South Surrey: Roland Kaufmann

Roland Kaufmann's Lens on South Surrey

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Surrey Through My Lens” proudly shares authentic photo essays that showcase what it is really like to live in and visit our community from a range of perspectives. 

Tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you lived in Surrey?

Hey!  I’m Roland Kaufmann, a Journeyman Cabinetmaker and aspiring photographer from Surrey, BC.  I grew up in Guildford, just down the street from Berkshire Elementary.  For the past 33 years this city has been my home.      

From Guildford, to Clayton Heights, and now Rosemary Heights, I’ve lived and experienced what Surrey is all about.  I’ve found that wherever I go there are great people, different cultures, and interesting places to explore.  

Photography has become a big part of my creativity.   It’s a hobby that I look to transition into a full time job moving forward.  I’m excited to share my images and inspire people to go out and enjoy this great city!


What does South Surrey look like through your lens?

 In the past I would spend my free time hiking, biking, and exploring the local mountains. Then last year, with the birth of my son, came a change to that routine.  Instead of adventures far away, my days off are spent much closer to home. South Surrey has become the focus of my photography.

I now see my neighbourhood and the surrounding area as an important place for me and my family.  The playground down the street is now a place I take my son to play. The Urban Forest has become my escape into the trees and the The Pier is now a favourite place to walk and capture photos.  

I’ve found a desire to photograph the people and places right outside my door.  In doing so I feel a meaningful connection to the community.  

What is one image that showcases how living in South Surrey feels?

For me, there’s no better place to spend the early morning than at the beach.  I try to get down and enjoy the sunrise as often as I can. There’s something special about watching the first light peak over the hill and shine onto the ocean below. The waterfront in South Surrey provides the perfect spot to view the morning light.

There’s a sense of peace and calm before another busy day. I find these moments impossible not to photograph.  At times things seem to perfectly align and the images fall into place.  Living in South Surrey feels like being on vacation in your own backyard.  

One of the stops on your itinerary in South Surrey was Hazelmere Pumpkin Patch at Gabriel Farms. How does the experience they provide represent Surrey?

Hazelmere Pumpkin Patch at Gabriel Farms is a great local business to support.  On my recent visit I was lucky enough to meet Shari, who runs the farm with her husband Chris, sons Craig and Otto, and daughter Paige.  With the help of many neighbours and friends, it seems to me they are looking to grow more than just pumpkins.  

You can pet goats, play on a ship and firetruck playground, or try to find your way out of a corn maze.  It’s a great place to bring the whole family!  From February to June they run a weekday farm school program for kids of all ages.  The family also run a Spring Break camp in March and Summer Camps from July-August.  Oh and don’t forget the Sunflower days in late August!  

It’s clear to me that Shari and family are looking to grow a close-knit community.  One that can enjoy their South Surrey farm for many years to come. 


Food is a big part of Surrey's identity - what makes the experience at The Everbean Cafe stand out to you?

The Everbean Cafe, run by Jessie and Chris, is truly a hidden gem. For the past 6 years this lovely duo has been carefully crafting the perfect place to sit and enjoy a tasty treat.   The giant wall of windows brings in great natural light to the space.  There’s even a dog-friendly patio for those sunny days.  

I highly suggest you try the (Kyoto-style) Slow-Drip Cold Brew.  It takes a stunning 16 hours to brew and is mesmerizing to watch.  Or you can buy a 1L bottle if you’d prefer to take more of it to go.  Don’t forget to grab one of the delicious pastries.  The PB & J cookie sandwich is downright amazing!

The Everbean Cafe also offers a nice variety of homemade sauces and syrups so you can make your very own coffees, lattes, and even cocktails in the comfort of your home.  There is a good reason the cafe is ranked #14 on Yelp’s list of top coffee shops in Canada.

Lastly, what inspires you to share Your Surrey through your photography?

These days my passion for photography has led me to experience familiar places again, but this time with a new perspective.  After three decades of living in this city, I’m now looking to showcase the people and places that make this such a diverse and interesting place to be.  

I share my photos because I believe there are amazing parts of South Surrey that are just waiting to be discovered.  Whether it’s a wonderful family farm or a cozy cafe, these places are what make Surrey so special.  My goal with photography is to highlight even more local businesses that are looking to build a strong community and improve the lives of those around them.  

See more of Roland's work here:

Check out the Other Lenses on Surrey

Check out the other lenses on Surrey’s six neighbourhoods – we’ll be releasing a new feature every two weeks from November 16th, 2022 to January 25th, 2022. Click the link below to learn more about the project and find the galleries for the other neighbourhoods.