MTLCM Team Profile – Photographer Taran Matharu
By Rebecca West
Creative Mornings Montreal wouldn’t be possible without our team of dedicated volunteers. A large part of our tasks focus not only on producing a great event, but on capturing that experience so that we can share it with a wider audience online. Taran Matharu is one of our talented photographers who contributes to the rich and varied visual content that we create every month.
You seem to split your time between movie animation and photography – how does one creative practice influence the other?
I’ve being doing animation since 1999, professionally since 2002. Certainly throughout the years, animation has been a predominant force in my life. Photography was always there, but more as a casual hobby. In my animation career, my awareness to composition became more apparent over time, and as a consequence I started implementing more of that thought process in my photography. With that basis, character animation and photography work hand in hand, for example I’m more aware of body silhouettes and framing in both animation (such as animating a shot in a movie) and photography. My career transition from game to movie animation in 2010 also definitely sped up my mastery of composition and framing, since I am constantly considering cinematography and body language.
Taran Matharu image from our “Minimal” talk with Félix Lajeunesse and Paul Raphaël.
What inspired your move from London seven years ago, and what keeps you here?
I’m originally from a little town near London, called Slough (yes also where the popular Ricky Gervais show “The Office” is based). I moved to the South of England, Bournemouth, for a degree in animation for 3 years. After this, I moved all the way up north near Leeds for my first animation job at a games studio called Team17, famous for creating the “Worms” franchise. I was there for 4-5 years until an agency saw my work from abroad and mentioned an opportunity to work in Montreal for another games studio. I was at a point in my life where I could take this kind of risk, and decided to go for it. Almost instantly I fell in love with the city, the people and the culture here, and ended up taking residency in Canada… and the rest is history. I realised that Montreal is a huge hub for creative talent, so not only was I able to improve my animation credentials, but my photography also exploded. The networking aspects of social media and sharing my work have been huge - learning from others is always influential. There are many animation studios in Montreal, so opportunities here are easy to come by. I’ve been doing a lot of photography work progressively year by year, again through exposure of social media or word-of-mouth. So I’ve also been fortunate in this aspect. Montreal is a land of opportunities for the creative junky!
When did you get involved with Creative Mornings and what inspired you to join?
I first heard of Creative Mornings through my good friend Pierre Antoine, whom I met randomly on a shared road trip to Toronto 5-6 years ago. Our friendship grew and I then had the opportunity to meet Francis Gosselin. Over time, my photography work improved and I was given the chance to be part of this great organization. I guess they liked my work :)
Taran Matharu image from our “Sex” themed Creative Mornings event with Emily Southwood.
Are there any other projects, either professionally or personally that you’re working on at the moment that you’re excited about?
I’m currently working on the feature film Le Petit Prince, directed by Mark Osborne. It’s an English adaptation, while staying very true to the essence of the original books - a new story, with elements of the old. Its shaping up nicely. As for photography, I’ve been doing a lot of portrait work, as well as several weddings. With all this stuff going on, I don’t have much time to do personal projects, but in a sense my professional work is personal also.