For photographer and world traveler Ondřej Jaroš, experiencing life through the lens of his camera was an unexpected passion. After graduating high school, Jaroš, who hails from the Czech Republic, went on to study finance in college, including a semester in China as an exchange student. While not creatively fulfilling, he knew a career in finance would offer financial security and stability for the future. A hiking trip in Austria changed everything. During the hike, his girlfriend of six years tragically fell to her death. To process his grief, Jaroš left the world of finance and began traveling the world in search of new meaning. He spent time surfing and taking photographs in the picturesque beaches of Mexico, Indonesia, Jamaica, and Costa Rica, seeking to find and hold on to life in its simplest form.
“Photography is a unique medium in that is allows you to capture a single moment and keep it,” Jaroš shares. “With photos, you can relive the moment and remember what it was like to be there, to be in that place and feel that feeling.”
In his pursuit to view life in its most unembellished form, Jaroš has produced stunning portraits and landscapes that are as arresting as they are beautiful. Inheriting his love for adventure from his father, Radek Jaroš, Czechia’s most successful professional climber, Jaroš’s travels have taken him to locations like Thailand, Bali, India, Sri Lanka, and Iceland, all on a shoestring budget. His goal with every trip is to live as simply as possible, experience the culture, develop relationships with the locals and learn about a new side of humanity. From eating found food in dumpsters in Iceland to singing songs and playing guitar with the locals on a train in Sri Lanka, Jaroš finds connection wherever he goes.
“It’s nice to get in touch with people from different cultures. You see how life is so different for everyone, but it’s also universally the same, with everyone in the end pursuing a life of peace and happiness. I love finding the commonality in different cultures.”
Jaroš’s found commonality radiates from his photographs, a true fly-on-the-wall experience of culture and everyday life in some of the world’s most beautiful backdrops. Through his photography, Ondřej Jaroš hopes each shared moment will be a constant reminder to cherish the time you have and not take a single moment for granted.