Hi, I’m Raz, a travel photographer, and this website is both the story of my freedom – and a way to bring beautiful art close to you.
It’s a trip around the world and a way to share some of the ideas I believe in: freedom, creativity and friendship.
An insatiable need for exploration motivated me to leave Romania about 4 years ago and aim at discovering the world, one day at a time.
These have been the most beautiful years of my life. I’ve learned more in 4 years than in all my other 27 years put together. It has been the time with the most intense feelings serving one purpose above all, freedom, and an unexpected by-product: internal exploration.
At first, I didn’t set out to become a photographer, but as soon as I realized the twin passion for discovery and photography, it felt only natural to continue cultivating them. Similarly, freedom and creativity need nourishing – and not to be taken for granted or having to be received from someone. You have to grab them for yourself and they will empower you to do the things that make life worth living.
My own freedom and creativity grew from traveling, standing in awe of magnificent natural landscapes and man-made creations. Also is took shape while encountering in my travels beautiful, creative and free people. People for whom living and enjoying life is the most important thing in the world. Free from rules, expectations and social pressure; just close to nature, their inner self and what takes place around them. My friends from India and Nepal showed me for the first time what it means to live as a free spirit.
razvanciuca.com is the story of such people, places and journeys.
I believe that those unique moments in time need to be shared, especially since bringing them closer to people will make exploration more accessible for everyone. Most places you’ll find captured here are worth getting to know intimately; like: Taj Mahal, with its symbolism for love; Jiuzhaigou with its amazing multicolored lakes and mountain slopes; Bukit Lawang’s jungles and wildlife; Philippines’s white sand beaches and slices of heaven, Japan’s tradition, culture and values withstanding the test of time; Singapore’s surreal city landscapes; and Donsol’s magical firefly show.
They are all expressions of diversity and culture which I hope to bring closer to you; and – by having them into your home – you can feel more in touch with the world around.
Wanderlust Labs is meant to be the bridge between these beautiful photos and you. That’s where you can find a selection of my photos which are meant to help transform your house into a home, by making it resonate with you. At Wanderlust Labs you will find fine art photography to share your beliefs, wishes or dreams.
I hope, by now, you’ve realized that Wanderlust Labs is not just another travel photography shop.
It doesn’t include generic photos, nor over processed photography. Wanderlust Labs prefers art that is in touch with reality; full of life, meaning and inspiration for dreaming.
All photos are handpicked, which makes Wanderlust Labs not the largest selection of travel photography (at least for now), but a selection sprinkled with beautiful photos carefully selected for you, the home owner, collector, or interior designer with a taste for art which captures fleeting moments that the next generation may experience in a different way (due to traditions and cultural values that are fading away, influenced by globalization, westernization and other new-age induced elements).
By making one of these fine art photographs your own, you will receive joy and freedom, and offer them in return.
Speaking about the process itself, I put a lot of heart into my artwork: most photos are crafted with research, consideration and careful attention to details. For example, the nautical set represents photos gathered from around Asia after many months of planning and discovery, getting over the fear of sailing in open water. Or, the wildlife set which involved jungle trekking for days at a time, being chased by a rhino in Nepal’s jungle – and an orangutan in Indonesia (hopefully this won’t turn into a trend for me 🙂 ).
As for the photos with people & portraits, these illustrate friendship, getting close to people I’ve randomly met and ultimately just making a human connection. Some of the portraits have their own tales with language barriers, communicating through gestures, showing affection, and simply talking to people out of the blue to get to know them better.
This brings us to the last chapter which is also about people.
There are a few special people in my life without whom this would not have been possible:
* Andra, my wife, travel partner and biggest supporter. She guided me in most travel choices (often dragging me away when stuck to an office desk), took care of exhibition logistics, on-site preparation, and occasionally photography gear handling (thank you for not dropping the 50mm lens even when attacked by monkeys! 🙂 ).
* The XT Deco team who has a great initiative on interior design and wall decoration.
* Special thanks go to: Maggie, Liz, May, Annie and Anita for all their support and for making things happen.
So, welcome to Wanderlust Labs and razvanciuca.com, feel free to look around. I hope you’ll like what you find.
If you want to stay in touch, know what I’m photographing and where I’m going next, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Etsy.
♦ MEDIA & PUBLICATIONS
Also, in 2013 some of my photos were chosen to participate in an international exhibition circuit organized by Chengdu’s International Photography Center.
Kuan Zhai Art Gallery hosted the artwork between Jan 22 – Feb 14, 2014.
Soon after that, Blue Roof Art Museum extended an invitation for a workshop and a two-weeks exhibition.
Workshop’s theme: Macro photography (Mar 30-Apr 13, 2014).
Press coverage: Metro Newspaper; CDTV 1;
MAGAZINES & ALBUMS:
I’ve contributed to “The Image of Tianfu Ancient Towns” album published by Chengdu Municipal Tourism Administration and Chengdu Culture & Tourism.
Another similar album included some of my work, that one targeting to capture the beauty of Pengzhou city and its surroundings.
In 2011 & 2012 I was invited to participate in two projects that were the result of a collaboration between Sichuan Tourism Department and Chengdu International Photography Center. Last year I took part in an initiative focused on promoting the Panda Breeding Center (related artwork is available here). Recently I’ve started my own project geared towards giant panda conservation.
- http://onajunket.com/searching-for-trouble/ (also published in “Travel Means Freedom” book)
I’m part of the board of teachers at Aurora Photography School – in Chengdu – where I occasionally teach classes and organize workshops. Also, in an effort to give back to the community I’ve initiated free events and workshops geared towards teaching enthusiasts and beginner photographers.
♦ PRESS & ONLINE PRESENCE
Article about the special charm of Chengdu city, published by 16hour.com.
I’ve used imagery to portray the city’s attractions and my most fond memories.
The Guardian – finalist in a photo competition:
Metro Newspaper – Featured Article:
On a Junket – travel articles and photos:
– http://onajunket.com/searching-for-trouble/ (published in “Travel Means Freedom” book)
FWAPhoto – Photo of the Day:
China Daily newspaper:
– http://www.chinadaily.com.cn / PDF article
Panda Home website:
Chengdu International Photography Center: