Instagrammer of the week @eyeofthe_iger

Sean Bennetts is a 30 year old South African who is happily married to his wife of 7 years with two amazing kids. He is a full-time pastor in a local church in Grahamstown, South Africa. He has been doing professional photography for 8 years now. Sean specialises in portraits photography and excels in one-on-one portrait work, whether it be conceptual, candid, fashion or simply to capture some beautiful shots of an individual. 

Sean is self-taught on most levels of photography. He started off his photographer career working for a local photo printing shop in Grahamstown. They did photography as well but mostly very basic studio shoots and school and event photography. This is where he learnt some of the basics and the foundational lessons in photography. But from there it has mainly been through reading blogs, watching lots of youtube videos & asking photographers who he networks with, especially through Instagram.

He has always been a creative person. As long as he could remember he would play with his dad's old film cameras and snap random shots. When he eventually realised he needed to get a real job and become a grown up, he had no idea where to look as he knew he didn't want to do something just for money, he wanted to do something that would utilize his passions and inspire him further. A friend of his suggested he look into something in photography since he seemed to enjoy doing that as a very basic hobby. He then approached the local photography shop, and the rest is history.

In his photography, you will see a Minimalistic approach. He enjoys the simplicity and dislikes heavy distractions. He enjoys to draw in close and let the person tell their own story from the images he captures. He photographs with a Canon 500D and an EF 50mm 1.4 lens but hopes to upgrade in the future to a 6D or 5D and use an 85 mm lens for portraits.

The only two things he uses are natural light he is getting at the time and little random accessories. He usually brings a few different mirrors with him to play with reflections, Which is a trick he learnt from his photography mentor and inspiration Zeno, and also some different scarves/materials to play around with. He uses Lightroom for all his editing needs, exposure, temperature etc, and hardly ever uses Photoshop unless there are obvious things that need to be taken out of an image.

In terms of creating his imagery, He is inspired a lot by what he sees. That is why Instagram has been such an amazing tool, to inspire people, by seeing what others are doing all over the world and giving you things to try yourself, although it is hard to not want to go with the flow of what seems popular at the time and just replicate that.

Other photographers, he knows and loves definitely inspire him. He is also part of a collective with some friends of his here in South Africa who have started a group called the #breadcrumbssquad, which is a family of photographers based in different cities in SA whose goal is to create and inspire. #breadcrumbssquad are a great source of inspiration as well as they provide helpful and constructive feedback and criticism with his work, which has been a great help for him.

Follow him Sean on Instagram.