unnamed (3)

Blake Chorley
Photographer & Alchemist

Photograph by Bob Lansdale

Blake’s passion for photography stems from a single eureka moment. Looking through a loupe in his high school darkroom, at a roll of film shot in Algonquin Provincial Park, a single image changed everything. An incredible excitement flooded over Blake as he took in the image, knowing in that moment, photography was about to become something that would define and shape who he was.

Blake was kind enough to provide a short interview as a preview to his upcoming talk!

Name your favourite photographer (living or dead).

Ansel Adams.

Who or What is your major influence?

Simply put, Canada. My passion is fuelled by my travels from coast to coast, which have allowed me to experience the multitude of landscapes Canada has to offer. Quoting Blake’s website: “There is nothing I enjoy more than being out in nature with my camera. Any worries or problems that are on my mind fade away as I become immersed in the beauty and serenity of what is around me.”

How crazy is it to lug 500lbs of equipment into the Rockies?

Apparently, crazy enough that some people thought I would only last a few days and turn right around. Completed the two month trip and came back with gorgeous photos.

Fun Fact: Blake took 150 glass plates and 150 metal plates for this trip. The camera Blake used is an 11 X 14 plate camera!

Name a piece of gear that you cannot live without.

A Knife.

What would be on your photography bucket list?

One shot of an Alberta Waterfall using my wet plate equipment. I found the waterfall going on a hunch while on an exploration trek deep in the Alberta Rockies. While having already captured the falls with my digital camera, I yearn for the opportunity to return.

Blake’s New Adventure

I have decided to continue my photography education and will begin my Masters of Fine Art at the University of Calgary in September. I am excited to be closer to my beloved Rockies; my favourite subject matter. I will specialize in Wet Plate Photography and I am currently on the hunt for lenses before my departure.

To learn more about Blake and his love of film & adventures he will be speaking at the Toronto Archives on June 30th 2014. For current information please sign-up for the Toronto Urban Photography Festival newsletter or follow us on twitter and facebook.  You can register for this event here!

Andrea Gimblett
Assistant Activity Director
Toronto Urban Photography Festival