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  • Writer's pictureJ.M. Valdivia

Picking up Speed

Updated: Jan 11, 2023

Shooting with my Digital Camera


The majority of my work has been done using film. In the past I've attempted to pick up the digital and make work. I quickly rush back to my film cameras as if I had been unfaithful to them. It's been a few years since my last attempt to pick up the digital camera. Things are different now, not because I've been shooting more which I haven't been. Mostly because I feel I've reached a very solid wall. Being terrible at self-marketing, I find myself needing to make something happen for myself and quickly. Allocating all of my film processing time to turn my focus on to acquiring subjects to photograph instead of working with dark tents, chemistry when its b/w (or dropping off/ picking up if it's colour), drying, cutting, scanning, cleaning up the negatives from dust and lastly editing the images.

The subject and direction needs to change as well. Despite the many things I enjoy photographing. It has grown quite clear that people do not seek photographers by noticing their skills and discussing a new project, instead they are noting what the photographer has done before and are asked to repeat the skill on a "new" project. What happens there and I see it much too often is photographers get pigeonholed hold into producing the same things. This is the main reason I have not allowed myself to go in the direction of commercial, editorial photography. A photographer is at the mercy of the art director or the uppers that are usually not even on set. So where is the artistic integrity there? We can't be as fortunate as Tim Walker and others before him.

So what am I doing if not that? My plan is to develop work that is easily understood by viewers. Work that focuses more on physique and fashion. By doing this I will peak the interest of subjects who will want to be photographed in a similar fashion. As I continue shooting more, my style will inevitably make itself visible. In do time I will be asked for my services and that is where I need to be. My time is up and I need to take control of this circumstance. Dusting myself off so that I may be asked for my services in the near future.


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