Matthieu Paley - instagram lists #feedolist

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After a selfie request, they piled up like good roommates do and gave me that image. They were getting ready to perform a dance, outside. «Monk is the best, I have no stress, I am fed, I have friends, no girlfriend headache, I can flirt on my mobile and when I go to town people respect me ». The fun and kindness was palpable, I wasn’t sure about the extend of the spiritual commitment. Gasa monastery, Bhutan.

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Monk practicing dance moves backstage #eyesrollback #monkdancers #bhutan

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A monk performs a Tibetan Cham dance at the Gasa monastery, Bhutan; rooted in folk tales, these mask performances have a narrative interspersed with comedy and satire. The mask seats high on the head, the dancer actually watches through the mouth opening; a very athletic performance with hypnotic jump moves. Swipe for a backstage portrait of a performer wearing a large phallus around his neck: traditionally, symbols of an erect penis in Bhutan have been intended to drive away the evil eye and malicious gossip. Take note! #himalayanculture #phallus #buddhism #tshechu #danceperformance #fertility #maskdance #mountainculture

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It’s a white-out day. Pema’s mum heats up water on the wooden stove, pours it in the plastic tub, steam rises with her hand. Swipe for other black backdrops; post diner tea with miss Wangchuk and a road worker’s Tibetan mastiff met on the trail. #himalayanculture #mountainculture #happiness #bhutan #layap #paleyprints #tibetanmastiff #babybath

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Wedged uncontrollable bird by the school roof at lunch break, dogs waiting for morsels. Kids squat out to eat, the house were they usually have lunch is full of rice bags, a large delivery brought by multiple horses. Swipe and this simple classroom delivered profound messages about unity, the G.R.O.U.P.S, applicable to the whole world. #bhutan #layap #wisewords #bhutanschool #classroom #classroomdecor #snowylandscape

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The trail up to Laya village is the only flat ground, used as makeshift camp for wranglers and their horses. Next, Karma Wangchuk, 13 years old, father of horseman. His dream? “I want to be a Bolero driver”. Bolero is a popular jeep, people with fancy shoes climb in the passenger seat. The road doesn’t link the village yet, it doesn’t matter, dreams are big. I change my SD card on my camera, he asked for it “i have never seen a 64GB card!”. At night he is OK with rapping, mum watches on. In the morning it snows and he skips school, “Drivers don’t need to go to school”. #changingculture #mountainculture #himalayanculture #globalization #horsesinsnow #bhutanhiphop

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Wearing Layap woven bamboo hats and Tibetan chuba coats, women from the Laya valley line up before a traditional dance performance at an annual Tshechu. Tshechus are large religious gatherings that take place inside dzong (here in Gasa); they facilitate social bonding among people from remote and spread-out villages. These women travelled by foot from their village. Until the 1980s, the Layap lived in near-complete isolation from the world. Swipe right for a quick social media check-up between dances...

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This scene came with the tapping of rain mixing with distant river sound and the quiet chanting of the shaved-head lama, halfway submerged in this hot spring. I sat there for a while, nursing a bad ankle, taking turns near the hottest spot, feeling shy for pictures when in fact i was making this all up, as so often. Below the Gasa dzong, Bhutan. #hotsprings #holywater #bhutanese #paleyprints

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On our way up to the Laya valley, Bhutan, we gazed up to the Gasa dzong, dwarfed here by Himalayan peaks. A dzong is a type of fortress architecture found mainly in Bhutan and Tibet and serves as a religious, military, administrative and social center. They always stand proud at strategic geographical points - from here we heard chanting coming from inside and so all our plans changed. Traveling is serendipity or nothing, thank you very much.

