The Bunz And The Brains: Rebecca Hearn Is One Of LA's Coolest Emerging Creatives
Ready-made filters and easy-to-use photo-editing apps have turned us all into amateur photographers, while platforms like Instagram have made it easier than ever to distribute our photos. For young professional photographers, the question is now how to stand out among a sea of hobbyists. For Rebecca Hearn, her answer was found in the pitch black of the dark room.
A Montreal native turned West Coast creative, Hearn has never played by anyone’s rules. Although she credits her rising popularity to her social media presence, Hearn still continues to shoot with film — and only with film. As a result, her photographs have a refreshing purity not found in digital work. Today, Hearn has made a name for herself as a photographer, director and producer by creating fresh content with her unique analogue flare. Here, the creative talks inspirations, future goals and why she’s known around LA as “bunz.”
First things first: tell us about your Insta name, beckybunz, where did that come from?
Haha... Well... It is actually from my bunz. One weekend, I was on a hike with my rugby club from back home, and a friend of mine behind me yells out, "Holy shit, Becky has got some bunz!" Ever since then, it has been my nickname and has stuck. Mostly everyone in Montreal calls me Bunz, and it has most definitely caught on in LA.
When did you first start taking pictures?
I really couldn't tell you when I first started taking pictures. I feel like I always have. I recently found a stack of polaroids from a high school trip in Europe; every day I was documenting one place we went by taking a photo. I was the only person I knew at that time who was using a polaroid and taking photos in an aesthetic way. Looking at those pics actually did resurface something for me. I thought, "Hey, I guess I always did think of photography as a creative outlet!"
You made the move from Canada to LA, correct? Do you think experiencing that transition impacts your creative vision and the work you do today?
100% — Out in LA, everyone I surround myself with are creatives. It inspires me and motivates me. Don't get me wrong, the Montreal scene is killing it too. SSense is one of the biggest online retailers out there, and they produce amazing content. Shout out also to the brothers at Saintwoods who have an influence on me. I feel like if I were still out in Montreal, I could only advance creatively at a certain pace, but out in Los Angeles, I am never advancing quickly enough.
If you weren’t doing what you do now, what would you be doing?
Criminal psychologist or social worker.
Given that there are so many people today trying to break into fashion photography, how do you keep your ideas and concepts fresh?
Research and constantly keeping my brain wrapped around creating new ideas. Whether it's taking a screenshot from a scene in a movie or taking a photo of a Goodyear ad in vintage Playboy, all of these things influence my ideas and concepts.
What influence has Instagram had on your photography work?
Ha- So much! I think it's the same for a lot of people, too. It's a strange thing, but it has created a lot of opportunity for me with production work and photography jobs. I am going to bet you came across me through my Instagram too.
In your Insta bio, you rep “HENRI COLLECTIVE,” a LA creative production service that’s “coming soon” online. Mysterious. What’s that about?
Not so mysterious — it's the creative production company I started. The company itself has launched; I am just waiting for some of the stuff Henri Collective has produced to be released before I officially launch the website.
What’s the craziest project/shoot you’ve worked on?
I produced a job that involved a few snakes, a haunted mansion and two babes sandwiching a DJ resembling Iggy Pop.
You’ve created some pretty awesome content since you got started! What are you most proud of?
Capturing human beings and real moments. Some of my favorite photos are ones of kids in Cuba skateboarding, playing soccer, praying or families in the little town of Cobá, Mexico. Oh yeah, I am also pretty proud of the photos I have of musicians, especially the rap artists. I love rap music.
You also attended and shot the Women’s March in LA, right? Tell us about that experience.
Powerful, captivating, inspiring and emotional.
The one thing in your closet you can’t live without?
1. Full underwear
And what’s next for you?
I just want to keep on doing what I am doing now and get really good at it. Hopefully influence people the same way I am influenced by others and things.