In three days, photographers Mikael Kennedy (of passport to trespass) and Sean Sullivan (of The Impossible Cool) will embark on a 5,600 mile journey across America on an epic road trip to document the interesting things they come across. The project, titled Ramblers Bone, will last for 30 days, and the two travelers plan to traverse mountains, deserts, and of course, the open road.
Ramblers Bone was made possible by American bootmaker Wolverine, who is sponsoring the two as they capture the moments in time that embody what is left of the American Dream, and the spirit of the wilderness. We caught up with Mikael Kennedy as he made some final preparations for the trip ahead.
What inspired this trip?
For me it really is the landscape. The wildness of the west. The American landscape is a thing of wonder, and it's something that I think has slipped from peoples mind when they think about America. I was interested in getting back out there and showing a little bit of it.
You both live in New York City. Why are you leaving from California?
Like I said one of the main things driving this project was the American West. The epic landscapes that at one point defined America, what it used to be known for. The American west is some of the most beautiful and diverse countryside in the world, we figured LA was a good point to launch from to be able to hit as much as we could in the month.
How did the connection with Wolverine come about?
I actually wrote a letter to them awhile back about their 1000 Miles boots which I'd beat to hell after a several months of heavy travel and wanted to get resoled. I sent them a few pictures of the landscape project I was working on at the time (The Odysseus) and of where I had been with the boots. We started emailing back and forth about working together on a project, it just seemed like a natural fit.
You mention Ansel Adams, Robert Frank, and William Eggleston, what other photographers inspire you and what do you hope to accomplish on this trip?
It's hard to have a plan when you are heading out. A lot of it you just have to roll with and see where it takes you. A good rule of the road is to say 'no' to as few things as possible, just see where it all takes you. As for photographers I recently have spent time looking at Joseph Koudelka's work, Wim Wenders book 'Once' is a staple of American Road photography, Allen Ginsberg's photographs always have been some kind of perfection to me. Other than that I don't really spend a lot of time looking at photography. I'd say I spent more time looking at paintings, the Hudson River Painters are a better example of where my head is at, Andrew Wyeth, stuff like that.
What are you packing with you clothing wise?
Smith + Butler x Tellason Utility Coat
Really old distressed pair of Levi 517s that I've been repairing over the years
Wolverine ICS Off Road Hikers, these things are fucking crazy.
Patagonia fleece (it gets cold in the desert at night)
Mossy Oak Camo trucker hat.