• Facebook

    500 K / likes

  • Twitter

    1 M / followers

The Pixel Trade: Man Traveling the World with Photos Rather than Money


Everyone knows that traveling is expensive. Some people say that photography is expensive as well (both creating and buying it). The two things should therefore be a natural fit, right?

Australian photographer Shantanu Starick thinks so. He’s currently undertaking one of the most ambitious photo projects we’ve heard of: traveling the world with photos rather than money. His website, The Pixel Trade, tells the visual tale of his incredible journey.

Starick is attempting to pay for all his expenses through the simple concept of trade. What he offers people in the places he visits is professional photography that’s driven by his keen eye for beautiful images. In return, he asks to be paid with food, shelter, and transportation.

Rather than seek out random clients, Starick asks each customer to introduce him to the next one. Here’s how he conducts his on-the-go business:

I start with 1 couple, I take photographs for any project they have, as I would a client: Portraits, products, music, architecture, weddings, fashion, anything.

The edited photographs are my part of the trade. In order for my journey to continue I ask to be introduced to a new trader during my stay. A friend, an associate, anyone that would benefit from having professional photographs taken. The pixel trade will continue, leading from one place to the next.

On his (gorgeously designed) website is a documentation of each trade he makes. Each entry contains the trade number, the season, the name and occupation of the client, a short blurb about the gig, one song recommendation by the client, the duration of the stay, and the resulting photographs:

Starick started the project about two months ago, putting his architectural studies on hold in order to see the world.

The journey has already taken him up and down the east coast of Australia, and more recent trades have taken him to other countries as well, including New Zealand and the United States.

It’s a fantastic photo project idea, and we definitely recommend that you follow along for the ride!

Thanks for sending in the tip, Willis!