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Published, Nov 20, 2020

Behind the Lens: Shaun Donnelly

Born in Ireland and currently based in Liverpool, Shaun Donnelly is menswear, lifestyle & interior blogger and freelance content creator with a passion for photography and design.

Instagram: @shaunyness
Twitter: @shaunyness
Pinterest: @manimalistblog

1. Tell us a bit about your background?

I work for a designer furniture, lighting and homeware company based in Liverpool, as their Digital Retail Director. So photography is part creative outlet and part side hustle for me. I’ve never considered myself a photographer - I’ve got too much respect for those who do it day in day out to claim that title. I guess I’d say I’m a content creator - a jack of all trades, master of none - that I can claim without any imposter syndrome.

2. What was your motivation to start photography, and what was your educational process?

I dabbled throughout my youth but sporting hobbies took up the majority of my time back then. It wasn’t really until Instagram came about that I spent any real time with a camera, and started exploring the ins and outs.

I’d say I’m self taught but in truth, I’ve learnt loads from friends and peers. I’ve still got loads to learn. At the start of the year I picked up film photography which has done more in helping me learn the technicalities of photography than anything before.

3. What subjects interest you most as a photography, and why?

I think this is something that I’m still trying to figure out. I’m not really the kind of person to photograph the nitty gritty of daily life. I lean more towards beautiful scenes with my ​Instagram account​ - a nice landscape, piece of architecture, interior setup or outfit. Which I guess is odd because a lot of the photography I consume is street photography, which for the most part, really does show the “truth” in everyday life.

4. Is there a particular project you've worked on, which stands out most and if so, why?

In the last 6 months I shot my first portrait sessionon medium format film, and took my first stab at night photography, also on film. With such limited experience, I was very pleasantly surprised with the results, so those two stand out. One of the b-sides from the nighttime shoot blew up a little over on Reddit, which was pretty exciting.

5. What equipment are you currently using, and what do you like about it?

My daily carry at the moment is the Fujifilm X Pro-2 with a 35mm f2 lens. The form factor is great (quite similar to 35mm film cameras), the glass is sharp and the fuji colours are great for the odd occasion where I opt to not edit the RAW files.

By the time this comes out I may have pulled the trigger on the Canon R6 for my client work.

My baby is the Mamiya RB67. I’ve created my favourite photos on that camera, and every time I shoot with it, I have fun.


6. What are your working on next?

I’m working on a journal entry on ​my website​ that will feature some polaroid photos. In fact, they’ll be the first ever polaroid photos I’ve shot, so who knows how that will turn out? We’ll have to wait and see.

You can read Shaun's guide on how to brew coffee at home in his journal, using our single-origin Brazilian coffee, Das Almas. You'll also find more of his amazing work on Instagram at @shaunyness.