I travelled to Nepal and did several portrait projects while I was there, but my main focus was photographing local people in the Khumbu who make their living from the Western obsession with Everest, whether it's trekkers making the journey just to see Everest base camp, or climbers going to climb the mountain itself.

All these images were shot on location, with flash.
Members of the Icefall Doctors, an amzing Sherpa team that fixes all the ropes and ladders throught he incredibly dangerous Khumbu Icefall, through which everyone has to pass to get to the summit of Everest
Jabbu, a climbing Sherpa, photographed at Everest base camp
Pemba, a climbing Sherpa, photographed at Everest base camp
Pemba, a climbing Sherpa, photographed at Everest base camp
Pertemba, a climbing Sherpa, photographed at Everest base camp
Ang Phurba, a climbing Sherpa who summitted Everest 8 times, then retired and used the money he had made to set up a guest house which he now runs, catering for foreign trekkers
Ang Phurba, a climbing Sherpa who summitted Everest 8 times, then retired and used the money he had made to set up a guest house which he now runs, catering for foreign trekkers
The abbot of Thame monastery. Buddhist monks make money by performing Pujas, or blessings, for climbers before they climb the mountains, to appease the mountain gods.
Pasang Nuru Sherpa used to work as a climbing Sherpa, but a group he was with were trapped in their tents by a huge storm. Running out of food and water they realised they would have to brave the storm and try to make it back to civilisation. Pasang and one other person were the only people to make it back alive, and Pasang lost all his fingers on his left hand, and all his fingers to the second knuckle on his right hand, to frostbite.
Unable to carry on working on the mountain he now paints to support his family, selling his art to visiting trekkers.

Pasang Dikki Sherpa is a teacher, and also helps her father out in his guesthouse, where she is seen here in the kitchen. She is also an amazing ultra runner, she and her sister entered a 60km Nepal marathon that went up to altitudes of 5350m, without much previous training or experience, and came 1st and 2nd, making times of 9 and 11hrs respectively. This beat the next runners (mainly international champion marathon runners) by several hours.
Guesthouse owner Sheeta Phutti, photographed in the kitchen of her guesthouse, the Namaste Lodge in Pang Boche, where she cooks an impressive range of dishes on a very basic wood fired stove.
At only 17 years old this is Ubaraj Rai’s 3rd year on the trails as a porter, completing 2 treks in each of the spring and autumnal trekking seasons which are punctuated by the Monsoon season which he spends working at his fathers farm. Ubaraj is a Christian (about half of the Rai ethnic group are) and looks forward to his Saturday services back in his local church in Pawai, noting there are no churches in the principally Bhuddist Khumbu valley. He has big plans and by the end of this season will have saved up enough to do the the trekking guide course next year.

Santos Tamang Sherpa is only 17 years old and has already been doing this for 3 years. Santos’ favorite sport is volleyball and plays regularly back in his village of Kotang Diktel where his family have a farm. He’s also looking forward to getting back there to see his girlfriend but will most likely do a second trekking trip this year before going back to help with the harvest. Santos dreams of becoming a trekking guide, noting that you need to go to Kathmandu as part of the 45 day course which costs around 60,000 Rupee ($600). He’s hoping to be able to save up in the next year for that.
Kaljang Dorje Sherpa, photographed on Pokalde with Lhotse in the background
Tashi, a climbing Sherpa, photographed on Pokalde
Dev Kumar is 36 and has been portering for 19 years, for the last 6 of which he has had his Nepal guiding licence. Also from a farming village, Dev’s wife and other son are currently looking after the farm and he’ll also be back with Ramesh for the busy monsoon season. Mainly their farming is for self-sufficiency and their porter income brings in all the extras. He notes there are no lights in his village, they use kerosene lamps.

Laxman Rai, trekking guide, photographed at 5200m, at our camp near the Kongma La pass.
Laxman guides treks during the trekking season, which earns him enough extra money to supplement the subsistence farming that keeps him busy for the rest of the year. Orphaned at a very young age he was raised by his sister and has a wife and daughter back home, looking after the farm.