Kevin started giving away photos a decade ago on his extensive travels around the world. Although not a photographer by profession, Kevin’s portraits beautifully capture the people he meets on his journeys. We’re excited to see who Kevin will share photos with on his next trip to Guinea Bissau. Follow Kevin on Instagram at Ventureforthphoto.
When did you start giving away photos?
It’s been a hope all the years I’ve been traveling. A decade ago I did a trek in Ethiopia with a community based organization and I was able to send more than a hundred photos back to them by mail. The stories I heard about people’s responses to the photos just motivated me more to try and figure out a mobile printing option. When Fuji came out with their Instax printer a couple of years ago, I knew it was the perfect solution. I’ve taken it on a couple of long trips now — Bangladesh and West Africa.
What motivated you to do it?
It just seemed like such a natural exchange for the privilege of taking someone’s photo. It makes the whole experience mutually pleasurable and I often part company with folks with my face hurting from grinning so hard.
What equipment do you use and why?
Any camera with wifi makes the process easy. The image goes from camera to phone to printer in less than a minute.
Can you share one memorable story with us about your experience sharing photos?
There have been many, but one in particular was an older woman in Benin who nodded eagerly when I asked if she wanted a picture. She then promptly disappeared into her house for more than ten minutes. Just when I was really wondering where she had gone, she emerged in her best clothes and headscarf, and told me that she wanted a photo for her family to have after she died. She currently didn’t have one. It was quite a poignant moment with her son when I handed her the print. I did my best to make it a good shot!
Do you have any suggestions for people who would like to give photos?
Just that the expense is well worth it for the degree that it will enrich your travel experience and open doors for you.