Today we are bringing you the work of Grace DeRidder. We love Graces’ bright and airy style of photography. Her images leave you wanting to visit the places she has. You can find her on Instagram as – @atravelersbliss
What are you shooting with? Camera, phone…both?:
I shoot with both a DSLR camera (Canon 60D) and an iPhone 7Plus. Most of the photos I post to Instagram tend to be my camera photos, but I always take photos on my phone to do location test shots, have duplicates of favorite photos, and geolocations saved.
My favorite lens right now is my canon 24-70 mm f/2.8 lens. It is so versatile and while it is a bit big and heavy, it is perfect for traveling because I know it is the only lens I will need.
How did you get started in photography?
Oh, gosh…. I have always had an interest in art and photography. I won my first camera at a raffle in sixth grade, a digital Fujifilm that could fit in your pocket. I photographed everything and anything for no particular reason other than the pure delight of using that camera. I truly got serious about photography in high school and that’s when I started taking it a bit more seriously and started to experiment more with film and digital editing.
What is your favorite image you have taken and why? (include this in your images, label it favorite)
One of my favorite pictures. Is of The Flamingo sculpture in downtown Chicago. During my junior year of college at Columbia College in Chicago I had and incredible professor who always challenged me, stretched me creatively, and thought outside the box on every assignment for each of his students. For this particular photograph, he had challenged me to go around the city and photograph four different architectural structures on a diagonal and turn them black and white. It was such a different and unique was of thinking that made me photograph a city I had been wandering every day for the last three years in a whole new light. It made me take a step back at the end and see my photograph in a different way.
What is your favorite photography subject?
I have a huge passion for architecture. To me there is nothing like wandering the streets, getting lost in a crowd, looking up at towering buildings and trying to find some small hidden details and make them visible again. That and anything related to travel. I love to document where I have been, important moments, the food, and anything that leaves and impression on me. My photographs are always my best souvenir so I take as many as I can and of everything.
What is your favorite trip that you have taken?
My favorite trip to date is probably my youngers spring break in Scandinavia. She picked out the countries she wanted to go to and I planned the trip on a very restricted college budget in expensive countries, so needless to say we got into some very humorous situations. We traveled to Sweden, Norway, and Denmark in March and it was still pretty cold but it was gorgeous and worth it. To save money, we would took a FlixBus overnight from Sweden to Norway, spilt meals, created our own walking tours, and even ate at Ikea.
If money were no object where would you travel to and why?
Okay, this is one of those questions that gives me anxiety. Because if money is no object, I choose everywhere. I am quitting my job to plan my around the world tour. I have extreme FOMO and have the worst time when I plan a trip. I do at least four to five different drafts of the same trip because I am afraid I will miss something, or won’t have enough time, and might be able to squeeze in a few more places or activities. I am my own worst enemy sometimes when it comes to travel planning because if I can’t fit everything in that I desperately want to do, I scratch the whole thing. If I had to narrow it down, I would say Myanmar, Bhutan and Cambodia. I have always been fascinated with Asia and I would love to visit some of the smaller, off the beaten path countries.
What is the most photogenic place you have been?
Three-way tie. Venice, Italy; London, England; and Dubrovnik, Croatia. Each are so different, but so bold, colorful and unique. If I were stuck in any of those cities forever I would be perfectly content because there is the architecture, cuisine, the city life, and so much happening around you I could never be bored.
What is your travel itinerary for the next year?
Everything is TBD at the moment, but I am currently trying to plan out more USA trips so I am hoping to get out west or discover more of the south.
Do you have any tips?
My favorite thing to do when I am traveling is to get up at sunrise and explore whatever city or town I am visiting. Almost nothing is open so there the streets are empty and you can experience all of the cities highlights without the crowds and with the ambiance of the morning glow. It’s the perfect time for photos, too.
When you are not traveling, what can we find you doing?
Working nonstop so I can go on my next trip! (And binging the 17 TV shows I am currently obsessed with and can keep all of their plots straight, I honestly think that is a hidden talent.)
Tell me something random about you –
I’m a lefty. I write left handed, eat left handed, and photograph with my left eye (which I’ve been told is not super common).
Do you have any photography or travel goals?
SO MANY. My big goals are to travel to all seven continents, photograph the seven wonders of the world, I would love to learn how to scuba dive to expand my photography skills to underwater photography, I have had this crazy fascination with photographing major cities from out of a helicopter since my freshman year of college and I am still determined to try it, and my biggest goal would be to get a professional photography job with a travel magazine or company.
Any special projects you are working on (photography or otherwise)?
I am currently working on photographing the city I am living in, Nashville. I currently do not know how long I will be staying so I try and get out as much as I can to soak up all of it’s southern charm and document it with my camera.
Favorite travel or photography accessory?
Lightroom and my hard drive. I never travel without a hard drive and I have the Lightroom App for when I am on the go. I use Seagate 2TB hard drives and you can get them on Amazon or at Costco (in the fall they are usually cheaper since it is the back to school season and occasionally have a rebate deal with them if you buy two).
Any accomplishments you want to share?
I was having a rough time finding a job after college and was in a slump. I was incredibly unhappy, working a job I did not enjoy, and could not see a way out of where I was at. I felt stuck and hated that feeling of being trapped. I started researching options for traveling for a few months, volunteering abroad, and eventually found opportunities to work abroad. In college, I did two studies abroad and loved the experience of living abroad, having the freedom to travel on the weekends, and experiencing other cultures was the norm. I quickly decided that moving somewhere different was the change I needed and started the process of applying for a visa to move abroad. In April of 2018, I moved to Dublin, Ireland and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. The challenge of being in a forging country on my own, working and living, taught me more life experiences than I could have ever hoped for and I am so proud I did it.
If you were shipwrecked on an island but had all your human needs (food, water, clothing) what two items would you take with you?
My camera and a book on how to build a raft.
ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER
Hello! My name is Grace and I am the photographer behind @atravelersbliss. I have always had a passion for photography, and in high school I got bit by the travel bug on a school trip to Italy and Greece. After that trip, I was hooked and completely convinced that I would never be able to settle down until I personally discovered the world and captured it all with my camera. In 2017, I graduated with a BA in Photography and Art History from Columbia College in Chicago. During my four years, I planned two studies abroad into my degree to learn photography from other perspectives around the world, and travel as much as possible while in school.
My latest adventure began in April 2018, when I packed my bags and moved to Ireland for the year to live and work abroad. On my days off I would travel around Ireland or book trips to different parts of Europe to travel and soak up every moment of my life across the pond. While abroad last year, I traveled to sixteen countries – including all of Scandinavia. My dream, passion, and goal in life is to be a travel photographer. I am always up for an adventure and I am not afraid of taking a risk or getting lost along the way.