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May 15, 2024 by Frederick Reimers

Trade Secrets: Commit to Your Style and the Work Will Follow

featuring the STREET PHOTOGRAPHER Mike Thurk

Home Base / Lyons, Colorado

Activities / Street Photography, Coffee Drinking, City Walking, Light Chasing

Insider Knowledge:

Plenty of photographers build successful careers by matching a client’s desires and style guide. Then there are the instances where clients seek out a creative because they want the vision and style specific to that artist. Mike Thurk has become one of the latter. “Clients seek me out now because of the aesthetic choices I’m making,” he says. “It’s best to work with people who trust what you can bring.”

Union Station, Denver.

For Mike, that typically means focusing on the emotionality of the subject, whether that’s capturing the essence of one of a brand’s ambassadors, the physical process of a company’s work, or even spotlighting a product. “I work to bring the same emotion and authenticity to my commercial work as I do to my passion projects,” he says.

Quick Tip:

“If you are in it for the long game, and you commit to your style, people will find you for that,” says Mike. “It’s easy to compare your work to others and to chase the prevailing style, but the earlier you figure out what makes you unique as a creative, the better. Then stay true to that point of view.” For Mike, that means remaining committed to his process of understanding his intention whenever he picks up a camera. Every subject, whether a person or a thing, has a unique essence, and he knows his job is to find a way to connect with that. “I do as much homework as I can before I start, and that includes doing my homework on myself,” he says. “Knowing myself helps me connect more easily to my subject.”