The highlight of the programme today is David Hays. His photos of 'still life' are amazing! It's always a pleasure to look at them and feel calmness, warmth and coziness.
I asked him 20 questions, and here are his detailed and interesting answers. Enjoy!
1. When did you start photography and which camera did you use at that time?
I think I’ve always been into photography…even as a kid I was always taking pictures with my parent’s cameras. I started getting serious about photography as an undergraduate back in the 70’s when I took my first photography class. My camera then…a plastic toy camera…the Diana! My first love!!
2. I took up photography because...
The magic! Capturing a moment in time…seeing it in a different perspective. Working in the darkroom and watching the image appear on my negatives and paper. Powerful stuff!
3. Who are your favourite photographers?
You know, I don’t have any favorite photographers. Seriously! There are many, many folks whose work I admire but I can’t say that any of them are favorites. Sorry!!
4. What does inspire you as a photographer?
My inspiration comes from life around me. A moment catches my attention and I’ll try to capture it with a camera. Light and dark inspire me…it’s the shadows of life that I find the most inspiring.
5. Can you recommend us any photo books, magazines or websites that could be interesting or/and helpful?
There are two websites that I follow that I’d recommend. Art of Mob (http://artofmob.blogspot.com) and The App Whisperer (http://theappwhisperer.com). Both are great sources of information about iphoneography and photographers. There are other websites that I check into from time to time but these are my top two. I would also recommend following as many photographers as you can on Instagram, Flickr, Tumblr, etc. There is some fabulous work being shown on these streams…you need to see it!
6. When and why did you switch over to the mobile photography?
Truth be told, I’ve not totally switched over to mobile photography! My iphone is always with me so I’m most apt to grab a shot with it but I still use my Nikon DSLR on a regular basis…and keep thinking that I’ll dust off my film cameras any day now. You know…it’s not what you take the picture with that’s important. It’s the fact that you did!
7. Which kind of mobile device do you use for taking pictures?
I use an iPhone 6 to do my mobile picture taking…and an iPad3 for most of my editing. This is not to say I don’t edit on my iPhone, I do. I just like the bigger screen the iPad gives me.
8. How many apps do you usually use and which one is your favourite?
I own hundreds of apps…most of which are sitting idle. There was a time when I would use 5 or 6 different apps but not so much any more. Lately I find that I can achieve the look I’m after 2 or 3 apps at most! Typically I’ll start with an app like PS Express to do some cropping and basic exposure tweeks. Then I’ll go to one of these apps: Stackables, Mextures, Distressed FX, or VSCO to finish. Other times I might just use Snapseed from start to finish! Now, after saying all of that, I do like a couple of other apps that I do use when I’m feeling a little more playful. Those would be iColorama, Procreate, and Repix to name a few of my favorites.
9. How do you estimate the situation in today's mobile photography? Are you happy with it? Or may be you see some problems, etc. Share with us your thoughts, please
I’m a bit of a late comer to iphoneography…not coming into it until the day of the iPhone4. Folks were still toting the idea of simplicity…take the shot, do a quick app, and publish. I really liked this idea. Still do. It was this simplicity that caused me to fall in love with iphoneography and for a number of years abandon my film and digital ways. Today, there is more and more emphasis on creating what I consider “digital art” vs. iphoneography. App developers have created mini-versions of Photoshop…and everyone’s mobile devices are becoming more like DSLR’s! So much so that I feel that the power of iphoneography is being lost in all the layering I see going on in many mobile images. Might as well pick up the DSLR and brush up on your Photoshop skills! In any case, there’s still room for everyone’s style with iphoneography…minimal to “app the hell out of it”!
10. Do you take pictures for yourself or for audience?
I take pictures for myself. These are my take on life around me and while I know that I’m influenced by other images, in the end…if I don’t like it…I don’t publish it!
11. Show us 2-3 your favourite photos taken by yourself
I’ve been spending a lot of time creating still life images this year…so here are three recent images that I like a lot: “Milkweed” (Snapseed, Mextures); “Cracked” (Stackables); and “Radish” (VSCO). All were shot using my iPhone6 native camera app and processed on my iPad.
12. Exactly what it is you want to say with your photographs?
I don’t want to say anything with my images…just that this is what I saw at a particular moment in time. I’ll let others decided if there is any deep hidden meaning to my work. I suppose there is…but I don’t know what it is!
13. Have your works been exhibited/published?
I publish/exhibit my work everyday on my IG, Flickr, and Tumblr streams. As for the more traditional venues, I have been honored to have my images show up in The Art of Mob, The AppWhisperer, and iPhonegraphyCentral showcases from time to time. Come this December, my images will be published a special edition magazine put out by The Woven Tale Press and shown at a companion exhibit at The Empty Spaces Gallery in Connecticut.
14. Tell us about a photographic opportunity you have missed
An opportunity missed? Probably one everyday! While I’m sure there have been times when I wished I had my camera with me, I can’t think of any time in particular. That’s what I like about mobile photography…I always have my iPhone with me…and I’m not shy about using it!
15. What would you say to your younger self?
Be less risk adverse…take more chances when it comes to developing your photography. Do it now
16. Tell us your favourite photographic quote
“You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” – Ansel Adams
17. Which characteristics do you need to become a photographer?
A vision. If you have that then everything else will fall into place.
18. Do you have a photographic habit that you wish you could get rid of?
Stop being as critical about my images…I’m my own worst critic! There are times when I won’t take the shot as I worry about it not being good enough.
19. Black&White or Colour?
Black & White. My first love. There’s nothing like a black & white image where the photographer has taken care of business. There’s power in the shadows!
20. What is your dream project?
I consider myself to be a mixed media artist as well as a photographer. My dream project would be one where I put it all together…photography, painting, collaging, and assemblage. I will do this someday.
I want to thank David for his time and collaboration!
Enjoy his wonderful pictures on Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/clearerreflections and follow him on Instagram (@clearerreflections)
About the Author
Yulia is a mobile photographer who exclusively use her android phone for all her artwork. Her work has been shown in various exhibitions through out the world including mDAC Summit 2015, The DarkRoom Gallery, The Appwhisperer, Pixel & B&W photography Magazine. She is currently in charge of the mobile photography wing of Mobile Art Academy - teaching, interviewing, blogging and curating shows & events.