Restaurant, Pyramiden, Svalbard.
Phase One XF, Schneider Kreuznach LS 55mm f/2.8, f2.8 @ 1/160 second, ISO 400.
If you visit Svalbard, spend a couple of extra days in Longyearbyen and take a ferry ride around the fjords to Pyramiden. It's an old Soviet coal mine that was abandoned when the USSR fell apart. The small town below the mine housed thousands. Parts of it haven't been touched for decades, but in the four years since I visited the first time, the small group of workers living there have certainly cleaned the place up, while leaving it looking poetically abandoned.
The wallpaper in this huge common room next to a massive kitchen might not be to my wife's liking, but it makes a striking interior! And what the photo doesn't show is that everywhere we walked we had a guide with a gun, just in case a hungry polar bear should wander into town. We saw no bears, but the reindeer were plentiful.
But how do we share all of this experience with just a photo? Maybe the answer is a journal.
For many of us, our cameras produce a visual travel journal, so it's understood that not all photographers feel a need for writing up a journal at the end of each day.
However, when it comes to working on your travel project, these notes can be incredibly useful. The notes don't have to be included in the project. They might just be ideas for framing an exhibition, designing a book or music to search out for an audio visual.
However, travel is more than just the pictures, it's the experience and sometimes things happen on a trip that can't easily be photographed. It could be a story related by an elderly farmer photographed by the side of the road, or a joke one of your fellow travellers shared. Maybe it's a recipe you grabbed from a restaurant, historical details about a location or directions on how to get back to a special location.
Photography is all about images, but to produce something that attracts attention, you need to do a little more. In the past, it was good enough to take a well exposed photograph, but smart phones have changed all that. Notes and ideas from a travel journal can make your project more interesting and exciting in many different ways.