Phil Crozier – aka PHOTOPHILCRO – is a Calgary-based photographer with a host of outstanding client jobs to his name and a network of photo-junkie fans who can’t wait to see what he’s working on next. This 28-year-old lens master started his journey during his time working towards a vocal performance degree at Rocky Mountain College; he began photographing musicians and bands for their online platforms, and the rest, as the cliche goes, is history. Find out more about PHOTOPHILCRO in today’s YEDaily.
Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
I am a portrait, home interior, and wedding photographer. My company is called PHOTOPHILCRO. As a photographer, I capture images of people that they can feel proud of. I want the images I take to stay timeless rather than being just the current trend. Most of the time it’s about trying to shoot to get that person engaged; to connect through their eyes. It’s all about the eyes and making them pop through my use of light.
Why did you start your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
It just happened. It was a passion that quickly grew into a viable business. I started with $20 shoots that allowed me to develop and hone my skill. And I used MySpace and Facebook to market myself – more work came to me after people would see the photos I had posted. I relied heavily on my network and word of mouth and I still do. My network keeps growing and growing and the shoots I get to do are a reflection of this.
My inspiration is to photograph the best of people and make them feel proud. No matter who they are, everyone has a beauty that needs to be captured. It’s about pulling that out and showing the true essence of who these people are.
What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
I get excited on the days that I upload photos and let my fans see what I am doing. I hope it inspires my friends to do something creative in their lives. If they can see that I can go ahead and take a simple talent and roll with it, perhaps they will have the courage to go after their own dreams.
As a business owner, I like that I can dictate my schedule. It gives me the freedom to connect with different people throughout the day and has given me the ability to work all over the world. My work has taken me to places such as Toronto, New York, Vancouver, Italy, Maui, Chicago, and LA. I have met and photographed so many interesting people. When I was in New York, I got to photograph 12 Opera and Broadway performers.
But as a business owner, everyday is a challenge. Sometimes it’s hard to separate work-life from personal-life, whether it is being Phil the friend as apposed to PHOTOPHILCRO, or simply making time for myself. That can be hard especially when things are really busy.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I see my work expanding into celebrity and influential cultural portraiture. I’ve already had the opportunity to work with the Alberta Ballet, House and Home, Avenue, and Globe and Mail, and have photographed some amazing individuals like Sarah McLachlan, SHeDAISY, Kyle Shewfelt, and Paul Hardy. It has been incredible to be able to work with these people.
But I want to build my portfolio to a level where my name allows me to choose some of the work and when I search out people they are excited about the opportunity to work with PHOTOPHILCRO.
What does success look like to you?
Being able to photograph iconic images that inspire others’ creativity. I want them to feel they can make a life and a living with their talents. I also dream of building an awesome home in the woods, where everyday people are coming to spend time and get away. That would make me feel successful.
What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
It’s cool to see my images in print. I never print my own pictures – instead I tend to just keep most in digital format – so to open a magazine and see my images on the page is exciting.
Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Ask for help. Be humble. Take your time and enjoy the journey. I get frustrated when I hear about people dreaming too much about becoming big photographers without thinking about all the hard work needed to get there. I always encourage people to breathe, relax, and enjoy each step of the process. It is a long road, but those opportunities you hope for will and do start coming.
Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
I have supported a little boy with World Vision for the past five years. I chose this because I wanted to be a part of something bigger than my my daily life. I wanted to give a portion of what I make and know that it was going to help someone else.
What to you is notable?
Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?
iPhone. I run my business from my Apple products and love to document my day with simple iPhone captures of friends and places.
Check out PHOTOPHILCRO on Facebook.