By Laura Amato
It all began in a slightly unexpected place – on a wrestling mat.
Or, rather, just off the wrestling mat.
Kania Pollock was the only girl on her wrestling team when she first started the sport. She was also just 11 years old and more often than not found herself without an opponent for her matches.
It left her with some time on her hands. So, Pollock started filming her teammates’ matches and one day, her coach’s girlfriend suggested something different – taking pictures of the matches.
Fast forward to present day and The Mary Louis Academy basketball star is a photography force, never far from her camera, even when she’s on the court.
“My coach’s girlfriend was a photographer, she went to school for it,” Pollock said. “And she taught me how to use the camera. Ever since then I fell in love with photography.”
Since those first few days on the side of a wrestling mat, Pollock has focused most of her attention on becoming the best photographer she can be. She bought the equipment, she made the contacts, she brings her camera with her to every single game she plays on the off chance that she’ll see something and need to snap a frame.
It’s become as important as basketball has and, for Pollock, serves as better expression of who she is.
“It’s art. I just love art,” Pollock said. “It’s a different perspective on things. It’s like, I see you here, but the camera sees you another way.”
Pollock’s first photography love was sports and action – she spends most of her offseason on sidelines and even during the season always manages to find a few moments in between games to take photos.
She took pictures during this year’s Rose Classic and, just a few moments after she put the camera down, suited up for her own game.
Sports photography offers Pollock an opportunity she doesn’t have on the court – a chance to pause a moment and keep it visually forever. It’s something she’s learned to cherish over the last few years.
“Sports is totally different, you’ve got different shutters and you can see different things,” Pollock said. “You can get someone in the air dunking or something you can’t get on video. A picture captures it and it’s a different world when you think about it.”
Pollock loves sports – basketball, in particular – but she’s not turning down any opportunity when it comes to photography. In fact, in the last few years she’s staged photo shoots for friend’s clothing lines, album covers and even Sweet 16 parties. It’s a venture that’s helped her create The Wave Photography and Pollock’s Instagram feed is chock-full of her photos.
Photography has become as much a part of Pollock’s life as basketball and while the Hilltoppers standout has team-based goals this season, she’s also keeping one eye trained on her photography goals as well.
“I’m working on trying to get a studio because I have the light stands and stuff and I know people that do it, so they can help me get into it,” she said. “I think I’m going to start it after the season because I don’t want to worry about it now.”
Pollock wants to play basketball at the next level, but she’s not in any rush to put her camera down. She stumbled into photography, but it’s a passion that’s changed her life and one, she hopes, defines it as well.
“I want to go to college for basketball and also do photography and business,” Pollock said. “When I get out of college and I don’t want to play basketball anymore or I stop playing basketball, I’ve still got something to fall back on.”