We all have our heroes in life. It can be an athlete or an artist, it's the person who inspires you the most, and who has the qualities you would like to possess and the ambitions you would like to satisfy. Meet my heroin: she's both athlete and artist. She's an artist of life. Krystle Wright. Globe-trotting adventure photographer.
Krystle has traveled the world shooting extreme sports. Originally from Australia, she has chosen a nomadic lifestyle, moving seamlessly from adventure to adventure, documenting the places and the people along the way with stunning photography. She enjoys being cut off from civilization and immersed in adventure for weeks, as she did battling freezing cold temperatures in the Arctic or paragliding in the Karakoram Range in Pakistan. “In a past life, I used to have that thing called a home…” says Krystle.
The photographer is driven by the challenge. Pushing boundaries. Searching for new ways to capture moments. "Because it makes me feel alive."
"That being said, I struggle with the concept of "holiday". With that in mind, photography offers me a purpose and a drive -I love the challenge of capturing great images."
Krystle is a daredevil artist. The kind of girl who is so cool, you can't help it but hate her a little bit. Her biggest fear in life is regret. We all know that fear. The thing is, she follows her instinct in life in order to create a lifetime of adventure. Even if it means hanging from cliffs or swimming with stingrays.
"A blend of inspiration, creativity and insanity"
I've discovered her beautiful work on my favorite magazine (Action Asia). Since then, I stalk her on Instagram and Facebook. When I asked Krystle to answer a few questions to inspire other travelers/artists/dreamers, she spontaneously said yes. She really is cool.
Photography has taken Krystle from working at local paper to becoming one of the world's leading adventure photographers. "Originally I wanted to be a sports photographer as I dreamed of going to the Olympics or Rugby World Cup and documenting from the sidelines. But as I began my newspaper career, I was shooting adventure and extreme sports on the side as I just love being outdoors. Over a couple years, my passion shifted and suddenly all I could think about was adventure sports and so I quit the paper in mid 2011 and began a full time adventure career."
"I've had many mentors over the years. Tim Clayton mentored me for many years early on in my career, particularly with the newspapers. And through my travels, I've met so many incredible photographers and many who have given their time and advice to me such as Jimmy Chin, Tim Kemple, Blake Jorgenson, and many more. I wouldn't say I have just the one mentor these days but no doubt I still seek out advice and help as its not easy being a freelancer and working solo all the time." [I know the feeling!]
"I've taken many adventures but perhaps the one trip that truly stands out is my first expedition which was a BASE jumping expedition to Baffin Island in 2010 with 23 BASE jumpers from around the world...That trip opened my eyes to the potential of expeditions! It wasn't an easy trip but I seem to thrive in challenging situations as it also teaches me who I am, and what I'm not capable of."
"The injuries I've sustained haven't put me off one bit though. If anything, ut's only inspired me more to keep pursuing what I love to do."
The most incredible thing that happened during your trips? "Hmmm... That's a tough one because do I talk about the grandest of experience of the little grand moments. I love the subtle grand moments because they can tend to leave a stronger impression in the long run. I remember feeling super lost at Ulan Ude train station in Siberia, and I ask a train conductor which train our group was meant to get on. In broken english he assured me we had not missed it but then he goes to grab a chair and play his accordion. He also gave me a fine apple and a little navigational trinket and it was such a wonderful traveling moment."
"I crave any and all excuses to disconnect with civilization and drop of into the wilderness. Usually the hard it is to get there, the more remote the place, the more I end up loving it.
I find that on these trips, life strips down to its basics and it's easier to be one with the present."
"My favorite place in the world is somewhere that is hidden and way off the beaten path. I can't choose a singular place because every experience is different and sure they are magical places that stay with me but there's no singular one. I particularly love the places that I turn up and have no idea of what to expect."
Any advice for other people who are thinking on embarking on an adventure? "One of the biggest advice I have for those who wish to pursue this lifestyle is that there is no straight answer.
One of the biggest things I was reminded of was to remember to have fun. Not always in a sense that things need to be easy and carefree, but when you're out there in the field, make sure that you want to be there for the right reasons.
As soon as those reasons aren't in the right place then its important to stand back and ask yourself why are you there. I've pulled the pin halfway through a trip before because the strongest feeling came over me that I no longer wanted to be there and I have no regrets about that and leaving. Intuition plays such a strong role because ultimately this isn't a job, its a passion and sometimes in the extreme situations, lives can be on the line if the wrong decisions are made.