Travel, photography, art, hotels… what do all these things have in common? They are all things that I love about my job. I’m fortunate enough to be able to see some rather amazing places on this beautiful planet with the work that I do. Not only do I get to see these places, but I also get to photograph them. You could say that what I do for living is art, however I’m also fortunate to see and experience the art of other artists on my travels.
“I stay a really old hotel last night. They sent me a wake-up letter.”
Hotels? Really? Yes! I love hotels. While I am not a fan of the more arduous aspects of travelling for a living, I am a fan — a big fan — of finally arriving at my destination, getting to my hotel, unpacking, taking a shower, and getting a good first night’s sleep at my destination. Hotels have their own personality and I have a switch that goes on when staying at a hotel where there is that something extra. At times this is the intangible feeling that I get when everything goes right, other times it’s the one specific thing that I’ll remember fondly. Most of the time it has to do with kind hotel staff that really know how to make their guests feel special. So yes, I love hotels and the people that work there who make my stays so pleasant.
In the next five months, I’m getting a chance to work along with a great hotel chain to help celebrate art all over America. A couple of months ago SpringHill Suites (an all suite brand of Marriott international) got in touch with me to discuss a very cool project they had in mind. This “Art on the Road” project involved photography, art, travel, and you guessed it… hotels. What I liked the most about the project was the fact that SpringHill Suites insisted that the prime focus of this art on the road tour was to be the art and artists that we are celebrating. The secondary aspect was to work with me to showcase my photography on this very cool Facebook page they built! How cool is that?
“A picture is a poem without words.”
The idea is simple. In the next five months I will be crossing the United States and visiting ten cities. In each of these cities I’ll be meeting with some local artists, photographing their portraits and some of their artwork to share with you. I’ll also be getting the chance to explore the cities, discover some of the urban art in those cities as well as photograph some of the local landmarks, historic areas, and other fun features of the locations that I’ll be in.
“Photography is a major force in explaining man to man.”
I’ll be doing all kinds of different photography including the portraits that I mentioned as well as some of the typical travel photography that you are used to seeing from me on my blog. If you’ve been reading my blog at all lately you know that I started to document a lot of fun things on my trips with my iPhone camera. I’ll be sharing a lot of these types of photos on Instagram, Twitter, and the official Art on the Road Facebook page. You can follow me as I visit each city, with the Facebook/Twitter updates and the Instagram pictures for an immediate insight into the “Art on the Road” tour. After each segment of the tour, I’ll return home to work on the professional images and write a retrospective blog post about each city and what it meant to me.
Not only do I get a chance to help celebrate art and artists, but I also get a chance to explore several new cities, as well as rediscover some of my favorite places in America. The new cities will be announced shortly before I visit, so stay tuned… I may be heading your way!
It’s only fitting that I am writing this initial blog post about the “Art on the Road” tour at the Spring Hill Suites located just outside the US capital Washington DC. I’m in Alexandria, Virginia on a hot and rainy Sunday night sitting on the sofa in my cozy hotel room. Tomorrow I’ll begin with my first artist portrait and then… let the exploration of Washington DC begin!
“If a building becomes architecture, then it is art.”
This is not my first time in Washington DC and I am thrilled to be back, its a great city for photography. There are so many historic buildings landmarks, monuments, and amazing museums to discover that a single trip is just not enough. The last time I was here, it was under very different circumstances. As you can see from the pictures in included in this post I was here just around Christmas time two years ago. Today as I got off the airplane I could have sworn I was disembarking in a tropical destination. Hard to believe I’m in the same city. While I get this kind of temperature variance at home in Montréal all the time, it’s a completely different type of experience to be in a foreign city and experience it in frigid cold one time and searing heat the next.
Next stop after Washington DC is the equally if not more historic city of Boston. This will be my first time in Boston and I can’t wait to roll up my sleeves and dig in to some New England architecture, art, and clam chowder… Mmmm chowder.
“All art is autobiographical. The pearl is the oyster’s autobiography.”
I hope you’ll join me as I explore the arts scene in America in the next few months.This is a very unique project and I am thrilled to be a part of it. I’m eager to meet the artists and hear their stories about what inspires them to do the kind of art that they do. The stories artists tell with their work is the story of their lives. Each artist does this in his or her own individual fashion and I’m privileged to be getting the chance to meet so many of them on this journey.
“The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.”
Thank you to SpringHill Suites for selecting me to showcase my vision of art in America and share it with all of you, I’m gonna enjoy this ride!
Follow my adventure on the official Art on the Road Facebook page!
While I do love all your blog posts this has probably been the most exciting one, probably because it says there will be many cool posts in the near future! We have to go get some drinks when you go to NY to celebrate that Marriott is soooooosmart (after all they selected you for this… that’s SMART!) Oh, and guess what? I have a cousin in Boston! ;)
Yah! This sounds like such a unique and exciting project! I applaud Springhill Suites for doing something like this and for hiring you to undertake it. They have excellent taste. :) Can’t wait to see your portraits Ken!
laura demarco says
You have a great job!!!! and I agree with you about hotels…..I travel a lot for my job, and choosing the right hotels has always been crucial for the success of the trip. So I’m going to follow your next posts. Enjoy your trip and lucky you! Laura : )
Beautiful image you have here!
Dave Wilson says
What a fun project! If your 10 stops include Austin, give me some notice and I’ll do my best to show you around.
Dave Wilson says
I just found the location list over on Facebook and see that you’re snubbing Texas :-) Oh well, maybe next time.
