A big welcome to the amazing Tom Sics, a super talented, clever and reflective urban wanderer who lives close to the woods in Riga, Latvia. Tom is visual creator, photographer and media enthusiast with great taste and a killer eye. We’re really excited he’s here, enjoy!
Good vibes and endless inspiration,
Preset Shop Team
Who is Tom Sics?
Tom is something more than a physical body. I am an ambitious space rocket and a photography dreamer. I am quite a new up-and-comer in the world of visuals… Soon it will be close to my two year anniversary in the field of photography.
Where do you call home?
Any place where I can do what I love. A place where you can be exactly who you are and gather your thoughts. But, without thinking the first place that comes to mind is Riga. It resides somewhere in Eastern Europe in a country covered by forests and harsh winters.
Edited with +PS Looks N°3
What do you love the most about your job?
It never loses the sparkle in my eyes. When you see me thinking, be sure that it’s about new ideas and photography. If it is around people and visuals, I feel that it’s everything for me. I can choose which emotions and feelings I’m cultivating with my work. There are things you can mentally take from each of the photo-shoots and hikes. That’s the way we should build ourselves and our personalities.
How would you describe your style?
My style is everything that I can find it to be… Interactive and very personal. I always prefer to find a connection before the photo. I’m an empath, I can sense other peoples energy very easily and that sometimes is a driving force in my photography and my style. I like energy, emotions and vibes and I hope that is something that reflects in my pictures.
When you are shooting people, are you directing them in a certain way or letting events unfold naturally and capturing what happens?
At the start I was a bit closed minded, but slowly I am turning on the “friends” style of approach. It always comes in handy for the person to feel that we are not just working together, or this is just a business thing. Everyone is so different and everyone has their own switches that they feel like turning on or off. For some it comes naturally, but lots of personalities have their quirks and little things that make them start to feel comfy.. It’s all about finding what works for different kinds of people.
Edited with +PS Noir
Edited with +PS Looks N°3
As you look through the viewfinder, what is the most critical moment in the capture of your image?
For me everything is about storytelling. It can be a story of feelings, love, warmth, adventure or loneliness for example. If a detail out there gets my attention and it could be some kind of a beginning of a story – I’ll make it start.
Tell us about authenticity.. What does it mean to you?
Everyone has fingerprints. We, photographers, have our own and it should stay like that. Inspiration is an authentic thing but should not be taken from someone. However, to create the way – may just be one of the hardest goals of all times.
What is an issue you have with the state of the fashion photo industry today?
The confirmation of what is beautiful and good looking. Is there an algorithm which tells you- “Yes, this person is such an icon”. It has been an issue for me in the sense of asking myself… Should I listen to someone else telling me – this is that or this is this?
In today’s economy what changes are driving photography and how have you adjusted?
Somehow everything is always starting to matter in numbers. To the point where social media is a bit faulty and it reduces the outcome from a photographer. Never trust engagement and focus on yourself. Numbers are fake, but your moments are not. I just stick with what I feel and what I trust, that’s me.
Edited with +PS Retrograde
Edited with +PS Retrograde
What is the best advice you have received so far about photography?
It’s from my close friend, the guy who inspired me to start to take photos. He said – “Sometimes you just have to enjoy the moment with your eye, leave your camera in the bag, everything is not meant to be captured.”
What photographers from the past or present have influenced you the most?
The work of William Klein. It reflects the raw process of a moment, the crucial second. He always reminds me to go just one step closer than I was planning to.
What’s the most important thing you want potential clients to know about you?
I don’t work for you but with you.
What was the biggest challenge throughout your career so far?
Recently from just capturing nature and lifestyle pictures I had to jump on a fashion shoot! It was a little bit of a challenge as I had to learn the fashion guide and photography style from zero.
What has been your favorite photo location or session?
As a big part of me is a wanderer, there are no spots that can hide from my eye. I would have to say it is for sure the green forest with a path that goes in-between the trees. This spot never changes despite the winter or the summer and it keeps it’s saturations. Time stops in there and everything feels like a movie.
What are you currently working on?
There are several companies I am currently creating some visual content for, and also being an ambassador for. I am also collaborating with a model agency where I can practice my fashion shooting skills. From times to time there is a work trip abroad, but mostly I work with companies remotely.
Edited with +PS Retrograde
What type of cameras do you shoot with?
My first camera was the 60D with which I shot all my pictures for about a year. But I recently upgraded to 6D. A slight jump up for sure, especially when I sneak out to shoot at night.
If you had to choose one lens which one would it be and why?
I never thought I would say this as I did not appreciate the lens for a very long time.. But my Canon 40mm 2.8 is quite a blast!
What is your favorite computer/editing accessory, other than your computer?!
Not thinking twice, it is coffee and it’s chemistry with the evening.. Making a blast outcome with my pictures!
Cos we just have to ask…!! What is your favorite +PS tool?? And how has it improved workflow time?
Have tested the Beauty Brush as my last shoots were mostly fashion and it’s such a gem to find. It saves lots of time and effort. The custom made brush works for all types of people without adjusting the brush settings. Love it! It is not a lie when I tell you that most of the tools have made a big difference in my process and time! Also, just add a little bit of Retrograde and then the magic happens!
Do you maintain a studio or do you rent one when needed?
My studios are streets and the environment around me. Would not say that it’s more natural, but the process feels more real and I can approach the model much more openly.
Three photography pet hates and why?
From the communication side, the most annoying thing is when other photographers ask where are the locations of where your pictures have been taken… And how can they get there?! Starting from this, to every single detail about how they can try to make something similar… To be honest, I actually hear this from a lot of different people – but mostly photographers.
Next one, would be seeing watermarks everywhere. It’s a weird tendency to somehow show that you are an authentic and a real photographer. In my mind, that is just a spoiled spot on the moment.
Often people think that it’s not a job (just because I don’t have a contract job where I work 9 to 5) and are always asking me what I do for a living..
What keeps you awake at night?
Next capture I’ll be taking. I’m thinking about it, visualizing it and then it becomes a reality.
Where would you wish to wake up tomorrow?
Anywhere with a film camera! Just a small dream, hoping it will become a reality.
What five words would your clients use to describe you?
These three would be just a perfect hit. Inspirational, passionate and determined. I would love to be a visual influence and create some changes, create stories in which I can lead a person to think.
Do you play music whilst shooting? If so, what are you digging right now?
The best music is everything around me. Chatter, noises, wind, laughter. You can’t get more authentic than that! Might switch it up if I decide to shoot in a studio though..
Big plans for the future? What’s next?
To work with more companies around Europe or maybe even out of it. Each of them can offer me personal growth and that’s an exchange in both ways. Also, to just stick with what I do the best, story-telling with my photos. I am currently in communication with a few different organizations about some photography tours and ambassador work.
Keep your eyes open!