We caught up with one of our students, David Paul to hear from the perspective of one of our students. David is an amateur photographer who took Photo 101 and Photo 201 with us.
David loves to travel and specializes in shooting stunning landscapes. Read our interview with David for inspiration and to find out more about some of the students we have here at GTA Photography Classes.
When and how did you fall in love with photography?
I have always had an interest in photography because I grew up as a skateboarder and loved the work of Atiba Jefferson and Spike Jonze. At that time, I was more into skateboarding than photography. I took a photography class in high school but it didn’t still didn’t “click” for me. I didn’t pick up a camera again for over 10 years. Last year my mom surprised me with Nikon D3400 camera for Christmas. After I had a quick lesson from my friend Corbin Smith, I found myself at the top a bridge that overlooked Rosedale station. I wanted to take a photo of the Subway cars in a long exposure. I wanted to capture both trains in the station at the same time. After several attempts, I got the shot I was thinking about in my mind and I was completely blown away by the result. In that moment, it felt like I had finally tapped into the creative side of personality. I have been hooked ever since.
How would you define your photography style?
I enjoy showing movement in my photographs through long exposure. I enjoy showing movement within the City of Toronto and I am highly influenced by my need to explore. If I had to label myself I would say I am a cross between an Urban, landscape, and conceptual photographer.
What was your most memorable photoshoot or photograph?
I really enjoyed shooting in Old Quebec City last year, it’s the closest thing to a European city that we have in Canada. There was this enormous snowfall and it turned the entire trip into a winter wonderland. There’s so much character in Old Quebec City and Chateau Frontenac is a stunning building to photograph. It was a great experience being in awe at almost every corner. I also happen to be at the fire that happened at Avenue and St Clair last year, I happen to have my camera on me and running around in a really chaotic environment was interesting to shoot.
Which piece of gear (lens, tripod etc.) is your favourite?
Recently purchased a Nikon 16-85 VR 3.5-5.6 lens. I haven’t had it very long but so far so good!
What’s your next photography purchase?
My next photography purchase will be the sigma 18-35 1.8 Art lens and I am looking into upgrading to a full frame body in the next year.
What advice would you give to amateur photographers?
- Be endlessly curious and learn about the environment you are shooting.
- Inspire yourself so that you can inspire others. I think everyone should be getting their creativity out there; life is a gift and your creativity is a gift that you can share to inspire others.
- Learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. I think as a photographer you have to want to learn about your subjects. Whether it means learning about your environment or objects you are shooting, or the person you have shot. Always think of different ways you can interact with the space around you. There are no bad days to shoot, get into environments that make you uncomfortable. Keep learning!
- Set photography goals and research events going on throughout the city that would interest you in shooting.
Just so we can find out a bit more about the person behind the lens, could you tell us…
What is your favourite building to photograph in the city? I really enjoy shooting the Gooderham building and Old City Hall.
What’s your dream vacation destination? For photography, I want to ride a motorcycle through South America shooting photos and hopefully make it to Easter Island. Also, anywhere I can surf/skateboard that’s warm. I want to go everywhere.
What’s your favourite TV show? I really liked the HBO show the Wire and Game of Thrones is also awesome.
What would you do if you won the lottery? I would live humble and travel to every corner of this earth shooting photos, collecting stories and expanding my knowledge through experience. I would want to use that money to help others and start charitable endeavours. Invest in experiences.
What did you get for your last birthday? My friends gave me the gift of their time and took me to an excellent Mexican restaurant for dinner. Next time, they can buy me the Nikon D850. Just kidding.
Learn More About The Class David Took: Photo 101
If you are a new to photography, this is the place to start! Photo 101 is where we teach the foundations of photography and master manual mode.