Interview with Jonathan Canlas

Jonathan Canlas, the creator, photographer, and author of the FIND Guide: a Digital Photographers Guide to Film, was nice enough to stop by and answer a few questions for us today.

Jon is an 100% film shooter that lives in
Lehi, Utah with his spectacular wife and 5 kiddos (soon to be 6! congrats!) Jon's work is heartfelt and stunning. Jon shoots anything from Xango magazine shoots, birth stories (here is Lus'), to families and weddings. He also puts on a phenomenal workshop several times a year, which I was luckily enough to attend Oct '09. Jon He has recently released a breath taking 96 page e-book sharing his decade of experience and knowledge, as well as love for film and photography, to assist others in becoming better photographers and even just better picture takers.

Some photos by Jon:
You are an extremely talented guy that had the opportunity to go in to some other great fields of work. Why did you choose Photography?
I did not choose it per say. I never really said, wow, I want to a photographer, let alone a wedding photographer. I got into it while living in Japan when a dear friend of mine lent me a Canon AE-1 with a 50mm 1.4 lens. And it all went from there. I actually got a degree in Japanese and Asian Studies from BYU before I went back and did a BFA in photography.

What is your main purpose and goal when going into a shoot?
to capture the light in people. or to find the interesting or beauty in the mundane.

What suggestions do you for families with small children when preparing to get their photos taken?
plan around nap time for sure. and let them just BE. don't force certain looks on them. i like to go to places where i can let them play and be together as a family. because as much as they want that one family shot for the wall, they also want the moments in between. they just may not know that yet until i show it to them.
You take A LOT of photos of your family and kids, do they show any interest in Photography?
meh, not really :)

You shoot a lot when you are on vacation with you family. Does photography ever get in the way of spending time with them and giving them your full attention?
i would be shooting as much as i do weather i got paid or not. it is a part of who i am. there are times where i consciously put the camera down, but those times are rare. shooting film give me a lot of time to give my family the attention they deserve and need.

What 3 things would you advice someone who wants to get into photography do and learn first?
learn your camera in and out before you start. you should be able to show up to a shoot without having to think of the technical so you can just create. don't care what anyone else is doing. and last find your voice, and realize it will take YEARS to find it and it is never found in your paid work. it is found by shooting copious amounts of personal work. so shoot for yourself ALWAYS.
You are all about finding your personal voice in photography. Where do get inspiration to find yours?
my family. my beliefs. that is how my vision was formed.

What was your main purposes behind writing the Find guide?
to gather all that info people spend hours upon hours trying to search on the internet. also, to help people possibly save a couple hundred bucks in mistakes. i put it all out there and if i don't answer everything, there is always my formspring.

My readers are mostly artistic Mothers, just wanting to take good photos of their children, is the FIND guide for them?
for sure. knowing how to shoot film will make you a better digital photographer as you will get to know how your camera is going to react to different lighting situations. with film there is no chimping [looking at the back of your camera to see the digital image]. either you get it right, or you don't. and not having the crutch will force you to get better. regardless of the medium.

Jon is a busy man, it is MUCH appreciated that he took his time to answer a few questions. Thanks again Jon!

Jon's new e-book is absolutely phenomenal. It is informative, it is visually stunning and is easy to read and comprehend. It will help you become a better photographer, it will help you take better photos of you children, of your life, and as Kim Orlandini wrote "It will change your life if you let it."

The book is available for immediate download for $149. Worth every Penny. Type in SUMMER at check out and get an extra $10 off. Better yet? The first 20 people to purchase the FIND GUIDE from the link below will receive 3 free rolls of Fuji 400hPro 35mm film. Every sale you refer after your purchase will get you an additional 2 rolls.
FIND Guide
I love and am so inspired by this book that I have become an affiliate for the Find Guide. For every book I sell I receive a small percentage of the sale. That being said, I would push and coax mothers and every photographer to purchase this gorgeous book, even if it meant I didn't make a dime.
Buy the book, shoot a TON and enjoy!

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