Jack Sweeney - Photography

I think I first got into photography in around 2014. Some of my friends were doing art or photography courses in college and had to learn how to use old 35mm film cameras. I really liked the look of the pictures that they were developing so I decided I’d get my own camera and give it a go. On adverts.ie I bought an old Voigtländer Vitomatic, a 1950’s West German Camera for around thirty euro. Amazed by the build quality and longevity of what I had just bought I did some research and found out that, I had in fact a very good camera from a company that dates back to 1756, a good 70 years before the invention of photography. Once I learned how to use it properly and experienced the excitement of getting a good roll back, photography became my most expensive and consistent hobby.

I find a lot of my photography is quite landscapey, which I think is because it is easy. Going to a beautiful place with a half decent camera usually makes some pretty nice photos. But I always feel like these photos are just a google image search away and to some degree pointless. What I really find impressive in other peoples work is pictures of ordinary people in interesting situations or ordinary objects with interesting colors.

Saoirse Sexton (@saoirsesextonphotography) is a young photographer from Dublin who I really admire for her almost portrait like shots of ordinary Dubliners going about their daily lives. Many of my favourites are taking sneakily of fellow passengers on Dublin public transport, or from a bird’s eye view of people passing below her as she stands in the window of a building above. Taking pictures of people like this can be quite scary as you never know how they might react if your caught but the intimate and unguarded results are definitely worth it.

Cáit Fahey (@caitfa) and Gareth Smyth (@loomingrass) are two Dublin based photographers who I love for their attention to detail and eye for colour. So many of their pictures that have made an impression on me are not necessarily of anything interesting, but are framed in such a way, with the right lighting andvibrant colours that your eyes are immediately drawn to them.

Daragh Soden (@daraghsoden) and his work ‘Young Dubliners’ is what I believe to be the perfect combination of interesting and intimate shots of ordinary people and aesthetically pleasing colours. His photos of Dublin Youth enjoying their summer is one of my favourite photo series I’ve ever seen and the Zine where they are published is definitely worth a buy.