35 more

The latest installment of our ongoing analog photo series, 36 Frames, showcases a gritty set of images taken by globetrotting photographer, Julien Boudet (aka @bleumode). Similar to his last feature, Julien captured various moments during his time at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Tbilisi, yet this time around, the photographer extended his travels to some neighboring post-Soviet countries, including Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

Read about his experiences below.

“I was invited to Georgia for the third time to attend Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Tbilisi. As always, when there were no shows or events, I would jump into a taxi and explore the city, looking for great architecture to photograph. I stayed two extra days to shoot a bit more of the local scene, met up with a few friends there (including Georgian “It” girl Nini Nebieridze, featured in my series) then flew to Almaty, Kazakhstan.

It was my first time there. It’s very different from Tbilisi yet there are a few similarities because of the USSR. I met a man in his 50s, originally from Amsterdam, who moved there about 20 years ago with his wife to open a very nice café in the city, his story was pretty interesting – he loves it there.

Fellow photographer/model Ira Chernova (also pictured in my series) was also in town, so we decided to explore the city’s surroundings together. We went to Kyrgyzstan by “bus” – which looks more like a shuttle and only costs about $3 for a three-hour ride. We crossed the border by feet and then took a taxi to Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan.

Again, it was very different from Almaty. We went to the local market, did some vintage shopping and went back to Almaty the next day. The taxi driver was going super fast, taking all the risks to make it back as early as possible so that he could make more trips during the day, so that was pretty scary.

We rented a car for the last few days and drove around Almaty. There were beautiful landscapes with mountains, snow and hotels with natural hot springs for only $15 a night. At some point we were only 100 kilometers away from the Chinese border, but we couldn’t go because of our visa situation.

Overall, it was one of the best trips I’ve ever done in my life and I definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a different travel experience.”

Be sure to check out our last 36 Frames with skateboarder and photographer, Robert LeBlanc.

Words by Nico Amarca
Fashion Editor, North America