You have such an expansive portfolio which includes; portrait, landscape, candid and concert photography. How did your photographic journey start and what made you focus on these genres of photography?
My journey started in 2013. In 2013, I was full time concert photographer, shooting between three-and-four gigs per week. My first concert as a photographer was a XXYYXX show. Three years have passed since then. In this time I’ve collaborated with a couple music magazines, namely; Marvin and Indierocks. I’ve also shot at some great Mexican Festivals, such as; Corona Capital, Ceremonia or KnotFest. Added to that, some festivals that can be considered as part of the underground scene; Nrmal or Bahidora.
In 2014, I started making my way as photojournalist, shooting for a local journal called La Crónica, there I learned the importance of portrait and candid photography. In 2015 I become part of El Universal, a big newspaper in Latin America, a few months later I joined Vice. With Vice I am involved in capturing and understanding; daily life, politics and conflicts that form part of everyday life. This is why I’m focused within those photographic genres.
When did you start documenting for Vice? What exactly do you document? How has it helped you progress as a storyteller?
I started last year. Most of the time I document daily life in Mexico City, telling stories of regular but weird people just like you and me. Being part of the Vice crew has helped me on my way to become a better Journalist, as you know, I’m a Photographer but I’m still studying Journalism. The cool part about working with Vice is the freedom they give to their contributors to publish whatever they want, however, we always remember that with great power comes great responsibility.
Apart from the use of prisms, as seen in your shots from Festival Nrmal 2015, do you make use of any other special photographic techniques?
As you said, I just use prisms on special occasions. My favourite technique though is to shoot in low-light conditions. Other than that, I love black and white photography.
As a photographer, do you think you are able to bridge the ‘disconnect’ between our social media selves and real life?
Possibly, it’s difficult but not impossible, it happens to me a lot when people on the street-side or at gigs don’t recognise me until say I tell them my Instagram name, “lalocaster”. This happens because I don’t really upload pictures of myself. I use social media as a portfolio and not as a way to share my life. I think one can cross that bridge by combining one’s professional and daily life.
What gear have you relied on during your progression as a photographer?
At first, I started with a basic Sony DSLR Camera but right now I shoot with Canon. I make use of two lenses, a 50mm and 70-200mm.
Are there any movies and songs that have inspired or inspire your shooting process?
Movies: There’s a documentary film called ‘War Photographer’ about James Nachtwey. Another movie I like; City of God and lastly, all the movies by a Mexican director called, Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu.
Music: There’s no an specific song that inspires me in my shooting process, but my favourite five albums to shoot to are; The Lumineers by The Lumineers, American Football by American Football, International Super Hits by Green Day, Reality Check by The Teenagers and Lomas Verdes by No Somos Marineros.
What do you think about Mexico City’s underground music scene?
A few years ago a new wave of musicians with the ‘DIY philosophy’ started to produce and play around the city. They don’t only play at well-known venues but also at houses or any spot in which a power source can be found to plug in an instrument. Nowadays, all these musicians have become part of our pop culture and it’s great. The cool thing about the Mexican underground scene is the sense of family you can feel in every gig.
Have you watched Star Wars? Did you enjoy it?
Episode VII? Sure, I watched at opening night here in Mexico. Honestly, I enjoyed the movie, however, I would have preferred more lightsaber fights, but it’s okay.
What is your honest perception of South Africa?
It’s a great country with great history and definitely a place I want to visit. The first time I heard of it was in a history class when the teacher spoke about Mandela, after which, I looked-up some movies about him and I started to understand the basics of the country. South Africa became a part of my life for a short while when the FIFA World Cup took place there in 2010. One of the main reasons I have become a fan of South Africa is because of Neil Blomkamp and his amazing movies.
Are you starting up any photographic projects at the moment?
Right now, I’m going to start a documentary photography project for an Irish Whisky called, Bushmills, besides of that I’m still going to shoot for Vice.
Can you tell me about any great moments you’ve had as a photographer?
Every festival or piece of travel I’ve gotten to do all have had great moments, meeting new people and every bit of political or social conflict, despite the violence, have been great moments. Everyday is a great day to me if I’m with my camera, it gives me a different and unique way to live my life.
Which local and international photographers inspire you?
Local: My local hero is Emmanuel Lubezki. Jorge Serratos, an amazing photojournalist, my friends and fantastic photographers; Seo ju Park, Belen Garcia, Alexis Gomez, Ivan Bocanegra and David Barajas.
Where can we find more of your work?