3000 Meters over Sibiu
My time in Romania helped shape what I want out of life, and out of the REMY ROMAN brand. My brand isn't a job, it's an identity that I've been working on solidifying for years.
In the summer of 2014 I took a trip to Romania; sort of a "Back to the Roots" trip. I traveled across Romania, sticking mostly to quiet tourist free destinations. I wanted to see and document Romania from a perspective that was authentic. After spending two weeks around the country I ended up in Sibiu, my home city. There I was able to relax a little bit, catch up with family and plan my final major shoot; an aerial tour of the Fagaras mountains. I wanted to do an aerial tour of the Fagaras mountains because I wanted a new perspective on something I knew as well as home.
My tour started at the Sibiu Aerordom, where I met my pilot and got my gear ready for flight. As it turned out, light aircraft aren't built to handle much past the bare necessities, or anyone over 5'8" (thankfully I'm only 5'7"). I ended up leaving my entire camera bag on the ground, taking only my camera and a 135mm prime on board.
Our ascent started over the outskirts of Sibiu, framing a perfect view of the old city and the distant hills. As we rose higher we started approaching the winter resort of Paltinis through the valley known as Curmatura. It was intriguing to experience a place that I know like the back of my hand from that perspective. The road nothing more than a gray line running through the mountains, and sheep merely mistaken for snow piles. As we reached Paltinis, I had to make a decision, what mountain pass would be the most photogenic, the Transfagarasan or the Transalpina. The Transfagarasan is a winding pass, hugged by the Fagaras mountains on both sides, giving way to a spectacular mountain top lake. All while the Transalpina rides on top of a mountain crest, with incredible views for miles. The decision was a tough one, but I decided to shoot for the Transfagarasan pass, as its winding roads are condensed in one valley.
We made our way from Paltinis to the Transfagarasan pass in a matter of 20 minutes, passing over some of Sibiu's most famed medieval villages on the way. As the pass became visible, the aircraft reached its top operating altitude of 3000 meters, this allowed for a few strafes of the valley in an attempt to capture the most monumental shot of the pass possible. After our 4th fly by, the engine began getting a little too hot, so we decided to descend into the plains and make our way back to Sibiu over the Olt river.
This shoot was one of my favorite experiences to date, simply because I got to see a place I know very well, from a very different perspective. It made me love home just a little more, from the orange shingles to the frosted caps of the Fagaras mountains.