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Live & Work

March 16 2016

This is #MyGastown – with Braydon Chapelas (aka @dj_quickie)

When you live in the valley and play in the city, inspiration comes from everywhere. Under the handle, dj_quickie, this photographer, cinematographer and visual storyteller has long been on our radar. Meet Braydon. 

How long have you been taking pictures?

I’ve been taking pictures since I got my first camera at 10 years old. I started with a point and shoot Canon and got introduced to mobile photography when I picked up an iPod.

photo by Benjamen Cockburn

Do you take more photos with your phone or your camera?

I spent the majority of my moments capturing life through my phone. Now, I tend to spend more time shooting with DSLR’s than my phone just because of the quality and the processing power of RAW images.

Has street photography always been your thing?

No! Actually, I’ve always LOVED nature images. I’d spend most of my time shooting macro shots of insects, flowers, etc. Over time however, since I practically live in the city on weekends, I have fallen in love with street photography. I’m not sure if it’s my love for gritty character portraits, or if it’s my sense of adventure when I’m roaming Vancouver carrying only my backpack and a camera.

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You lead photo walks with other photographers – what are your top three tips?

My top three tips as an event organizer are promote, promote, promote. Get the word out as much as you can. Get people interested, and bring them to a popular place or introduce a fun activity / special event! When hosting, make sure you’re able to make everyone feel comfortable! There’s always a few newcomers and the last thing you want, is to think that our community is full of pretentious snobs. Reach out and talk, we’re there to disconnect from social media and explore the whole “social” thing in real life. If it is your first meet, start off by introducing yourself to the host, make conversation, talk about what kind of photography you’re into, etc. Don’t be afraid to talk to someone just because of how “big” they are on Instagram. Behind the accounts, we’re all just people with the same passion and ambition for photography and social interaction.

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photo by Benjamen Cockburn

You recently met Andrew Knapp of Find Momo fame. What was that like?

I didn’t get to chat a lot, but I knew I had met another awesome human being with a heart of gold and a passion for photography like the rest of us. Andrew is one of those people that you can talk to for a few minutes and then walk away from feeling as if you’ve known each-other for a lifetime. He reinforces all of the great aspects of community, plus he has one of the cutest dogs ever…

Do have a favourite spot in Gastown?

Well, Gastown’s Coffeebar has got to be one of my favourite stops. It’s not a far walk from Waterfront and it’s usually where I head to when I’m searching for coffee. If we’re talking favourite photo spot in Gastown, I gotta give it to the Cordova Parkade. I always love making my way up here to do fun photoshoots with models or grabbing some fresh air and looking over the water.

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Is there a theme to your takeover?

I don’t think there’s so much a theme to my takeover, as to its more of just my style of photography, bringing light to the beauty of Gastown.

Braydon is running our Instagram feed @MyGastown this week. You can also find / follow him on Instagram @dj_quickie

If you’re an insider with a unique perspective on the neighbourhood, head to our Instagram feed at @MyGastown and tag your photos or send us a DM. You might hear from me!