A familiar face at hundreds of events across the city, photographer Jas Sansi is one of the most passionate champions of modern Birmingham and everything it stands for
BEEN THERE, DONE THAT
I’m a freelance photographer here in Brum, specialising in shooting conferences, award ceremonies and corporate events. I’m often surprised to find myself in front of prime ministers, royalty and heads of state. I mostly work with the region’s business community with whom I have built a very close relationship. I’ve also worked across Europe, which was why I campaigned for us to Remain.
IT’S WHAT I DO
I capture events but more importantly I syndicate the images across traditional media – magazines and papers – as well as social media, which is a phenomenal way of getting immediate exposure. My Flickr account is marching towards 10 million views. I’m a big fan of Twitter and Facebook. The client benefit to this approach is their events and conversations continue online after the venue has emptied.
WHAT I’D LIKE TO SEE
I’ve always aligned my ambitions with those of Greater Birmingham and the Midlands. To showcase our part of the world to attract inward investment, retain graduates and build strong communities and generate pride for what is the best place in the world to live. If we can achieve this, our personal ambitions and the aspirations we all share for quality of life, our families and friends, and our communities will follow.
I went to a terrible school. It wasn’t the teachers, most of them were doing everything you would expect and more. It was just the chronic underfunding and social deprivation. My biggest success has been along with my wife Anji getting our children into good schools to give them the best possible start in life.
BIGGEST LESSON LEARNED
I’ve made every mistake in the book, I wish I’d learnt from the mistakes of others rather than my own. I didn’t know what a Russell Group University was as a student. If I’d known, I think I would have worked harder to get into one.
WHAT I LIKE ABOUT BRUM
It’s always been the people. That’s what makes the place. I feel we deserve to enjoy more swagger in our success but we’re too modest. From manufacturing to research, creatives to finance, our green spaces and trees, the best food imaginable, the arts and networks, the factory floor to the presidential suites, everyone has a place in this city. I’ve definitely witnessed the pendulum of opinion swing from a city which is challenging to one we can all fall in love with.
I’m a trustee of LoveBrum which shines a spotlight on and raises funds for ‘under the radar’ projects in the region. We simply want to make Brum greater than it already is. We’re on Twitter @LoveBrumUK
Brexit has split the country in half. I hope 2017 sees the jigsaw put back together including the continental pieces. We have rejected the EU model but we haven’t turned our back on our European partners. It will take time to repair the relationship but that shouldn’t stop us trying.