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Late March, after a @ngphotocamp, I spent a week in Laya, Bhutan’s remotest village. You still need to walk 7 hours from the end of a crazy road, but soon it will reach the village. Electricity arrived few years back and social media is making its way into the fabric of life much like in the rest of the Himalayas (the world!) and is affecting culture. The brand Supreme is a huge hit, brought in by popular Korean soap opera - I have a whole series. It’s this strange/fascinating big world salad like anywhere else. Here Gile Sitar (57) came out to see her son Dawa (23). Swipe for some trail encounters (while walking up to the village) including a walking closet, another Supreme girl helping her grand mother and a cool couple returning home, Kile Zam and Pema Tson, names that sing to my ears. @natgeo assignment #supreme #changingculture #mountainculture #himalayanculture #bhutanculture #supremenyc #supremeclothing @supremenewyork

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Oddball of a sister squeaching brother with love. Vrang village, Tajikistan. #lovehate

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Kachura (open edition, 80x60cm) I In 1999, out of NYC, @paleyography and I volunteered to teach english in Kachura, a little village in the Karakoram, Pakistan. It hasn’t changed much. We would get trouts from that tiny lake near our home. Mareile stands on a rock, floating fairy. We thought we would stay few months, we ended up being there for a year, trekking all around Baltistan. Have you read “Where the Indus is young ” by Dervla Murphy? Great read. Last days: we are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile! #paleyprints

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Kumtag (Open edition, 75 x 60cm) I In 2016, @paleyography and I took a sabbatical year from Turkey, homeschooled our kids while on the road, bought a van in India and went across China by train. It was a special time that allowed me to photograph yet not miss my family. No regrets there. It was life changing for my boys (5 and 10 then) too, they gain so much confidence. Here, showing too much confidence thinking they can just head out across the Taklamakan desert in western China. 🐫 🐫 Last days: we are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile! #paleyprints

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Pegich (Open edition, 80 x 60cm) I Pegich kept circling the fire, busy as she was, mending the fire, preparing diner. The wife of Er Ali Boi, she was named after the Wakhi village she was born in, a week walk down the valley. Most Afghan Kyrgyz woman would have their blouse decorated with shiny pretty things gathered over the years,as well as old family heirlooms. We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile! #paleyprints

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Tella Bu II (Open Edition 50 x 40 cm) I Evening, Tella Bu and friends have just returned the bleating young lambs to their mothers; too cold for lambs to go out with the herd in winter, they are kept indoors for the first few weeks. Now the Kyrgyz daughters come hide from the wind in their mum’s skirts and listen to the gossip of the day, something about wolves attacking yaks. We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile!

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Tsast Uul (Open Edition, 80x60cm) I Early morning, head out of the tent and greeted by this. We had just climbed Tsast Uul, following 2 months on foot across Mongolia. Back in 1998, with @paleyography We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile!

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Abena (open edition) I Proudly, Abena shows me her home made dress. Wakhan Corridor, Afghanistan. We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile!

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Ato (open edition) I Portrait of Ato Mohammed, on 6th September 2017, at the hot spring near Sherk village. I was returning to the Wakhan corridor, on assignment for @natgeo, trekking across the Pamir and Karakoram mountains into Pakistan alongside writer Paul Salopek. Paul’s @outofedenwalk project is fascinating; he is retracing the ancient path of human migration, walking across the world and started in Ethiopia 7 years ago. He is currently in India approaching the Burmese border; of course all on foot... reporting at boot level! We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile!

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Abdul Aziz (open edition) / After 10 days without meeting anyone, our scientific expedition came across this nomadic tent, on the edge of the Lut desert, in Iran. We ate and as I headed to my tent I stopped to photograph Abdul Aziz, the camp chief sitting under the stars next to his home, the same tone as the distant hills. #camouflaged #paleyprints We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile!

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Devlokh (open edition) / A Pamiri girl swings from an apricot tree at the edge of a summer settlement in the Bartang valley, spring time. For 5 months in 2009, we lived with our 3-year-old son in Tajikistan's Pamir mountains, doing work for various local NGOs and promoting the Roof of the World music festival. We stayed for a while in an old Russian building in Khorog, got evicted and took off for days in the mountains, a great time. We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints (including that image) during this month of MAY, see link in my profile. #paleyprints

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Ech Keli III / Above Ech Keli camp, two girls walk up the frozen spring to fetch water. In the distance, Chaqmaqtin lake. Chaqmaqtin means flint stone; must be the place to get the right stone to spark a fire. To the right is a valley where the Oxus river (Amy Darya) takes its source. 2011, it was my second winter expedition in Afghanistan's Pamir mountains, 5-weeks. We are doing a 50% discount on ALL open editions prints during this month of MAY, including this image, see link in my profile. #paleyprints

