TWiP Family: Jon Canlas on Family and Film

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Jon + RolleiflexThis week, it’s Jon Canlas on family and film. Jon knows kids. He’s got six of his own. He creates beautiful family portraits whether the kids are cooperating or melting down. And, he does it using film.

In this interview with Jon Canlas, he tells us how he works with families to get photos that shine with love and connection. Does he take them from one location to another to vary the backgrounds? Nope. Why not? It opens the door to more chaos. And, Jon says, ”Connection trumps background any day.”

I have friends that photograph families for their work but don’t feel like they take enough of their own families. I tell Jon about my friends and he says, “To me, that’s just crazy.” He takes more photos for himself than his clients. We talk about how important his personal work is to developing his voice as a photographer.

Jon does all his work on film. He tells us why he loves film. (He started the FIND film lab.) Jon does not let his photos just sit on his hard drive. He feels very strongly about printing work. That disk of photos you have from a few years back? You can’t use it in your Apple computer today.

Jon’s Simple Tip:

The number one thing is lighting. Don’t shoot in the dark nooks and crannies of your bedroom. Bring them to a window. If you don’t have a reflector, use a white sheet. Ask one of your other kids to hold up the sheet. Or, ask them to put it over their head and pretend to be a ghost.

Jon’s cameras:

Pentax 6×7 and Rolleiflex 2.8F.

(The Rolleiflex is a twin lens reflex. This is why a DSLR is called a digital single lens reflex.)

FIND: Family Guide and FIND: Biz Guide Use code OHANA that takes 35% off until the 19th of November

Connect with Jon: Website, Instagram

I hope you enjoy my conversation with Jon Canlas on this family photography podcast.


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