The Pushkar Festival from PatitucciPhoto

PatitucciPhoto (patitucciphoto.com) is the unique combination of Dan & Janine Patitucci’s vision for a creative life as photographers and mountain sport athletes. Since 1999, PatitucciPhoto is one of the world’s leading sources of the finest mountain sport, lifestyle and travel images for the global outdoor industry, or for any client seeking dynamic outdoor photography. As real athletes of the sports they work within, Dan & Janine have a thorough understanding, high level of technical skill, and passionate enthusiasm for the subjects they photograph. PatitucciPhoto’s work has appeared in countless magazines and ad campaigns for many of the outdoor industry’s leading companies: National Geographic, The North Face, REI, Patagonia, Clif Bar, Petzl, Jack Wolfskin, Gore-Tex, Men’s Journal, Sports Illustrated, Smartwool, Deuter Packs, Mountain Hardwear, Nature’s Path, and many more.

THE PUSHKAR FESTIVAL

"Each fall, thousands of Indian nomads, gypsies, sadhus, pilgrims, camels, and tourists travel to the state of Rajasthan, India for the Pushkar Camel Fair.  Every group comes for its own reason.  For Hindus, it is a celebration of the god Brahma who was born in the village lake.  Nomads and camel owners come to trade and do business.  For tourists, it is an amalgam of all things for which India has to offer.  It's held each November as a combo Hindu pilgrimage and the world's largest camel fair where camel owners do business, buying and selling.  It is also a festival that many photographers go to shoot - several workshops go on at the same time, and the place was crawling with photographers.

A COLLECTIVE OF PHOTOGRAPHERS

"An American friend had been teaching at an Indian Photography school where we went in 2004 to do a guest lecture. There, we got to know many of the students and actually traveled around within India with some of the participants to shoot the fair. A photography teacher from Brooks, Paul Liebhardt, was also involved with the Indian school and had the idea that together with the Indian students, we all meet up to shoot something. In 2008, we all went to Pushkar, still not sure what the project would be beyond a collection of images. When we saw the images, we were pretty thrilled, so Janine designed, laid out, and published the book through Amazon services. We also stuck the book online in the same format as the print version. The whole trip was really just for fun. Our whole group stayed at the same place, and we had our old teacher there who was the photography instructor Janine and I had at Brooks for our first class. He actually introduced Janine and I, taught us, and even married us! In fact, he was a mentor to our whole group: http://paulliebhardt.com. I think the style we shot was thanks to him with a little of all our personalities thrown in.

PHILOSOPHY OF TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY AT THE PUSHKAR

"Our philosophy with how we travel with photography gear is also influenced by Paul, our teacher, as he travels with almost nothing. I don't think anyone had anything elaborate or much more than a couple lenses and a body. (Here is a sampler of our packing list on a recent trip to Peru.) We often work on the Canon 5D or 1D Mark IV, depending on how much weight we can take.  Then we use a Canon 17-40 mm f/4 and a 70-200 mm f/4 or f/2.8, again depending on weight, rarely anything more.

During the fair, I remember we all sat one day at a restaurant and watched some photo workshop people with all their piles of crap.  We laughed at how cumbersome it all was. Then this cool group of nomads walked by.  We all jumped up and got the shot, the workshop people all missed it because they were trying to sort through the junk:  changing lenses, putting on and taking off filters, setting up tripods ... It was hilarious. I am all about simple when it comes to photography, and this is from watching Paul at work in India. I applied this to our own work in mountain sports.  We'd get up pre-dawn each day in India for about five hours, heading out separately and shooting until mid-day, then meeting and discussing what we found and if we should go back for more. It was totally low key fun."

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