Guest Post: Digital Photography Student Will McGrath, Kelowna

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I hail from a town right outside of Calgary Alberta called Cochrane – it literally consists of school, a gas station, and a Tim Horton’s.

So how did I end up here? My first semester out of high school I attended Mount Royal University in Calgary. Shortly after finals I packed up and moved to Kelowna where I tested out the Business program at Okanagan College. Upon the completion of my first year I decided to pursue a more creative path, encouraging myself to look at the world through a different lens, and turn my passion into my profession.

I stumbled upon CAT’s website when researching photography programs. The location worked for me and after a tour I was sold.

There have been a lot of highlights in my program so far, such as being able to work with real models for my Lighting for Stills class, as well as meeting with multiple photographers in Kelowna that gave me advice for growing a profitable company.

I would love to say that I’m that kid that use to carry around a Polaroid with him everywhere, but unfortunately I’m not. I acquired my first camera just after my first year of university; it’s been a nonstop sequence since then! I never thought that it would lead to a career path, but I’m sure only the best things will come from it.

After I receive my diploma at the end of this quarter, I’m returning to Cochrane to finance Will McGrath Photography. I want to use my photography passion to travel to new places like Whistler, the Yukon, Thailand, and Nepal. Ideally I would love to specialize in sport action photography, photography famous skiers and snowboarders in their back country elements; that’s major goal of mine. Until then, I’m content taking in the landscape and submerging myself into different cultures to document. But hands down I’m all about the snow!!!!

Most of our projects are about taking on my concepts of perfecting another, such as targeting the viewers eyes to one subject while many others objects are around it. I normally set off into the weekend with a couple of new concepts in mind and try to portray them in many different ways through my imagery. For the most part, the concepts fall into place through my viewfinder.

My advice would be the same advice that I got from a photographer when I first started. Submerge yourself into 110%! Do everything possible that you can and don’t look back, good things happen to people that are dedicated and willing to go the extra mile! Obviously you need to know your camera and its capabilities. The hardest part about photography is people under cutting you for your work. What it takes is time though, at some point you just have to dive right in and commit to it.  If you try and just shoot in evenings and weekends while working other jobs it rarely works out.  You just don’t end up with enough shooting time.

I’m a big believer in jumping in feet first and making it work.

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