John Blais

A Vision Through Connection

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Q: What does connection mean to you?

A: It means everything! I had a pretty rough childhood, and the connections were lacking. For me, it’s heartwarming, the most beautiful thing in the world. Especially parents and children, that unconditional love.”


Q: How is this time of social distancing impacting you?

A: Everyone is craving connections now. pandemic or no pandemic, finding and documenting those connections is what I live to do. I just can’t not do that — capture the human experience. I search for love and connections every time I walk out the door. When we were at the height of the lockdown here, I just couldn’t take it. I had to get out, so i brought some food to homeless people. I ended up meeting some police officers. I found my connection that day and we did some cool photos! Even now, with all this mess going on, connections are everywhere. And the need for them is greater than ever.”


Q: Do you have a favorite connection moment from a personal shoot?

A: Yea, definitely. This one is gonna make me cry. It was from a recent trip to Cuba. They have so little there, so few distractions. Their focus is on each other. I bring candy and chocolate. Last time, this little girl, who was probably dying to eat the candy, took it across the street instead gave it to her elderly grandfather. My hope, when we get past this, is that we all care more about each other.”


Q: How does your desire to capture these connecting moments inform your production?

A: Well, it’s kind of like I’m a chef searching for the best ingredients. I’m really involved in every area of the production because if we don’t put the time in to find these amazing ingredients then we are not setting ourselves up to capture sincere connections. The most important ingredient for me is the talent. Whether they are real people or cast, we need to feel their humanity and their ability to connect with themselves as well as others openly.”


Q: You have almost as much BTS footage as you do the shoot itself. Can you explain why?

A: On every production, on the way to the shoot, at the shoot, I’m always shooting, when I am waiting for the stylist, I’m shooting the crew. It all goes together for me — I can’t stop. I’m addicted. This is my thing. Because I am so shy, this is my way of communicating and connecting. I love sharing BTS photos with crew and clients after the shoot. It’s also my way of saying thank you.”

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