sam stevens | photography
How did you get into photography? Do you remember the first photo you ever took?
In all honesty, it was sort of on a whim, I had always enjoyed creating art of all sorts. Then when a photography course became available I didn't hesitate to study photography alongside Art at A-Level. I'm not too certain what my first ever photograph, that's a difficult question for me because it was so long ago and I wasn't great at the start. Probably the same thing anybody takes their first photo of - the sky or a friend.
What’s lockdown been like for you? A lot of your work surrounds taking pictures of your mates/people around you so that must’ve affected a lot of what you do. How did you adjust?
Lockdown has definitely been a different experience, despite it being very similar to my usual life - staying in until the occasional chance of a photograph arises. I've definitely had time to sort my life and creative direction out, working with Welsh bands like Mellt who I've known a long time has definitely opened my doors to a new and more commercial style that could lead my career for now. With the prospect of moving back to Wales on my mind, I am hopeful for what my life will entail when things begin to become more normal & restrictions get lifted.
What do you think is the most special piece of work you’ve produced and why?
I am a very passive person, especially about my work, I couldn't really tell you to be honest. I like all of my photographs equally because they remind me of what was going on at the time, but if I had to whittle it down to one that I unconditionally love it would be the family photograph taken at Lumb Falls, West Yorkshire. I was sat at the falls in the summer of 2019 when a young family walked by. I noticed the young child & the gold chain of the father and had to ask for a photograph. Despite my huge camera, I am afraid of speaking to potential subjects, I don't know what it is, I guess I get stage fright. But I gathered my courage for this photograph because the man and baby perfectly visually represented the place for me at the time. The young man told me that he'd be happy to model, calling his daughter to stand with him, who was holding a chihuahua, it couldn't have been a better moment for me. Sadly I contacted them with their photograph but they didn't reply.
If you had to pick one element, what would it be: subject or environment?
Environment over subject, in the right place anything and anyone can look good. I photograph my life for myself in 50 years, so if I can perfectly capture the environment of a place with my photography, I know 72-year-old me would be happy!