My name is Joel and I’m, well I’d like to think that I am, a wizard. Maybe not in the traditional sense, and maybe not in the incredible way that was created by JK Rowling, but I like to think I’m a wizard in the art world.
Growing up I was always set on being an artist. I devoured two things in equal measure. Animated films and storybooks. My weekly treks to the library were punctuated with family screenings of films filled with magic, adventure, imagination and curiosity. As I continued to immerse myself in the chapters of my favourite books, my desire to be an artist, a storyteller, only grew stronger.
But, as life often goes, I grew up. And grew away from those passions. I went to school, I got a job and after several years without a book or a pencil in my hand I realized I was missing something. And thankfully they both seemed to come into my life as a package deal. I discovered creative portraiture on the internet and I was hooked. Artists from around the world, sharing their ideas and their visions with the rest of us, not because they were being paid, but because they simply wanted to share their skills, their talents. I knew this was going to be how I found my creative voice. Almost at the same time, again simply by chance, I picked up Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and read it in an afternoon. The images swirled in my head and immediately I read each book as quickly as I could.
As my passion in photography grew, so did my appreciation and admiration for this Wizarding World. It became a safe place for my creative mind. It was comforting when I needed something familiar, but it was still exciting when I wanted to delve into a creative world. I’ve often turned to the pages of Harry Potter to fuel my own creativity, sometimes literally inspired by the graphic imagery but sometimes just inspired by the idea that magic lives all around us, inside us and with us.
What I’ve found in this magical world is more than just inspiration and escapism but also friendship and community. I joined a running club inspired by the Wizarding World, I’ve worked with other artists on their passion projects that include elements of the stories. I’ve met with fellow fans on the sets of the films, at the theme parks and book readings. It’s become a beautifully inspiring part of my life.
I hope you enjoy seeing some of my creative interpretations of this truly magical world