How long have you been an artist?
As a serious artist that does photography full time - 15 years.
How did you get involved?
I was always interested in art and more specifically photography from an early age. I remember using my Dad’s old film camera when I was around 15 years old.
I started to get more serious once I left university and started to train as a photographer. I was lucky as my job at the time involved a lot of global travel, this allowed me to take photographs of different countries and cultures and start to play with different styles.
It started to grow from there.
Have you entered any competitions or exhibitions? If so which ones
I have entered the Mono Awards in Australia and New Zealand for the last three years (which is for black and white photography) in any style. I have been commended on all three occasions but yet to win an award.
I have entered the Landscape Photographer of the year awards the last two years. I was not successful last year but have been shortlisted this year and waiting on the final result, due end of January.
I have also appeared in a number of publications in North America and other areas overseas including Martha Stewart, The Knot Magazine, Pacific Weddings Magazine, Style me Pretty, Once Wed, Magnolia Rouge Magazine and Real Weddings Magazine.
I am just working through the logistics at the moment, but I have been offered to exhibit at the other Art Fair in Melbourne this year.
What do you love about art? What is your motivation?
I find deep spirituality in nature and that emotion shows through in my photographs. Being part of those moments that are so emotional is my motivation. Photography for me is not about making money but I believe If you put your passion first, sometimes the money follows. As artists we need to take care not to lose sight of the passion that started our journey in the first place. I would rather have the passion and love of photography than the money any day.
How would you describe your style?
Many people pick up a camera, but a photographer never puts it down.
Who you are as a person defines your photography and that in turn, determines your style. If you think about it, photography is not just about the picture that someone looks at, it is far more than just about the photo or the content of the image. It also speaks to the viewer about the photographer who took it. There is no way you can take a picture and not leave a piece of yourself in every image you take. My photography conveys deep spirituality and emotion that I experience through nature.
Who/what are your influences?
I think we naturally fall in love with places that prove how small we are, places that humble us with reminders that we have so much more to learn, so much more to grow that we are part of something bigger than ourselves. As a student of life, I believe intelligence manifests itself not through expression or formality but observation and genuine curiosity. Observing nature is always an awe-inspiring, spiritual experience for me, I can sit and watch waves crash for hours. There is nothing more humbling than being face to face with something so much bigger than yourself, but I often wonder why nature inspires us, why we are in awe of certain scenery and why we find these landscapes, oceans, and stars so breathtaking.
As a photographer, I am always looking at the landscape in a way that will help others appreciate and care for it. I hope to express the deep spirituality that I find in nature and to bring back images to people that might not otherwise have an opportunity to witness the beauty.
What are some of your favourite personal works?
I would say my portfolio of work that I did of the Fiordlands National Park on the South Island of NZ.
The views never cease to amaze me in this beautiful environment, at every turn you cannot help but be inspired by the rising mountains and snow-capped peaks.
This remarkable natural environment features stunning fiords, spectacular waterfalls and snow-capped peaks. Ancient rainforest clings impossibly to the mountains; waterfalls tumble hundreds of meters into massive fiords; shimmering lakes and granite peaks look the same today as they did a thousand years ago. It is one of only few places in the world that is still untouched by man and can only be accessed via helicopter.
What is your creative process?
Many people pick up a camera, but a photographer never puts it down. Who you are as a person defines your photography and that in turn, determines your style. If you think about it, photography is not just about the picture that someone looks at and it is far more than just about the photo or the content of the image. It also speaks to the viewer about the photographer who took it. There is no way you can take a picture and not leave a piece of yourself in every image you take.
Consider this: If 15 photographers or photojournalists show up at an event, all of them from different news outlets, all with different backgrounds. As the moment unfolds in front of all 15 of them, the shutters go off – but are all the pictures the same? Of course not – It’s just not possible. For each of those 15 photographers – the 15 photographs will be subtly influenced by what defined that moment for them and that is based on who they are.
People often ask how I manage to convey so much emotion in my work. My answer is I find deep spirituality in nature and that emotion shows through in my photographs. For me, the payoff is to be part of those moments that are so emotional. People also ask why I take pictures from behind all the time or over the shoulder. They ask if there is something about me that happened back in my childhood, back where I grew up or the environment in which I was raised. My answer is simple, it is not something I can explain it is something I feel, it is part of my style and what defines me as a photographer.
Eventually, you will find yourself in each and every one of your pictures and that is what it is all about.
What are your goals?
Photography is a lifelong journey for me. It’s not about the $10k I am going to make from that wedding tomorrow. It just does not work that way, I want to take my time, study, find out who I am. I believe I will be pleasantly surprised down the road.