Meet Joshua San: Founder of Cwolf Photography

Joshua San's journey as a photographer began unexpectedly when he purchased a camera for travel photography. Little did he know that this simple purchase would ignite a passion that would define his career for the next 13 years. With a commitment to authenticity and a diverse portfolio ranging from travel and fashion to artistic work, Joshua's photography style captures real moments that resonate with viewers. His career highlights include shooting a diverse range of subject from Kobe Bryant, Dr Jane Goodall and Richard Dawkins to Christiano Ronaldo, A$AP Rocky and Julian Assange.

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Why did you decide to become a photographer?

Photography found me rather than the other way around. I bought my first camera for the sheer enjoyment of capturing travel moments, and it was a revelation. The ability to freeze a fleeting moment in time and convey emotions through visual storytelling fascinated me. From that point on, I knew I wanted to pursue photography as a career and share my unique perspective with others.

How would you describe your photography style?

I try to keep my style as authentic as possible. I try to capture genuine moments that evoke emotions and tell stories. Whether it's the raw beauty of nature, the subtle nuances of fashion, or the artistic exploration of portraiture, I strive to maintain a candid feel in my work. Capturing real moments allows viewers to connect with the images on a deeper level.

Which professional photographers have influenced your work?

I found a lot of inspiration from street photographers and film makers. Both have an ability to find beauty in the mundane and create compelling narratives through their images. There is some amazing talent in Australia at the moment – both Lazyfair and Stillsbydan are doing some epic work and are changing the way we view our craft.

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Among all your work as a photographer, do you have a favourite project that holds a special place in your heart?

I’ve found a lot of fulfillment in shooting nature and cabins – there’s a sense of timelessness in capturing the beauty of the natural world. However, some of my most inspiring work has come from shooting portraits of the likes of Kobe Bryant and Neil deGrasse Tyson. Being able to work with such iconic figures is always an honour. My favourite series to date is my Japan film series, where I had the opportunity to immerse myself in the rich culture and breathtaking landscapes of Japan on 35mm film.

As a freelance photographer, what is the best advice you've received?

To approach my career with flexibility and intention. Setting clear goals, knowing my targets and constantly evolving my style have been crucial in shaping my journey as a photographer. This advice has not only helped me grow professionally but has also encouraged me to embrace experimentation while staying true to an authentic vision.

If you could give your younger self a piece of advice when starting your photography career, what would it be?

If I could give my younger self one piece of advice, it would be to lean into patience and persistence. Building a successful career – in any field - takes time. I’ve seen so many great photographers give up early because they didn’t get the ‘cool gigs’ straight away, or get paid large fees early in their careers. Persist, and you’ll get to where you want to be.


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CoTheory

How do you stay organised and manage your time?

If it's not in my Google Calendar, I'm not doing it! Having a way to track schedules is crucial. I start the first hour of my day with email administration, spend a few hours editing, and always leave at least an hour for client outreach at the end of my day.

What's the most important thing about your workspace?

Besides the technical aspects, the most important non-tech element in my workspace are my salt lamps. Since I spend hours editing, having them next to my screen helps keep my eyes from straining. I also have a lot of paperwork, and my marble document tray from CoTheory has been truly invaluable, too.

In your opinion, how important is a space for a person's state of mind and wellbeing?

A clear space leads to a clear mind, and an organised space promotes an organised mind. The environment we work in greatly impacts our state of mind and overall wellbeing.

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CoTheory

What has your experience been like working with us at CoTheory? What did you think of the campaign shoot that we worked on together?

I absolutely love everything about CoTheory and what they represent. The team was amazing to work with, and I genuinely adore how their products look in my house.

Which editing software do you usually use?

Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere Pro, and After Effects are my go-to editing software tools. They cover all my editing needs.


Which is your favourite lens?


My 24-240 lens is my favourite. It covers all the bases, and I use it for everything – I’d highly recommend this type of lens for anyone starting out and wondering which lens to kick off their collection with.

What is your best photography tip?

Find your own style and always experiment. Practice is always a better way to learn than theory.

To learn more about Josh, you can visit Cwolf Photography online here.

Words by Jacqueline O'Neill, Inneka Agency.