How did you discover photography?
Throughout my life I’ve sketched and painted and have always been interested in some form of art. As cell phones evolved with cameras, I discovered photography as a form of artistic expression. A few years ago my wife bought me a small point and shoot and my passion for making photos snowballed. I’m sure she regrets it as it’s now a semi-compulsion…haha.
Did you have any formal training?
I haven’t had any formal training in photography per se. I do believe that being able to operate a camera in all modes is vitally important, and I learned this via internet searches and watching youtube videos. For what I do, I don’t think formal training is needed, just a passion to create great images that please me. Studying fine art and the work of other great photographers helps too.
What inspires you to shoot?
People, color, composition and emotion—and not in any particular order. I usually shoot in downtown El Paso or Juarez, but I always have my camera with me. I’ve lived in El Paso for most of my life thus my love of the people of El Paso and Juarez, definitely inspires me also. We have a unique diverse border culture that has interesting people. I just happen to enjoy photographing them.
Does your photography have a theme, concept or message?
It’s definitely a reflection of how I see the world and, perhaps, our own emotional states. Sometimes sadness, other times euphoria, disappointment, happiness and so on. Human condition comes to mind but that’s too cliché-ish.
Anything else you want to add?
Shoot for yourself first. Make the pictures you have a passion for and not what others may or may not like. I think sometimes we get sucked into the social media BS of followers and likes. Some of my favorite posted images have the least likes; it’s really funny. Also candid street shooting can be very difficult as you have no control over anything but the camera and where you are. This makes it very challenging and rewarding, but other times very frustrating.