gadventures

NYC Independent Film Festival - Films - Antarctica by Katherine Yaksich

Check out this interview I did for my Antarctica film premiere next week. Below are some excerpts and the full interview is here: https://www.nycindieff.com/film/antarctica

Interview by Kerby Pierre. 

KP: Thank you Reuben for taking the time to answer some questions for us. Your film is very unique. What inspired you to film this exotic short?
RH: I had a strong feeling that visiting Antarctica, my final continent, would be a significant life experience. I wanted to memorialize the journey in a special, meaningful way. I was inspired by Ron Fricke’s time-lapse work in Samsara, and the one second a day sequence in the movie, Chef.

KP: The film shows NYC, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and Antarctica. Why did you choose those five locations?
RH: The film begins and ends in NYC, which is where I live now. Argentina is where we embark on the Antarctic expedition ship, and I also wanted to visit the Salar de Uyuni (salt flats) in Bolivia, and photograph the Milky Way rise above the Atacama Desert in Chile, one of the driest places on earth.

KP: Of all the vast landscapes of these five diverse countries how did you narrow it down to two minutes?
RH: It was incredibly challenging to film every single day, especially on the boring days where not much was happening, such as travel days or days at sea. I really had to reach and try and find beauty in the mundane, and editing it down to just one second a day was extremely difficult. There are a lot of beautiful shots that didn’t make the final cut.

KP: What do you want the audience to get from this beautifully shot short?
RH: There is beauty everywhere, even in the mundane. Antarctica, the largest wilderness area in the world, transformed and forever changed me. Never in my entire life have I been in such close proximity to so much wildlife and such raw, untouched beauty. It humbled me because it is like no other place on earth. I hope these images will have a lasting impact and inspire others to protect and safeguard the future of our planet.

by Katherine Yaksich

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2015 | A Year in Review

Greetings from Costa Rica! Costa Rica has been on my bucket list for quite some time so it’s wonderful to be relaxing and writing here as 2015 comes to a close. This year has been one of the most fulfilling and memorable years and looking back I am grateful and my heart is full.

One of the major highlights this year was my time as Photographer in Residence onboard the M/S Expedition ship in Antarctica twice this year, at the end and the beginning of the Antarctic season. It has been my long time dream to visit Antarctica ever since I was in 4th grade, and Antarctica forever changed me and left an impression on me. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced so much raw, untouched beauty, and Antarctica is out of this world and like no other place on earth. Antarctica was also my 7th and final continent. It’s crazy that I was there just 11 days ago!

I also had a blast and learned a lot freelancing for The New York Times, and working on the JR art piece that graced the cover of the New York Times Magazine, Walking New York issue. New York continues to surprise me, and I’m lucky to call it home.

This year I spent over 6 months on the road, which was exciting, tiring, and difficult at times. Fortunately, I had the opportunity to travel and create some of my most cherished memories with some of my loved ones and dear friends this year. I am reminded that life is about relationships and building community and making moments with the people that you love. 

Next year I’m excited to do an extended residency in Berlin and visit South Georgia and Antarctica again onboard the M/S Expedition.

Thanks for following along and for allowing me to share some of my images and stories this year. I’m thankful for my clients, loved ones, and friends who support me and allow me to do what I love everyday. Wishing you love, light, and peace in 2016 and beyond.

The photos above are my top 10 of 2015, curated out of 40,000 images, with captions below.

