We meet Trevor – better known to most as TVTrev – a Midlands-based photographer specialising in capturing people, places and events with his OM-D E-M1 Mark III.
Q: Why/how did you get into photography?
A: I got into photography like many people through using my phone, and when I started my first real blog it got me exploring different things – one of them being cosplay & comic conventions. Part of that world crosses over with photography and I found that I became pretty good at shooting the many different toys on show at these events as well as the cosplays using my camera phone.
Q: How did you become an Olympus photographer?
A: Eventually I came to realise I needed a camera after a few trips overseas and realising the limitations of my phone, so I was recommended Olympus by a friend in my office. She was also someone who travelled a lot and was using the E-M10 Mark II. The weight of it, the feel, the tactile nature… everything felt right, so I was sold.
Q: What subject do you most often take photos of?
A: I tend to gravitate more to people when taking photos so I often focus on portrait, event, travel, documentary and street photography.
Q: How often do you take pictures?
A: Usually I would be taking pictures daily / weekly, however with COVID I have found myself rarely going out to take pictures or video – which is something I initially had tried to do when lockdown began. The dystopian scenes weren’t something that I personally wanted to capture, or felt safe to capture.
Q: What’s in your camera bag?
A: Which one?! Depending on the situation I pack a different bag, but currently my bag would consist of my OM-D E-M1 Mark III, 12-40mm PRO, 12-100mm, extra battery, DJI Osmo Mobile 3, pen, notepad, iPad, USB C to SD reader, extra SD card and a reusable flask. This makes me ready to shoot in multiple situations and edit on the go.
Q: What kit’s essential for your preferred genre, other than cameras and lenses?
A: Other than camera and lenses, it would probably be either the extra battery or the extra SD cards. Either could fail, die or run out, so having extras is a must when shooting.
Q: What keeps you busy, other than photography?
A: Other than photography, I have a day job in marketing, sometimes I run a blog and am part of two voluntary organisations. One is heavily photography-related which is being one of Igers Coventry and Warwickshire’s community leaders, where we try to gather the local community of photographers to showcase the area. The other is being the marketing lead for TEDxCoventry. I also watch a fair amount of TV – hence TV Trev.
Q: Do you shoot in Raw or JPEG? (and did you change – and why?)
A: Okay – I will admit I used to shoot exclusively on JPEG so I got a really good run out of my memory cards, however I have since switched to Raw and I’m unlikely to go back but could if needed.
The size component of the files is why I avoided Raw for so long, as well as not having the ability to easily edit on the go with the tech that I had. The plus side of this is that I have, in my opinion, got very good at editing with a variety of different tools, because I was using JPEGs and not Raw.
However since switching to Raw I can see the improvement that it’s made to my photography and my editing, although it does require more space for the larger files.
Q: How do you know when one of your images is good – what do you look for?
A: Getting the right part of the photo in focus is what I base it being good on, however other factors like the light, emotion or just not being able to replicate the moment also play a part.
Q: What’s your workflow like?
A: My workflow now tends to be based around my iPad so I can do it on the go. So for example following a day of shooting, it’s memory card into the reader, straight into Lightroom mobile, edit the shot and then export for where it’s needed.
Q: How much editing do you do after you’ve taken your photographs?
A: This depends entirely on the photo. If it’s really good I don’t need to edit them that much. With this I will say I spend more time editing sets so that the pictures in that set all look and feel the same way.
Q: What do you do with your photos once they’re finished?
A: If they are for a client I will send them the files to download. If they are for myself I will usually upload them onto Instagram/ Facebook/ Twitter / blog over a period of time depending on the amount of shots.
Q: What’s the best feature of Olympus kit?
A: For me it’s the tactile nature of the cameras that has stayed a part of their design for years.
Q: What’s the most useful piece of photography advice you’ve ever heard?
A: Take off your lens cap 😉 but seriously, it’s probably to use your eyes first before using the camera. I often see more of the scene looking around and anticipate moments with my eyes rather than through the viewfinder.
Q: Who or what inspires you?
A: Everything around me, TV, film, culture… it all connects and feeds one another.
Q: Aside from photography, what do you wish you were really good at?
A: I wish I were better at swimming… far too many near death experiences/great stories
Q: If you could only have one lens on your camera, which would it be?
A: The 12-100mm is versatile enough for me to be able to use in most situations, and would serve me well if it was my only lens.
Q: What’s next on your wishlist, kit-wise?
A: I am interested in getting an electronic slider for some dynamic self-shot video content. Alternatively, a more portable tripod than my heavy-duty one.
Q: Can you point us at another Olympus-using photographer who deserves more of a spotlight (and tell us why?)
A: There are a few Olympus photographers I could point to who deserve a spotlight:
Toyin Dawudu – a black Coventry / London based photographer who uses an old school Olympus film camera
Rebecca Orleans – a visual storyteller who uses her Olympus camera in her crafts and blogging.
John Roberts – excellent photographer I met during the Paris trip.
Ed Brown – Brummie-based photographer largely black and white.