My work investigates Canadian gun culture through documentary photography. This series looks at hunters, who make up the largest demographic of gun owners in Canada. By engaging with hunters and documenting their experiences I am attempting to create a holistic portrait of this community. For some, hunting reflects their connection to the land and for others it is a way to provide for their families. Regardless of their motivations, the subjects of these photographs are united in their love for the natural world, and their interest in using guns as a tool of choice.
Canada has a federal gun licensing program run and monitored by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The rules surrounding firearms in Canada regulate who gets to possess guns and outlines the steep penalties for using them irresponsibly. However, regardless of these regulations and the extensive background checks that law-abiding citizens go through to own a gun in Canada, the influence of American media negatively shapes our perception of gun owners as dangerous and violent individuals.
Through these photographs I represent the firearms community in Canada in a way that is honest to their experiences; both the serene and the severe. I hope my work challenges people’s perspectives on firearms and hunting and also creates opportunities for informed discussion about gun use in Canada.