All My Best,

Reuben

1. Josefina, “Man on Wire” redefined, Salar De Uyuni, Bolivia

2. A morning filled with 400 billion suns, the rising of the Milky Way over the Atacama Desert in Northern Chile

3. Breaching humpback whale, Antarctica

4. Hiking Neko Harbor, Antarctica

5. Iceberg, Antarctica

6. Antarctic light bounce

7. Breaching great white shark, South Africa

8. Recently circumcised junior Maasai warriors, Tanzania

9.  Iceberg, Antarctica

10. 12:50 AM, Camping on Rongé Island, Antarctica

by Katherine Yaksich

5 of 5 of the #blackandwhitechallenge 
 Nearly 5 years ago, I quit my job and relocated to NY from CA with hopes of becoming a photographer and filmmaker. Back then, the Holy Grail would have been to land an assignment for National Geographic, but I’ve since learned that I don’t necessarily need to shoot for Nat Geo to do meaningful work and tell powerful stories. In fact, one of my favorite photographers told me that he actually turned down his first assignment for Nat Geo. To be perfectly honest, I’m not even entirely sure if I could handle the pressure of such an assignment, and the thought of shooting 40,000 - 60,000 images for a single assignment is a bit overwhelming… 
 This year I had the incredible experience of being a photographer in residence onboard an expedition ship in the Arctic. I absolutely loved it because I got to explore such a beautiful and remote part of our planet doing what I love, and it was a meaningful and transformative experience because it helped me understand our fragile world a bit better and the importance of safeguarding the future of our earth. 
 I’m beyond excited to embark on the ship again in February for a month long residency in Antarctica, especially since Antarctica has been on my bucket list ever since I did a report on it in 4th grade. It is also my last and final continent to visit. 
 What kind of experiences transform and bring meaning to your life? 
 I nominate @andrewshepherd for the black and white challenge. I love working with Andrew not only because he is an overall wonderful human, but because his work is always unexpected, beautiful, and solid. 
 #thisarcticlife #neverstopexploring #notgeo

5 of 5 of the #blackandwhitechallenge

Nearly 5 years ago, I quit my job and relocated to NY from CA with hopes of becoming a photographer and filmmaker. Back then, the Holy Grail would have been to land an assignment for National Geographic, but I’ve since learned that I don’t necessarily need to shoot for Nat Geo to do meaningful work and tell powerful stories. In fact, one of my favorite photographers told me that he actually turned down his first assignment for Nat Geo. To be perfectly honest, I’m not even entirely sure if I could handle the pressure of such an assignment, and the thought of shooting 40,000 - 60,000 images for a single assignment is a bit overwhelming…

This year I had the incredible experience of being a photographer in residence onboard an expedition ship in the Arctic. I absolutely loved it because I got to explore such a beautiful and remote part of our planet doing what I love, and it was a meaningful and transformative experience because it helped me understand our fragile world a bit better and the importance of safeguarding the future of our earth.

I’m beyond excited to embark on the ship again in February for a month long residency in Antarctica, especially since Antarctica has been on my bucket list ever since I did a report on it in 4th grade. It is also my last and final continent to visit.

What kind of experiences transform and bring meaning to your life?

I nominate @andrewshepherd for the black and white challenge. I love working with Andrew not only because he is an overall wonderful human, but because his work is always unexpected, beautiful, and solid.

#thisarcticlife #neverstopexploring #notgeo

by Katherine Yaksich

3 of 5 of the #blackandwhitechallenge 
 This is a portrait I took of Neil onboard our expedition ship in the Arctic this past summer. I looked out the window and saw Neil smoking a pipe by himself, out in the cold, on the port side of the ship. I immediately knew I had to get a picture of him, so I ran outside and captured one of my favorite images from my residency. In the Arctic, often times the most memorable moments occur when you least expect it. 
 I nominate @leifography, a fellow New Yorker who I connected with onboard our ship in the Arctic 
 #thisarcticlife

3 of 5 of the #blackandwhitechallenge

This is a portrait I took of Neil onboard our expedition ship in the Arctic this past summer. I looked out the window and saw Neil smoking a pipe by himself, out in the cold, on the port side of the ship. I immediately knew I had to get a picture of him, so I ran outside and captured one of my favorite images from my residency. In the Arctic, often times the most memorable moments occur when you least expect it.

I nominate @leifography, a fellow New Yorker who I connected with onboard our ship in the Arctic

#thisarcticlife