Lost Lens Images from South Korea
Chris Cusick is a British-born, Cambodian-based photographer who spent the last three years living in South Korea . His travel blog, The Lost Lens, documents his adventures through Asia and demonstrates that life on the road is possible. The following images are some of his favorite that he’s taken over the last year while exploring South Korea:
Life From Above
Seomun Market, Daegu
This shot was selected as my best by PIK Magazine in their Best of 2014 Special Edition. Who am I to argue with them? Communal dining plays such an important role in the lives of ordinary Korean people, I felt I really needed to make an image that adequately portrayed everyday life before I left. This was my first real foray into storytelling imagery, something that now flavors my current approach to photography.
Exit the Demon
Boryeong Mud Festival
This image was made during Boryeong’s beachfront Mud Festival; with my wrist in a cast I hadn’t been able to participate in the filthy festivities, but with a few fumbles here and there, I was able to operate my camera. Koreans endure some of the cruelest working hours and are afforded very little vacation – yet they are some of the most spirited, playful people you’ll ever meet. This image will always remind me of that. Work hard. Play hard.
Gwanghwamun Square, Seoul
While out shooting with fellow photographer Jackson Hung, I stumbled into this scene. Though uncomfortable in the presence of so many police, and after being advised to leave the area through fear of my own safety, I threw caution to the wind and focused on photographing what was such an unusual sight. After seeing Simon Slater’s Banksy-esque take on the same happenings, I realized the important role that photography plays in portraying history as it unfolds. The set of images that emerged from all over the peninsula that weekend painted a more accurate picture of the mood in Korea than I have seen written anywhere.
The Sound of the Drums
Not only is this my favorite shot of 2014, it also ranks as my favorite shot from my three years in Korea. Despite an ungodly number of temple visits, this kind of shot had always evaded me. Then, right in my last month, while waiting out a sunset shot of the Haeinsa complex, I heard the unmistakable gong of ceremonial drumming. I ripped my camera from my tripod, raced down a seemingly endless number of steep stone steps, and arrived in the nick of time to capture the scene you see here.
“Veins of the City”
Centum City, Busan
I had tried my hand at a few cityscapes before, but this is the one I’m most fond of, showing that dizzying pace and electricity for which Busan is renowned. The image wouldn’t have been possible without Keith Homan, who gave me access to his rooftop and pushed me (mentally) closer to the roof edge with each passing minute.
ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER
Chris Cusick is a Cambodian-based photographer who originally hails from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England. While not belonging to a particular genre of photography, his style is characterized by travel, and his imagery varies greatly depending on what moves him in a certain location. He strives to capture the essence of what he photographs, portraying the real rather than simply the picturesque. Chris loves working with people, and offers services as a photo educator, running guided workshops and one-on-one tuition throughout Cambodia. Discover more of Chris’ work at www.chriscusick.com or contact him with inquiries.