Let’s talk photography, my friends

Let’s talk photography, my friends

Over the course of the last few years I have been present on multiple platforms, internet forums and projects. I enjoyed all of them. I met many talented people, I tried new ideas and faced many challenges. Having said that, this blog has always been my home—my refuge, if you will. This is where I started and met most of you through good and bad times.  

One of the greatest privileges of being a photographer is getting to know people like you. Sometimes we are joyful and full of optimism, other times we are sad and worried. What is really remarkable in this bountiful, unpredictable and demanding life is that we still find time to share our passion for photography.

Now, as I am organizing my photographic life around just a few chosen projects, I would like to rekindle our connection. I have some thoughts and pieces which I will share with you over the course of the next few weeks. Also, as my photographic interests remain diverse but articulate you will see more diversity of imagery published here. 

In the meantime, I would like to ask you for a favour. Could you please let me know what you enjoy on this blog the most? What would you like to see more of? Less? What would you like to hear from me? Or maybe you have moved to YouTube or Instagram and the idea of a blog is no longer speaking to you? I would appreciate your thoughts. 

Let me leave you for today with some diverse work from my recent outings. 

and some recent vistas…

2019 © OLI Publishing Inc. All rights reserved.

It is great to be among friends

It is great to be among friends

Photography and the craft of seeing matters to me. For this and many other reasons I have been publishing serious doses of photographic thought on this blog. Today I would like to talk about something very important and close to my mind – YOU!

The last few months have been pretty intense. I admit, I have been working very hard to pursue my passion of photography and build my photography business. I photographed some of the most incredible cities in the world, led multiple workshops, wrote hundreds of articles and essays, including my monthly column in the FujiLove Magazine, participated in the exhibition at the Capture Photography Festival, made many presentations, webinars and most recently published “Seeing Simplified – How to see and craft great imagery” a book on which I have been working for quite a while. As you can imagine, this launch was an important milestone for me. Now the book is out, I’ve taken a one-day break to pause, gather my thoughts and simply rest.

Strangely enough, this moment of reflection transpired at the same time as I received numerous emails and messages from You my photographic friends. Your humanity, kindness and understanding moved me deeply. No, not in the honeyed and sweet way but rather in an in-depth, sincere and revealing modus. Some of you asked me how I was doing, if I needed any help, offered a meeting or just a place to stay. Such interactions with you, friendships, exchanges, in person or through email or social media, are priceless to me. And I am not only talking about those pleasant interactions. Some of you have been tough but fair in your critique or advice. I appreciate both equally. 

There is no question that being a full-time photographer is not easy and some days are better than others. However, every time my head goes down and doubts reassert themselves, YOU lift me up. If I had to choose one thing that makes everything worthwhile, it is having the privilege of getting to know every single one of You. Indeed, it is great to be among friends. 

Here is some imagery taken on the streets of London with the X100F and X-E3 paired with the XF 35mm F1.4

 

Next time…

 

2018 © OLI Publishing Inc. All rights reserved.

The Magic of Photography

The Magic of Photography

I have found photography to be an incredible endeavour. Every day I face a plethora of choices about observing, seeing and crafting a photograph. The more I practice this craft the more I agree with Elliott Erwitt that “it is about finding something interesting in an ordinary place.”

There is no better season to do just that than in the winter months. At this time of year, I used to put away my camera with the exception of family celebrations and commercial work. After all, Vancouver can be quite miserable in winter: the perfect blend of R-A-I-N, cold and wind was not something I was looking for.

Then I started the R-A-I-N project and began photographing when it was pouring rain or on foggy mornings or when Vancouver got snow. I embraced the elements at their worst! Now, the summer months have become a less desirable time to do photography.

For the last few days I have been shooting street photography in downtown Vancouver, taking advantage of the beautiful fog that’s been blanketing the city. Photographing in fog has always been one of my favourite activities. It’s a neutral canvas. When teaching workshops, I always try to convey the idea of a canvas to my students. Crafting the image has a lot in common with painting. A painter takes a white canvas and starts adding elements to it, considering light and shadow in the process. Therefore, paintings usually have marvellous aesthetics and very little clutter.   

Fog provides you with a blank, white canvas and you, as a photographer, start adding elements to it, arranging those elements in the frame and together with light you create unique visuals. However, that’s not all. Fog, R-A-I-N, wind – all the conditions we avoid – provide an extraordinary atmosphere.

This set of conditions along with concentration and intense observation are prerequisites for creating great imagery. Don’t confuse great with popular – they often diverge for a reason. Unique imagery is different, strange, bizarre – not something you can consume on-the-go. Yes, such risk-taking often leads to failure and disappointment but on occasion you can create magic. There is no greater compliment than the moment when your viewer stops scrolling and stares at your image because there is so much to explore, decipher, process and feel.  

The magic of photography, indeed.   

All imagery taken with the Fujifilm X-E3 and the XF 35mm F1.4. Will try to share with you some thoughts about this little camera in one of our upcoming posts. Stay tuned.

next time…

 

2017 © Olafphoto. All rights reserved.