These days, everybody takes photos, whether it is to remember a special moment, catch an astonishing view, or even freeze time. Through colours, angles, and expressions, photography allows us to convey a feeling or tell a story. It is an outlet for creativity we can pursue throughout our daily lives. In a large city like Vancouver, there are a lot of amazing art and artists, most unknown and underappreciated. Here are three great photographers in the city whose work can bring beauty to your feed and aid you in your own artistic endeavors and discovering your niche.
Ash Lewis began his journey ten years ago during a time where he felt he needed a creative outlet. He explains the feelings and emotions obtained while doing and viewing photography really brought him in. Night street photography has been his most recent focus, however, he’s also experimented with landscapes and fashion.
I love how Lewis emphasizes the lights and colours that come from his settings in a way that is intense and mysterious. It has a nostalgic feel, which helps you to see your own city in a new light. His work is on the darker side but it includes bursts of color that contrast beautifully.
He stresses that many beginners buy expensive gear and are disappointed after their first shot. Spending thousands of dollars doesn’t make for a good photo. Lewis’s advice is to “focus on things like subject, composition, light and the story/emotion.” Not only has he been able to produce such great work, but creating has made him a happier person, and he’s also, “met so many great people through photography and travelled to many places around the world.”
Kamilia Shin shoots portraits of couples and families. Her eye for angles and framing capture moments that seem to be filled with happiness. The sweetness and joy of her photographs never fail to put a huge smile on my face! She brings out and conveys the feelings the models had in the moment and that’s an amazing skill to have as an artist, to be able to transmit those emotions to the viewer through the medium of photography. “I love to save the joyful and happy memories,” says Shin
Shin walked in step with photography her whole life. Several years ago, as a clothing designer, she loved capturing moments in a natural way when her models were wearing her clothes and accessories. This is what sparked her passion and love for natural portraits. Shin transitioned into photography very quickly and, like Ash Lewis, learned that to be a good photographer, “you don’t need expensive gear!” Instead, she emphasizes the photographer’s sensibility.
“What’s important is your feeling and having “good eyes” to spot ideas. You need to find yourself, and what type of photographer you want to be. Don’t be afraid to follow anyone, looking at your inspirations work can give you more passion, more feeling, and can be your muse! Just try and see for yourself.”
She told me that in order to capture the feelings of her subjects, before she shoots she tells them, “I’m not here, just enjoy the moment, be yourself.” It seems to work because her pieces flow with elegance and never look staged.
Christophe began photography when his father introduced and explained the mechanics of his Minolta SRT-101. It only took one shoot of 30 photos to inspire his passion and everlasting love for the camera and the art it can create. He describes the act of taking photos as a kind of “meditation made with art. It just feels right, the photographs are almost a byproduct and the results not so important.”
He creates portraits in an intriguing cinematic style, creating a sense of story and character. He is a master of finding the perfect environment and manipulating the action of his models to create that vivid effect that gives the viewer a need for more. Parrocos best advice is to just keep producing, “There are no mistakes, just learning opportunities or experiences. Productivity is all that matters. The more you produce, the more you get to know about yourself.” The best thing about photography, he says, is that you can create something out of almost nothing, and it’s great for fun and stress relief, too.
All three of these artists are truly moving. I find their photography inspiring–that it makes me want to pick up my own camera and try out their techniques. All photography requires of us is a little practice and your imagination. Paying attention to the work of talented people like these can help us learn new methods and approaches to photography, which, like any art, has limitless possibilities. It starts with you. Ask yourself: What can I create?