Feb 20, 2019
Casey is a Canadian designer and photographer who creates stunning visual narratives that explore his surroundings in a detached and critical way. By portraying individuals and urban and semi-urban landscapes, Casey depicts the issues that affect his local community, as in the case of "Hub City". A series that shows the cultural and socio-economical changes undergoing in the Central Cariboo Interior region in Canada.
am - First of all thank you very much for your contribution to our project. Can you please introduce yourself for us?
CB - You’re most welcome! Thank you for the opportunity to share my work on your website, I’m really grateful for this. I’m a photographer/graphic designer based in the Central Cariboo Chilcotin of British Columbia, Canada. Right now I’m mainly freelance graphic designer — it’s tough when you live in a small, rural town, but I’ve been fortunate enough to meet the right people who have helped me to gradually build a client list.
am - How did you start in photography?
CB - I’m not formally trained in any type of photography - I picked up a 35mm camera when I was about 27 — it was my dad’s Pentax ME Super, actually. I’d just returned from film school and didn’t have the greatest experience and was floundering around when I started to photograph my friends. A lot of what I did was just try, fail and try again. I started out shooting concerts and getting paid in merch. I then made the natural transition to weddings to make money and then worked my way into editorial and a few commercial gigs.
am - What is “Hub City” about?
CB - "Hub City" began as a personal project where I was attempting to make sense of why I found myself back there and my own identity in a small BC town. Ultimately it grew into a series that focuses on life in Williams Lake, British Columbia, a community in the province that has gone through significant cultural and socioeconomic change. Located in the Central Cariboo Interior, where individuals’ collective livelihoods and lifestyles have been, and are, currently heavily dependent upon certain industries–particularly the logging and mining industries, which have experienced some unstable periods over the last few years, leading to shut downs and massive layoffs. Generations of families have committed their lives and passed on an identity of working these jobs, becoming culturally bound to these careers.
am - Who are your favourite photographers / artists?
CB - That’s an endless list. I will say that the photographers that I spent a lot of time looking at while working on this series have been Ari Gabel, Kyler Zeleny, Stacy Kranitz, Jake Reinhart, Tommy Keith, Rosie Brock and Alec Soth.
am - What’s your favourite movie?
CB - ‘Red’, the last film in the Three Colours trilogy by Krzysztof Kieslowski, which would also sadly be his last film. He retired after the film in 1994 and died a year later from complications following heart surgery. I rented it on VHS when I was 17 and watched it everyday for a week. I’ve seen it at least once a year since then.
am - What is your favourite photo book?
CB - "Sleeping by the Mississippi" by Alec Soth and "American Prospects" by Joel Sternfeld.
am - Thank you very much for your time and your contribution to analog magazine.
CB - Thank you for having me, really appreciate this. Cheers!
All images © Casey Bennett