Ryan is a photographer from South Devon, he has recently returned to Devon after studying in Bristol. His work focuses on the South West landscapes and wildlife photography, with dramatic forest scenes and stunning coastlines. We caught up with Ryan to learn more about how the South West has inspired him and helped him find and develop his style of photography.
Tell us a bit more about yourself Ryan, who are you and what do you do?
Hi I'm Ryan I have recently graduated from UWE in Bristol studying
Forensic Computing and Security. Technology and computers have always been something I have enjoyed studying at school so this was always a really good option for me.
What are your hobbies and interests?
My biggest hobby is photography, but I also enjoy cooking, graphic design and cycling. (Cycling can be a great way to find new locations to photograph). I also really enjoy building and upgrading computers, although this doesn't happen often.
How did you develop your passion for photography?
I was first introduced to photography at A-level (2015), as I took it as a subject. During the first year we all went on a trip with the Geography department to Iceland and had a guided tour around some of the best locations (Blue Lagoon, Skogafoss and black-sand beach to name a few). It was an incredible experience and was certainly a reason for my passion today. It wasn't until my second year of University in 2018 that I stated to take more photos, learning how to use editing software and started to upload on social media sites. Seeing big progression and results I was happy with really drove me. There's an exciting feeling when you go out to capture an image and come back with the exact image you had in your mind; although this certainly doesn't happen every time.
What inspires your photography?
Photography is an art that everyone sees differently and where everyone is free to create what they like. I am inspired to see other photographers work and what they can achieve.
Who inspires your photography or to develop your style in a certain way?
There are many incredible photographers out there, each with their own unique styles that allows me to recognise their images without seeing who took it. I mainly get inspired by other local photographers, like Neil Burnell, one of the best photographers in the South West. He has developed an incredibly unique style that gives off a wonderful mood and atmosphere to many of his images. If i am lacking creativity or feeling burnt out, I often take to YouTube to watch the likes of Thomas Heaton and Nigel Danson, as their videos on locations can often get me excited and in the mood to want to take my camera out.
What is your favourite South West area for inspiration?
This is a tough question. I think I would have to say Haldon Forest in Exeter, as there is so many different compositions to find that can give you a completely unique image. New compositions can arise when the weather changes, like the inclusion of fog and mist or different lighting. I always find new things to photograph whenever I visit.
What is your usual set up and go to equipment?
I currently use a Canon E0S 80D with a selection of a few different lenses.
For wildlife photography, I use a Sigma 150-600mm, this allows me to get really close to my subject, but its not always needed. I have been close enough to photograph lots of wildlife at 200mm and less.
For landscape photography my main go to is my Canon 24-70mm, but I also use a Canon 70-200mm when I want to pull everything closer. I shoot most of my landscapes at 24mm as its quite wise. However, I would like to get a 14mm lenses in the future to allow me to capture more of the scene.
I also have a DJI Mavic Pro, although it hasn't been used for a little while. A drone can be a great way to re-visualise a scene and find some new and more interesting compositions that you otherwise wouldn't be able to see.
How do you get into your editing and shooting zone? Are there any rituals or habits you go to before you start?
I often do a lot of research before I go to any location so that I know what to expect. However, it can also benefit me to visit a location without knowing anything so that I am not inclined to shoot images similar to other photographers. In terms of editing, I listen to music to help me get into the editing zone, especially if I have a few different photos to edit, as I don't tend to spend too long on one edit.
Where do you see your work progressing? Is there a dream or end goal?
A goal of mine is to be published in a book or magazine and see my work on display. After purchasing a printer last year, I a have realised that seeing your work on display can create a whole new meaning to an image. I would also really like to create my own photo book dedicated to a project. The real dream is to become a full time landscape photographer and travel further afield to photograph new locations. I would really like to visit the Dolomites and Faroe Islands.
Any advice, hints or tips for people starting out?
Find a style of photography that you enjoy the most and keep at it. Make mistakes and learn from them, over time your images will get better and you will notice big improvements. You don't always need to travel far to take nice images, there can be very good locations right at your doorstep. Get involved with the community on various social apps, follow other photographers and reach out to them. Finally, always have an open mind, keep learning and try new things.
What is your all-time favourite piece of work you have created and why?
That is a very tough question. From my more recement work it would have to be the shot bellow. It was taken on a very cold and frosty morning in a local woodland that I had only visited once before. When the sun came out and began to melt the frost, I was able to see all the individual sun rays peeking through the gaps in the tree line. It is a fantastic example of how an image can present itself in the right light and conditions; not long after I took that photo, the sun rays disappeared and the scene completely changed. If it wasn't for the lighting that morning, I would have walked straight past it.
Where can we find more of your fantastic work?
You can find my work on Instagram @_ryan_kerr or on Flicker @_ryan_kerr.