Tom Hoops is a self taught photographer specializing in portraiture and fashion. He shoots both digital and film and splits his time between London and Bangkok.
Former smoker, lover of black and white. Photographer of people, good, bad, beautiful and ugly.
Tom is well known for his striking emotive work and has been featured and published in many international magazines and publications. Schön magazine, Var magazine, Lavazza, Vogue, Reader’s Digest, Tocco Toscano, Porter magazine, Hunger Tv, Polydor music, Fault Magazine, Unilever, Greyhours, FEI tv, TBWA\, Kent, Label Magazine, Travel + Leisure, Red Magazine, Hapers Bazaar …
-How did you first become interested in photography?
I have always been fascinated by people and portraits, I wanted to paint but fell in love with photography instead. Once I found I could shoot people I was hooked and never looked back.
-How did you go about building a career for yourself as a professional photographer?
It was a slow process to begin with. A tough process too and the first 2 years we struggled but eventually more people got to know my work and jobs started to come in. I began with some portrait commissions and some print sales and from there began to shoot some fashion and commercial work.
-What words best describe your style of photography?
I describe it as the work I like to have on my wall, classic old school film with a twist. Dark and moody from time to time.
-You are passionate about shooting on film and black and white photography. Why choose film?
I love the look of film, I like that it’s a slow process that makes you take your time. The transition from black to white still looks different to me on film and of course the grain looks great. I do shoot digital too and appreciate both.
-What are some of the biggest influences on your work?
Early Face magazine, Helmut Newton, Franz Kline, Avedon, Penn. There are many.
-What do you believe to be the most important element of a great black and white photograph?
For me black and white photos work best when they have depth, a great range of tones. Couple this with a great subject and you have a captivating photo.
-What is your post-production workflow like?
Quite simple, I like to try and get things right in the camera. From there I either import to Lightroom / Capture One(digital) or scan and take into Lightroom. Make contrast adjustments, some layer masking and look for a good balance to the image.
-Is there a single photograph that you are most proud of?
I have several I am very fond of. I can’t say there is just one.
-What is your dream project?
I want to shoot the Rolling Stones and the Queen. If that doesn’t happen then something that involves interesting people in great locations around the world would be fantastic.
-What was the best career advice you were ever given?
Stick to your style, shoot things you love and don’t be afraid to turn the wrong projects down.
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