Paola + Murray Don't Freeze Up in Japan for Conde Nast Traveler
To hear it told, Northern Japan has some of the best skiing conditions in the world. The idea of ski resorts calls up images of the Alps and Colorado, but there are pockets on Honshu, Japan’s largest island, where the mountains give way to thrilling slopes. Conde Nast Traveler invited Paola + Murray to venture to these more remote places to bring back a taste of what they found there. What they found was a little bit different from what they expected. “[Adam Graham] had been there two weeks before and the conditions were absolutely perfect. Lots of deep snow and blue skies, and pretty much as soon as we landed it started raining. And it rained, kind of the whole time,” says Murray Hall, who makes up half of Paola + Murray with his wife Paola Ambrosi De Magistris. Even though it rained the whole time they were exploring the area, they were still able to use their skills to show off what it was the writer saw and deliver a story that’s as full of snow as we could hope.
The story in Conde Nast Traveler is about more than the slopes and the wintery conditions – it’s also about everything that surrounds the literal skiing experience. And when Paola + Murray couldn’t capture three feet of perfect powder, they were still able to deliver the full picture. That’s because they looked beyond the expected. “It comes down to those areas around ski resorts; they kind of just have that vibe,” explains Murray. Whether it’s a steaming bath at a hot spring onsen, or a hearty meal of soba, the experience extends far beyond the trails and deeper than the rain sodden snow outside.
“In all our photography, our main objective is to keep things as real as possible and keep it really authentic and real,” says Murray. “Japan is one of those places that is super authentic, so it’s not very difficult to make it look real.”