Félix-Antoine LaSalle17 min read

Hello Félix, Could you introduce yourself?

What’s up! My name is Félix-Antoine LaSalle, I am 19 years old, and I’m a full-time student at Laval University in Quebec, Canada. 

I study graphic design, and I love everything that encompasses communications, marketing, and creation. I discovered a strong interest in photography three years ago, during my time at CEGEP. 

In the past three years, I’ve developed my own style and found the kind of content that pushes me to excel; I commonly use photography to express my creativity and share my vision of the world as seen by my camera. What makes my photos and my style “unique” is that I always try to express a story or a mood through my shots, also by varying between several photography genres. 

Being a nature lover, I mostly shoot landscapes, but I also do lifestyle photos and portraits. In the past year, I started doing product photography for local businesses, as shown in my portfolio!

I recently switched from Canon to Sony and had to sell all my equipment; I’m now using the Sony A7III paired with the Sigma 24-70mm 2.8, and for aerial shots, I use the Mavic Air 2. This setup allows me to obtain results that meet my expectations every time. 

Tell us about your first introduction to photography; what’s your backstory?

As I mentioned briefly in my introduction, I started to get seriously into photography about 3 to 4 years ago when I began CEGEP. I studied in a program called “Intégration Multimédia” at Collège Montmorency, in Laval. We studied pretty much everything connected with media and creation, starting from photography and videography to video editing, color correction, and sound design. 

Even at a young age, I always loved to play around with my dad’s sony camcorder, but in reality, I only fell in love with photography when I followed these classes. In fact, the science hiding inside the camera itself really aroused my curiosity and pushed me to learn more and more and eventually buy my first ever DSLR, the Canon SL2. I played around with it for about a year, going on hikes, taking landscapes and portrait shots, then sold it and moved to the Canon 90D, which I particularly loved. 

Studying Photography and media for the past 3 years taught me to stay organized in my work; I also acquired all the knowledge and techniques that forge the photographer I am today.

Since starting, how did you develop your style? 

Personal development has always been a huge factor for me in all aspects of my life. I constantly want to get better, learn new things, and perfect what I already master. Since starting, I have always tried to develop my own and unique style. 

I like very contrasty images, with punchy and vibrant colors. Symmetry in my images has also been part of my identity online since the beginning. Overall, it is clear that I am still experimenting and learning, which is why I always try new things and methods. 

When working with businesses and doing product photography, I always like to do close-up shots to accompany the other images and emphasize the quality and details, depending on the product. It is also crucial for me to always meet a client’s requirements and intentions. That’s why it is fundamental for me to listen closely to my clients and pay attention to what he’s really looking for.

When it comes to editing my images, I also like to incorporate my own style. In fact, I have accumulated several of my own presets over the years to match with many different lighting situations. By doing this, I ensure that my grid and portfolio stays homogeneous and clean, which is also a hugely important factor for me.   

Since starting, what has worked to attract fans and followers? 

I started sharing my photos on my social networks, such as Instagram, almost a year ago. I still consider myself an aspiring and upcoming photographer since I do not yet have an audience of thousands of subscribers. However, I am starting to see results and gain followers, which is undoubtedly linked to the work I do for companies and influencers since they offer me significant visibility.

To continue to increase my audience, I plan to expand my portfolio and make partnerships that would be beneficial for me. Right now, on Instagram, the algorithm is pretty damaging for content creators and photographers like me, so I have to try to adapt and catch people’s eyes differently, even though it’s hard to break through and stand out when the algorithm is not on our side. People mostly see content based on what they have liked previously and in general, so I try to bring together an audience interested in photography by using hashtags.

Through starting as a photographer, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

Like everything in life, you learn from the mistakes you make. Corny, right? Sadly it’s actually true. Some things can seem pretty basic but can save your life when you pull out your camera during a shooting or on the top of a mountain after waiting for 45 minutes for the sun to rise. 

First of all, never forget to charge your batteries, and if you can, buy 1 or 2 extras ones. Also, always make sure to have space on your sd card and make sure to save a copy of all your files on your laptop or hard drive. These tips are fundamental, but trust me, they can save your life, LITERALLY.