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It’s far from fantastic, but the meaning it carries is lyrical; teapots have heard more stories than you and I. Summer 2005, we trekked about 300km across Afghanistan’s Pamir mountains, delivering letters to the Kyrgyz community. High altitude, harsh winds; we always craved those cups of salty tea! Huddled in these interiors, quiet except for the occasional uproar amongst the kids, ruled by protocol, filled with dust and tales; these are some tasty cups of tea. The red veils, the sequins bouncing light, and always a golden tea pot somewhere… Empty, it’s light as a feather; the handle has sharp edges and gets hot when tea is poured. Steaming up, it knows it holds the keys to comfort and unite people, worth more than any gold. We are doing a 50% discount on all open editions prints only during this month of MAY, including this image, see link in my profile! #paleyprints

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Candy floss matching sunset while on a recent @natgeo story in Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar. A windy day means clearer skies, at least temporarily, a respite from the incredible air pollution that is afflicting this city. It’s been interesting to photograph this issue, keeping an eye out for visually evocative scenes, while trying to stay close to this ugly reality.

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In a coal mine on the edge of Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar, a miner climbs into a bathtub-shaped metal bucket before being lowered with a cable down a 200-foot-deep shaft. He and his co-workers send the big bucket up full, and crews shovel the coal into pickup trucks bound for the city. Coal burned by nearby power-plants and in Ulaanbaatar’s homes releases high amounts of fine particles when burned, contributing to one of the world’s most polluted air. These miners working with makeshift equipment and under harsh conditions are themselves routinely exposed to elevated levels of fine particles. This image is part of a story I recently shot for @natgeo Cities Issue. See story link in my profile #climatechange #miners #fineparticles #coalminer #airpollution #mongolia #ulaanbaatar

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One of several coal-fired power plants located inside Mongolia’s capital... in the distance, buildings are covered by smog. “Ulaanbaatar is already suffocating from its coal use,” says Sukhgerel Dugersuren, chair of a mining oversight group called Oyu Tolgoi Watch, but she fears “the way the planning is going, there’s going to be more coal-fired power plants. There’s going to be more coal burned here.” Ulaanbaatar’s air is one the world’s most polluted, especially during the cold winter months. This image is part of a story I recently shot on air pollution for the @natgeo Cities Issue. See link in my profile. #climatechange #airpollution #mongolia #ulaanbaatar #powerplant

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His face coated with coal dust, a worker takes a break after unloading coal from trains at a refinery on the edge of Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar. The air here is one the world’s most polluted, especially during the cold winter months; largely due to the city’s massive dependency on fossil fuels to heat up homes, cook and provide electricity. This image is part of a story I recently shot for @natgeo Cities Issue. See story link in my profile #climatechange #airpollution #mongolia #ulaanbaatar #fossilfuels #coalminer @everydayclimatechange

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Dream time during the daily afternoon nap at a kindergarten in Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar. 2nd image: the classroom… because of the current air pollution crisis, each room has air purifiers in, as young children’s health is especially vulnerable to air pollution. 3rd image: a two-year-old girl is treated for pneumonia in the intensive care unit of a hospital. On her forehead is a smudge of coal ash applied by her mother to ward off evil spirits. It's air pollution from coal burning, however, that has caused the incidence of pneumonia and other respiratory illnesses to spike in the Mongolian capital, especially among children. These images are part of a story I recently shot for @natgeo Cities Issue, see link in my profile #climatechange #airpollution #mongolia #ulaanbaatar #childrenhealth #aircrisis

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Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar, has grown rapidly and in an unplanned way in recent years, as nomadic herders have left the countryside and settled on the city's outskirts, in districts such as Dari Ekh. Living in gers (yurts) or simple houses, they use coal stoves for both heating and cooking. Ulaanbaatar’s air is one the world’s most polluted, especially during the cold winter months. This image is part of a story I recently shot for @natgeo Cities Issue, see link in profile.

