Becoming A Portrait Photographer

When I was young I wanted to be a model (don’t laugh). When I knew that wasn’t going to happen I thought of being a fashion designer; then it became fashion photographer. 

In the 80’s

As a teenager in the 80’s I knew all the designers and the models names. This was well before celebrity models. I learned to recognize their faces and sometimes magazines would print their names. I spent all of my money on fashion magazines, particularly European magazines, which I would find in Los Angeles (not so much in San Diego). I remember throwing down $40 on an Italian Vogue once! That was a lot of money for a magazine -still is.

At art school I still thought I wanted to shoot fashion, but it ended up not being a good fit for me. I was insecure so I didn’t like that fashion shoots had teams of people on set, it made me nervous. 

Still Life to Portraiture

So instead, I started shooting food and objects- just me and a bowl of fruit. Then I moved on to portraits because I really like photographing people, I like getting a crooked smile or a laugh with closed eyes. I seek out the real, not the perfect, because honestly the real you is super important and people need to see it.

Using Format