In addition, don’t be scared to reach out for help or reach out to brands you like. The worst possible outcome is being rejected, so shoot your shot! 

To me, not overdoing an edit is very important. In fact, you can spend hours editing a single photo, and you can start to lose track of your initial goal. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to take a break going outside and come back later. Your perspective will change for the best, and you will be able to see if you did too much or just enough. 

Finally, be patient. There will always be something else to learn and master, so don’t rush anything, and most importantly, always have fun!

What’s your biggest achievement so far?

Having the chance to work and represent any company is an honor; I take very much pride in my work, therefore putting time and effort into shoots for brands is truly enriching. 

One of the clients I’m most proud of is KaseMe Design, a cell phone case company I had the chance to work for during a trip to Gaspésie. Coming up with ideas and shooting for other companies like ApexWays, a sports apparel brand, was also huge for me. 

During a trip to Gaspésie last year, I had the chance to photograph the famous “Roché Percé” which I had never visited previously. The conditions were not the greatest, but we made it work, and I’m very proud of the result. Going all the way there to take a picture of a massive rock is a pretty cool achievement for me!

How are you doing today, and what does the future look like?

As mentioned above, I am currently a full-time student, and I take photos in my spare time. Ideally, I would like to make photography my part-time job, which is why I am working more and more with companies to get photography contracts.

As for my partnerships and my contracts for this new year, I believe it will be a fruitful period for me as a photographer. For example, I am moving in a few months to my first apartment, and I will be working closely with the building developer. I am thrilled to have obtained this contract since it will allow me to create content for an important company in the sector and possibly give me visibility.

Given the current pandemic context, it is certain that many tourist places here in Quebec are inaccessible and impossible to travel to, which pushes me to find inspiration in my daily life. It is also difficult from a marketing point of view since many companies are on a budget and cannot afford to use the services of photographers like me. However, I am fortunate to be able to work for local businesses to create content for them.

In the short term, I aim to expand my portfolio and increase my audience on my social networks. I would also like to start selling prints and put my website online.

As for my long-term goals, I would like to have the chance to travel, as soon as possible, to vary the content of my photos and take photos of different landscapes. I definitely want to work with new companies and explore videography more. Ultimately, I would say my ultimate goal would be to be a photographer for National Geographic.

What’s in your camera bag these days? 

I am currently using the Lowepro ProTactic BP 450 II camera bag, and I love it; It’s pretty compact, can fit pretty much anything, and is fairly affordable. I can take my laptop with me everywhere I go and strap on my Manfrotto Element II as well. In my mind, having good camera gear comes with having a good camera bag. 

Has mentioned before, I recently switched from Canon to Sony and had to sell all my equipment. Therefore, I’m currently rocking the Sony A7III with the Sigma 24-70 2.8 ART lens as my main setup. 

For portraits, I like to switch to my Sigma 85mm 1.4

For aerial shots, I use the DJI Mavic Air 2, a little beast! 

Additionally, I also have a couple of filters for my lenses. 

For editing and social media, I use my Macbook Air 13″ 2020

So far, I’m very much impressed by my new camera’s capabilities, and I’m excited about all my future plans.  

Félix-Antoine LaSalle's camera bag
Shot by Félix-Antoine LaSalle

What software and platforms do you use for your photography?

I strongly believe that by editing a photo, we can tell a story and represent a mood. A picture can be edited in thousands of different ways, and that’s amazing about editing; these 1000 versions will evoke different emotions even though the original shot was the same. 

Personally, I use the Adobe creative suite on my Macbook to edit my photos, namely Lightroom, Photoshop, and Premiere Pro for my videos.

Lightroom is definitely the platform I use the most. When I started, I used some presets sold by photographers that I follow on social networks because they inspired me and admired their work. Over time, I have accumulated several of my own presets. I now edit my photos from A to Z. As for Photoshop, I use it when I want to create effects and add typography to my photos or specific elements.

