FEATURE #GOOGLEPLEX: CHIP MOONEY of rADVENTURERS
Chip Mooney is a photographer, friend, and runs the rad travel blog rAdventures, with some other friends of ours. rAdventures was recently featured on the travel spotlight of tumblr, and we’re super stoked to have Chip answer some questions for us.
ROOOOF: Tell us about yourself. Name, age, camera gear, place of residency, best breakfast ever?
CHIP MOONEY: Chip Mooney, 22 years of age, I use a Contax T2, Pentax 67, Hasselblad 500cm and a Canon 7, all with various lenses. I live in the south eastern suburbs of Melbourne, and the best breakfast ever is a home-cooked breakfast on the BBQ, eggs, bacon, snags, tomato, grilled buns and a lot of tomato & BBQ sauce.
RF: Explain the idea behind your blog, rAdventures.
rAdventurers was a little idea that came to me while travelling through the states. I realised that a good bunch of my friends were taking amazing photos, and going to amazing places around the world. I guessed I may as well make something that we can all contribute to, and it works well, and everyone who contributes is doing a great job.
photo by Andrew Bibby
RF:Your photography is a mix between documenting your (r)adventures, skateboarding, pictures of your friends, and fine art. Do you ever consciously differentiate between these ‘styles’ when shooting? Is there one style that you’re particularly passionate about?
CM: I hardly ever think too much about my style. I probably should, but it hasn’t really come to me too much yet. I would say I enjoy shooting documentary style photos, as probably 80% of the time, it’s just me carrying a camera when i go out for the day, whether it be skating, out for lunch with friends, or on a road trip to go camping. I’d love to get the chance to work in areas I haven’t had the chance to work in before. I’ve been reading fashion/lifestyle magazines a little recently, the photos in there are the type I’d love to be able to shoot one day.
RF: The radventurers team post pictures from pretty much any kind of (r)adventure that one could have - beach, roadtrip, mountains, etc. etc. What is Chip Mooney’s ideal location to venture to?
CM: The trip around California I recently took was perfect, and I couldn’t think of a better place on earth to radventure. California has so many different landscapes, all in a stones throw of each other. If I had to pick one type of place, it is definitely coastline, there is something that draws me towards the ocean, maybe it has something to do with growing up so close to the beach.
photo by Liam Robinson
RF: When I first met you, you were filming for your first skate video, ABD, which eventually premiered and was awesome. Have you ever thought of making video content for rAdventurers? Are you making another skate movie?
ABD, that was great. Video content is in a funny spot for me at the moment. I spent a few years filming ABD, and then went into 3 years of film study at Uni, and once I’d finished that I was a little burnt out from it all. I’ve always had a soft spot for photography, and it took a back seat for a while, but for me now it’s riding shotgun, hell, it’s even driving the damn car. There’s a possibility for some film making in the near future but I haven’t got anything planned yet.
RF: You’re stuck in a room with 5 people, photographers/adventurers/pretty girls/anyone/etc, who are they? You can bring one friend from the rAdventurers team, who is it?
MF: Ooh tough one, lets take one of each. Photographer - Atiba Jefferson, Adventurer - Jebediah Springfield, Pretty girls - either Karlie Kloss or Daisy Lowe, Anyone - Bill Murray, and to round off the 5, let’s make it both the pretty girls. Annnnd, one of the radventurers, I’d bring Brandon Jensen, I owe that dude a bunch!
photo by Chip Mooney
RF: rAdventurers was recently put on the travel spotlight of tumblr, and has a rapidly growing follower-base. What can we expect in the future from rAdventurers?
CM: I’m pretty happy about that one! But I don’t think it’s going to persuade the way the blog is being run. We’ll just keep going with photos from our travels and adventurers. In terms of content, Jack is about to return from India with a bag full of film, Andrew has just headed off to Canada, Brandon is always out and about, and the rest of us are sitting on a bunch of images to be put up very soon. Keep checking back, it’ll only get better!
photo by Chip Mooney
INTERVIEW #665: MELISSA KAGERER
ROOOF: First up, tell us a bit about yourself. Who are you, where do you come from, what do you shoot pictures with, what do you eat for breakfast?
MELISSA KAGERER: Melissa Kagerer, I’m from Georgia originally, spent the last four years in Chicago but living in Seattle now. I mostly shoot with a Mamiya 645, a pentax p30, and on occasion I break out my olympus point and shoot. Lately I have been really into bagel sandwiches for breakfast; usually accompanied with some banilla (banana + vanilla) yogurt, and a big ol’ cup of black coffee.
