At a time when nearly everyone is carrying a camera, or more specifically, a phone containing a camera, a Kamsack man is making his livelihood as a professional photographer.
Stephen Dutcheshen recently acted on a 20-year dream and returned to his hometown after having studied, lived and worked in the city and is continuing his business Stephen Dutcheshen Photography, working from his home in Kamsack.
A 2001 graduate of the Kamsack Comprehensive Institute, the son of Bill and Carole Dutcheshen of Kamsack, Stephen admits to having “a passion” for photography which immediately after graduation from KCI had pulled him into a photography certification program at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and then to the Alberta College of Art and Design, which is now known as the Alberta University of Arts.
“At school in Alberta, it was all photography that I studied,” Dutcheshen said recently after having spent an afternoon taking pictures at the Town of Kamsack-sponsored program held in honour of the 2020 KCI graduates.
After a few years studying in Alberta, Dutcheshen went to California for two years to attend the Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, where again all his studies were photography-based. Dutcheshen returned to Calgary in 2007 and for two years he worked with former Kamsack resident Bud Moore who had developed a reputation as a photographer with his business Bud Moore Photography. He then began his own business and has now been incorporated for 10 years.
Asked how a person can make a living at a time when nearly everyone is carrying a camera or a phone containing a camera, Dutcheshen gave an analogy saying that just because one might own a state-of-the-art table saw does not mean he or she can construct fine woodwork.
“I have studied, I have the knowledge and I have the tools of the trade, such as better lenses and high end cameras which allow me to do many more things than what can be done with less dynamic equipment.”
Dutcheshen’s business has concentrated on high-resolution images usually “product shoots” for corporate clients. For example, he has worked for realtors, taking pictures of buildings for publicity purposes and has worked with Brandt Tractors, photographing a line of new tractors.
“I have an eye for composing a good picture,” he said. “I tend to see things differently.”
Dutcheshen said that living in a small town in Saskatchewan should not be much of a change from working in Calgary.
“I plan to focus on family events, real estate and sporting events,” he said. “I currently have a booking for a 50th birthday party.”
Dutcheshen explains how he takes the photographs and then emails the high-resolution results to the client who then takes the digital files to a place like Wal-Mart or Staples to have prints made.
Persons wishing to contact Dutcheshen may send an email to foto4X5@gmail.com