JD Andrews says
What a cool adventure, I’ll be following you all the way!
Abby Hacker says
How awesome! I have always admired your images, and am even more jealous of all your travels! Can’t wait to see what you come up with :)
Jennifer Squires says
I’m totally envious! Have a fantastic time! I know it will be inspiring to meet with other artists from across the country. Can’t wait to see the photographs that come of it!
Kris Koeller says
Great stuff. Love the HDR work here.
Ken Kaminesky says
Gaby,there sure will be a lot of cool posts in the future. This is going to be quite the adventure!
Beth, They sure do have amazing taste, don’t they ;) Seriously though, SpringHill Suites is a big supporter of the arts and I’m excited to be a part of this fun project.
Laura, Hotels rock!I love relaxing in my room after a long day of shooting and my room here in Alexandria is HUGE and comfy.
Dave, yup… Next time indeed. Would love to catch up in person.
Hey JD, thanks! I’ll be in Miami in Dec… hope to catch up with you then.
Abby, don’t be jealous… Put on your travelling shoes and see the world. You’ll never regret it.
Jennifer, Looking forward to sharing the new pics… Stay tuned
Kris, cheers! I appreciate the nice comment.
Judith Perkel says
I found out about your amazing trip on Twitter. The picture from Florence has blown me away. I can’t wait to see the rest of your trip. Springhill Suites made a great choice! Is Richmond in your plans?
wooow its really amazing photos i like so much and your blog so nice too
Santosa Laksana says
Thanks to your posts Ken, this is my build as a beginner ….. ^ _ ^ …..
crazy sexy fun traveler says
DC photos are cool! SO different from my last visit :) Enjoy Boston, I really liked it there.
Lisa Wood says
What a great idea – visiting cities and there art works! Love the idea of art on the road :)
Kat Warren Photography says
I hope you enjoy your time in DC, there really is a lot to see here. Boston is such a great city, and hopefully it will be a bit cooler than Washington! I just found your blog and I look forward to following along on this latest adventure!
Ken Kaminesky says
Judith, Unfortunately Richmond is not in the initial list… Perhaps next time!
CSFT, Thanks… I love DC and got some very cool sunset photos that I can’t wait to share.
Lisa, Yep… this is gonna be so cool! Can’t wait for the next cities now.
Kat, DC was incredibly hot AND humid. Boston was a bit cooler… Thank goodness! Both are amazing in terms of history and I hope to be back soon.
I love Florence!! One of my favorite places (from the ones I have visited, I still have many to go…) Great Picture and thanks for bringing back memories!
Kimberly Key Young says
There is nothing better than living your dream! That too is my wish:)
All the Best,
Wow what an amazing opportunity! I’m totally captivated by the Florence photo, it says so much about such a beautiful place.
do you use Photoshop apart from the basic editing, to enhance your photos? for example change the light, colours etc.
Ken Kaminesky says
Jazzy, I wouldn’t be much of a photographer if I didn’t use photoshop to enhance my images.
Well, it´s difficult when you are on the road!
do you use HDR at all?
Great photos btw :)
if you plan too be in London one day, let me know
So so so beautiful photos!!! Will you travel to China?
You know I love what you do with your job. You enjoy all those things, get to visit popular cities and capture good photos. Congratulations.
Daniel McBane - Funny Travel Stories says
This sounds like a really fun and exciting little project, both for you and for us. I’m really looking forward to the photos and hoping you visit a few of the cities I’ve lived in, so I can see what my pictures could have looked like if only I had a little more talent. Ok, a lot more talent.
Laarni of Visa USA Migration Expert says
I was very pleased about your work and I can say that your passion for photography is really amazing that it shows on your photographs. Hopefully you can continue inspiring others about the art of the photography and share your trips and also your gallery of awesome pictures! Keep it up and God bless!
Agness (@Agnesstramp) says
Great job! I really love the photos. My favourite one is the Washington building. Extraordinary. How long have you been travelling for?
canvas prints says
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Agness (@Agnesstramp) says
I agree with all people above. Sounds like a fantastic project. Your photos are stunning and I can’t wait to see the photos. You must be loving your job!
divine sevial says
what about the Philippines, would you please post it here.. just wish..
Flight Centre Lawrence says
Just amazing. You really capture what you would see in person. Amazing!!!
Ben Tucker says
First ones my fave loving the colours in the sky :)
Impressive work Ken. I enjoyed looking through the photos. Makes me want to visit Florence!
Keep up the great work.
The pictures are amazing. I love Italy and Florence, but I have never seen such a great foto of the city. I will get back soon to your blog to read more!
Wow, amazing HDR processing !Great work !
Great work Mr.Ken!!!! You rock!!!!I could never guess from where you would have captured The Florence City view. Did you find it very difficult?????
Roshan Mendonca says
Pictures are amazing
Adventure Tours says
These cities pics are looking so beautiful.
I just like these pics
Ken Kaminesky says
Hey everyone! I really appreciate the wonderful comments left here on this post. Since August I have been on the road so much that it has been quite challenging to keep up with the blog and i apologize for not replying to such kind comments.
Thanks again for your support. :)
aledesign.it - Creative Graphic says
Very nice blog….and fantastic photos! Thanks for inspirations!! ale
To tell to you the truth your pictures/ photos are really great , you should come to country like Nepal to catch same type of pictures of mountains and Himalayas temples and monastery . best for your upcoming days !
What a great project!!
I also love staying in hotels :)