What got me into photography…

Noah Gecelovsky
By Noah Gecelovsky April 20, 2018 13:54

Anthony Sheardown poses in a field in Essex-County at sun set. (Photo by Noah Gecelovsky)

By Noah Gecelovsky

 

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“I think the purpose of a photograph or art piece in general is to capture emotion and have the viewer feel an emotion when they look at it,” said Sheardown.

He peers through the viewfinder of his camera, mapping out the next shot of what was once a functional family barn. The barn — once painted a vibrant red — is now covered in graffiti, caving in. It is surrounded by a sheet of white snow and backed by a dark grey sky with a fading orange sunset.

“You know what’s so great about winter? All these trees are dead,” said Sheardown referring to the leafless trees he saw down the highway. “That’s what makes the photos.”

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Anthony Sheardown, 22, is a self-employed photographer from Windsor, Ont.

It was not until after he graduated high school in 2013 when Sheardown found himself grabbing a camera and taking up photography.

“I took a year off from school after high school and I worked full-time midnights at a fast food place. I wanted to find what I wanted to do in life, I wanted to be productive when I wasn’t at work,” said Sheardown. “I bought a camera and started shooting every day when I woke up until I went to work that night.”

Sheardown bought his first camera in 2013, but with no real aim or idea of what to shoot, he began with what interested him.

“I didn’t really know what to shoot but I loved downtown and just exploring in general so I started with street photography because at that time I didn’t really know anything else,” said Sheardown. “[Street photography is] all real life, [it] shows things that are actually happening.”

With no prior experience or lessons, Sheardown is self-taught and he uses mistakes to sharpen his skills — although he claims there are few.

“I was 100 per cent self taught and never even really spoke to [other] photographers,” said Sheardown. “But my influences come from Ryan Muirhead, Christian Watson, Cvatik, Woody Gooch and Vivian Maier.”

After taking a year off from school and finding a passion for photography, Sheardown studied journalism at St. Clair College.

During his time at St. Clair, Sheardown was able to grow more as a photographer and began taking jobs shooting weddings and portraits aside from school work. He was also hired by St. Clair College’s Student Representative Council to take photos at the school events that would later be published in St. Clair’s Scene Magazine.

“I had done a paid job before I started [the business], but I grew it while I was in school and by the time school was done I was working for myself,” said Sheardown.

After graduating from St. Clair, Sheardown said, “everything took off and I got crazy busy — it was perfect timing and I’ve been going hard since.”

Sheardown has now been self-employed for five years covering and shooting a wide variety of styles and events.

“At this point in my career I shoot many different things,” said Sheardown. “Street is my favourite. First of all I love that the photos are real I like to capture the raw, real and grittiness of the streets and primarily the people.”

Sheardown has also incorporated his woodworking skills into his business by crafting his own frames so the frame is customized to the photo.

During the winter months while business is slower, Sheardown becomes more creative when it comes to shooting to keep himself busy and to ensure that he does not slow down.

For the last few weeks he has been driving down different county highways running out of Windsor towards Chatham-Kent and London and taking landscape photos of barns and houses off the beaten path.

Over the years, Sheardown has also gathered quite a large collection of film cameras.

“[I have] over 40, I forget.” said Sheardown laughing. “Because I collect them.”

Along with a massive collection of cameras and band t-shirts, photography has helped Sheardown travel to different countries in the search for photos.

“I’ve been to Toronto, Northern Ontario, Detroit, South Carolina, New York, Costa Rica and Nicaragua,” said Sheardown. “This years plans are: Nicaragua again, Iceland, Yosemite, Calif., multiple camping trips and back to Toronto.”

In between travelling for photos and shooting for his business, Sheardown also organizes shows at different local bars around Windsor where he displays his photography and showcases different bands. His next solo show will be at Phog Lounge in Windsor, Ont. April 27, 2018.

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“Now that’s a banger,” said Sheardown.

Abandoned house in Essex-County with sunset in the background. (Photo by Anthony Sheardown)

Noah Gecelovsky
By Noah Gecelovsky April 20, 2018 13:54

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