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Modern day Sisyphus. Obeying order, a worker sweeps the floor of a coal refinery, in what seems an endless job, more dust resettling as he sweeps. Bad coal is grounded in this refinery near Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar, moisture and some pollutants are removed to make it a "cleaner" and more valuable fuel. Not a solution in itself. Mongolia, at least for now, remain completely dependent on burning huge quantity of coal (a family easily burns two tons or more each winter) to survive the brutal winters. But the toll it takes is steep. Ulaanbaatar has currently one the world’s most polluted air. From the United States and Germany to India and China, air pollution cuts short an estimated 7 million lives globally every year, according to the World Health Organization. This image is part of a story I recently shot for @natgeo Cities Issue. #climatechange #airpollution #mongolia #ulaanbaatar #coal #fossilfuel #smog #sisyphus

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Back in the Himalaya for couple of weeks, on a @ngphotocamp followed by @natgeo assignment in... Bhutan. This image has nothing to do with Bhutan, actually it was shot at the other end of the Himalayan arc, all the way in the Pamir mountains. From there to here is an uninterrupted giant sliver of mountains, fascinating to picture the transitions from a bird’s perspective, starting at the wet green foothills in Yunnan/china, across Bhutan, Nepal, northern India, pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan until the dry central Asian deserts. This is an unpublished from my first @natgeo assignment, seven years ago when I embarked on my 3rd winter expedition in Afghanistan’s Pamir mountains. I was cold and hungry trying to catch up with a wedding party of 4 and a 2 horses, we stopped in Andemin camp, outside the women were milking, we ended up spending the night here, no plan is always the best plan #internationalwomensday #afghanpamir #reddress #paleyprints

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The crack through these 2 trunks, the natural door to a small field next to home. No sheep or goat can enter, the pasture grows quietly until the grass is ready for harvest. Bibi Hawa and Gul Chera runs all day, either watching over the calves or checking on their big brother, cutting hay somewhere behind them. on assignment for @natgeo #sisters #paleyprints #wakhancorridor #villagelife #afghanistan #reddress

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Apparently Baloch shalwar/pants were traditionally sewn using up to 40 yards of cloth (36 meters or 118 feet!!!). That’s stretching it a bit. The heat and modesty are to blame, maybe. This is actually a normal shalwar on that picture, doesn’t look as puffy as the Baloch ones. These are great to be used as pyjamas. Respected fashion wallahs can express their views below. Here, Delip Kumar is a Hindu on pilgrimage in Pakistan. On assignment for @natgeo #pakistanzindabad #bluepants #blueshalwar #simpleportrait

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#NatGeo100Contest - Good morning! I have had the great honour to work with @natgeo for the last 8 years… and we just hit 100 Millions followers (that's about 10 times the population of Portugal where I currently live!). An incredible achievement. As a thanks, @natgeo is having a photo contest for the next 7 hours only. To submit, simply post your most Nat Geo inspired photo on your feed using the hashtag #NatGeo100Contest. The top 10 photos will be posted on @natgeo and the winner gets a photo trip to Tanzania. Good luck! Here is my most liked photo on @natgeo, a moonrise over the Hindukusch in Afghanistan, swipe right to see the ledge where we sat, patiently waiting for me to find the manual focus switch.

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Resistance is futile when it comes to the man with the orange moustache, especially such a delicious looking one… so I obliged. Move right to the tablecloth that fits the scene. #hindusinpakistan #henna #orangemustache #mustacheman #orangefamily #localpunk

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Wrapping the gift of nature, sending wishes in silence; how many cultures have tied things to trees, in cold and hot lands, dressing up nature way before Christmas even existed? Baluchistan desert, Pakistan. #prayingtonature #paleyprints

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Part 1 of 2 - A bath in the holy Hingol river, just before the temple - "There are crocodiles in the river, but they come out when it is cooler”, Raj Kumar. Water in a landscape that dry. Hindus in Pakistan. On assignment for @natgeo #pinkdress #hindupilgrim #pinkfashion #bluesteellook #portraiture #paleyprints

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Part 2 of 2 - Crumbling crust, the burning plains of Baluchistan. “Back to the car please, there can be dacoits”, kind worried driver. On assignment for @natgeo #sarmachar #pinklandscape #crackedearth #desertlandscape

