Collard Studios in February: Travel Photography and Commercial Campaigns in Thailand
Thailand has often been described as a vibrant, luxurious location, full of natural beauty, welcoming locals, and delectable gastronomy. Which is why Liam and Stam consider themselves extremely lucky to call this paradise their current home base.
But for these two exceedingly talented photographers, thinking outside of the box by experiencing new adventures, is their number one favourite activity. So whilst working on several campaigns around various cities in Thailand, they decided to enjoy some time off to take the road less traveled.
This road led them to several interesting places, such as a small, intimate, and very interesting Muslim fishing community in Phan Nga Bay, the small village of Samet Nangshe in Phang Nga, as well as many hidden spots in their home base, Phuket. And the photos alone are enough to inspire.
In an interview, Liam and Stam talk about their various side projects that they underwent during the month of February. They discuss the amazing time that they had talking with the locals, and photographing the way of life that these inhabitants experience on a daily basis.
How long were you on Phang Nga Bay?
We were lucky enough to spend two days in this historical and beautiful location whilst working on various client projects throughout Thailand. You can find this gem somewhere between Thailand's mainland and the well-known island of Phuket.
Why did you choose Phang Nga Bay?
We had read that there was a small Muslim fishing community that lived there, and knew that this would be a great opportunity. We wanted to bring to light the way in which different cultures live, and how these Thai locals experience this lovely country.
We also wanted to shine light on the side of Thailand that many holiday-makers and travelers aren't all that familiar with.
Did you achieve all that you had hoped within those two days of your visit?
No, actually. Being with these locals was such a brilliant experience, that two days felt more like two hours. For that reason, we're planning a second (and perhaps third?!) visit shortly. It's definitely something we're really looking forward to!
How would you describe Phan Nga Bay?
This location is seemingly indestructible! Despite the number of monsoons that tend to take place in that region, this area has remained intact. In fact, there are a number of interesting things to see, such as houses built on wooden sticks, a school, a mosque, restaurants, and even a market.
How many people live in this community?
It is said that there are around 1600 inhabitants on the island that live there permanently.
Would you describe this community as an unspoiled, authentic area or a place that has been altered by tourists?
A bit of both.
In actuality, if you really dive deep into this area, you will find that there are locals who have lived there their whole life. They make use of very basic amenities, and enjoy their livelihood with their families. They also sell their produce to the locals, such as fruit, vegetables, and fresh fish.
On the other hand, tourists are able to visit this island, and the inhabitants use this as an opportunity to sell their art and trinkets.
What was your overall opinion of Phan Nga Bay?
It really was an amazing sight to behold. From the 'floating' houses and how they live, to the way in which they hold a very respectful and close-knit sense of community. Everyone knows everyone, and they're friendly, welcoming, and extremely interesting.
While in this cultural and interesting community, you mentioned that you visited the viewpoint, Samet Nangshe in Phang Nga. Do you have any favourite images to share of this stunning location?
Sure, here are a few of us enjoying this amazing place:
You said that one of the most memorable moments here was an incredible sunrise, how was that?
Sincerely breathtaking! We adore waking up early enough to catch the early morning light peeking through, allowing us to capture the most natural and beautiful scenery that the world has to offer. In the picture below, you can see just how amazing the experience was for us.
Amazing! So what other fun adventures did you get up to during the month of February?
Well, we thoroughly enjoyed two blissful weeks discovering more of Phuket, our current home, with our adorable French bulldog, Bob.
Simply wandering around this island is a dream come true. Of course, we took as many photos as possible to try and capture the amazing feeling that it continues to bring. Below, you'll find a few of our favourites!
Excellent. you certainly are living your best life - and we're so grateful that you're sharing these precious images with us!
Thanks, but in actuality, it's our pleasure to showcase some of the world's beauty! We adore capturing these places, and experiencing the way of life in as many places as possible!
Are there any other projects you worked on during February?
We spent some time in the north of Thailand, working on a fantastic project for the boutique hotel, Rachamankha. The hotel, which is situated near the old town of Chiang Mai, not only allowed us to practice our passion, but also gave us the opportunity to meet some incredible people and to explore this amazing region in our free time.
We also managed to do some commercial photography for a fabulous, newly-opened, resort in Phuket, called Rosewood.
More specifically, we were commissioned to tell the story of their Thai restaurant, Ta Khai.
The main aim of this project was to showcase its charm at night, as well as the deliciously fresh food prepared by their chefs.
We were so impressed with Ta Khai, and its incredible rustic vibe. It has a stunning view of the ocean, and it is an authentic, simple, and traditional restaurant with really fresh dishes. We felt so at peace in this lovely location.
You can find more images of this project here.
Well, you definitely had an incredibly busy yet amazing month in February! Do you have any other interesting happenings to add?
Yes, actually! We managed to fit in two days down in Nakhon Is Thammarat (Stam's hometown). Here, we did a lifestyle shoot for Voltaire, a very progressive local coffee franchise all over the south of Thailand.
But of course, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy! So, in our free time, we visited a few stunning spots up the mountain, as well as along the river - and we loved every second of it! We also favoured the fact that these spots are unspoiled by tourists, leaving us with a real authentic experience, that we really enjoyed.
Thank you so much for sharing your fantastic experiences with us, and we adore all of your photographs! We look forward to catching up with you again in March!
Thank you! We cannot wait to return with some more inspiring images that capture the world in all of its beauty!