Photographer Mitch Service (AKA @416shooter) captures Toronto’s most intriguing angles. He tells Notable about turning his passion into his career, his go-to Toronto restaurants and where he wants to travel to next.
Describe what you do in less than 140 characters. Go.
I am a freelance photographer known on social media as @416shooter. I mostly shoot street and lifestyle, but have experience in portraits, studio, events, etc.
What was the inspiration for your career route?
I also run an online building material supply company, which required professional photos of the interiors from projects we had completed.
I borrowed a camera from my mom and called up a friend, and we started running around the city shooting everything we could! We started by finding interesting buildings for roof-topping, look-ups and symmetry. Then we scoured the city in search of abandoned locations for interesting grungy shots we had seen as inspiration on Instagram. Seeing my creativity come to life from the photos, and how exciting it was to edit them, just drove me to improve. Whenever I look through my lens or edit a photo it drives me to want to shoot more.
What is the most memorable milestone in your career so far?
Definitely this recognition from Notable. But another memorable milestone in my career was when I was asked by the Warehouse partners if I could take a shot for their feature in Now Magazine, “Best New Restaurant 2015.” This was an excellent opportunity and was very cool to see my work published as a full page in a magazine with hundreds of thousands of readers!
Where do you see yourself in five years, 10 years, 20 years?
In five to 10 years, I would like to own a studio for my own photography, rentals, galleries and events.
In 20 years, I would like to be retired and living comfortably, travelling and taking photos around the world with my family, and making sure my children are cultured.
Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
My advice would be that if you are passionate about your hobby, set goals and work hard to achieve them, you will be able to turn your passion into a career.
Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is it (or they) important to you?
I have worked with The Warehouse group for photos to support several of their charitable events, including clothing and food drives.
What is one major challenge that you’ve had to overcome in your career? How did you overcome it?
One major challenge I have faced in my career is juggling my online business while pushing my photography to be more than a hobby, and making it my career. I have still not completely transitioned over, but I have set the wheels in motion to prepare myself financially to be able to make photography my full-time gig.
What does the word notable mean to you?
To me, “notable” means someone who has had a significant impact, and I want to continue to create a notable legacy through the pursuit of my passion.
Where is your favourite place to wine/dine in your city and why?
Queen Warehouse and Soos are the main places you’ll find me enjoying myself. Queen Warehouse is like Cheers for me, it feels like home, and Soos has the best noodles in the city!
What’s the most visited website on your Internet browser? The most played song on your phone? Hmmm, probably Amazon on my computer, or Instagram on my phone. This changes weekly, but currently Redbone by Childish Gambino.
Who’s one person you think everyone should be following on social media?
Honestly, @fuckjerry because laughing is good for everyone. Otherwise, @alenpalander, he is a big inspiration for me and takes beautiful photos all over the world.
What’s your favourite country to visit and why? And what’s the next one you plan on travelling to?
My favourite city is probably a better question. I have only been shooting for a few years, and photography makes exploring new cities that much more exciting. Chicago has some incredible architecture and so many iconic places. I loved the vibe there, and roaming the streets taking in all the new views. I really want to visit Tokyo, Japan. All the lights, buildings, people, culture…it would be amazing!
What gives you the greatest FOMO?
When there is an amazing opportunity for a photo on the rare, random occasion that I don’t have my camera on me.
What’s your guiltiest pleasure?
My guilty pleasure is Uber-Eats and Netflix all day with my girlfriend and dogs.
What’s something you wish you didn’t spend so much money on? What’s something you wish you spent more on?
I wish I spent less money on socializing and more money on travelling, but socializing has helped me to get where I am, so it’s tough to say.
And finally, what does success look like to you? Work, play, or otherwise…
Success to me is living your life in the way that makes you the happiest! Happiness looks like many things to many people, but for me it’s to leave a legacy my family and I are proud of.