If you spend enough time in one small city it turns into a backdrop—an infrastructure for our experiences. As I wander around town, I seek intriguing subjects to photograph in a light that is authentic to their character.

My hometown provides this backdrop and offers an endless resource of diversity to capture. Winnipeg’s isolation, extreme climate, and the tough and tender disposition of the city’s people create an impulsive undertone. The conflicts in my photographs are born of an ambiguity that reflects these unusual qualities I encounter. I am thrilled to be able to capture a surreal image from an ordinary moment.

The ridiculous also takes center stage, and an odd combination of lavishness and minimalism often prevails. When I take regular subjects and capture them in a grandiose, heightened reality, it is as if their intrinsic self-worth has been confirmed. These moments are highly provocative. Aware of the camera, the subjects’ resulting vulnerability is brutally honest. Capturing this moment usually requires an equal balance of comfort and tension.

It is the awkward imbalances and perplexities that I try to capture throughout my work.