On protecting the chair
It’s the same chair in every country, every photograph. It’s been beaten up quite a bit, but it becomes more and more valuable every trip. To me, it’s no different than the fact that we only have one planet. It’s symbolic for us, since we know if we had ten other identical chairs in the trunk of the car, we wouldn’t take nearly as good of care of them. If we lose this chair, we’re done. We’ve had a couple of close calls with wildlife where they’ve decided to get a little more friendly with the chair than we would’ve liked. We’ve also had experiences where the chair has been in a crowd and we would hide somewhere far away to capture a good shot, but someone would wonder what the heck the chair was doing there, and pick it up and walk away. We’ve had to chase them down but there was never any harm done and so far the chair has remained intact throughout the journey.
On what’s next for Take Your Seat
We talk a lot about the phrase, “One people, one planet, one life,” and the chair, on the “one people” side, is really about that human connection from the stories we hear on our journeys. The “one planet” side is the work we do with various organizations to remind others that as a director of your life, you also make choices as to whether or not this planet’s going to survive. Lastly, the “one life” side of it is holding yourself accountable; are you living the best version of yourself? Are you doing what you said you were going to do? Are you following your passion? Spreading this message has always been a continual goal.
[Since the book went to print], we’ve already shot in two other countries, so we’ve been to 16 total. We’re about to go back to Turkey for the sixth time. Overall, it’s this continuous human journey that this chair takes us on. It sounds strange at first to think that a piece of furniture can have that kind of human connection, but we’ve had ambassadors [sit in it], we’ve had heads of major companies, we’ve had kids. There’s been such a wide range of people that have had their portrait taken in this chair and we are excited to continue documenting these stories.