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Interview: Mr. Volk

Mr. Volk

How long have you been photographing?

“I started photographing in 2003 here and there to stave off boredom while living in a then remote area of Surrey. It was with a simple Sony point and shoot that was around at the time, of which some of the pictures from then I still have. I really started to take it seriously in late 2004, when a good friend of mine bought a top of the line point and shoot and began producing some amazing work. At the time I had no camera of my own and borrowed others P&S to go out on city walk abouts with him. I then met a great friend from Japan and she was also interested in photography. So we started to take her camera out almost daily and go off into the city streets and lane ways on 2-3 hour shoots. With her and my other friend I mentioned earlier, we began to collaboratively shoot and exchange pictures via email to critique and in turn slowly improve. I bought my first DSLR (Nikon D50) with the kit lens (18-55) in late 2005 and from there I never looked back.

What inspired you to get into photography?

“I’ve always been interested in captivating images from magazines, especially National Geographic and various music magazines I used to read. I also should say that cd covers from various music, especially the covers from the “Waveform Records” catalogue really inspired me to look at photography as a way to create an inner world or take from the inner world and express it in an image. These inspirations have always been able to build a story in my mind very similar to the way good ambient music can. When I picked up that point and shoot and started to produce some pretty interesting images from somewhere inside myself, I knew then that I wanted to continue with it and find a way to express the images in my own mind more aptly,  watching to see how they themselves would develop over time.”

Describe your photography in three words.

“Spontaneous Expression of Self”

What is your favorite lens?

“Since I don’t have a heck of a lot of experience with different lenses mostly due to the financial aspect, I don’t really have much to say to this. However, there are two lenses I want to have and they are the Nikkor 17-55/ 2.8 and some sort of a good macro lens. I’ve yet to delve into that realm of photography yet. Small is interesting.”

What is your favorite camera?

“Well I started out in the realm of Dslrs with a Nikon D50 and now shoot with a D200.  For what I do at this point my D200 is already something I will have to grow into in a major way. With that being said, I would probably say the D300 because, well, it’s newer and shiny. I’m a Nikon user for life.”

Where do you get your inspiration?

“All my inspiration now comes from the divine within and is absolutely spontaneous. I can’t force a shot or an image to come. Nor can I try to purposely create an idea or an image. All I can do is let go and just go with the flow. When I start to surrender to the process then things start working out. Of course the pictures my friends of many talents take tend to always blow me away, and also drive me to develop further and go deeper.”

Could you describe the process or idea behind your favorite picture that was in one of our shows?

“The Picture is called “Going to Pieces” and was featured in the “Winter Salon” exhibit.  The process is the same as what I described above for inspiration. I saw this piece of rock covered in dry, cracking mud inside a fountain some workers were repairing just off Georgia Street. Immediately the image of a vast, drought stricken lake bed somewhere in the third world popped into my head. So from there I tried to capture that feeling using the subject matter that was available to me at the time.  I tried a number of different angles until I got the one that fit. Only after I got it into my computer did I see that the lake bed looked as though it was a piece of land floating in space. Friends said I should have changed the name to “Edge of the Universe”. After some contemplation I decided to forgo a long winded, deep name that would lend itself to that idea, and instead went with a snazzy little number that is a simple, everyday phrase that sounded good to my ears. Sometimes ya just got to go with something that sounds good and rolls off the palette, checking your intellect at the door. Besides, this is art. Intellect has no place here. Just enjoy.”

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