Leah Denbok-Girl with Ukrainian Headdress



A lovely sensitivity

B&W photography by Leah Denbok on exhibit at Collingwood Public Library 



It’s not often that an amateur photographer gets praise for her work from some of the best known photographers in the world. But it’s even more amazing when she’s 15 years old.


Leah Denbok just finished Grade 9 at Jean Vanier Catholic High School in Collingwood, but over the last year she has been receiving rave reviews for her photography from such well-known photographers as Joel Sartore and Lana Slezic.


“If [Leah] sticks with it, I think she’s well on her way to becoming not just a good photographer, but a great photographer,” writes Sartore, whose work appears in National Geographic. “And I’m not kidding.”


Photojournalist and filmographer Lena Slezic, who freelances for The Globe and Mail, The New York Times, Maclean’s, and TIME, says: “…[Leah’s work] has a sensitivity which is lovely….”


Leah has only been taking pictures since 2012, when she bought herself a used Canon EOS T2i from a local store. “Everyone has a camera these days,” she says, “but I wanted to create art more than just photos.”


She signed up to study with Joel Sartore and, for the last two years, has been concentrating, primarily, on photographing people and animals in black and white. She feels that, at least at this point in her development, colour can distract from the design and composition of her subject matter. “The beauty of people comes through,” she says, “if you capture them right.” 


The results of her work will be on exhibit this summer in the Art Walk and Bridge Gallery at the Collingwood Public Library from July 2 to August 28 in her second solo exhibition called “Chiaroscuro: Light & Dark Images.”


You are invited to meet Leah Denbok at her opening reception on Saturday, July 4 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Art Walk of the Collingwood Public Library, 55 Ste Marie Street. Leah Denbok will be available for interviews and photographs.


More praise for Leah’s work: “Surely, [Leah] will make a name for herself as an artist and photographer…She has the skill and, if she endeavours to develop a conceptual practice, she will prove to be a tour de force.” Natalie MacNamara, director, O’Born Contemporary Gallery, Toronto



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