“Toronto is Where the World Lives”: Meet Photographer Ryan Bolton

A night shot of the historic Gooderham Building in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, by Ryan Bolton.

“If I can impact just one person with a story or photograph, I’ve done my job,” says Ryan Bolton, a photographer based in Toronto, Canada. Ryan caught the travel bug after his university graduation, when he spent time as a journalist in a Liberian refugee camp in Ghana. Exploring the world, telling stories, and taking pictures have since become his passions. From vibrant cityscapes to quiet portraits, here’s a glimpse into Ryan’s work.


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The colorful Toronto skyline.

You photograph landscapes to portraits, weddings to concerts, and more. What do you enjoy the most?

Looking for a portfolio-style theme? Ryan uses the modern Hermes theme, which highlights his photos beautifully on a front-page showcase.

The variety. I see every photo as a puzzle. As something to figure out and capture. It’s not just the composition of the shot . . . it’s the right light. The right numbers (aperture, shutter speed, ISO). The right vibe. The right story to tell. I love that about photography. Every shot is different: a different moment, a different capsule of time.

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A shoot with model Kiana.
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A nighttime street shot of iconic store Honest Ed’s, now gone, in Toronto.
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Capturing a moment between a couple, Leah and Chris, on their wedding day.

What do you love about photographing Toronto?

Having had the blessing of traveling all over the world, Toronto is where the world lives. I think it’s the most multicultural city in the world. It’s also the coolest: the art, culture, music, and food scenes are bar none. And the energy and the landscapes are ever-present. There are so many spots to photograph in Toronto — many ways of putting the city into perspective.

The view from Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto.
The view at Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto.

What’s up next for you in 2017?

ryan-bolton-self-portrait2017 is looking wild. I’m doing what I truly love — travel — and mashing it with my other-other love, photography. In the next couple months, I’m shooting a wedding in Halifax, then down to Florida, then to Sri Lanka.

Then, I’m joining my mom — a veterinarian and true badass — in Northern Ontario, in First Nations communities, to photograph her work running pro bono spay and neuter clinics, which might be the most rewarding.

In the summer, there’s California, quite a few model shoots, being a staff photographer for two major music festivals (WayHome and Boots & Hearts), and fitting in 12 weddings along the way. Let’s get it, 2017!

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A scenic shot from Maasai Mara in Kenya.

Explore more of Ryan’s work at ryan-bolton.com.

February 2, 2017Exploration, Photo Essay, Photography, Place,