FM42: When did you realize that photography was a path you wanted to follow?
I liked and played around with photography, including film, since I was like 12 years old. Later, I had a Fuji bridge camera and with the advent of mobiles with better cameras, I enjoyed photography as a hobby, taking pictures of everything that caught my eye, including on the street. The moment I knew I wanted to take on photography as a full time lifestyle, was a year ago when I bought my first second hand, entry level DSLR. One year later, I am shooting on a Canon R5, learning from some of the best photographers in the business, shooting with professional models and entering photography contests. But street photography remains one of my favorite genres.
FM42: What does photography mean to you?
Photography for me is a way to express myself. It is a way to see the world in a different perspective and show others how I see it. It is my way of seeing the light, shapes, shadows and emotions. It is that instance, when you catch the perfect moment, the perfect frame, sometimes not knowing that you did until later when you look at the photos on the computer at home. Photography is a way to help others discover beauty in mundane, everyday, ordinary things that surround them. Like how beautiful the eyes of a street cat are, details on the wings of a dragonfly on the edge of a lake or a certain moment of an alley at night frozen in time.
FM42: What was the most curious story behind your photograph?
I guess one story behind a photograph that I can tell is about… a spider. Late at night, I am at my computer, doing whatever. Problem was there were many flying insects around the room. Pretty annoying. So I took a can of spray and used it around the room. Ten minutes later when I returned, I had a big surprise. The surprise was in the presence of a big spider, bright green colored, hanging from one of his silks just above my computer screen. He looked dead. I felt bad because I don’t like killing spiders. Don’t ask why. But oh well, too late now. On the other hand, I had just purchased a 100mm macro lens. Big dead spider coupled with a brand new macro lens, perfect opportunity. So, I tried to grab the silk to get my specimen. But another surprise. He wasn’t dead. And I know for a fact bright colors in nature means beware, I have poison (turns out I was right, I later identified it as being an American House Spider). But what can you do?
I continued. The spider was pretty groggy from my spray. I was careful not to touch him and put it on the desk in front of the computer, got my camera and started to work on him. The poor guy tried to run away walking slowly like he was drunk and I was pushing him back with the lens cap. And so I spent like half an hour to an hour photographing him (or her, no idea). Even though I was working with a moving spider, handheld, a depth of field around a tenth of a mm and as light only with the flashlight mode from my phone, I was pretty happy with the results. Out of around 100 shots, I got about 8 or 9 that I was happy with. And got rid of the spider by throwing him outside in some bushes. This is a story that makes me laugh every time I tell it.
FM42:Who are some photographers that inspire you?
A few big names that inspire me in photography are Henri Cartier-Bresson, Ansel Adams, Robert Frank, Sebastiao Salgado and Garry Winogrand. I am trying to work as they did in those old days on film, in the sense that I want to get the perfect framing and exposure in camera. All photos you see are straight out of the camera JPEGs, except for slight crops in about two or three of them and the one with the cat that is a RAW file processed. The main idea is I want to be as true to reality as I can. What you see is what you get. Of course their influence goes further when it comes to the way they viewed life through the lens. In general, they created photos that left you speechless and you need time to admire each one.
FM42: How did you find out about Open Call First Date and what do you think about themed open calls?
I found out about this Open Call First Date searching online for photography contests. The theme was appealing and reading the description of the requirements and the advice given by one of the judges, I decided to enter it and I am glad I did /smiley face. I think that this kind of contest is very good for finding new talent that needs discovery. I would like to see more like this. I want to take this opportunity to thank the organizers and judges of Open Call First Date. To see my works on display in the ArtCave Gallery in Zurich was amazing. So, thank you Fashionmag42, ArtCave Zurich, Artpopup community, Vera Parish and the judging panel for organizing this Open Call contest.”