Thursday, November 3, 2011


Bill Hornbostel is a relatively new member of the Spirit of the Hills Arts Association which we both belong to in our area.
I had the privilege of 'sitting' with Bill at the Warkworth Maple Syrup Festival Juried Art Show earlier this year. He was most gracious and put up with so many questions I had for him.
The more I speak to other photographers, the more blown away I am at how much I still have to learn.
My apparent ability at composition is something many tell me is a gift. Since I don't know any different and I trust these people's opinions, I am flattered, to say the least.
I will admit when I speak to photographers, such as Bill, I am so envious and yet chomping at the bit, to learn and soak in all that I hear.

Thank you, Bill for giving me some of your time. In his own words, here is the interview of one fantastic photographer.

When did you first get interested in photography?
I first had a bit of interest in photography back in high school; out of curiosity, I took a course in it, and learned the basics of shooting and printing.
What kind of camera was your first and what do you use now?
My first camera was a Nikkormat ELW; a film SLR and a good, solid piece of machinery. Nowadays, though, I’ve switched to digital, and I use a Pentax K-20D.

What, in your opinion, are the advantages and disadvantages between ‘point and shoot’ and ‘DSLR’?
A point-and-shoot camera can be good because it is compact; it can also be good for learning the basics of shooting. However, point-and-shoot cameras have serious limitations when it comes to having control; many lack advanced controls, while on others they are buried beneath layers of menus.
A DSLR, on the other hand, gives a shooter much more control over the shot. It is bulkier, though, and with extra lenses, filters, etc., there ends up being a fair bit to haul around.

What type of pictures do you tend to shoot the most?
I tend to shoot landscape photos the most. In the area around Port Hope, that usually ends up being farmland, forest, and lake scenes.

What type of art, photography etc. do you have in your own home?
Most of what is on the walls in my house right now is photographs; however, there are also some oil paintings and watercolours waiting to be hung.

What is one tip you’ve learned to improve your photography?
Keep experimenting, trying new things, whether it is fiddling around with the settings on the camera, or trying out new compositions, or working on new ways of processing the results of what was shot. Through constant experimentation, one becomes a better photographer.

What type of photography is more difficult for you?
That would be portraiture. I am more accustomed to the quiet stillness of the places devoid of people.

Is there a particular photo you just haven’t managed to shoot yet, but you really would like to get?
Painting with light is one of the odder things which I have been meaning to experiment with, but the necessary condition (long nights) have not yet come around again.

Who influenced your love of photography?
Art Wolfe. A few years ago, seeing some of his work reawakened my interest in photography, which had been dormant for a long while.

Name one photographer you admire living or dead and why.
The artist I most admire is not a photographer, but rather a painter, Caspar David Friedrich. He was a German Romantic painter from the late eighteenth/early nineteenth centuries, and his works have a dramatic and evocative quality that I have sought to emulate in some of my work.

Which shot, up until now, are you most proud of?
One of the shots of which I am most proud is a shot I took at dawn on the shore of Lake Ontario during the winter.

What awards or acknowledgements have you received thus far, if any?
In August, my photograph "Town Hall in False Colour Infrared" won third place prize at the juried photography show in Warkworth.

Please visit Bill's website at:

If you would like to leave a comment, I know Bill would very much appreciate it. Bill, continued success and I hope one day we can do some shooting together.

1 comment:


What a talent! I enjoyed reading the interview and getting some tips about photography. I take my first photography course next week and I hope to see lots of improvement in my pictures and have a better understanding of my camera.
Thanks for these inspiring interviews Marg.