Faculty photographer flying to Sochi to capture “mind-blowing emotion”

Photography instructor Chris Morris teaching a class
Photography instructor Chris Morris teaching a class

Langara photography instructor Christopher Morris hopped on a plane to Sochi on Feb. 3 to photograph the world’s best athletes.

This will be the third Olympic Games Morris has attended and photographed.

While security in Sochi is a hot topic, Morris was more concerned about going overweight on his checked bags.

“I just think that Sochi will be the safest place, if not [just] in Russia, then in the world during the Olympics,” Morris said.

Education and history

A native of Montreal, he was originally enrolled at Carleton University to become a lawyer.

He left after finishing his second year of a political science degree and worked as an assistant in a friend’s photography studio.

He found his passion in photojournalism after watching the 1983 movie Under Fire, starring Nick Nolte.

“I saw that movie and I realized that not only did I want to be a photographer, I wanted to be a photojournalist,” he said.

Early in his career, Morris worked for The Canadian Press in Montreal under photo editor and chief photographer Bill Grimshaw.

According to Grimshaw, Morris’ work ethic at the time was nothing special.

“He was lazy . . . I guess he just needed to be pushed out of the nest because I saw him two years later and his stuff was really good,” Grimshaw said.

Olympic coverage 

Morris worked his first Olympic Games in Vancouver with the visual media licencing company Corbis.

They were impressed with his work, so when Morris asked to cover the Olympics in London, they agreed. Corbis is now sending him to his third Olympic Games in Sochi.

Even with more than 25 years of photography experience and two Olympic Games under his belt, Morris is still awed by his surroundings

Heading to Sochi is an expansion of what he lives to do, he said.

“One of the hardest things for a photographer to capture is emotion and after every final there’s just phenomenal, incredible, mind-blowing emotion.”

Reported by Madelyn Forsyth

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