladesh with Mark Pacura 17

My Photo Box - Bangladesh with Mark Pacura

My Photo Box – Bangladesh with Mark Pacura

If you’re following our social media accounts might have noticed our latest product – my photo box. It’s our new baby ( or a new version of existing one ) that encourages everyone, from professional to amateur photographers, to print their own work. To inspire you to do so we’re going to showcase some personal projects or new photography avenues taken by our clients and friends. We’re starting with our own founder, Mark Pacura, and his photo trip to Bangladesh.

What is this project about?
It’s something I wanted to do since coming across Maciej Dakowicz‘s “Cardiff after Dark” and his other work, and that is to go to one of his street photography workshops, in a place I would not normally visit by myself. I love Asia, I’ve been to many countries in the region, but never to those of the beaten track. Bangladesh blew me away, and so did Maciej’s approach and professionalism, so hopefully as soon as this pandemic is under control, I’ll be able to attend another workshop.

What was the hardest part of this project?
Changing the way I normally shoot. I don’t usually take street photos, and chaotic streets of Bangladesh are “slightly” busier than my natural habitats like Glencoe or Isle of Skye. It was hard to digest what one can describe as a madness for the first few days. Most of the time I work “with less is more” approach, trying to show as little elements on my photos as possible, which is not what necessarily works in street photography. My obsession with straight lines, symmetry or the fact that 99% of my work is shot at f1.8 did not help as well. Street photography is all about the moment and the bigger scene, not just a tiny part of it. In the end I decided to compromise a little on both approaches and find a happy middle point.

You were a total stranger to them with camera in his hands, coming from a different place, wearing different clothes. How did you manage to get so close and take all these portraits?
I didn’t plan to take portraits. Approaching a total stranger to ask if I can take their portrait is not something I’m confident to do, and can’t imagine doing it in Europe for example. But Bangladeshi people love being photographed and I’ve taken the first few portraits, because I’ve been asked to do it. And that’s how the idea to make a mini-series from it was born. I’ve a collection of B&W portraits from this trip that I plan to print in a small book.

What equipment did you use? 
This is another case of less is more, which is even more important with street photography. It’s pretty much impossible to stay invisible while shooting in Bangladesh, so at least I tried to keep my gear to minimum. I shot with Sony A7RIII and 35mm 1.8 lens. The combo worked perfectly – fast and sharp, relatively small and light weight.

Your favourite moment?
The whole trip ( including the 12hrs on the plane, because I miss flying so much at the moment ). I have never been in the situation where I can shoot for 10hrs straight, 7 days in a row. It’s both physically and mentally demanding, even more if you’re surrounded by constant noise, dust and petrol fumes. But it’s really awarding. People in Bangladesh are incredible, and it’s so inspiring to see how they can seem to be so happy while having so little. The most memorable moments will definitely be those when I was hiding in the corner one of the big markets to watch the everyday life, and had many chances to witness how everyone, despite the fact of not having much, is keen to help those who are even more unfortunate.

Advice for everyone going there? 
Do not hesitate, it’s beautiful. Also, choose the hotel room away from the main road. It’s loud from 6am to 11pm.

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Styled shoot with Howards Events 18

Styled shoot with Howards Events

It's always exciting to see what our clients and friends can do with our boxes, and we always say, that it's not just about the box, it's what's inside it that really matters. That's the reason why we decided to give away free boxes for everyone who's got an idea for photoshoot or any other creative project and think our products can play a role in it. Tamara from Howards Events, was one of the first few people to reach us, and we're blown away with the results. Together with Hanna Shearman, a super talented photographer from England they have proved that there's really no limit to your imagination when it comes to creative shoots. We absolutely love the photos.

Do you have a creative idea and would love to use our products? Fill in this form and we'll come back to you.

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bananas about clients with Lena Sabala

Showing your clients you're bananas about them with Lena Sabala

The last few months have been difficult for everyone, and listening to our community of clients and friends who work in weddings, it's clear that it's one of the most affected industries during the COVID outbreak. Being a wedding vendor these days is pretty much limited to dealing with constant emails regarding cancellations and postponements. It's unprecedented and it's stressful. It's also easy to forget that most of the time, the person on the the other side of the email is a heartbroken bride or groom to be, who's plans of a dream wedding have either been completely shattered or, in the best scenario, postponed until 2021 or 2022. That person needs to send 10s of emails to friends and family, ask them to cancel often expensive travel plans and juggle many different vendors to keep everyone happy. If there ever was time to be extra nice to your clients, it is now. One of our favourite photographers, Lena Sabala, does it in such a unique and brilliant way, it actually encouraged us to add the idea she's using to our store. She created different sets of wooden coffee coasters, that she sends together with beautiful tea bags and a handwritten message to all her clients who were forced to reschedule their weddings. We love the idea, and we're absolutely certain that Lena's clients love it even more.

Lena's work is amazing ( you can see some examples below ), but like most of us, she can't take photos at the moment. What she does then, is making sure her clients are looking forward to work with her even more than before this madness froze the world for a couple of months.

You can check Lena's work here. If you'd like to send your clients something similar, our coffee coasters are available here.