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My Summer Lair featuring Henry VanderSpek (Culture Snap Photography)

My Summer Lair featuring Henry VanderSpek (Culture Snap Photography)

Sammy Younan

Published on: April 18 2017

My Summer Lair Chapter #39: If A Photograph Speaks 1000 Words How Many Of Those Words Are About You?

Let’s get the Clark Kent-Superman business outta the way: Culture Snap Photography is Toronto-based photographer Henry VanderSpek.

I’ve known Henry for years…sadly one of the stories we failed to share during our session was meeting Eddie! Eddie is this self-proclaimed “culture vulture” a dapper witty senior we meet when Henry and I were in Chicago. The more we hung out with Eddie that night the more we realized he was basically…me! It was like hanging out with a future version of myself; as if Future Sammy had time travelled back in time. This is what Henry means when he talks about characters. Like Black Sinatra…come on, man. That’s gold.

Like most creatives Henry’s path has not been linear. And like most creatives–most people!–Henry is attracted to stories. It’s one of the common elements he and I have: the platform or the medium don’t matter as much as telling the story. And with his photography Henry has begun telling stories.

I’ve been fortunate to be his subject many times; he’s able to bring out or focus on key characteristics that compel your attention. Reminds me of Chris Buck‘s work. His work is visceral; you almost get the feeling that if you could lean in just a bit closer maybe hold the photography right to your face you could smell the air; or hear the birds…like evoke more than one of your senses. It’s a rare gift and it clearly stands out even in an Instagram world.

Henry takes a lot of the themes we discuss and smoothly funnels them into his Taxi Drivers of Toronto series now on display at the Contact Photography Festival.

If you’ve a chance…go! Henry’s work is #Pantsworthy.

Photographers Henry Digs:
Rinzi Ruiz
Vineet Vohra
André Kertész

Host Sammy Younan W • T • F

Culture Snap Photography @ W • T • F

Recorded: April 13, 2017 7:00pm (EST)
Photography by Alissa Santiago