About Johann

Johann Bona (Filipino-Chinese-Canadian, b. 1986) is a portrait photographer, approaching his subjects with a perceptive gaze, encouraging them to open up in front of the camera. His background in fashion photography lends elements of poetry to his portraiture work: tying in clean, graphic compositions with the mood and expression of his subjects. There is dynamism and movement in his images, giving space to the narratives of the people he is photographing. He is influenced by the work of Irving Penn, whose work in fashion photography informed his iconic portraits. He shares that one of his most memorable portrait and humanitarian projects was The Pinatubo Aetas, in which he photographs an indigenous Aeta community from the Philippines, dissecting the identity of a people.

Just recently, Johann fell in love with teaching, having found joy in sharing his knowledge of the craft to young aspiring visual artists. He taught at Humber College, one of the leading creative colleges in Toronto, and conducted lectures at Seneca College and the University of Toronto. A cum laude graduate with a Master in Fashion and Luxury Brand Management from the Istituto Marangoni in Milan, Johann worked largely as a fashion photographer after graduating, shuffling his time between Canada, Philippines, and Italy. His work has since appeared in international editions of Esquire, L’Officiel, and Tatler, among others, and he has amassed a notable clientele for commissioned work. In 2013, he was signed by the creative agency Jed Root (presently the Artists & Company Manila.) He currently lives and works in Toronto, Canada.

Selected Publications 

Esquire PH, L’Officiel Manila, Juxtapoz, GQ Brazil, 1968, Tatler, Town & Country, Highsnobiety, Lifestyle Asia, Rogue, Preview, Mega, Metro, UNO Guam, and Business World High Life

Selected Clients 

BBDO Guerrero, Mountain Dew, Havaianas, Wrangler, IURI Milan, Folded&Hung, SM Women, SM Men, SM Youth, SM Kids, Jellybean, Freshgear, Penshoppe, and Philippine Consulate General of Toronto

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