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EarthXplorer - Travel Visionary & Adventurer Extraordinaire

Living the adventure with JD Andrews

We're thrilled and honored to welcome JD Andrews to GoGirlfriend to share his travel journey. We've been following JD's adventures on Twitter and Facebook for a few years, but his journey began long before social media. Pull up a chair, pour yourself a coffee (or tea or wine) and sit back and enjoy!

We're a community-based travel blog and we welcome submissions from everyone. Whether you're a budget-baller or a first class only kinda traveler, we'd love to hear from you. Visit our Writer's Guidelines and learn how you can share your travel advice, stories and adventures!

Up close and personal with JD

JD Andrews via EarthXplorer.comJD Andrews via EarthXplorer.comJulia Rosien ~ Can you tell us how you first got into traveling? What was the catalyst?

JD Andrews ~ I started traveling back in 1990, working on a cruise ship. I thought it would be a fun summer job that lasted eleven years. My job title onboard was 'video programmer' which meant I was in charge of everything on TV, from satellite reception to movies and all video production. So I did everything, producing, directing, shooting, editing, lighting, sound, graphics, equipment repair etc. I was very lucky to have directed an onboard TV talk show that featured a number of my favorite actors and entertainers.

I had always wanted to see the world and what better (way back when) to get paid along the way! 

Maui via EarthXplorer.comMaui via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ What inspired you to jump into travel industry first?

JD Andrews ~ I'm a big 'sharer' (is that a real word?) I love to share, so capturing the beauty of the world and having the ability to share it is my perfect job. 

JR ~ What's the best travel production advice you've ever received?

JD Andrews ~ I was told to try, no matter what it was. It might turn out terrible but it will only be that way once. You'll learn what to do and not do and become great. But you have to make yourself do it! 

Cairo, Egypt via EarthXplorer.comCairo, Egypt via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ What's the best travel advice you've ever received?

JD Andrews ~ Go! 

JR ~ What's the worst travel advice you've ever received?

JD Andrews ~ "Don't go there, it's no worth it." In my opinion that's wrong! Everyone has different views on the world and just because you don't like a place doesn't mean others won't, so I say, "If you don't go, you won't know" 

Wadi Rum, Jordan via EarthXplorer.comWadi Rum, Jordan via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ Have you ever had an experience with a travel publication (or travel writer) that made you rethink your decision to be a travel videographer / photographer?

JD Andrews ~ I think every situation is as bad or as good as you make it. So I try (and I do emphasize try) to get something out of every situation, good or bad. 

crater via EarthXplorer.comcrater via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ Have you ever been compensated to travel to a destination and not been able to find something positive about it to write about?

JD Andrews ~ Not yet, thank goodness. There is usually always at least one thing that is good or fun about a destination. 

Antarctica via EarthXplorer.comAntarctica via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ Have you ever been asked about your ability to be unbiased when you're compensated for your travel?

JD Andrews ~ I get paid to make destinations look great and hopefully encourage people to go see them, I'm not a journalist so I don't have to worry about that. 

Skagway, Alaska via EarthXplorer.comSkagway, Alaska via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ What are you most proud of with your portfolio?

JD Andrews ~ My photos and videos from Antarctica. It's hard to take a bad photo there, it really is the most amazing place I've ever seen. I was up before sunrise every morning on the bow of the ship and would finally be 'done' for the day after the amazing sunsets every night. Between the two cameras around my neck, one with a telephoto lens the other with a wide angle lens, my iPhone and GoPro camera, I have over 5000 photos from that trip. 

Mexico via EarthXplorer.comMexico via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ Tell us more about EarthXplorer.com

JD Andrews ~ I started my website back in 1999, I wanted a place to post photos and videos of my travels. Now all these years later it's called 'a blog' and is still where I share my adventures. 

JR ~ What's next for JD in 2013? 

JD Andrews ~ There are so many places I need to eXplore: Japan, The Galapagos, The Arctic, more of Africa.... Too many to list :) But right now, I have nothing but plans to make for 2013! 

Barcelona, Spain via EarthXplorer.comBarcelona, Spain via EarthXplorer.comJR ~ What's the best advice you can give to an aspiring travel professional?

JD Andrews ~ Enjoy it! Don't get into it looking to just make money. Experience the world and share it. If you love what you do and have a passion for it, the money will follow. One of my favorite quotes: "People Don't Buy What You Do, They Buy Why You Do It" ~Simon Sinek

Suva, Fuji via EarthXplorer.comSuva, Fuji via EarthXplorer.com

Thank you JD for sharing so generously with GoGirlfriend readers. If you'd like to learn more about JD and see more of his amazing pictures, check him out online:

Ever thought of travel writing, photography or videography for a living? I'd love to hear your travel writing experiences: what worked, what didn't work, what you wish you would have done. Feel free to share in the comments below or shout out to us on Facebook or Twitter.

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