#LOCALartIs: Shane Mahoney

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Shane Mahoney is a photographer snapping lifestyle imagery around the city of Pittsburgh. Mahoney is Recreation Specialist at Washington County Health Center, working with dementia patients. Seeing this side of life helps Mahoney to view, appreciate, and capture the spatial and somewhat fleeting nature of the human condition. His work is vivid and haunting, showing movements of life and the deafening nature of blank space through architecture. We had a moment to sit down with Shane to discuss what he sees through his lens. Shane Mahoney, Seer of Light. Oh yeah, he also love cupcakes. #win

What’s going on in your world?

I’m currently finishing up my Masters of Science in Counseling Psychology at Chatham University.  Before that I had received my Bachelors in Psychology at La Roche College. I also have an Associate’s Degree in Graphic Design from Bradford School of Business.  I’m currently engaged and will be getting married on October 27, 2017.  I can’t wait for that day to come!  I know that this isn’t the most exciting life, but it’s the kind I wanted.  I’m currently happy with where I’m at in this stage of my life.  I got a great fiancée, as well as family and friends.

What are you doing when you’re not working?

The interesting thing is that photography is my main hobby outside of my profession.  I would assume that I don’t fall under the typical photographer upbringing.  I loved photography and seeing captured moments ever since I was younger, but I never found myself behind a lens until about 2 years ago.  Even then I didn’t take it as seriously as I do now.  My other hobbies include: collecting retro games; collecting civil war related items; video games; movies; basketball; and I would also count going to concerts as a hobby!

What do you love about being an artist?

What do I love about being an artist?  I love the fact that it’s my vision being brought to life.  That sounds cliché, but it’s honestly true.  I love the idea that what I’m creating wasn’t created before.  It might have been portrayed before, but it wasn’t portrayed by myself and not in the way that I like.  I learned in graphic design that originality is almost dead.  Everything has been done in all different aspects.  Our goal for our generation is trying to find a way to mix all the different styles out there and to put out something refreshing or possibly new.  It’s our goal to try to revamp and restyle.  I’m not saying that original work is completely out of the picture because the human mind can dream up a vast array of amazing works.  What I’m saying is that it may be more difficult because being creative can be a challenge.  I just like the idea that I was able to come up with something that I haven’t done before.

What is your photography philosophy?

 My philosophy for being a photographer and even in life is to not care about what other people may think or say, but always be respectful.  I feel that this holds a lot of people back in their lives and it really shouldn’t.  I do understand why it does, but I just wish it wouldn’t.  This is my work and I appreciate all feedback that I get, whether it be positive or negative.  Feedback helps push me to better myself in my hobby and in my professional career.  I would say to just trust in yourself and believe in whatever you do because in the end it’s your life and it shouldn’t be dictated by others.  

Catch up with Shane on Instagram @thesuga

Profile shot by Taylor Handy