There is that sparkling moment when you find your calling; when in a flash of a feeling, everything stops and you just know.
For photographer Dan Tom, it was on a mission trip in Kazakhstan. He had just purchased a point and shoot camera and looking back on the images, discovered the profound effect they held. In that two week span, he fell in love with photography. Looking at his work now, that sense of captivation with the moment still remains. His images are dripping with discovery and nostalgia in stunning escapes near and far. Tom sees what the average eye will miss, finding beauty in landscapes that most would deem typical.
"I love that there's something already there," he says. "By that I mean you're not starting from scratch like in design. If someone says design a logo, you literally start from nothing, just your thoughts. With photography, it's what you already see. How you compose it, what you want to portray, are all things I feel come natural to me."
And the community has taken notice of the all around creative (he's also a web designer). Tom has worked with a number of notable brands from his recent trip to France with Cartier to a story in AFAR covering his time in northern Thailand. He also just finished a job in Utah shooting for a Japanese sunglasses company, will have work published in a book next year for Tiny Atlas Quarterly, and is in the midst of creating some large format prints.
Tom's Instagram feed, which used to be the only place you could see his work when I interviewed him three years back, has shifted dramatically since finding his niche. As his portfolio and journal of sorts, he focuses on nature and landscapes. However, when he first bought his SLR almost a decade ago, it went with him everywhere, and the diversity reflected in his photos.
"I would shoot street scenes, people, and food I would eat. With that said, I think it's constantly evolving. I'm finding the need to push myself more by trying new things to not become complacent. "
It just depends. Blogs, Instagram, chats with friends, anything I'll see on the street, a song I'll hear, etc…
Favorite places to shoot in the Bay Area
Mt Tam, Point Reyes, anywhere along on the coast really.
What moves you the most?
Just how beautiful the world is. We are so small in comparison and having that perspective I feel is important.
What was the last thing you learned?
The best way to beat uninspiration is to go out and shoot as much as possible.
Life is short. Give what you love a shot. You don't want to live with that regret.