Working on the book, we started with a selection of roughly 1,800 images, edited down to 600, then 300 and finally end up exactly at 183 through an excruciating difficult selection. most images in the final edit have never been published or shown before. this image displayed above of a baby yawning did not make the final cut as @mrwilley thought we had stronger options. time to leave nyc now and heading back on the road to work on a different assignment. i will post more updates about the book in a few months as we get closer to the launch date. more soon 🤟#mongolia #bloodandsweat
How we spend our weekends. matt @mrwilley at work at the studio going through a sample from the hundreds of images and editing down, the old school way, with all printed hard copies laying down on the studio floor. a long meticulous process. a typography master and minimalist, matt is taking care of all the design of the book. we have collaborated together over the years for magazines like @port_magazine and @avauntmag for which matt used to be creative director until recently on top of his job at the @nytimes
This is it, it’s finally a wrap. 16 years, 7 months and 17 days, my mongolia book project is finally completed. it took longer than initially planned in such a vast country, there was always a last area to visit, a corner to explore, last portrait to shoot or a season to photograph. i will come back, but the book project is finally coming to an end. now, slowly, heading back to nyc where i will be working in the next few weeks and months with @mrwilley on the final edit and design. the book will be published mid october 2018 in a limited, large format, collector’s edition of one thousand copies only, by italian publisher @damiani_books #damianibooks #mongolia
Looking for a safe passageway. the frozen, flat surface of hovsgol lake is often used as a shortcut and alternative to the rugged dirt path during the winter. cars and trucks use it to cover the 120 or so miles to the north of mongolia. i have often heard stories of accidents happening in some areas where thinner ice breaks under the weight of the vehicles and entire load of people disappears to never be seen again. those anxious thoughts always pass through my mind when we are crossing that lake. it is always a huge relief to finally reach the shore #hövsgölnuur #hovsgol @jenkhdul
It has been three years since i last came to this part of mongolia. time to catch up on the news with my local friends. so much happens in three years: birth, weddings, children leaving for the nearby big towns to study and of course passing aways. there is not much sentimentality when mongols talk about death of relatives or friends, but much more a matter of fact tone. birth and death are the inexorable extremities of the same thread, the cycle of life, with one comes the other. as birth is celebrated with joy and triumph, death is announced with a more muted and detached emotion, a passage to the next life in this buddhist country. and life goes on, there is a family to feed and cattle to attend.
Making a movie #üüregnuur
Back here in central asia, in a country very close to my heart and heading to the wild west.
back in mongolia to shoot, among other things, one last portrait to complete a long term book project, more than a decade in the making and closing an epic chapter. #mongolia #epicjourney @jenkhdul
During one of my earliest trip in mongolia, one of my mongol friend told me: “when mongols travel, they know when they leave, they never know when they arrive”. that was everything i needed to learn. that sentence gave me the true sense of living in the moment, with the flow and flexibility: the more and the best i could plan and organize each trip i took there with the limited amount of time i had, it never once worked out. events always had an unexpected turn, most of the time because of the extreme weather conditions. and with time, i learned to break that western rigid linear expectation and on the contrary, relax my grip, let go, accept and work with the flow of the events without wanting and having much control or exceptions. and always, things turned out better than i could have planned them to be, allowing me to be in places in perfect timing and synchronicity to shoot some powerful moments. that really gave me a lot of confidence and trust overall for the unexpected and the unknown which can otherwise trigger apprehensive and fearful emotions. a notion that i have since come to live by in my everyday life today. that is the gift from that country, possibly the biggest impact of traveling in mongolia ——-
heading back there soon to complete a chapter. #mongolia