A View From Above with Gray Malin

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A Bikini A Day would be nothing without the power of good photography. Our culture is part freedom, part photograph – we recognize the greatness in the ability to capture the pleasure we feel. Our love of all things summer and freedom is universal, and provides photographers the world over with the tools to capture some real beauties. No one does this better than a certain LA-based talent, who has the ability to turn everything he sees into a dose of dreamlike liberation. Which is why we have decked our entire apartment out with pictures taken by the famed, heavenly-talented Gray Malin.

At only 30 years old, he is one of the most respected artists in his field. Having left the corporate world after a year working for Paramount, he spends his days capturing his freedom and the joys it presents. And his youthful zest for life is epitomised in his pictures. Gray’s subjects are similar to our own. They feature the sea. They depict travel. They indulge in happiness.

Using bright, tantalising color, sharply defined shapes and the most glorious of subjects, Malin’s photographs are just delightful. He looks for patterns everywhere, finding striking imagery through a focus on color and shape. His world is a blank canvas, and he has made a name for himself with a unique take on capturing it: he travels the world hanging out of a helicopter, finding art in the minutiae below.

He writes that he is ‘on a mission to make every day a getaway’. And there is a special magic in his images which stop us looking away. A joie de vivre, if you will. His shots of beaches, taken from sky-high vantage points to create a dot-to-dot of colored parasols along the sea front in images such as Coogee Beach Horizontal, are accompanied by his use of sharp lines and bright beach-balls in Summer Time Splash. And he uses animals, inflatables and 1950’s-esque models to add a tongue-in-cheek attitude to life, epitomising his carefree attitude. We just get lost in his enchanting freshness.

His shots make us hungry. Hungry for the summer, the beach, and the pastel and candy floss inspired world he presents.

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Interview:

How did growing up in Dallas contribute to your love of fine art? 

Dallas has a very strong love for the art world so I grew up going to museums and exhibitions with my family. Also, as a kid, my mother was a busy and talented interior designer. I got to tag along with her on appointments and meetings, so that’s definitely where my love of decorating began, as well.

Why did you make the move to Los Angeles? I moved to LA to pursue a career in entertainment, actually. The move was prompted by the acceptance of my first job out of school as an intern at Paramount Vantage, where I quickly advanced to assistant to the president.

Your aerial shots are breathtaking, what inspired you to shoot from above? From above, the people with their umbrellas and towels create patterns that are eye catching and unique in that they are mere moments in time that can never be captured again. Though the idea originated from a swimming pool in Las Vegas the beach aspect first began above the shores of Miami during Art Basel in 2011, quickly followed up with trips to Australia, Rio, Dubai and Europe in 2012 and 2013- I was hooked on capturing this global project from the beginning and it’s been a total whirlwind since!

What is your favorite beach you’ve travelled to while shooting BEACHES?  There are SO many and they all have special memories attached. At the moment, though I am really loving the images that I captured in Rio last August. We’re releasing them to our audience in August of this year, so whomever has the book gets a first look!

Who or what would you love to photograph that you haven’t before? I would love to shoot a series from outer space– it’s just so big, vast and unknown.

You’ve not only succeeded in creating stunning and unique imagery, but also in building a wildly successful brand. What advice would you give to someone wanting to turn their passion into a business? Never let anyone tell you no, if you believe in yourself and have a passion for what you do, then other people will start to catch on, too. You just have to keep at it. If the door is closed, just go up and knock on it.

What do you love most about photography?  I love creating a moment in time that the viewer wants to live within. Some concepts take years of planning while some take only months but regardless of the time frame, all of my collections have their own personality and stories that aim to be timeless. Each concept ignites an adventure; traversing the globe to bring my inspired visions to life with the ultimate goal of hanging an incredible moment on one’s walls for years to come and enjoy.

Who inspires you? So many people, but some of my constants are my family and friends

What’s your favorite quote?  “You’re never wrong to do the right thing.” from The Intern.

What’s next for Gray Malin? I have some incredible new beach photography coming up this summer! I’m excited to share images from Bora Bora in July, Rio at the beginning of August, and some very cool geometric focused images from Italy.

There is a 30% off sale on all beach aerial photographs on www.graymalin.com from now (June 30) until July 6! Use code BEACH30 to get access to the sale! x

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