WHY WE EXPLORE
We've been following Darrin on Instagram for some time now. His landscapes whisk us away to foreign lands and ideal places. We wanted to take a moment to learn more about him, his adventures, and why he explores.
Why do you Adventure/Explore: Exploring, whether that be camping, hiking or travelling and photographing; I think it pushes me to release a lot of stress and creative thinking that I tend to gather throughout the week. I'm always heavily inspired by other photographers and adventurers/travelers. I often day dream at work and wonder where I'm going to go next. Sometimes, It feels like all the bad is washing away and your mind is fixed on whats ahead. It's a very satisfying feeling living like this and I think it gives purpose and meaning to my own life.
Why take risks in life: I think its super important to be able to get out of your comfort zone every now and then. Taking risks means you'll have new experiences, life changing events that can drastically change your future, if that makes sense. For example, I was sitting at work, miserable. My friend texted me out of the blue and asked if I wanted to travel for 14 days across Canada in the next few weeks. At first, I thought to myself I couldn't make it happen, but I was wrong. I made the choice to make the trip happen no matter what even with whatever my financial situation was at the time. I put my happiness first above everything and pushed myself to go and do it. The trip was one of the best experiences I've had and the people and friends I met along the way has changed me forever.
Where are you from? I'm from a little town called Sutton in Ontario, Canada. It's a small town mostly surrounded by a large lake, farm fields and trees. It's quiet here and I really like that. The countryside is a peaceful place to be. Living here can make you appreciate the smaller things in life and it's played an important part in my photography as well. Capturing genuine moments, whether that be a small moment, or something bigger..
What is your 9-5? I work a full-time job, 40+ hours from Monday to Friday at a job not even worth describing. It will make you fall asleep. I do photography part time, on the weekends, weeknights and whenever I can and make extra cash from this sometimes. I honestly just enjoying taking photos so much. I am currently in the process of changing the lifestyle that I live and getting out of my desk job. This wont happen overnight, but making the small steps in my own future will create happiness further down the line.
When you were growing up, what or who did you want to be? This is a tough question for me to answer, not because it's hard, but because it can be a little emotional for me. I was one of those people constantly all over the place in school, not knowing what or who I wanted to be. I had felt a bit lost. My motivation and interests were in things I knew deep down I didn't even enjoy and it affected me greatly in school. For many years in my youth, I had felt like something was missing and that I was to be apart of a bigger picture - like I was supposed to make a difference in this world. I knew in my heart I had a strong love for the arts, but I was constantly told from everyone that you can't pursue a career in this field and be successful at the same time. After a few years in College, a couple breakups, I realized that maybe who I was at the time was not the right person to be. As time went on, I discovered just exactly who I wanted to be. A strong hard working, independent, genuine man who doesn't need an extravagant life full of luxury and debt-burdening materials. A man who could tell stories and share experiences to others through art. Just to live life the way I had always dreamed of, seeing the world and meeting people with the same mindsets.
Place you most desperately want to visit? I absolutely need to see Alaska/Yukon, Faroe Islands, Patagonia, Colorado/Wyoming/Idaho......The list goes on endlessly. I'm a sucker for mountains and trees though.
What is the single greatest moment of human humanity you've experienced while traveling? On my way home once, I saw an elderly man. He must of been 70+ years old. He was parked off the highway and picking up trash in the nearby meadows all by himself. It was raining and cold. It seemed like he was struggling a bit, and I wish I could of assisted him when I look back on that day. It still brings me to tears thinking about it.
Where to next? I will be planning a trip to Montana first and foremost. There is something so wild about Montana. The small towns surrounded by mountains in the North. The glacier fed lakes and peaks...a land that just feels genuine. So much wild life and culture to be seen.
If you could travel with one person in history or in present who would it be and why? I think if I could travel with anyone, it would be Forrest Mankins. His travels seem real, and more genuine than any other person I know. I don't really know him, but I feel like I do. He doesn't focus on creating photos that blow people away, it seems there's more to them and they tell a story and have so much emotion. He seems like the nicest and coolest guy to hang with. I don't often idolize a lot of people, but I think I would idolize him.
What would you say to someone who has never traveled before? I personally think that the majority of humans are trapped in this very small bubble, working aimlessly and achieving goals that will help them get more luxuries in life. It doesn't have to be that way and I think a lot of people are unhappy and still choose to live this way. I don't see the happiness in that lifestyle anymore. I am completely guilty of this although, but I understand now and I'm making more of an effort to change that. Travelling will give you a better understanding of yourself. It will open you to new ideas, creativity and happiness. If you ever have the opportunity to travel, don't put it past you and try and make it happen. Make valuable memories, don't just wait around and waste your precious life given to you.
What gives you hope? The people I've met who share the same mindsets give me hope each and every day. Many photographers especially share a love for what they're taking photos of. To hear some people talk about wildlife, nature and our earth in a loving way always gives me hope. The people who stand up and fight for what they believe in especially, I really admire.
Is flannel always in season? This is an amazing question, haha. Yes, flannel is always in season, unless you live in Arizona.. Fall especially is my favourite season to wear one!
Must haves for travel? Wherever you're going, bring as much comfort as you can that reminds you of home. I personally bring Christmas lights EVERYWHERE I go. Whether I'm in my tent, or sleeping in my car. The more comfortable you feel, the better you'll feel when you're away.