As part of our upcoming Adventure Project series this summer, we will be working with several select collaborators to take This is Ground on the road with them as they travel the world.
Canadian photographer, Chris Amat has been captivating Instagram users with his photos of the diverse countryside of Calgary– from snowy mountaintops to incredibly lush landscapes that dwarf his subjects in the most surreal manner. He’s a part of the Great North Collective, a group of like-minded photographers dedicated to building community through the exploration of their surroundings. Their motto is: Explore. Create. Inspire. and Chris does just that; he’s a true adventurer at heart.
Hi Chris, you do an amazing job of capturing the vastness and beauty of nature in your work. Did you spend a lot of time in nature as a kid?
I didn’t spend all that much time outside as a kid unless you consider riding a bike around the neighborhood and occasionally into the park as spending time in nature. Most of my time was spent hanging out with friends, watching movies and playing video games. It wasn’t up until recently that I got bored of the routine that I had in my life and started to get out and really taking advantage of my backyard.
How far away are most of your shooting locations from your home?
Most of the places I shoot are anywhere from 45 minutes to three or four hours away. I am lucky to live in such a diverse place, from the prairies to the badlands to the rocky mountains I have quite the selection of places to pick from.
Your portraits in the snow are particularly noteworthy. Is it a challenge to shoot in such frosty conditions?
It can be, but I have been fortunate enough to work with really awesome people who are always willing to brave the cold with me. And as far as gear goes my DSLR usually handles the cold pretty well, my iPhone so-so.
Can you tell me a little bit about the Great North Collective?
Great North Collective is a social community made up photographers and artists committed to capturing our beautiful surroundings. We focus on creating iconic imagery on any format, whether it’s on your iPhone, DSLR or anything between. Our goal is to inspire, captivate and encourage everyone to get out there and explore their surroundings and share it with our community.
What do you shoot with?
I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark II and my iPhone 5.
What can’t you travel without?
My iPhone. Sometimes my DSLR can be a pain to lug around all day. I am almost always happy with the images I get out of my iPhone and it fits perfectly in my pocket… not to mention all those other neat things it can do, like make phone calls and stuff.
What are you listening to at the moment?
There isn’t anything in particular that I am constantly going back to. My wife and friends are the music connoisseurs around here so I just tap into their playlists when I am looking for something new.