Each month, I interview a photographer to learn more about their love of photography. Note: I’ve decided to expand my photog interviews beyond the Seattle-Tacoma area. I’ve found some amazing photographers via social media, and I really want to share their stories! Hope you enjoy this first non-local photographer, who is based in Toronto, Canada.
Sara wields her camera professionally in the realms of portrait, editorial, and food photography, as well as personally blogging photographs of her everyday life, meals, and her cats and their adventures. Sara’s editorial work has been featured by magazines like Time, Redbook, Elle, Chickpea, and Frankie, and full-page spreads of her food photography can be found in Quick and Easy Low-Cal Vegan Comfort Food by Alicia Simpson. See more of her work at www.saralynnpaige.com.
Roxanne: When did you become interested in photography?
Sara: For my twelfth birthday I was given my very first camera. I started using it immediately after that, but if I’m honest it was for documenting my life, and not photography as an art form.
*laughs* My dad actually tells this joke about how when I was young, around 13 or so, I would take so many pictures of strangers that he would always get weird looks after developing my film. We laugh about it now, but at the time I remember him being so frustrated that I would take pictures of people I didn’t even know, or worse, stranger’s kids.
Who or what influenced you to become a photographer?
I have always had an intense love that borders on a need to document my life and those that touch it. A lot of times life is like an ocean in that it’s deceptively steady, but the reality is that even though it is a steady ebb and flow, it’s a different part of the sea that comes rolling in each time. People are in our lives for days, moments, or years- and then they’re gone. Our situation is the same for days, moments, or years—and then it has changed. Sometimes that change is abrupt and you can see it coming but often times it’s much more subtle. I want to remember, as best I can, each ebb and flow of my life’s ocean. Photography helps me with that.
What motivates you to continue taking photos?
I will probably always feel strongly about documenting my life, but I’m lucky to say that now photography is part of how I make my living too, so I’m motivated on both a personal level and a professional level. I’ll probably die with a camera nearby.
What’s your favorite lens or other piece of photography gear?
Oh, this is a fun question! I am a sucker for prime lenses and my favorites for everyday life are the 35mm and the 50mm, and for food it’s the 100mm.
What advice would you give someone just starting out in photography?
Don’t stop shooting, and always shoot what you like, not what you think you should be shooting.