Who are you and where are you from?
Jonathan Havelock, currently living in Edmonton, Alberta. Born and raised in this wonderful Province.
My primary focus is landscape (especially Alberta fields coupled with stormy, dawn or dusk skies), but I try to change that up with “artsy” series like The Secret Garden and Nature’s Abstract, which are close-up shots of flowers, shrubs, garden plants, trees, ice and water. I am currently working on a night series.
How did you first get into photography & what keeps you shooting?
I played around with photography in High School, but University, marriage and my kids eventually took priority. When my father passed away a few years ago I took it up again – as a distraction. The intention was to travel across Canada, find a representative image for each province and territory, and hang those in my home. When I took a Peggy’s Cove shot in for printing the owner/professional photographer suggested I should exhibit and sell my work. That was seven years ago – and has evolved to where I now have the gallery. I never intended that, but am very fortunate to have something I love doing coupled being outside while continuing my professional consulting practice. That and having people appreciate what I do makes the trudging through rain and snow, skinning my knees, and getting up at 4:00 am worth the effort.
What or who are your photographic inspirations?
Not really anything specific – a general love for exploring, being outdoors and sharing experiences with my family and friends. Plus a need to push beyond what others expect.
Do you have any favourite advice you’ve received?
Don’t be lazy while shooting – move around. And be patient, especially when shooting at dusk or dawn, because the tapestry is constantly changing and gives you multiple unique shots in one session.
Do you have any favourite piece of equipment that you own currently?
I use all Canon equipment and simply add lenses or bodies as needed. And I don’t get hung up on the technical aspects of photography. I just shoot until it looks good to me, and if what I happen to be using gets me what I need, then that’s my favorite.
Is there a piece of equipment that you feel you need to complete your kit?
Just bought a new tripod, which gives me added stability and flexibility. Absolutely essential, so I am set for a while. And I avoid rushing out to buy ‘what’s new or trendy’.
What advice do you have for new photographers?
First, figure out what you want to focus on. Is it people? Landscapes? Events? After that, look at what others are doing. Is there something unique that inspires you? Don’t be ashamed about borrowing a concept, but do not copy – do not do what they do. You can adopt a certain approach or look, but then change it to make it your own. Next, create a different series of images every year or two. You will avoid boredom and are constantly bringing something new to the market. So, if its people, perhaps look at a series focusing on the Asian continent. Then South America. Or cities vs. rural. Only you constrain what you do. Finally, share what you are doing with those close to you. My best photography trips are with my wife and brother (and sometimes my two boys). They keep me safe – and keep me laughing.
Jonathan Havelock Fine Art Photography. www.jonathanhavelock.com