Our community member Mark Carolan (markcarolan) is a traveler. He has called some of the biggest cities in the world home but right now he is based in Bali, Indonesia. His photos are a fantastic balance between creativity, sexiness and drama, and the ’cinematic’ feel of his photos are created with the help of only using natural light. Wan’t to know more about him? Great! We asked him some questions. Enjoy!

Monsieur Blonde 02 by markcarolan

Can you tell us about yourself and your background?

My name is Mark Carolan and although I’m originally from England, my love of travel has kept me on the move for some time. At present I’m based in Bali, Indonesia but before that, I’ve called Amsterdam, Barcelona, Riga, Sydney, LA, Singapore and Taipei home.

My background is Advertising. I’ve worked as a freelance Creative Director for many years, working on projects around the world: airlines, banks, beers, cars, mobile phones, fashion and shampoo brands have kept me busy for some time. A large part of my advertising job is working with directors and photographers so my two careers/passions cross over a great deal.

Sveta by markcarolan

When did you first think about becoming a photographer?

After High School, I studied art and design at Bournemouth Art College in the UK. The course covered graphic design, typography, illustration and photography and it was since then, I’ve had the bug. But it wasn’t until later in my ad career that I started to pursue the photography path on my own.

Balloon03 by markcarolan

Where do you get your photographic inspiration from?

Perhaps a cliché, but I gain inspiration from anywhere and everywhere. From Netflix tv series, an overhead story in a cafe, a post on Facebook, a film trailer, a piece of graffiti on the back of a toilet door. In Bali, I just ride around on my scooter, taking in all and everything. Thousands of images flying by is a great way to find an idea.

Aiya18 by markcarolan

Do you have any influencers?

Not one person in particular but I have a constantly growing home-made book collection called ‘Armchair Walking’ that I often turn to and browse. Whenever I find an inspiring image online, it gets dumped into a desktop folder. After a while that folder becomes a book, full of random images: neon signs, fashion lighting, a quote, an illustration, a funny picture of a hat, a piece of meat. I started this collection when I lived in a remote village in Spain, with very little around me. The internet - and then these books - became my window to the big world. I’d sit for hours reading them and drift away. Hence the name of the collection. I suppose I should’ve called them Pinterest and made millions from them!

Helmi01 by markcarolan

What is your favorite subject to shoot?

Anything with a person in it. Ideally a person with a difference or story.

Kerianne by markcarolan

What is your favorite gear to shoot with?

I usually just use my Nikon D610 with a fixed 50mm 1:4mm. I only shoot with natural light so that makes my life slightly easier.

Whulan by markcarolan

When you go in one of your travels, what do you take with you? Why?

I need to travel light as I’m often on a bike or a scooter or an old boat letting in water. So the less the better. It also helps me blend into a crowd if I just carry a camera and little else.

Anna10 by markcarolan

How do you educate yourself to take better pictures?

By not being afraid to ask for advice, for support, for guidance, for a point of view. And not getting too attached to an image.

Claudia by markcarolan

What it is you want to say with your photographs?

I’m still trying to find my voice with my images. I’m still exploring trying to find where I want to go with them, so when I find the right words to describe them, you’ll be the first to know.

Anna01 by markcarolan

How do you actually get your photographs to do that?

By finding a different angle. With cropping, with a different grade, with patience.

Rosa by markcarolan

B&W or color, what do you prefer and why?

Colour. I like to spend a lot of time grading my images and experiment with all sorts of colour grades.

For more beautiful images taken by Mark, visit his profile, website, Facebook page and Instagram.