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Travel Photographer of the Year Q&A | Insight Guides Blog

Travel Photographer of the Year Q&A

A man transports bamboo fishing baskets near Tat Vien village, Hung Yen Province, Vietnam.
A man transports bamboo fishing baskets near Tat Vien village, Hung Yen Province, Vietnam. Photo: Ly Hoang Long/www.tpoty.com

By Alexandra Smith

The winners of 2015's Travel Photographer of the Year (TPOTY) contest have been announced! Powerful, evocative and inspiring, the winning shots earned their spot at the top.

Insight Guides was lucky enough to chat with photographer Ly Hoang Long of Vietnam, whose vibrant, eye-catching photos tell a story all their own. This shot in particular (above) snagged him a special mention in the contest. Here's what Long had to say about it.

IG: Tell us about your TPOTY photo? When/where you shot it, etc.

LONG: Actually, my awarded image was from a portfolio (four images), which I submitted into the Portfolio category. It's about bamboo basket-making in Tat Vien village, Hung Yen province, the North of Vietnam, shot in January 2015.

IG: Why do you think people have responded so much to it? What story do you think it tells?

LONG: I don't expect that. I simply wish to share a traditional craft of my country: After the harvest crop, the villagers spend most of their spare time by knitting the bamboo baskets, which are used for fishing. This traditional craft has been handed over many generations in Tat Vien village.

IG: What sparked your interest in travel photography?

LONG: Discovery

IG: What do you find to be the most inspiring thing about travel photography?

LONG: Experiencing a place, a culture, etc., then telling a story with my camera.

IG: Where have been your favourite destinations to shoot?

LONG: Bhutan, India and Myanmar.

IG: What has been your favourite story or message to tell with your photographs?

LONG: Traditional activities such as festivals, rites, and handicrafts are my favourite subjects that I wish to make into stories. A few years ago, I was very lucky to attend a maturity ceremony of Champa girls in Ninh Thuan, Vietnam; it has been the most favorite one of mine.

IG: As a travel photographer, you are generally on the go. What type of cameras do you use to complement that?

LONG: I'm now using a Nikon D4 with two zoom lenses.

IG: What advice would you give to someone who is interested in travel photography?

LONG: Sensibility and predictability are the keys. Join the National Geographic community to improve your skills.

Long's stunning photos were shot in Vietnam.
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Photo: Ly Hoang Long/www.tpoty.comPhoto: Ly Hoang Long/www.tpoty.com

Photo: Ly Hoang Long/www.tpoty.com

Looking to improve your photo skills? Check out Insight Guides: Travel Photography to help get you going.

Experience it yourself with our Quintessential Vietnam trip.