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Nigel Barker filters life by focusing on the beauty of everyday moments

Nigel Barker filters life by focusing on the beauty of everyday moments

A renowned photographer. A judge on America’s Next Top Model. A husband and father of two, Nigel Barker is many things. But above all, he’s a man who chooses to celebrate life. Whether he’s on a fashion shoot in Rome or in Haiti to document its people recovering from an earthquake, Nigel knows how to stage a story by revealing the beauty of the personalities in it. When we asked him how he combines it all, he simply told us he focuses on the things that matter the most at that specific moment. Add to that his great eye for beauty and you understand why we were curious to hear what makes him tick. Nigel: ‘Luxury to me is about the things you can’t buy. Like time, the look of my wife who’s asleep, or a stranger who opens a door for you. When you travel as much as I do, you don’t go to a hotel to be overloaded with more information. Unlike my home, which is a collection of memories from all over the world, AC Hotels is like a blank canvas that offers the opportunity to be fresh and create. That’s exactly what I want from a good hotel. That, no carpet and a good night’s sleep.’ 

NIGEL’S ESSENTIALS

Music

Music

My iPod helps me to set the tone on a shoot, and in my hotel room. It’s a pretty desperate state of affairs when it goes missing. I engraved it with my name and return address. 

Travel wallet

Travel wallet

When you travel, you're always searching for things. This wallet holds all my vital documents. It has been in the same pocket of my bag for the past ten years. 

Cuff link box

Cuff link box

This box belonged to my grand father. He traveled with it and now I travel with it. I always carry it in my hand luggage. It makes me happy to open it and wear my cuffs. 

Battery pack

Battery pack

Whether I’m in the desert or the jungle, this mobile energy pack powers my phone, my laptop or my cameras two times over. 

Photography bag

Photography bag

People laugh at me because I never let go of my photo bag. No one can carry it, not even the bellman, and when I’m at home I sleep laying over it. If my wife is jealous about it? I don’t know. 

PHOTOGRAPHY ESSENTIALS

Nigel’s three essentials to take a great landscape photo.

  • Look for a story

    What’s the heartbeat of the place you’re in? What is it about the people? The weather? The history? Soak that up and channel it in your shot.

  • Use natural light

    Early in the morning or late afternoon are the best times to take a photograph. We call that the golden hour.

  • Use long exposures

    Use a tripod, or if you don’t have one, hold the camera very still, place it on a wall and let it soak up the natural light.