Cambodia is a place of paradox. The big cities of Siem Reap and Phnom Penh clash violently with the farms and countryside that dominate the nation. Towns and farms have a palpable tranquility to them, a calming hum that wraps you up and slows everything down. Contrasting this aura is the frantic whir of big city madness. Phnom Penh breathes life at every corner and possesses its own energy that almost bubbles over with excitement.
There seems to be one constant in the differing worlds. The citizens. Dubbed “the smiling people”, Cambodians are some of the most outgoing and friendly humans I have ever laid eyes upon. However beneath this happy image there seems to lurk some sadness behind their beautiful smiles. As a photographer I aimed to capture both the cheer and melancholy of a nation still haunted by genocide, but hoping for a bright future.