Meet the ingenious explorer behind all these amazing city and nature shots. he goes by the name of john westrock and loves to take you on a unique photographic journey . But what is John actually like? Find out in our little interview with him.
Hey John, first of all, would you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I grew up in Wisconsin and lived there for 32 years. While living in America's Great Heartland I tinkered with the camera every now and again, but I never took photography that seriously. I looked at photography more of a hobby at the time and captured what I saw around me in a very nonchalant way. When I moved to the Seattle, WA area in 2012 I instantly fell in love with the landscape and everything the great Pacific Northwest has to offer. I always carry a camera with me these days (other than the camera on my phone).
When did your start shooting?
I started to get interested in photography during my High School years. I inherited a Minolta SR-T 101 from my Grandpa and slowly started to figure it out through trial and error. I shot many, many blank rolls of film! It's actually embarrassing how many blank rolls of film I shot. I remember doing a "365 project" back in the year 2000 with a 2 megapixel Canon Elph. That was when I started to realize photography is more than just trying to capture an interesting picture; it's about trying to tell a story.
Besides your heart, eye and soul, which gear do you use?
These days I primarily shoot with a Canon 5D MKIII. I also shoot with an Olympus OM-D E-M5, Ricoh GR and still on occasion use my Minolta SR-T 101. Each camera makes me look at the world in a unique way. Cameras are just tools in the toolbox that offer the photographer different options for expressing themselves. My favorite lens is the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 ART series. Though, I haven't been able to figure out my camera on my phone. I really want to! I guess I feel most comfortable using a viewfinder.
What do you love most about photography?
I love photography because it offers me the opportunity of exploration. I like hiking through a forest and stumbling upon magical light shining through the leaves, discovering a cloud rolling off a mountain in a moody way or finding unique architectural viewpoints within the city. I've found that my favorite photos are the ones that presented themselves in a pure random moment. I like the feeling of being on the look out for these moments. I like spending time with my own thoughts while exploring. I find that I do some of my best thinking while alone in nature.
What has photography taught you?
Photography has taught me how to appreciate the little things in life; the sound of the wind, the lapping of a lake, natural patterns found in nature and more. It's taught me to appreciate those moments that last for a split second. It's taught me patience at times. It's taught me persistence. And most importantly it's showed me who I am.
If you could only take one more photo, what would it be of?
I'm not a portrait photographer, but I would have to try my hand at taking a portrait of my parents. Landscapes and city photos will be around forever but family members will not.
Favorite place to take photos in the world?
The Redwood forests in California are like no other forests in the world. The sheer size of them will make anyone feel humble. The color palette those forests have to offer is simply a dream.
What is your ultimate photography dream?
I just want to continue to explore new landscapes, continue to go on adventures and capture the world around me to the best of my ability at the time then I will have accomplished my dream.
What do you like to do when not shooting photos?
I like playing guitar and writing songs. I'm an avid reader. I've also been known to stay up late writing code for some project that seemed like a great idea at the time.