This is me

Usually I do not do this. What I mean is usually I do not talk about myself because sometimes I think why would people care, but I recently had a conversation with a mentor or mine and they told me it cant just be about the destination, people would like to see the journey of how you got there on a day to day basis as well over a long period of time. 

Basically its like this, when the teacher asks you to show her work but you already know the answer to the equation so you give only the answer. People like to live through others and sometimes they like to see the real side of things when it comes to how the person really got there. 

So I am currently 30 years, but does that really matter? I first started creating since I could remember (typical answer I know) , but since I could draw cartoons that I used to see on Saturdays I was hooked. Eventually drawing and colours became something I enjoyed. 2005 graffiti came into my life and I was hooked I didn't really know what it was but I knew I wanted to learn it, study it and embrace it.

So I started with handstyles and learning from the ground up with sketchbooks. I learned how to write my name it felt like I was becoming someone else because it was an alter-ego something I could hide behind because I was not always the most out spoken person. The name was...yeah you guessed it "Smvrk" why I chose this name was because I was a bad kid grounding up and people used to tell me they knew I did something due to the smirk on my face. 

fast forward couple years and now I am making stencils tagging my name anywhere I could, but one thing I wish I need early on what never "shit where you eat". I was caught writing my name on the new public school ways. (Yes some may call it vandalism). It was from that point I realized I could be writing my name illegally and getting in trouble. 

Its 2007 and now i am in college for visual and digital arts. This touch the fundamentals of drawing, painting, sculpting and graphic design so I thought sign me up I could still do something I love which is letters colours and cartoons. I learned and learned fast, staying late at school understand illustrator and learning what it does and how I can make it mine own. I started with all I knew at the time music taking my favourite musicians and digitizing them. From Kanye and ASAP Rocky to Jayz and Lady Gaga. (No she was not a favourite of mine it was just an experiment).

A$AP Rocky 

A$AP Rocky 

Kanye West

Kanye West

School was over and I needed a job or I had to go back to school for a few years to deep dive into a more specifc field. I worked for a a few years until Instagram came around and it was somewhere I  did not have to do much. Post my work and move on, but then I stumbled across people with some amazing work that was coming from there phones and the rest it history. 

I picked up a camera and it was a new fresh area I could create in. I could still hind bhind my name because that part hasnt changed much. I prefer people now know who I cam because I like the work to speak for itself, I rather the work do all the talking. (Not that I cant speak) I rather have the work do it for me. 
So here i was working overnight and driving downtown every more to meet up with people like Ryan Millier, Brxson and The Brightest Hour just to name a few. I was hooked it was something new and fresh, but it was not about the likes and followers how it is now, but more about the adventure unknown places that we would have never seen if it was not for photography. 

Underground tunnels, roof tops, motion blurs, instameets was all a new community of like minded people potential friends and competition. Then when people started to reach out and brands started to call you something bigger than just a photographer or a hobbyist. The platform had changed my life in a positive way, I meet new people brainstormed ideas went to all kinds if events. 

Now I was travelling the world because my passion had grown outside of home town, my city and even my country. Exploring and seeing the world became the goal. Its more of a life time goal to travel as much as possible before I leave this earth. Since I picked up a camera I have drove to Montreal, Detroit, Flower Pot Island, took a bus to Chicago, flew to Cuba, Jamaica and even New York.  Thats a short list of places I want to go, but I feel like I am only getting started. More events, more people to shoot more places to see. 

That's me in a nut shell. I love photos I have a passion to see the world, meet new people and try new things. I feel like I can be a photographer for the next 30 years and still love it the same. I get bored easily so Im sure I would be shooting film or using mixed mediums in order to provoke an emotion. I love shooting people in their natural ora, but I also love landscapes and creating a cinematic mood similar to movies. 

 

Till next time,

Sean 

New York Minute

Not sure how to start this one back up again, but its been a long time since I have posted anything on here. I have been doing a lot to be honest just no time to sit down and make a post about it. 

Today I want to talk about my New York City experience in which I was soaked by the rain, had my backpack fall apart and spent 2 hours trying to get the perfect shot.

 

Chinatown

Chinatown

When I came across this location it was here when I felt like I was in New York. No, it wasn't the slick talking or the One World Trade building. This!! This somewhat iconic shot of Chinatown from the Manhattan Bridge is when I felt like I was in New York. Its places like this that we see time and time again that make us feel like we made it. A lot of the time it is not about the destination, but the journey it took to get there.  Cloudy days, rain and puddles are what made up most of the week.

Walking across iconic bridge felt like a bad joke at times. "why did the photographer cross the bridge?" To get all the shot? As much as we tried to predict the weather we had many failed attempts because predicting the weather is like finding the fountain of youth you come close, but your just not there. 

