Balance / Luis Mora

Luis Mora is an artist and commercial photographer based in Toronto, Canada. He was born in Colombia and raised in the United States and Canada. He studied Applied Photography at Sheridan College. His commercial work is represented by KZM Agency. He recently self-published his first photo book “SayItWithFlowers” and had his first Canadian solo exhibition at Contact Gallery by the same name.

1. What is your favorite daily activity? Is it a specific time of day?

I am 33 years old in 2021. My daily life at the moment revolves around my personal life with my wife Melanie and daughter Veneda Lola, commercial work and my art practice. I am happy to say that I enjoy doing all three of these parts of my life equally. They all feed and uplift each other, on slow or fast days. I have learned that having a balanced life is an ongoing project that never really ends and maybe that’s why I don’t really have a favourite part of my day. Depending on what I am working on at the moment, I can enjoy waking up really early in the morning if the job requires it, staying up past bedtime to finish a personal project or spending time with my family.

2. what is a important motif in your work. Can you explain us why? Can you share with us some artists who inspire you? 

In the past three years, I have been very inspired by places and locations. For my second body of work «SayItWithFlowers», a market in Bogotá, Colombia was my main inspiration. The people in the market followed but the actual place, textures and smells were the first and main vein for the whole series of images. I hope to keep getting inspired by places and locations instead of specific people and their ideas.

For «Window Seat», the images that I am showing below, I decided to be inspired by restrictions and the lack of sleep I was having while traveling for work. It is the location determining the work. I really enjoy that right now. The images in «Window Seat» started as an exercise in boredom and anxiety while being inside an airplane, seeing how beautiful the world is just outside my window. These series of images are bringing up questions like, Why do we cry more on airplanes? Is it the combination of being 40,000 feet above land and miles away from family and friends? Maybe it’s the idea that we can’t control anything once we are inside that metal tube. What’s more important? – Where you are going or where you came from? I am finding myself in the middle with the curiosity of knowing and learning about my past and my parent’s past to learn where I am heading. I find it incredible the things you learn about yourself and others by looking back at history.

Does everyone think about death the way I do the moment I step on to an airplane?

3. Do you have a specific methodology or process for your work or life?

I have come to realize in the past few years that the less I have, the better I work. I used to romanticize the idea of a chaotic artist in a messy studio–hoarding, collecting, and always adding. I thought that was the only way great work could be made. It has taken me several years to come to this conclusion, and I know it’s a very personal thing, but the more organized, simplified and prepared I am, the better I work. I can communicate easier with clients and I can sort my ideas easier. Work can flourish in both environments but this way is definitely better for me. I spend a lot of time thinking how I can grow my work, learning new techniques and the equipment that I am using, but in a very methodical, processed way. Only recently have I learned about the benefit of taking away and removing the unnecessary things that can easily pile up while making work, and understanding that less is more.

4. What is a perfect day for you?

8 Hours Labour, 8 Hours Leisure, 8 Hours Rest.