RF: Three of your sets on your website are named geographically - American South West, Canada/New England, and Northern Michigan. What draws you to these rural places?
MK: Well I grew up camping, backpacking, and exploring. Thanks to my dad and grandfather I got to experience a lot of really great places as a child and after I moved away from home for school I wasn’t able to go camping as easily. The summer after freshman year my friends and I spontaneously planned a trip up to Canada and since then my desire to travel and explore has just kept growing. There is so much to see in this country and I want to see as much of it as I can. I also really enjoy the act of disconnecting myself from society. It’s really satisfying to just pack a trunk full of your basic necessities and have no real obligations or set plans ahead of you.
RF: Do you notice a difference in the way that you photograph in the city and the way you photograph in the country?
MK: I don’t think there is any significant difference in the way I photograph whether I am in the city or out on an adventure, but I do find it more difficult to photograph in the city. When I’m traveling everything is new and exciting and beautiful. There are new things to see everyday, but in the city everything gets too routine, too familiar. I started noticing that the stream of conscious shooting that I do so prolifically when I am traveling slows down to almost a crawl when I am confined to the city due to whatever obligations I have found myself with. So I made a big effort last year to photograph my life in the city as if I was out traveling, which is how the project Viseral came about. I’m very happy with it and it taught me a lot about myself as a photographer but I believe I’ll always enjoy photographing more when I’m out of the city, whether it’s for a weekend trip or a month long trip.
RF: You’re trapped in a room with 5 photographers who can be living/dead/famous/notfamous, who are they? You can bring one friend along. Who do you bring?
MK: William Eggleston, Alec Soth, Justine Kurland, Nan Golden, and Robert Frank. I would without a doubt bring my favorite person, Michael Heck, along with me.
Melissa’s Website - which has just been updated with two new series, Mass of Sky and Visceral, which are both fantastic.
FEATURE #2000000: JUSTIN GUTHRIE
RF: First off, tell us about yourself. Name, age, location, photographic equipment, what beverage do you have with breakfast?
JG: Justin Guthrie, 19, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA, A bunch of different cameras but right now Leica Minilux and a Pentax K1000, I just purchased a Contax T2.
RF: Why do you shoot pictures?
JG: I shoot photos because to me it’s really fun to take photos and it’s a thing I feel like I have to do; If I see something in life that I want to remember or I feel is beautiful than I have to take that photo. Why else do people take photos is what I’m wondering? haha
RF: A focus of some of your work seems to be on texture, and the relationships between different textures in a photograph. Is this a conscious choice? Is there anything in particular that you’re always drawn to when you take a picture?
JG: Texture is definitely something I’m keen to when taking a photo, sometimes the texture to me is a lot more interesting than the object itself so leaning a little bit closer in to an object can get you a whole different picture altogether. Sometimes it’s fun to make the viewer have to guess what it is rather than just throw it all out there to be read right away.
RF: Some of your pictures have colourful or textural borders with varying degrees of explicit relation to the image - what causes you to add them? When you’re shooting a picture, do you imagine it with a particular frame?
JG: I don’t really see the photos when I’m taking a photo with any particular borders but sometimes I will see a texture and shoot it because I think it could be a rad border.
I believe the borders are there to accompany the photo, add some more layers of interest into it. I am very influenced by modern experimental graphic design as well as modern photography so to me it’s just a mixture of the two mediums.
RF: The series of yours, 336 Hours // 100 Frames is particularly striking as an account of two weeks in the life of a teenager. Did you set out with that (or any) intention, or did the series come together organically?
JG: The series 336 Hours // 100 Frames came together very organically. I lived out in Los Angeles this past summer and left my main group of very close friends and when I got back my girlfriend left me and my friends I stayed out with LA and I had sort of a falling out, so needless to say I was bummed. My very good friends that stayed behind showed me a great two weeks of genuine friendship and fun and helped me through a hardish time. Those two weeks were very exciting and emotional for me.
RF: Five years ago, what were you doing? In five years time, what will you be doing?
JG: Five years ago I was 14 and in high school, so basically I was just skateboarding and taking cell phone photos of my friends skating and that’s about it so in 5 years from now I will be 24 so hopefully still skateboarding and taking photos and maybe make a career out of photography so I can keep cheating life and have fun always.