Brooklyn Bridge

Brooklyn Bridge

The Infamous Brooklyn Bridge, iconic the first New York City bridge and one hell of a run to the other side. We got caught in a crazy down pour with nowhere to hide. No shelter to cover and all our clothes, camera equipment and bags exposed. All we could do was embrace the New York weather, as if we had any other choice. When things like this happen you take it and think its a bad thing, but its memorable so why not document it . First time in New York and on the Brooklyn Bridge we caught in the rain. (I know I have been saying we a lot, I was on this trip with my girl friend, who doesn't have Instagram but loves to travel take photos and experience different foods.)

It rained for 3 days so stayed inside...

Fulton Station pt.1

Fulton Station pt.1

Fulton Station pt.2

Fulton Station pt.2

The Oculus

The Oculus

Staying dry is key when your not walking around with a 1Dx or weather sealed equipment. Because New York is so big and has so much to offer have a day inside is still a good thing. Not all cities are like this, but I will say rain or shine NYC doesn't stop, doesn't slow down and doesn't take breaks. Unfortunately I don't have a 1Dx, but its in the woks. 

Chrysler Building 

Chrysler Building 

One World Trade Centre

One World Trade Centre

The rain finally settled and going high above New York to capture this busy city in one photo, finally made sense. Seeing a lot these buildings was also a culture shock because the amount of films that have been recorded in New York is astonishing. From Batman, Die Hard, Sex & The City, Fast & Furious and more, NYC has got it covered. 

Now to tell you what it means and how much dedication it takes to get that perfect shot that ends your trip. It was the last day of our trip and we wanted to see The 'Top of The Rock'. All tickets were sold out up until the next day and we were at the end of the line. The people ahead of us were buying tickets for tomorrow so by the time we get to the kiosk it would have been sold out. Did I mention it was our last day, so there was no trip back to the top of the rock for us. So, when your backs against the wall and you almost out of options what do you do? BUY VIP!!!!

We bought VIP skipped the line in a New York minute and stayed on rock for 2.5 hours because it was our last night the sun was finally out and we had no where else better to be than to watch the sun go down over one of the craziest cities in the world. It almost felt like we were in a movie watching the sunset. 

 

Till next time, 

Peace

The Cuban Experience

I know it has been long since my last post in January, but you can look forward to more post in the coming future. 

I recently took a trip to Cuba for the experience of a lifetime courtesy of Havana Club Canada. For 3 days myself and the 2 other photographers Celia & Gillian enjoyed food, music and of course rum. We were able to get some history of how rum is made in a very cuban fashion. 

IMG_5378.JPG

Walking the streets of Old Havana was one of the highlights of my trip, seeing the culture, the old buildings with new modern architecture. Tones of characters roam the streets of Cuba any given day engaging tourists and cubans alike. You may have to pay a peso or two, but a photo of one of these street characters is worth the experience and the memories. 

Unforgettable sunsets at 6am to going to kids in the streets playing soccer. Cubans may seem like they don't have much, but they sure live life to the fullest. Live it day by day and drink to the good times. 

There were very few times when a local wouldn't try to sell me cigars and or rum as Cuba's largest income is based around tourism. Very nice and very respectful by the 3rd day I didn't want to leave, I felt like I was more than welcome to stay for as long as I wanted.

I would definitely recommend if anyone wants to go to somewhere hot, where they can enjoy good food, dance and of course cigars Cuba is the place to be. I have so many moments from this trip that overtime I see an image I feel like I am still there. I will never forget this trip to Havana.

Till next time.

From a different perspective

The digital age is booming and times are changing so fast, with changing times comes new technology and new ways of doing the same thing. Photography has changed a lot over the years, before it was blogging, then it was design t-shirts and then graffiti. Now everyone wants to be the own version of 13thWitness or Trashhand.

Change is inevitable and sometimes that change is unwanted, other times it is creative. As visual people we decide to make that change. I recently changed up what camera I was going to shoot with. (Only for a week)

I took the FujiE-X2 for a spin. With a 18-55mm(27-82.5 crop factor) I was amazed at the shot I could get without being seen. I love wide shots, but this time around I used the zoom and I was in love. I was fascinated by how fast you could take that shot and walk away without being noticed.

I was impressed by how easy it was to understand the functions of the camera and how smooth and consistent the camera was (this is not a photo review). I was pleased to walk just about anywhere and not question, if I was going to get the shot or not. It took me a few hours to change to my own custom setting and make the camera my own, but it was refreshing.

The Fuji is mirrorless camera and I felt it was time to try my hand at it and see if its worth the jump, if its worth selling my BMW (Canon 6D) for a smaller camera that can do almost the same thing. It was fun shooting with the camera, it felt like nobody knew I was there, but who knows.

Only time will tell...