We are excited to feature ViewBug community member SimonB. Simon studied film and television but enjoys photography because "you only need to rely on yourself". Read his story and learn what inspires him, enjoy!

1. When someone looks at your photos, what do you want them to take away from it? What are you trying to communicate?

I’m quite selfish on this front, I usually think about what I want to see first! Considering how other people interpret my pictures is a secondary thought. I would like them to take away a sense of originality. I would want them to see a different perspective or a new idea, or subject. Overall, aesthetics usually come first for me. I would like people to think my pictures look good! 

2. What is it that you love about photography?

I love the escapism photography brings. I’m sometimes shy, photography forces me to interact with the world. I enjoy travel photography the most as I feel inspired when i’m experiencing new things with fresh eyes. I love capturing a moment and sharing that with people. I like sugar coating memories!

3. What has photography done for you?

Photography has cost me loads of money! There’s always room for a new addition to my kit. I get carried away quite easily. 

4. Do you try to be conceptual or do you prefer to show the feeling behind a photo?

I started out with documentary and travel photography so focusing on realism and feeling was more accessible. I would like to work on more conceptual ideas, ViewBug is great for theme inspirations from the different competition subjects.  Over all I’d like to focus more on portraits and developing a unique style. 

5. What are your 3 tips for others who want to become creative photographers?

Buy a prime lens. Get close to people. Have a clear idea in your head of what you want to achieve before you leave the house. 

6. Have you received negative feedback from your work? What did you do about it?

I have had some negative feedback. I don’t mind it as i’m always critiquing my own work and looking at how I can improve my photos. It’s good to get an alternative perspective, as soon as you get too precious you’re finished!

7. Where did you learn to take photos?

I did a short module in photography as part of my degree but predominantly I studied film and television. I enjoy photography as it’s something you only need to rely on yourself for, rather than having a huge crew of people to achieve success. Working with different cameramen gives a great insight to the thinking process and lighting styles of professional image makers. 

8. If you could have the gift of a great photographer who would it be and why?

I try to look at a wide range of work and merit photos on their individual successes rather than focus on the photographers. Saying that I am a fan of Don McCullin. On a personal level I can’t imagine what it would have been like to go through what he has  over the years, covering conflicts. His images have retained a sensitivity and intimacy with the subjects that is incredibly striking and moving. To witness and capture these emotions in the conditions he has is astonishing to me. 

9. What is next for you? Any planned adventures with your camera?

I’m am currently looking at purchasing a new long lens and extender and giving nature photography a go.