Emma Bass is an award-winning photographer based in Mt Eden, Auckland. Her strong style features vibrant use of colour. Her ability to make subjects feel at ease shows effortlessly in her images.
Where are you based?
I am based in Mt Eden, Auckland. I used to operate a studio, but since having children I've operated from home. My home has the best light for shooting people in. The world is now my studio - I can take my gear anywhere. I love the challenge of location shoots.
How long have you been a photographer?
For approx 20 years. I was initially a nurse and had a radical career change.
Tell us a little about your style of photography.
I'm not sure exactly what my style is, but I guess it's along the lines of vibrant, quirky and strong. I think my nursing background has given me empathetic skills to make people feel more comfortable in front of a camera.
What gear do you use?
I use a Canon 5DmkII. Looking forward to trying the MKIII ! I have a variety of lenses mostly L series. I often use the 70-200mm f/2.8 zoom.
What is/has been your greatest challenge as a photographer?
Trying not to take too many photos and multitasking! When taking photos of people, one is multitasking on an enormous level, technically ensuring good exposure, sharpness, interesting composition and all whilst making someone feel comfortable and natural. Maintaining the balance between work and family is also always a major challenge.
What do you feel has been your greatest photographic achievement to date?
I try to achieve great results on each photographic project, but my most memorable achievement is my recent Imperfect series. It is very heartfelt.
If not a photographer, where would you see yourself?
A midwife. Bringing babies into the world would be one of the most rewarding experiences.
If the chance arose, who or what would you most like to photograph?
A cover and feature spread in Vanity Fair magazine. Maybe George Clooney..
What tips or advice do you have for budding photographers?
To have good people skills. It's all about creating relationships from the people and places you photograph to the people who give you the jobs. And to be diverse.
Has the advent of digital been beneficial or detrimental to professional photographers?
I was one of the last to swing from film to digital - I considered myself such a purist. But now I've fully embraced the digital technology. I find it very efficient and it does enable you to take more risks by taking more images and being able to review as you go. This does mean a lot more post production time and then there's the storage and continual upgrading issue.
Can you see clients moving from stills to video, with the advent of HD video capabilities in digital SLRs?
I think there's always going to be a need for dedicated stills. Most of my clients require only stills at this stage. I'm interested in exploring the video capacity of my camera, but one day, when I can find time.
Are you a fan of using flash in your work?
Only when I have to and I try to make it look as natural as possible. I'm a big fan of natural light. I'm into simplicity. The less gear the better.
If you can change one thing about the world, what would it be?
That humans take more care of each other and the planet we live on.
What do you do to get away from the grind/to de-stress when things get too hectic?
Yoga and cuddling my children. The sound of children's laughter is the best medicine I wish I could bottle it!
Who has been your greatest influence / role model?
My mother. Her optimism, love and support has been ever present.
Check out Emma's website here
View the 'Imperfect Series' here