Mike Corey (@fearlessandfar) is an adventure travel YouTuber, TV host and podcaster. His YouTube Channel, Fearless & Far, features epic travel adventures that seek to explore and explain the often misunderstood. We came across his Alpha Universe Profile and just had to know more about his adventurous lifestyle. Keep reading to find out how he became an adventure travel vlogger, why he switched to Sony and his current go-to Sony gear. Create your own Alpha Universe Profile HERE for a chance to be featured on Alpha Universe.
Popular adventure travel vlogger Mike Corey is known for his epic travel adventures seeking to explore and explain the misunderstood. We talk with him to learn more about his experiences and why he switched to capturing them with Sony.
Corey grew up right above the state of Maine in New Brunswick, Canada. The area is a nature wonderland and he grew up a curious kid who loved the outdoors. “I always loved the things that were misunderstood, especially the creatures like salamanders or spiders,” says Corey. “I watched a lot of nature documentaries and I really loved showing people these things that they found gross or weird and explaining how cool they were. It was kind of my childhood passion. Other people may not have genuinely cared, but I always thought it was super interesting.”
His passion for nature led him to earn a degree in biology, but he didn’t particularly love the process of getting it. As a hands-on learner, he wanted to be out learning with his hands and meeting those creatures instead of reading about them in textbooks. He began doing volunteer work as a biology research assistant for more hands-on experience, and through that he was able to travel and began doing a lot of scuba diving.
“I just channeled that childhood passion of explaining things often misunderstood out into the world. Concepts, countries, foods – you name it. Then about 10 years ago there were a bunch of travel competitions where you could enter a video and they would pick a winner to travel the world for free. I had a phobia of public speaking and it was so rough in the beginning talking on camera. That’s where my name Fearless & Far came from, because public speaking was actually the greatest fear of my life.”
He practiced more and more at speaking on camera and eventually became pretty good at it. Over the next two years he would apply to many competitions and eventually ended up winning one. “I won this international competition with Cathay Pacific Airways. They gave me unlimited economy flights for three months, and that kind of kicked off my career from there.”
Why He Switched To Sony
Corey had been shooting with a Canon 5D Mark III and years after when they still hadn’t released the Mark IV he looked at the Alpha 7S and what it could do. He was very impressed by its low light performance and how that would apply to his job. “It looked perfect for my job because obviously I don’t have lights. Very rarely are there any studio or professional lighting I can use, so the ISO performance on the Alpha 7S made me start thinking about all of the possibilities. At that point I was shooting a lot of underwater videos of things like shipwrecks. And ambient light looks really good when you're shooting somebody going through some rusted iron cathedral down 35 meters and with a flashlight.”
He jumped over to the Alpha 7S and one of the first places he took it to was Mosquito Bay in Puerto Rico, one of the brightest glowing bioluminescent bays in the world. “I was able to capture incredible bioluminescence, unlike anybody had captured before on YouTube. And then I took it from there to do a lot more underwater stuff. I took it to the Firefly Sanctuary in Mexico, where there’s a forest that lights up with hundreds of thousands of fireflies every summer. I was able to capture something like no one had, unless it was National Geographic with a super expensive camera.”
“I fell in love with that camera. I went through like three of them, not because they were poorly made, but because I put my cameras through absolute hell for the most part. It's a bit unavoidable with what I do.”
His Current Go-To Sony Gear
“About two years ago I upgraded to the Alpha 7 III and for me, it’s honestly the perfect camera,” says Corey. “I think just as far as size goes, being able to shoot at 120fps at 1080p, being able to shoot at a decent ISO, having two card slots, being able to shoot timelapses, being able to have the Z-batteries which last forever, being able to charge that with USB. It's the best travel camera I've ever used. I really like it. And at some point I'm probably going to upgrade, but it’s always difficult for me to get a new camera because I’m afraid I’m going to break it.”
He also has a group of lenses he’s had for a long time, not because he doesn’t like change, he says, but he’s settled on a few that he loves and thinks are the best for what he does. “I’ve been using the Sony 16-35mm f/4 forever,” says Corey. “It’s a better alternative for me because it’s a little cheaper and I’ve gone through several of them because I’ve cracked them around too much.”
“And you know for the longest time I always said if you're going to be a travel content creator, always get zoom lenses just for the versatility. Then you won’t have to switch lenses if there's a dolphin jumping over the boat or something that you only have one chance to nail. You also don’t want dust to get on the sensor, which is a problem in some places I go. But I’ve really changed my mind on that after a while. I used to have a 24-70mm with my 16-35mm but I got rid of it and got the Sony 90mm f/2.8 Macro G lens to try shooting some bugs in the forest for a wildlife project. I fell in love with it because you wouldn’t think so, but it’s amazing for travel. It sounds like it would be too specific but it takes great portraits and shots of food, wildlife, so many things.”
Corey attended Sony’s Camera Camp in 2019, and there he fell in love with another prime lens that’s now a part of his daily photo kit. “They had the 24mm f/1.4 G Master there and I LOVED that lens. I never thought I would fall in love with primes because they just don’t seem as practical when you're traveling, but the stuff I've been able to shoot on that 24mm f/1.4 G Master looks incredible. I shoot on it all the time now and am to the point where I'll keep it on my camera for most things.”
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