This page is currently in development.
I will have a selection of portfolio work to showcase here which will include examples of commercial photography, special events, and music related. Feel free to check out more of my photography at 500px.com/alexzafer.
ALEX ZAFER, an introduction
Candidly chronicling the streets through my lens, interpreting the world around me, the people, personalities and the events I come across.~Alex Zafer
Hi, my name is Alex Zafer. I'm the editor of The Candid Flaneur street photography website. I shoot candid real-life images. Humanist, street-style, documentary, urban lifestyle, live events & entertainment photography.
For the last several years, humanist photography, urban Street-style in particular, has become a vocation (so-to-speak), my main trade. It is what rejuvenates me, keeping things fresh and my photographic skills sharp. Each time I hit the street I'm reminded why I fell in love with the art of photography in the first place.
I believe it is true to say that the best camera is the one that's with you. I also believe that the way a certain camera in your hands can make you feel when you're using it, certainly as a creative mechanism, is just as important. In the few years I've slowly made the transition away from DSLR for street use to small compact camera systems. The weight and size is much better suited for the types of image making I enjoy most, unobtrusive non-posed street photography. Were there trade-offs? Yes. Was it worth the move? Absolutely.
For several years I've been making street photo's nearly everyday and needed a public repository to host some of those images. I started a photo stream on 500px initially to showcase a long-term humanist photo street project - what some might call an applied sociology through the lens, a visual narrative. It has expanded to be much more than that since and I'm currently now working on my first photography book and hoping to do another gallery showing soon. I hope you will find these images thought provoking and inspiring by having you look at every day life a little more closely.
I find it difficult to want to be pigeon holed into any one genre of photography, but at the core, straight photography is and always has been the truest form of photojournalism, documenting the times we live depicting scenes as realistically and objectively as possible. Of all the types of photography I currently shoot, incorporating the philosophical elements of straight photography with street-style is the one I'm most passionate, or rather obsessed about. I find street photography to be an excellent storytelling medium. It is in the search for the "story" that keeps me walking for miles, pounding the concrete jungle for hours on end.
In the street it's spontaneous. Always in motion I like to capture candid scenes, very rarely interacting with my subjects. It is the authenticity in the non-posed candid shot that I'm after, nothing contrived. I am simply an observer, yet my camera allows me to also be a participant, in a raw and unrehearsed unmediated theatre full of unknown actors and extras. The spirit and rhythm that is REAL-LIFE.
When I'm photographing in the street I try to frame with a filmmakers eye. I am hyper aware of my environment and the people around me, studying the light and the geometry, paying close attention to both the stillness and the movement. In between the smells and the noise, the serenity and the calmness in the unending, ever-changing momentum of the city's everyday oddness I seek out the serendipity of a scene that comes together perfectly for that rare and decisive moment. The uncontrolled so-called 'reality' as it happened in front of my camera. It is one thing to create a good photograph, it's another challenge altogether to create one that is meaningful.
Much of my work is based in the art of reportage, what I call "personal-documentary" street-style photography (adjunct to my other professional work in the medium). Reminiscent of noir, many of my monochrome images have a gritty aesthetic enhanced by deep focus and high contrast intended to add drama to the one frame or multiple frame story. As a general rule I very rarely crop a street image. When Henri Cartier-Bresson said he was vehemently opposed to cropping street photos, I understood why. Not to argue that cropping absolutely can create a stronger image... which I will do in other kinds of picture making. It is in the purity of the street shooting philosophy though, in my view, with great respect for the intuitive eye to compose quickly knowing precisely when to hit the shutter button in the split second chance that I enjoy so much. If you have to crop later, it probably wasn't a great composition to begin with.
So with that introduction of myself, I invite you along a virtual journey with me as I continue to share this visual narrative of the human condition in pictures.
BIOGRAPHY - for media release:
"Alex Zafer is a photographer and digital media artist/producer who has been exhibited and published internationally. With his distinctive style developed over the years he has become a photographer’s photographer with an awesome eye for artistic composition. He is famous for his street photography and photo-journalistic scenes that capture the essence of the human spirit, in ‘the moment’ candidly, and his live action music video footage has awarded him international distinction. Alex has a vast knowledge of the technical aspects of cameras, lenses and lighting and that has made him a very in demand DP on many independent film, video and photo productions. He is extremely perceptive and has a deep understanding of the human condition and that intuitive understanding helps him make great pictures." ~Dave Beatty, Producer - QED Media
Alex has been selected for photo-art exhibits and has been featured in Europe, Japan, the United States and Canada. Many of his photographic images have been used for digital and print publications, and has produced visual media work for special commissions and projects. Alex also works with filmmakers, documentarians, and music producers.
Alex's talents have been used for a variety of interesting projects and assignments. Fellow producers, artists, collaborators, agencies, publications, small and large businesses as well as non-profit organizations have utilized his services.
"In my off-time I enjoy the art of candid street photography. I am passionate about creating images that portray both the grittiness and the beauty of urban street-style photography. I seek out environments that expose me to these factors, forming a sequence of truly remarkable moments that fill me with immense energy and joy."
Alex maintains a studio outside of the Toronto area with a group of creative collaborators and producers in the arts hub city known as Hamilton, Ontario.