Not Just A Pretty Feed: Roi Mitchel

Indonesian serial entrepreneur Roi Mitchel shares with us his story - how travel has shaped his visually arresting, authentic photography style, work, and life.

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Roi Mitchel captures the many different facets of each city he visits, in an authentic picture of the culture and everyday life of people and places. The moody, yet inviting, feel of his photography stirs up a curiosity that makes you want to know more. A perfect balance between inspiring landscapes, fascinating architecture, local business and simple pleasures (like having lunch!). It's like he's showing us 'this is what I found, now it's your turn'.

But to Roi, travel is much more than the photos he returns with. When he and wife Yeri got married, travel became a big part of their life. The more they explored, the more ideas it prompted. Now they both run Calla The Label, one of the most popular street fashion brands in their home country, Indonesia. He also runs experiential marketing company Kyooki+. We even hear there's plans to launch a culinary brand very soon!

We chat to Roi about how travel has influenced and guided his entrepreneurial spirit.

Tell us your story Roi. How has travel shaped your life and work?

Travel has its own meaning and is very special to me. If Yeri and I hadn't travelled in the past, maybe our fashion brand wouldn't be as big as it is now. It may also have meant the creative ideas that came to me for my experiential marketing company mightn't have appeared. Especially for my hobby as a photographer, travel has a big influence on my style.

While traveling, my activities are almost the same as ticking off tasks in a job. From preparing the itinerary, choosing the right accommodation, to determining the exact location to capture a good photo. But of course, it's much more fun when the end result is photography :) 

I'm hoping we can travel again very soon.


What place has been the most memorable for you?

Nagano and Otaru in Japan. Because we don't really have winter in Indonesia, to see these places covered in white, is so beautiful.


What does ‘being real’ mean to you? In your own travel content, and in the travel content that you look for?

Being real is hoping I can share my travel experiences from my perspective to everyone. Enjoying cityscapes, enjoying landscapes and sometimes getting lost. Finding rooftops and almost getting locked out by security. Finding old streets, unique cultures and meeting new people. Some of these things I cannot just describe with words. This is where I hope my photographs can help tell the stories.


What role do you think travel plays in bringing together different cultures — both offline and online?

This is a hard question to capture in just a few words. But my main belief is that it brings us closer.

Who do you love following for their real travel stories?

  • Billy Dee (@billydeee) —artist and NYC-based street photographer.  I met this very talented man in Hong Kong a couple of years ago.
  • Yeri Afriyani (@yeriafriyani)—she's so good at telling stories when we travel together.
  • Anggey Anggraini (@her_journeys) —born in Jakarta, Indonesia she travels the world highlighting her travel experiences.

See more of Roi's work at @roimitchels on Instagram.

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This is part of Not Just A Pretty Feed, our Q&A series with creators across the world, uncovering their unique and diverse travel stories. We learn how travel has shaped their lives, influenced their work, and what being real in the world of travel content means to them. Continue the journey with Indonesian-based fashion designer and entrepreneur, Yeri Afriyani.

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