In conversation with Gray Malin
For Spring & Summer 2020, Bugaboo partnered with acclaimed fine art photographer Gray Malin on the perfect summer accessory: the breezy sun canopy in a limited edition print featuring Australia’s famous Bondi Beach. Perfect for creative, design-loving parents, Bugaboo by Gray Malin brings the beauty of the beach to every adventure.
We talked with Gray himself about the collaboration with Bugaboo and his passion for photography.
When did you discover your passion for photography?
I have loved photography ever since I was a child - I remember meticulously going through photo albums of my grandparents’ travels around the world and marveling at their impressive collection of old cameras. In high school, I delved into photography and I found the dark room, which quickly became an obsession of mine. I think this is where I really knew that I was passionate about photography, but never imagined I could turn it into a career. Although I moved to LA after college for a job in entertainment, I realized my photography was my heart and soul and I needed to give it a try professionally. I took classes from some amazing photographers and opened up a booth at a trendy flea market in West Hollywood where I found out that people actually wanted to purchase my art!
Where did the idea for your style come from?
It was a combination of good luck and a keen eye that led me to the beach aerial aesthetic - it all started at a top floor hotel room in Las Vegas where I looked below at the swimming pool filled with guests and it got my attention, so I snapped a photo. After sitting with the image for a few months, I ventured into a helicopter to see what other interesting patterns, shapes and colors I could see while photographing beaches from above. It didn’t take long to realize that the beach was my canvas and each unique scene was a work of art. Turns out that this was not only interesting to me, but it quickly gained popularity, becoming a crux of my business and brand.
How is shooting art whilst hanging from a helicopter?
At first it was absolutely terrifying but it’s also thrilling! Sometimes it’s hard to plan as I never know exactly how the weather is, so I have to be flexible and I’ve had to learn how to work through the nerves. This is not an experience that many people have and that feeling of the wind blowing in my face is unlike any other.
Tell us about the collaboration with Bugaboo?
Bugaboo has been a brand that I’ve had my eye on for a while - the success of the branding and the program collaborating with top notch artists has been very interesting to watch over the past few years. I was amazed at Bugaboo’s ability to translate imagery and art onto stroller canopies without compromising the quality of product or the art. It has gotten so much incredible media attention and I’ve heard many testimonials from friends, even before we had the twins, on the high standard of the product. Having the twins has opened up many avenues in my brand, as I have organically wanted to start creating more family oriented products since it is relevant to my life. I knew Bugaboo was a brand I had to collaborate with!
Tell us about the choice of shot? Why Bondi Beach for this project?
Bondi Beach is a favorite of mine and truly one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen. The bird’s eye view of this location never gets old to me and it has become a perfect symbol of my aerial beach images. The beautiful colors that speckle the beach are vibrant and there are a lot of details to take in, yet the image still makes you feel calm and nostalgic as it shows the interaction of the water and the shoreline. For this project it was the perfect choice because it makes a statement, wherever you may go with the stroller.
You’re a parent now. How is it?
Being a parent is one of the most, if not the most, rewarding thing that has happened to me. I love seeing my children grow and celebrating every single milestone...x2! Having twins has been especially wonderful as we get to see them play and interact with each other every step of the way. It absolutely enriches your life!
Your art is about escape? Where is your favorite place to escape to?
As much as far off destinations are beautiful and I absolutely love to visit them, my favorite escape over the past few years has been Lake Michigan. My husband and I bought a home in the same neighborhood that I grew up visiting during my childhood summers and it’s been incredible (and relaxing!) to continue this tradition by bringing my family there. We really enjoy just spending time going to the beach, hosting dinner parties and enjoying the beautiful scenery.
Where would you love to shoot, but you’ve never had the chance?
I would love to one day shoot a series from outer space!