Dan Wood: Obsessed with Documenting

Where are you from? Where are you based at the moment?
I was born and still live in Bridgend, Wales, UK

How and when did you get into photography?
I got serious about photography in around 1995 when I bought my first SLR camera – a Minolta 5000. I was skateboarding a lot back then and really wanted to capture my friends and the general essence of the local skate scene. I immediately became obsessed and was spending all my money on film, gear and travel, and here I am almost 25 years later still completely obsessed.

What is your favorite subject to photograph?
Anything documentary related that involves people and landscape. I love visual storytelling and mainly like to work on long term projects that have a strong narrative and also personal connections too. I also really like shooting New Topographics type stuff with my 35mm camera when I’m just out and about, but that’s mainly for fun.

Can you tell us your source of inspiration?
Photo books are without a doubt the best source of inspiration for me. I absolutely love being surrounded by them and randomly choosing one off my shelf in the evening and sitting down with it for an hour is just the best – totally inspiring.

In an industry saturated with imagery, how do you keep your ideas new and fresh?
I do like to feel that I’m pushing forward and progressing as an artist, so momentum in that respect is crucial. One of the worst feelings for me is being stuck creatively and that’s why constant inspiration (photo books) is so important. I just keep shooting things I see and like. Although, good ideas for long term projects do take some time to present themselves, however, I’ve learned to be patient and now know that the ideas will eventually arrive – but only if you don’t overthink them.

Can you define your photography in three words?
Honest, real and biographical.

Do you enjoy using social media, does it help you as a photographer?
There is a love/hate relationship with social media, like many other creative people, I guess. It’s a necessary evil but has helped me enormously in regards to promoting my work over the years. I enjoy Instagram the most as it’s predominantly visual and great photography can be discovered on there without having to click through links. Twitter is another platform I use – I find it extremely useful for building bridges and making good connections to people.

What is your guilty pleasure?
Definitely photo books. I’m pretty much addicted to buying them. It is quite a pleasant problem – I just wish I had more money and shelf space.

What is your favorite travel destination? Favorite city?
My absolute favorite city is Barcelona for sure. I have been there so many times on skateboarding/photo trips, it is just wonderful and I really feel at home there. A close second in regards to a destination, would be Iceland – it’s beautiful, rugged and unique.

What is your favorite book and why?
Catcher in the Rye by Salinger is probably my overall favorite book, because I read it at a time when it was very relevant to how I was feeling personally and it resonated with me very much – I felt different after I had read it.

Last movie you saw?
The last movie I watched, which wasn’t a Kid’s movie (I’ve got 2 kids) was probably 3 Billboards, which I thought was fantastic and very much enjoyed.

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