While traveling the world as part of his work as an award-winning news cameraman, street photographer Bredun Edwards does everything he can to look at his surroundings with ever-fresh eyes and an open heart. Read on...
Calling Her Name
BtF: How did you begin your work in photography? Was there a "decisive moment" when you knew it was a special medium for you, when you felt truly committed to it?
BE: As with many photographers, an interest in capturing light began at an early age. I was no different, eventually buying my own camera—a prized and much loved Minolta x-700. But right then, I got into television instead. It happens.
Fast forward 25 years later. I'm a foreign news television cameraman and I'm waiting to board a flight to Marrakech at Paris Orly airport. I see a silhouette and I take a shot with my new iPhone 4. And that was it. Straight back to being a kid with a camera. It was so easy. And fun. I suddenly discovered I had a camera, darkroom and gallery all in my pocket.
After researching outlets like Hikari Creative, Tiny Collective and LensCulture and discovering many other inspiring and creative photographers using Instagram as their platform for expression, I saw that I wanted to change course and begin something new.
BtF: When you were beginning photography, were there any people, artists, books, films that served as essential inspirations? How about now—any sources of creativity you discovered recently that give you that jolt of "beginner's" passion?
BE: Yes, all the greats. There is always something to learn, to question, to discover about their work and craft in all the visual arts; inspiration is abundant and plentiful.
Yet, I was recently reading an article about Sebastio Selgado in which he was asked a very similar question. Instead of talking about the craft, he focused on studying the subject you want to photograph. Get a degree in history or economics or another social science and study it. From there you'll find the story and then the camera will become an extension of yourself.
I found this the most useful piece of information of all. If you want to do something great, you have to study your story. Know everything you can about your idea. And then the synergy will happen as you investigate deeper, also discovering your talent within.
BtF: Cartier-Bresson famously said, "Your first 10,000 shots are your worst." Can you share a humbling moment that happened to you recently with regards to your photography? A moment when you realized, like all of us, that there's always much more to learn?
BE: Whether it be batteries, film/cards, running late, accidentally breaking equipment, not paying attention to the moment, not knowing the essential details about the subject—well, let me just say it all takes time, practice and patience. And dedication.
Being prepared as best as you can is key. And then learn from the mistakes as and when you make them, preferably with a professional smile. No one likes a grumpy photographer.
—Bredun Edwards, interviewed by behindthefra.me
Editor's note: Edwards' work is available now in our inaugural themed sale, "Always a Beginner," running until February 14, 2017.