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Art & Life with Joe Thomas

Today we’d like to introduce you to Joe Thomas.

Joe, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I first started taking photos when I moved to Boston to attend Northeastern University. I had never lived in a big city before, so I spent a lot of time exploring Boston’s many beautiful neighborhoods and photographing what I saw. I started to post on Instagram and realized Boston has a very active community of like-minded photographers that inspired me a lot. People like Brian McWilliams (@brianmcw) and Ashley McKinney (@ashleymcky) showed the city in such a unique perspective that I wanted to learn how to capture photos like them. Over time, this hobby has led to multiple photography internships and jobs ranging from wedding photography, to digital marketing, to Amazon Robotics, where I have been able to learn from great mentors like Nicole Chan (@nicolechanphotography) and Zak Brickett. Most recently, I have mainly been working with hospitality companies to create social media content for brands including Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton, and Swire Hotels. Photography has been a great excuse to go explore areas I normally wouldn’t and connect with people I wouldn’t have otherwise.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I create travel and architecture photography and share them almost exclusively through my Instagram channel. When I go out to photograph, I usually have a specific photo in my head and do my best to create it through research and planning. Two of the main criteria I try and have for photos I share is that I want it to be both beautiful and interesting. My biggest goal is just to have people be inspired to go out and explore new places. It doesn’t have to be a big trip, it could even just be walking around your neighborhood when there’s been a fresh snowfall or when the spring flowers have just bloomed. I find it easy to take for granted what is part of my daily routine, and photography can be a good solution to appreciate beauty and see new places.

In your view, what is the biggest issue artists have to deal with?
With social media it has become very easy to have the number of likes determine the quality of work instead of the artist’s personal criteria. I feel it has become harder to find your own voice and easier instead to just do what is popular. But otherwise, I feel there has never been a better time to have a creative outlet. Platforms like Instagram have enabled me to have my work seen by thousands of people, make new friends, and work with great companies doing what I love. Just not that long ago, none of this would have been possible. Right now, the barrier to entry is so low that anyone can start building an audience just by using a smartphone, and I find that very exciting.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I share my photos on my Instagram (@joethommas). For support, the biggest thing people can do is just follow along and engage with my work if they enjoy it. I also sell prints on my website, joethomasphoto.com.

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