Around the World in Analogue: Saudi Arabia (AlUla, Jeddah & Riyadh)

In this edition of Around the World in Analogue, photographer Kerr McIlwraith shares photos and stories that capture the distinct warmth and rich history of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as well as the unexpected experiences that broke his perceptions of the Arabian country.

Name: Kerr McIlwraith
Social Media: (Instagram)
Camera: Olympus OM10, Diana Mini, Sprocket Rocket
Film: Lomography Color Negative (Mix of 800 ISO, 400 ISO and 100 ISO)
Location: Saudi Arabia (AlUla, Jeddah & Riyadh)

Photo Credits: Kerr McIlwraith

Nestled at the center and extending north of the Arabian peninsula, Saudi Arabia remains prominent as a cradle of rich religious traditions. The country encompasses the region of Hejaz which is home to two of the holiest Muslim cities, Mecca and Medina.

Photographer Kerr McIlwraith recently visited the country and took photos using the Diana Mini and Sprocket Rocket, and Lomography Color Negative Film in different ISOs.

This was my first ever trip to Saudi Arabia, a country we hear a lot about on the news in Europe; the trip entirely changed my perception of the country. Everything from the architecture, public art, history and hospitality combines to create a unique experience that differs entirely from my existing pre-conception of the country.
Whilst Jeddah was my favorite city, it was AlUla that proved to be the most memorable location. An ancient city in the North West of the country, it has been populated for over 2000 years! It’s gradually becoming Saudi Arabia’s hub of contemporary art - whilst there I discovered so many new artists!
Photo Credits: Kerr McIlwraith

Kerr was able to visit AlUla, Jeddah and Saudi Arabia's capital Riyadh, all of which house culturally-significant and historically monumental structures, alongside vibrant contemporary art.

[My favorite photos] would have to be either the Diana Mini double exposure panoramic shot of Shaikha AlMazrou’s monumental resin sculptures that are on show at the airport as part of their ‘safar’ exhibition, or the portrait shot I took on the Sprocket Rocket of the 2000 year old Tomb of Lihyan Son of Kuza in Hegra.
Photo Credits: Kerr McIlwraith

Kerr has these advice for anyone planning to explore Saudi Arabia for themselves:

I would say, arrive with an open mind and embrace everything the country has to offer. The warmth of the Saudi people and overall contemporary culture are a completely unique experience as a Western traveler; try to mingle as much as possible with the locals; even if that means communicating through hand gestures.
Photo Credits: Kerr McIlwraith
From a photographic point of view, it’s one of the brightest, sunniest countries I’ve ever been in - it’s probably the first time I’ve seen my light meter active using an ISO100 film! They have so many photographic programs, organizations and awards happening: Kingdom Photography Award, Ithra Art Prize, the Islamic Biennale; it’s truly an amazing time to be a photographer in Saudi Arabia. Finally, dress for the weather! It’s HOT!

Thank you, Kerr, for sharing about your trip with us! To check out more of Kerr's work, visit his Instagram page.

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written by sylvann on 2022-11-04 #culture #people #places #around-the-world #diana-mini #sprocket-rocket #olympus-om10 #saudi-arabia #riyadh #jeddah #around-the-world-in-analogue #kerr-mcilwraith #alula

Mentioned Product

Lomography Sprocket Rocket

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A camera dedicated to those preciously analogue sprocket holes, the Sprocket Rocket features a super-wide lens that flawlessly exposes the whole width of the 35mm film. Flaunt those sprocket holes in every shot! Enjoy a super panoramic view of the world with our series of Sprocket Rocket cameras and accessories.

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