Looking through the lens with Sidney’s Anya Tompa

Local photographer talks about the connections in people she shoots behind the lens.

Anya Tompa with her photograph titled The Takeoff.

Anya Tompa with her photograph titled The Takeoff.

For Anya Tompa, photography is all about connecting with people and seeing the people in her lens connecting with their passions.

Tompa, who runs Anya Karita Photography at her studio The Way We See it, began art at the age of 20.

She was living in Finland (her mother is Finnish) in a small southern town and worked in the photo lab and did layout for a newspaper company.

“There was a photographer there who was very well known at the time … and he sort of took me under his wing and taught me how to use the dark room, so we would go out and shoot together in black and white film … and then go back and process everything …” she told the PNR during a tour of her studio on Beacon Avenue.

Having traveled quite a bit, a lot of her work is of travel photography, particularly of her Mexican travels.

Since moving to her studio, Tompa has developed an interest in photographing people, which she never had before.

“I am obsessive by nature so once I start something I just go full on into it,” she said, adding that a lot of her work right now is portraiture.

Currently, her sessions are by appointment only and they will go for coffee, meeting to discuss what her clients would like to do.

“It’s whatever they want to do creatively.”

Tompa had one girl come in who wanted to be photographed with a python, so she photographed them together in black and white.

“I get connections on a deeper level with people,” she said, adding that the type of portraiture she does is not surface portraiture. “It’s whatever their passion is.”

Tompa said it’s also about the process and not just the end result.

“It’s the process also. It’s not just the end result, it’s fun to do.

“It can be heavy and deep and it’s whatever people are connected to or need to get out of their system in some sort of creative way.”

In the Fall, Tompa will be taking a trip with her mother Christel to northern B.C to do a series of photography on totem poles, which will be for display and sale at her studio.

Tompa also rents out the space to other photographers who wish to use it.

To book the studio or schedule a photoshoot, people can call 250-812-2840 or email anyakarita@gmail.com.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Island Health is expanding COVID-19 testing in Nanaimo with a new testing location at Vancouver Island University. (News Bulletin file photo)
Island Health issues apology over racist practices in health care system

Report by Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond finds ‘widespread systemic racism against Indigenous people’

Island Health has reported a COVID-19 outbreak at Saanich Peninsula Hospital. (Black Press Media file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak hits first Greater Victoria hospital

Island Health declares outbreak at Saanich Peninsula Hospital

The Sooke School District is actively looking for more bus drivers after they had to cancel a handful of bus routes in late November. (Black Press Media file photo)
Bus driver shortage cancels routes in Sooke School District

More drivers needed to accomodate expanding bus routes amid pandemic

Penny Hart is calling on the community to help find her son Sean Hart who was last seen on Nov. 6 at a health institution in Saanich. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Search spreads for Saanich man missing from mental health facility for nearly a month

Family hopeful as possible sightings reported across Island and in Vancouver

Victoria’s Royal Jubilee Hospital took in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health as part of a provincial agreement. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria hospital takes in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health

Royal Jubilee Hospital takes patients as part of provincial transport network

(AP Photo/Paula Bronstein)
POLL: Has COVID-19 changed your plans for the holidays?

The lights are going up, the stacks of presents under the tree… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Dec. 1

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation at the legislature, Nov. 30, 2020. (B.C. government)
Hockey team brought COVID-19 back from Alberta, B.C. doctor says

Dr. Bonnie Henry pleads for out-of-province travel to stop

B.C. Premier John Horgan on a conference call with religious leaders from his B.C. legislature office, Nov. 18, 2020, informing them in-person church services are off until further notice. (B.C. government)
B.C. tourism relief coming soon, Premier John Horgan says

Industry leaders to report on their urgent needs next week

A teacher places the finishing touches on the welcome sign at Hunter’s Glen Junior Public School which is part of the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) during the COVID-19 pandemic in Scarborough, Ont., on Sept. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Hindsight 2020: How do you preserve a year many Canadians would rather forget?

Figuring out how to preserve the story of the pandemic poses a series of challenges

BIG SALMON ranch in Washington State. (Center for Whale Research handout)
Non-profit buys Chinook ranch in hopes of increasing feed for southern resident killer whales

The ranch, which borders both sides of Washington State’s Elwha River, is a hotspot for chinook salmon

Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy are inviting audiences into their home for ‘A Celtic Family Christmas’. (Submitted)
Natalie MacMaster coming to you through Cowichan Performing Arts Centre

Here’s your chance to enjoy the famed fiddler in an online show with her husband Donnell Leahy.

An RCMP cruiser looks on as a military search and rescue helicopter winds down near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
B.C. Mountie, suspect airlifted by Canadian Armed Forces from ravine after foot chase

Military aircraft were dispatched from Comox, B.C., say RCMP

Most Read