Back after quite a bit of a hiatus, mondays are inspiring once again. This week, Aidas Odonelis, a 26 year old photographer living in Toronto with his wife Meagan and dog, Brittany. I had the pleasure of meeting Aidas during our time together at the Ontario college of Art and Design almost a decade ago. Together they run their photography business, Ruby Photo Studio. He earned my bachelor’s degree with a photography major at NSCAD University where I developed an affinity for large format photography.

I: What’s the earliest memory of a creative activity you did?

A: My earliest memory of a creative activity would likely be finger painting or screen-printing at summer camp.

I: If you weren’t doing what you do right now, what would you be doing?

A: It’s hard to imagine what I would be doing if not photographing. Realistically I’d likely be spending significantly more time rockclimbing, and perhaps writing. Alternatively, I’ve always imagined that being an architect would be a fulfilling career.

I: Inspiration, who? what? where?

A:  I draw a lot of inspiration from photographers and other artists whocreate work about what they care about instead of doing work to paybills. Specifically I admire the photography of Keith Ladzinksi for his sports and action photography, Robert Burley for his large format landscape work, Dan Winters for his portraits, Nathaniel Welch for his editorial work. The photography I enjoy the most is subtle and intelligent. I don’t like photographs that scream at you for attention. To me, a successful photograph draws the viewer in with aesthetics and lets them stay in there for a while before they understand the point. When they realize what the photograph is trying to say, its almost like they’ve been let in on an inside joke amongst a group of friends.

I: Share any of piece your work, recent or old and talk about it.

A: The photo I’ve attached is from my final body of work while at NSCAD, ”Four and a Half Billion”. I had spent the day walking around Halifax with my view camera looking for images for this series. I felt very unfulfilled, as though I was forcing photographs. After a while I decided to head home and have some coffee before heading out again. I rested for a little bit at home and decided to head out again. This building down the street from our apartment had been under renovation for a long time and I walked past it everyday without paying too much attention to it. On this day however I stopped and looked at it and saw this. I had a wonderful “aha” moment and knew this was the image I was looking for. The goal of “Four and a Half Billion” was to create a series of images that showed a contrast between different time cycles ( natural cycles with natural elements, natural cycles with manufactured elements, manufactured cycles with natural elements, and manufactured cycles with manufactured elements) in order to gain a more accurate understanding of the earths age relative to our existence. This image illustrated to me the life cycle of apartment buildings through changing ownership and tenants over the years. A life cycle that we can understand relative to our own.

I: Name 5 websites that you check often.

feature shoot
the f stopmag
climbing narc
the gear caster



four × = 28

Hi, I'm Ibraheem Youssef
I'm a Creative,
currently based in Toronto.

Welcome to my blog.

Art Direction / Alignment / Colours
Cooking / Design / Folding
Illustration / Paper / Printing
Ping Pong / Type / Walking

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to obsess over constantly.
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