For now, I use social networks such as Instagram to share my photos, like a portfolio. From a marketing standpoint, this platform also allows me to easily communicate with the companies and businesses I work with or to get noticed by brands I like when I take pictures of their products. I also exchange services by doing photo shoots with some influencers, which allows me to gain visibility and show my work’s flexibility.

What is the most rewarding part of being a photographer for you?

The most rewarding for me as a photographer is the editing process. I find it amazing how much you can take a photo and transform it, give it a story and a mood, making it your own, just by editing it. 

I think this is the most rewarding thing for me because a beautiful shot becomes an amazing photo after being edited according to the photographer’s colors, emotions, and ideas. It’s actually super rewarding for me to put my own touch and signature on a raw picture and take it to the next level. 

What is your favorite location to shoot? 

Until now, I haven’t had the chance to travel a lot and capture pictures outside of Quebec. But, this year, I’ve been to Gaspésie 3 times, and I think it’s my favorite place to take photos. Gaspésie is the Quebec region that is home to the famous Rocher Percé, which I had the chance to photograph. 

The landscapes are vast, and the place is so peaceful that I feel very inspired. I can also take beautiful aerial shots with my drone, flying over the sea or the fields. This place is full of possibilities and things to photograph. There are many lighthouses, beaches, beautiful docks, mountains for hikes, and tourist spots to visit and the sunsets and sunrise are absolutely insane. 

What is your best memory as a photographer? 

Last October, I went to Gaspésie for the third time with my girlfriend. She has an empty family home there, so we had a great week together, doing lots of activities. 

My girlfriend is an influencer, and she uses her platforms a lot, so we decided to spend the week creating content for both her social networks and mine and vlog our week for her Youtube channel. Every day, no matter where we went, we would bring my camera and drone, and we would vlog our adventures. It was a lot of fun and very challenging at the same time since I had not yet explored videography much with my new camera, and it was the first occasion I had used my drone.

One late afternoon, we were both on our computers working on the video editing of the vlog on Premiere Pro since it had been raining all day. My girlfriend looked up at the window; it was no longer raining, the sun was setting, and the sky was candy pink. We left quickly with the camera and the drone and drove to the seaside, only a few minutes from the house. 

When we got to the beach, it was definitely one of the most beautiful sunsets I have seen in my life. I took photos and aerial shots with my drone. The sea was calm, the sky was pink and orange, and we just stood there looking at this landscape until the sun went down.

What makes the difference between a good image and an iconic image?

For me, the difference between a good image and an iconic one is the story behind the shot; what it took for you to take the shot. 

Sometimes, a simple click can mean so much for a photographer; you can dream of taking a picture for years before actually having the chance to do it. For example, I’ve dreamt of going to Banff for years. It would actually be a dream come true for me to take my camera there with me and capture Moraine Lake on a snowy day. 

An iconic shot is a shot that’s special, which means a lot for the person behind the camera. 

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

Ever since I started photography, one of the most influential resources that taught me so much and inspire me to this day is Peter Mckinnon. His photos and grid are insane to me and inspire me to travel worldwide, chasing insane captures just like him. 

His Youtube channel is filled with tutorial videos that helped me get better in pretty much every way possible. Other photographers like Alen Palander and even local photographers from Quebec like Guillaume St-Amand and Max Meunier inspire me to keep grinding. 

Advice for other photographers who want to get started or are just starting?

First, I think it’s important to appreciate your own work and not constantly compare yourself with others. Personally, I like to be inspired by the work of photographers who surround me, but it’s important to be able to draw the line between appreciating someone’s work and wanting to do the same. It can be difficult to find your own style and identity when starting in photography, but capture what you find interesting, edit your photos however you want, and your style will be defined by the things you like.

I think it is also important not to worry too much about what gear you have. You can take beautiful shots with any modern camera, so don’t think otherwise. In the end, the camera doesn’t take the pictures, the photographer does!

Where can we go to learn more?

If you are interested in learning more about me and want to see my work and photos, here are my links!

My website will be online soon!

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