Michael’s passionate about living in the moment and documenting the good times. Check his story out below.
Say hello to Michael:
Where are you from? Where have you been?
I’m from Whistler, BC, a small ski town in the Coast Mountains of Canada. I’ve been all across Japan, fourteen European countries (and counting), every province in Canada, as well as most states in the U.S. and down to Mexico.
What’s your favorite place in the world?
Canada. It’s the place I grew up and have spent the majority of my life, yet I feel I have barely scratched the surface. I just love how expansive, uninhabited, and quiet it is. My love for photography began in this landscape, and after the tens of thousands of pictures I’ve taken here… this land keeps that passion stronger than ever.
What’s on your “bucket list” of ideas to create?
For me, I’ve never really liked the idea of a “bucket list” or long term goals for that matter. I find creating daily goals or habits to consistently stay on top of, means that everyday I’m getting one step closer to my overall vision. Although, one idea that has been on the top of my head for a few months now has been to spend a year living on the road and creating a book that documents the experience.
How would you describe your visual style?
This question is typically easier for the audience than the actor, but if I had to put it into a few words… I would say inspirational, dramatic, and natural.
How do you find your inspiration?
I find inspiration in many shapes and forms. I’ve recently made more of an effort to be very aware when I feel most inspired. It is almost always when I am pushing myself physically, either running, skiing, or climbing – or when I am travelling to new places. This is where 90% of my time and energy is put nowadays.
Do you get photographer’s block? If so, how do you overcome that?
Of course I do – I believe every photographer gets a mental block from time to time. The method I’ve always used to get past this is by taking more photos… everyday. Whether they’re photos you’re proud of or not, the act of creating something will get you through it.
Tell us about your career. How did you get into it?
For me, the sports were my first passion… running, biking, skiing, and climbing. After years of doing these sports on a daily basis, and around the time the first iPhone came out, I began to document my time in the mountains with friends. The way I work is still very much the same… I shoot the majority of my work with a 28mm lens (same as the iPhone), and most of my commissioned jobs are shot with close friends.
What has been your biggest setback as a photographer?
I’m lucky to say that I haven’t had any major setback as a photographer. Although, I feel all the setbacks I have had were created by myself. Whether that was just not going out to shoot that day, not waking up early and staying up late working on my craft, or not going out of my comfort zone to push myself forward.
Photography is competitive. How do you stand out?
Photographing what I love. I truly believe that creating photos of the things you are most passionate about will come through in your images – people will be able to see that and connect with the images better.
If you could photograph anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I’ve always been fascinated by Nepal, although I have never been. The culture, people, and landscape has consistently stood out to me as being unique and wild. Running, climbing, and photographing in the Karakoram range with my closest friends is something I plan to do in the near future….
What’s your philosophy when it comes to being a great photographer?
My philosophy for this is quite simple… although not always the easiest to implement. Shoot everyday, and shoot what you love. Being a great photographer is like anything else… it takes a lot of practice and time to improve on your craft.
What’s a deal breaker for you when deciding to do a shoot?
There are two things that go into this decision. First, I have to like what the company is doing – making a positive impact on the world and creating a great product or service. Next, is whether or not I enjoy working with the people at the company. I always try to surround myself around positive people… this philosophy also applies for the brands I work with.
For anyone that wants to get in touch with Michael, here’s some contact information:
Michael, thanks so much for sharing your story with us! 🙂
If any artists out there want to collaborate with FStop, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.