shot my first roll of film. and let me tell you, I get it. I understand why people still swear by film photography in the age of digital cameras.
sure, I had to wait a bit to see the final product, but that taught me patience.
sure, I had a limited amount of physical film to use, but that taught me how to shoot with intent.
sure, I totally screwed up my settings and focus in a few shots, but that taught me that I still have a lot to learn and master
even though this isn’t my best work, it’s reigniting a lot of creative possibilities within me and I can’t wait to focus on developing my work in the new year.
if you’re to ask me what the theme of 2019 is for my photography, it’s this: back-to-basics.
enjoy these shots, I can’t wait to look back on these and see how much I’ve improved down the line
[for all you nerds out there, this was shot on a Nikon Fe2 with a 50 mm lens and Portra 400 film]
I’ve always loved this photograph. I took it up with me when I moved to New York and it’s the only physical photo that I have in my possession. Composition-wise, it ain’t perfect, but it manages to capture all the emotions in that moment. Equal parts curiosity and fascination, I keep this photo as a reminder to stay curious and engaged in the moment.
I suppose that’s part of the reason why I latched onto photography; it’s now a way for me to assemble my own narrative. When I was young, I used to try and picture what I would be like as an adult and nearly two decades later, I’m trying to look back and piece together my past.
That’s why these old photos are so crucial. That little tub of shit has has dreams and expectations. He can’t possibly know how tragic and difficult life can be. And through it all, he serves as a reminder to do my absolute best to make him proud of the person he’ll wind up being.
As photographers, we take pictures to stop time, to commit moments to eternity.
I recently spent some time back at my parents place in Maryland. I took the time to capture some day to day moments, moments that I know I’ll treasure. I think as I get older, the more urgent it is for me to document loved ones as they were.
on april 7, 2018, i had the privilege of being a part of the 24HourProject, which calls for photographers of all different skill-levels/styles/experiences to document his or her own city/hometown for 24 hours. the overarching theme for all years has been to capture humanity and highlight the human condition. this year, an additional theme was applied, calling for empowering women and fighting human trafficking.
if you are following the 24HourProject instagram page, you’ll find a few very special photos of photojournalist Smita Sharma and 24HourProject founder Renzo Grande leading a photography workshop for underprivileged girls who would later participate in the april 7th event. really incredible to see and drives home the point that photography is truly something anyone can pick up and at any point and distill his or her own experiences into the art form.
as for my experience with the project, it was extremely challenging but rewarding. i deliberately went with uploading one photo every other hour because i wanted to give a chance for each photograph to have chance to leave a longer impression (and also not flood your instagram feed). it was definitely a challenge trying to pull together 12 photos in a short period of time that i was proud of, without repeating myself, and all the while trying to stay awake and alert for 24 hours (or in my case, 22 hours…took a nap here and there).
i want to thank paris-based photographer marie collin for introducing me to the project, and boston-based photographer cecily delapena and DC-based photographer ty von plinsky for joining me and working with me for an extremely long time while operating on fumes.
here are the 12 photos i shared:
12:58 AM, Hell’s Kitchen
3:04 AM, somewhere between Hell’s Kitchen and Chelsea
4:02 AM, Times Square
5:05 AM, Grand Central Terminal
7:02 AM, somewhere on the A Train
8:15 AM, Lower East Side
10:14 AM, Chinatown
1:15 PM, Chinatown
4:06 PM, Soho
9:36 PM, Washington Square Park
10:43 PM, Hell’s Kitchen
11:59 PM, New York City
and here are a few outtakes/behind the scenes:
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