A master of high and low key, designer-turned-photographer Oli Sansom takes us through his favourite photo moments.
(Credit: Tamara Erbacher)
Photographer: Oli Sansom
Speciality: Portraits, weddings and editorial.
Biography: Oli is a creative director at a digital health startup. While his background is in cartoon and animation illustration, he has also dabbled in the craft of hand-building truck seats and pillows, before giving his creative life the attention it deserved. He never considered photography until 2009, when he was inspired by the work that was produced by his fellow designers.
Oli soon learned how to work with light after shooting his friends' bands in erratic and ever-changing conditions. Weddings came next, when he found himself shooting an entire season of couples as he honed his skills.
Oli aims to stay focused on portrait, documentary and editorial themes, while further developing his distinctive visual style.
"I love the small stuff. I love trying to make boring normalcy an engaging part of a story, and giving everything its place with context."
Equipment: Canon EOS 5D Mark II, Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 70-200 f/2.8L, 580EXII, Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop
More of Oli's work can be seen on his website and you can follow him on Twitter.
This was part of a "morning couples" shoot with friends. I love catching little pockets of natural light, then casting them across human forms. Paul Barbera is amazing at that, and a big inspiration.
Driving a friend to work, this is a snap of him pointing at something while under the bridge at Hoddle Street and Swan Street in Melbourne.
He's an interesting dude with a curiously odd sock collection — that's part of another set I'm working on. Like most of my favourite shots, and certainly those from this series, this was candid and wasn't part of the morning's plan.
This is Jill. Carrying a chair. Jill was the first of my friends stuck with a 7am shoot. It was my first attempt at a "low key" shoot and, in the two months since starting to think about light more critically, I've learned more than the last two years.
Remember that chair? Here it is again, being lowered. I kind of like pairing images of simple "before and after" moments. Simple human moments — and sinks — are two of my favourite things to shoot. Stuff gets really awesome when someone is buttering toast in front of a sink. I'm glad I get excited by the small stuff.
This was at a wedding reception. I love the loop of the parents looking at their boy pining after the perfectly-posed girl at the front. I got pretty lucky with this catch, and had to move like a maniac to get it.
This is probably my favourite bride shot yet, and maybe the biggest reason why I'll miss my 70-200 when I get rid of it. Being able to catch moments like this, is one of the biggest reasons I do weddings.
I haven't shown much of it here, but I love shooting the backs of people's heads. Removing the distraction of a face makes you think much more about their own context, and the rest of the frame on its own merit.
Anyone that hasn't been to Underground Cinema, needs to get down there. This old-school taxi was a prop at one of their amazing events. Talking to people and putting up the hand to shoot anything and everything, can get you into a bunch of interesting places.