THE EXPERIENCE MINI SERIES //
Continuing with our new mini series of interviews with future attendees of The Experience this October in Vancouver, next up are The Toths – a husband and wife photo + video team based out of Calgary, Canada (and soon to be Vancouver).
Sancia and Mitchell capture both weddings and intimate celebrations and we’re honoured to feature them on our blog.
We have more mini interviews to come so stay tuned and never miss an interview by signing up to our mailing list below. Thank you Sancia and Mitchell Toth for sharing with us.
MEET THE TOTHS
CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT THE STYLE OF PHOTOGRAPHY YOU SHOOT AND WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO SHOOT IN THIS WAY?
This is a great question, and we’re going to flip it around a little bit.
Our style is the result of our motivation, and has evolved as we have better articulated what this is.
We are eternally grateful (and we don’t say this lightly) to our own wedding photographer and videographer for collecting our unique memories instead of fabricating them. We have the ability to look back on our day with fondness because of this, and are motivated to pass on that gift to others.
We are also motivated by a desire to approach our sessions with a selflessness that is often more challenging than we anticipate. We are motivated to create environments for people that are comfortable, adventurous, and intimate, space in front of our cameras where people can interact without pressure or expectation.
We primarily shoot weddings, and what we have come to realize is that we aren’t responsible for telling a story in the way we have previously felt before. It began long before the wedding day and will continue long after. Instead we have the incredible opportunity of documenting unique moments from a tiny slice of time that we hope will be cherished for years to come.
TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR CAMERA SET UP FOR WEDDINGS AND/OR PERSONAL WORK?
As we have gradually collected our inventory of gear, we have been quite specific about our selections (and not just because we can carry most of it in a backpack). Our go to lenses are our Canon 50mm 1.2 and 5Dm3 Sigma Art 35mm 1.4, in addition to a Canon 85mm 1.8 from time to time. During sessions or celebrations we do our best to reflect the perspective of an observer. How would someone standing beside us see the moments we are witnessing? This means intentionally steering away from a more cinematic stylistic approach with our films, and an editorial stylistic approach in our photos. A holdfast is home to a couple of Mark III’s, and a shoulder rig hosts our Canon C100.
However, for personal work we definitely explore other gear. Whether that is a Ronan or a prism, we try to carve out time to play and learn.
ARE THERE ANY KEY LESSONS FROM 2016 THAT YOU CAN SHARE WITH US?
There were an overwhelming amount, but we have narrowed it down to a few!
We learned that the location means much less than we initially perceive from an inquiry. Obviously we prefer to work in natural light, but some of the celebrations we have cherished the most were the ones, quite honestly, we were a bit “meh” about.
We learned that we actually really enjoy working together more than we like working apart (it took long enough)! Sometimes, with photo and video, we will be at different weddings on the same day but are making a shift towards only shooting together.
It seems that every year we encounter at least one situation where we go into a wedding with a “we’re just paying the bills” attitude. We end up driving home at the end of the day, humbled and reminded of just how beautiful the covenant of marriage really is.
We have learned that it is okay to be kindly unapologetic about our approach and what kind of people and opportunities makes us weak in the knees (not necessarily pertaining to location).
And thanks to one of our favourite podcasts (Ask Science Mike), we have been reminded of the incredible power of story, how it moves us and the people around us.
Story is able to break down neurological barriers of opposing perspectives, and is the one mean of communication that is able to transcend this polarization.
And we, as photographers and videographers, get to be the ones to hear and share those stories. We’re still navigating what that means as wedding photographers, but we call it a privilege.
CAN YOU SHARE A RECENT IMAGE YOU’RE PARTICULARLY PROUD OF AND TELL US WHY? IS THERE A STORY THAT GOES WITH IT?
We talked earlier about cherishing celebrations that we initially felt quite indifferent about. This photo is from one of those days, and likely seems like a standard image from any wedding gallery. But for us this image is a reflection of the whole wedding day, the connection between mother and daughter, the celebration and beautiful grieving of giving her away. We just keep coming back to it.
This image tugs on our hearts and is quiet reminder of the importance of people, a reminder we need from time to time.
WHICH PHOTOGRAPHERS OUTSIDE OF YOUR STYLE ARE CURRENTLY INSPIRING YOU?
As photographers, we are a little bit obsessed with Tomasz Wagner‘s work. It breaks rules (that are rules at least in our own heads) and every time we are scrolling through Instagram and see one of his images you’ll hear one of us say “Frick, Tomasz, he’s so good!”
We also freaking love Tomasz Wagner’s films, and A&Y Videography is another huge inspiration. Those two produce wedding films that are totally creatively unhinged. We’re not sure we can put it any other way. To be a fly on the wall for a wedding they are shooting, watching them work would be a wild experience.
WE’RE STOKED YOU’RE JOINING US THIS OCTOBER IN VANCOUVER FOR THE SECOND EXPERIENCE.
WOULD THIS BE YOUR FIRST TIME ATTENDING AND WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO GAIN FROM ATTENDING?
This is our first time attending The Experience, and we are so stoked! We nearly made it last year but were arriving back from a trip to Scotland on the day it started and sadly missed out. We are hoping to connect with some incredible creatives, particularly in the Vancouver area. Our hope and semi-plan is to move out that way in the next year or two, and we truly are in awe (and a little terrified) of all of the incredibly talented photographers in the area!
This is also the first time that we will have the opportunity to attend any sort of workshop pertaining specifically to videography. There aren’t many resources or workshops for shooting video, so we are very excited to learn from Brian Morrow, someone that is so talented with so many different video formats. And obviously it’s going be a blast!
THANK YOU TO THE TOTHS!
You can see more of The Toths’s work here // Web
JOIN US AT THE EXPERIENCE
Our next photography conference in Vancouver, BC is this October 17-19, 2017.
Join us for an out-of-the box experience with passionate photographers & creatives including food trucks, city adventures, a huge party and more …
Learn more here >> The Experience // ARC
Speakers and Master Classes from:
Photo by Nisha Ravji
CONNECT WITH US
Stay connected with us via the following channels for updates + discussions:
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