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Part 1 of 2 - For the details of reality, there is plenty surreal. The pride of Ramesh Kumar, a walking pilgrim - pink shalwar, the kamiz held by the finger tips, plastic shoe laying still on the rock, doing a circumnavigation of a series of 3 mountain passes. I have always wanted to buy a pink shalwar kamiz, I am just jealous of this guy for pulling it off so well! Hindus in Pakistan. On assignment for @natgeo #pinkdress #hindupilgrim #pinkfashion #bluesteellook #portraiture #paleyprints

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Part 2 of 2 - Chandragup volcano night glow, meanwhile pilgrims walk up to the crater, by the flashlight. The boom box, maxed out on Hindi tunes in the distance, I could live without. Hindus in Pakistan. #volcano #hinduism #volcanoworship #pilgrims #mudvolcano #paleyprints

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Part 1 of 2 - Pilgrims were walking around the rim of the crater. What brought people to worship such force of nature, hundreds, thousands of years ago til this day, that is fascinating. She sat there watching her family members doing their round, by the precipice. On assignment for @natgeo #volcano #hinduism #worship #womanofthedesert #mudvolcano #paleyprints

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Part 2 of 2 - The opening of a dormant volcano. Mother and daughter, shadow play on the crater wall. On assignment for @natgeo #volcano #hinduism #worship #womanofthedesert #mudvolcano #crater #paleyprints

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The collective movement that is train travel relies heavily on that man - the head cook. Well fed, we shall stay united by purpose... Next, I was duly impressed by this waiter’s hairstyle - he was getting a car for a client outside the station / I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story. #bowtie #haistyle #traintravel #iranbytrain #irantravel #headcook

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Hope everyone having great holidays and gearing up for new year! 💃🏻🕺Here, stopping for an invitation at a nomadic family on the edge of the Lut desert - meanwhile back with our host in Zahedan, view to the kitchen from a hole in the wall / I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story. #iranjourney #nomadiclife #nomadictent #holeinthewall #iranianhospitality #paleyprints

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Malek’s son plays in the family’s magnesite mine, on the edge of the beautiful Lut desert, Iran. Next, a car covered in dust sits amid an empty lot in Ahvaz city, capital of Khuzestan province. In 2011, the World Health Organization ranked Ahvaz as the world's most air-polluted city / I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story. #magnesite #stonemine #airpollution #mediumformat #irantravel #lutdesert #dust #iranianhospitality #paleyprints

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Laying on Iranian carpets, Malek Khan relaxes at home after a visit to his magnesite mine on the edge of the Lut Desert, Iran. Swipe right for a tender moment with his second wife. They hosted us for 2 days in Zahedan city, on the Afghan border / I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story #balochistan #iranianhospitality #traintravel #irantravel #zahedan

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IT'S (ALL) ABOUT TIME! The plan was to launch my Fine Art Print website before Christmas... 2017! In reality, there were just too many images to choose from, too many ideas to consider, too many adventures to take part in... So today, just in time for Christmas 2018 (!), we are thrilled to invite you to explore Paleyprints - please hit the link in my BIO, there are close to 200 images to look at... All design and editing by the amazing @paleyography

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IT'S (ALL) ABOUT TIME! The plan was to launch my Fine Art Print website before Christmas... 2017! In reality, there were just too many images to choose from, too many ideas to consider, too many adventures to take part in... So today, just in time for Christmas 2018 (!), we are thrilled to invite you to explore Paleyprints - please hit the link in my BIO, there are close to 200 images to look at... Design and editing by the amazing @paleyography

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Night crawl in Iran, between trains. Endless possibilities of encounters; the hard workers of the late night shift, in a fragile economy, trying to make ends meet • I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story. #irantrain #iranjourney #nightcrawler #traintravel #nightshift #ciaopantin #steelwork #garage

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Hijab advertisement in Yazd bazaar - swipe for living room TV featuring Turkish soap opera below Mecca... Does anyone knows that actress? • I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story. #irantrain #iranjourney #faceless #hijab #turkishsoapopera #iranianhospitality #headscarf

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Octogonal watermelon, rest stop / Burning window, Ahvaz, Khuzestan • I recently crossed Iran by train. A circular journey shifting between the enclosed space of our compartment and escapes on the edge of cities where the generosity of Iranians would open many doors. For an upcoming @natgeo story. #watermelon #fountain #floating #floatingwatermelon #burningwindow #ahvaz #irantraveling 🍉 🔥 #paleyprints