interview travel

Chatting Photography and Travel With Nash Hagen

11/26/2019Jake Ryan

When scrolling through Instagram one Sunday afternoon recently I found the account of photographer Nash Hagen. Nash is a travel photographer based in Hawaii and takes the most stunning photos.   I recently spoke with Nash to ask him about his photography work and travel adventures. See what Nash had to say by checking out the full interview below. 

Hey Nash, first of all tell us a little bit about yourself.  
Hey I'm Nash. I'm a 24 yr old travel and adventure Photographer and filmmaker based on Oahu, Hawaii. I moved to Hawaii about 2.5 years ago to pursue a career in movies. I actually moved here to work on Hawaii 5-0, but after about a month or so I decided to switch course and pursue freelance work. I started posting consistently on Instagram shortly thereafter and haven't looked back. Since then I have had the incredible privilege to work with some of the largest brands and names in the world including GMC, Cadillac, Mountain Dew, Aeropostale, Adobe, and Royal Caribbean to name a few.

Your photography work is outstanding, how long have you been taking photos?
Well thank you. Really appreciate that. Funny enough I didn't start taking photos until about 3-4 years ago, however I've had a camera in my hand shooting videos since I was 8 years old. I'd always get my friends and siblings together to make cheesy little "movies" when I was younger and that actually led into attending film school for college. Photography is sort of a more recent aspiration.

Did you study photography?
No not directly, but like I said, I went to film school so I guess a lot of the same elements can cross over from both disciplines. I will say though that the majority of what I've learned has come from either youtube, other photographers or experience. TBH just going out and shooting stuff is the best and fastest way to learn.

Do you have a favourite photo you’ve taken? And why?
HMM thats a tough one. There's a lot that I really like but some of my favorite are the scale drone shots. I'm a huge fan of landscape photography but I also like incorporating small people for scale. I think it just helps bring the whole comp together. But the photos that tell a story are by far my favorite.

Who inspires you?
Theres so many but I'll just list off a few here... Karl Shakur, Sam Kolder, Benn Tk, Martin Zapanta, Emmet Sparling, Ever Changing Horizons, Josiah WG, Mike Visuals. There's way to many to list but theres a few.

What would you dream project be?
Really anything that requires traveling to a really unique location with cool people and creating a meaningful and engaging story. I know that's really vague but for me it's less about the the vehicle and more about who's involved and why. If I were to choose though I'd say tourism boards. I'd love to work for the tourism board of Egypt or Morocco. I think there is so much to learn from other cultures and fully engaging in those cultures is such an immersive experience. I think everyone should step out of their comfort zone and visit a different culture at least once in their life and if I can facilitate that in some way thats a win for me. But really any project that promotes living a positive and fulfilled life I am totally game for!

Do you have a favourite place you’ve visited so far?
I've been to a lot of good ones but I think I'm gonna have to go with the Philippines. Not only is it incredibly beautiful, but the people are about the nicest I have ever met. Super hospitable and most speak english fairly well so getting around and actually conversing with the locals is a lot easier than in other places. I'm actually going back for a month early next year!

You’ve travelled to some amazing places, how often are you travelling?
So it sort of depends on the month and what projects I have lined up, but typically at least 1 trip per month that lasts about 10-14 days. I like having a home base just to recenter myself but I also love being on the road.

What is at the top of your bucket list right now?

The funny thing about travel is the more you do it the more places you want to see. So there's so much but right now probably the Dolomites, Sahara desert, Zhangjiajie National Forest, Norway, and Namibia. All drastically different haha.

What makes you happiest?
Traveling with good people. Of course cool locations help but I'd much rather travel with a few good friends than alone any day. I think that's one of the best parts about social media, that you can meet like minded people literally anywhere in the world. I'm also not a very surface level person so I love getting to know people on a deeper level.

And finally what are your plans for the future? 
Good question, I ask myself this literally every other day. Haha nah its not that bad. I do have a few projects I'm working on at the moment, but probably my main focus is transitioning my personal brand into more of a full serviced media production house and agency. And of course traveling a lot more! I think one of my biggest strength and also biggest weaknesses is that I am not a huge planner. I kinda wing it and it usually works out ok ;)

Thanks Nash for taking the time to speak to TravelFoodFilm. 

You can check out more of 
Nash's work on his Instagram and website

All photos in this post are property of Nash Hagen 

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