We are kicking off our new weekly interview series ‘Taking Five with..’ where we meet some of the photographers, celebrities, bloggers, artists, instagrammers, creatives and businesses that inspire us. This week we chat to the lovely and talented travel photographer Helena Bradbury whose instagram has us dreaming about packing our bags and heading off on our next travel adventure…
1. Where is your favourite travel destination?
People ask me this all the time and it’s such a tough question to answer! But I think I’d have to say Japan, it’s a country that has a special place in my heart, it’s where I booked my one-way ticket to when I quit my job in 2017 and it’s a country that has it all. The culture is just so beautiful and mesmerising, the architecture, the emphasis on respect and spirituality, plus I never felt uncomfortable or unsafe travelling alone there. Every town and city I visited was unique and I loved each place for completely different reasons; although hiking up the Fushimi-inari shrine at sunrise and being dressed in a tradition Kimono did made Kyoto one of my favourites! Visiting during the sakura cherry blossom season definitely made it even more special and seeing Mount Fuji had always been a dream of mine. Plus the food, ohh the food! I could eat sushi and ramen all day, every day!
2. What is your go-to recipe to cook at home?
I’m not completely vegetarian but I don’t cook anything at home that contains meat. I love one-pot recipes so my go-to is usually a chickpea, tomato and spinach curry or a crispy tofu sesame stir-fry. I’m all about the spices and flavours!
3. What can’t you live without in the garden?
I’ll be honest, I’m not a green-fingered person; I’m lucky if I can keep a mini cactus alive and we only have a small courtyard where I live currently. However I love to decorate outside spaces with string lights, moroccan-style lanterns and ornaments. I like that rustic aesthetic and plus I don’t have to worry about forgetting to water a garden ornament!
4. What inspires you?
I think about what inspires me often and it would be so easy to say somewhere I’ve travelled or places I’ve seen, but really I think the amazing women around me in my life inspire me most. My mum is my best friend and is always there to support me at every turn in my life and I know I’m super lucky to have that relationship with her. I also have a very close group of friends and we all really believe in women supporting women, my girls are always supportive and encouraging and they’re all constantly striving to achieve their goals, that kind of ambition is really inspiring!
5. Describe your perfect day?
A perfect day for me definitely involves a road trip and being out in nature. Packing up early in the morning to get to the coast for a spectacular sunrise then spending all day travelling along the coast, stopping whenever and wherever takes my fancy, plenty of picnic food and lots of photography. I’m much more of a nature outdoors girl than a city girl so any perfect day would involve a pretty decent hike to get to somewhere rewarding, maybe an amazing waterfall, a forest hideaway or a coastal beach or viewpoint. My partner lives in Oregon so filling our days like this in the Pacific Northwest has made me try to recreate similar trips in the UK and Europe too.
To see more of Helena’s beautiful photography visit her Instagram here.