For our latest edition of Through the Lens, we sat down with up-and-coming cannabis photographer Tyler Cameron aka @terpcam.
Cameron has shot many of the finest farms in the Pacific Northwest and California. The journeys always start from his base camp in Bend, Oregon. He’ll regularly hit the road to visit farms on his own or in support of Erik Christiansen, arguably the top cannabis photographer of the generation.
“I got into photography after weed, originally, I was really into a lot of like glass art and I wanted to take better pictures of my glass and my weed just for Instagram,” Cameron told L.A. Weekly. “I had a really good friend who was into photography doing landscape and nature photography. She sold me my first camera in 2017 or 2018.”
Eventually, Cameron’s work would move away from glass art to focus almost exclusively on flower photography. He struggles to pick a moment when he knew the images he was producing were up to par for the industry, but he emphasized he thought it was a slow process.
“I never really felt like I was really dialed in. A lot of it was just trial and error, and learning from Erik mainly,” Cameron told L.A. Weekly. “He was kind of around to help me with anything and teach me a lot of things that I was not aware of.
One of the things that helped Cameron’s progression was realizing how high quality the flower he was getting to shoot was. This, in turn, made him want to push his limits and learn more to create images that document the best flower, as professionally as possible.
He’s now taken those skills to somewhere between 50 and 80 farms, as he put it.
One of the most interesting parts of high end cannabis photography is they get to cross through a lot of different companies, and clicks of friends. They end up seeing more farms than most for sure. We asked how cool it is to be able to compare the way the best farmers in the world are doing it in the midst of shooting their crop.
Cameron argues that is probably the coolest and the most fun aspect of what he gets to do. He’s not a grower necessarily, but he loves getting to see how people can grow incredible cannabis and do it all differently with different methods with different techniques.
“It’s cool to see people sharing some of those, but also seeing people that are just doing something unique or doing things their own way,” Cameron said. “It’s so fun to be kind of, not like not an outsider, but not attached to anyone necessarily.”
As he sees it, this kind of just puts him on the exploration side and learning side.
“And everybody loves this plant. And it’s just all about this plant, and they’re doing all these crazy things and methods, and it’s absolutely crazy to see it all,” Cameron said of the farmers.
When we asked Cameron what the prettiest farm he’s gotten to shoot at was, he had trouble nailing it down, but it was probably somewhere in Humboldt County. He counts multiple-time Emerald Cup winner Ridgeline Farms among the best he’s seen for the views and quality of cannabis.
“Any, any of those Humboldt farms with views,” Cameron said. “It’s so special just to be in the hills and to be kind of out there.”