In the member spotlight this time, I’m delighted to introduce you to Chris Knight, who won the September Oxford Waterways photo contest with his fantastic candid shot of this bearded man riding his bike along the tow path. What a character, don’t you think?
One of the things that I love about Oxford Photo Walk is that it’s a great way to meet new people. And, as this group is still really new, there’s still a lot about our members that we don’t know. It’s therefore my pleasure to share this interview with one of our first members, Chris, where he shares how he got into photography, a few tips, and lots of great photos!
Where are you from and how long have you been living in Oxford?
I was born in Cyprus, but grew up in West Sussex. I’ve lived in Oxford since 2006 – so ten years here.
What’s your story? How did you get into photography?
I’ve always liked the idea of taking photographs, but never had any success. I had a dreadful 110-style camera in my early 20s before wasting good money on an SLR I never got decent photos from. It wasn’t until Christmas 2008 that I got a fantastic Canon IXUS that finally enabled me to capture shots that I was pleased with (and which friends often commented on). A year later I got my first Nikon DSLR and haven’t looked back!
What is your favourite subject to photograph?
I go through phases: for a long time, it was macro shots of trees, flowers and bugs, then landscapes, then friends’ weddings, then street photography, then sports, then architecture, then lunar photography, then wildlife; I like shooting gigs because the lighting is often fantastic. Since January, I’ve been into photographing birds. Who knows what my next thing will be? I’m a bit of a jack-of-all-trades when it comes to photography.
What do you think is key to taking a good photo?
Simple rules (which should be broken whenever the need arises): 1. Fill the frame. 2. Tell a story or reveal something in a photograph. 3. Try and see things from a different angle (which might be literal or metaphorical). 4. Take photographs as often as you can. 5. Deleting photographs is your most useful editing tool, so be ruthless; the second most useful is cropping. 6. Set yourself challenges from time to time, e.g. use only a 50mm lens, or shoot macro, or shoot black-and-white. 7. Get to know your camera: manual is definitely worth getting to grips with.
Where in the world would you most like to photograph and why?
The lazy answer is anywhere beautiful, different, dramatic. However, as I have friends from New Zealand (and I’ve seen all those Peter Jackson Hobbit/LOTR films!), I have an interest in what seems to be a startlingly gorgeous country. But I’d also like to photograph some of the amazing landscapes and cities in America as well as China. It’s a bit overwhelming to think about all the places I haven’t yet been, but ought to visit.
What is your experience of Oxford Photo Walk?
It’s been really good fun. I signed up mainly to meet other photographers in Oxford and to exchange tips, but I’ve also enjoyed the competitive element (maybe I shouldn’t admit that!). Having a theme is good because it’s a challenge to interpret (or subvert) that in just one or two photos. I like seeing everyone else’s photos on Facebook afterwards, not just the competition entries.
I’d like to thank Chris for sharing his story and a few of his favourite photographs with us. He’s also given us some great tips. I wonder which you’ll try?
Like what you see?
Then you can see more of Chris’s work on the following platforms:
- Website (very new and not finished!): http://chris-knight-photography.squarespace.com
- Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cpk1774/
- Instagram: wordswordswords
- Tumblr: manwithalens
If you have any questions or comments for Chris, please feel free to leave a comment below, send us an email, or ask him in person at the next photo walk! 🙂
See you soon!