Francisco López is a Mexico-based photographer whose life and the way he sees life changed after watching a Stanley Kubrick movie.
DYD: Who are you as a photographer and how would you describe your style?
Francisco: I think I’m someone who always try to portray reality, someone who loves different kinds of photography; from the photojournalism perspective to documentation side of photography. I’m someone who needs to learn more. My style is kind of weird, mostly, because people don’t know who I am, I’ve always wanted to keep myself as anonymous as possible ‘cause I don’t want them to focus on me, I would rather have them to focus on and analyze my photos.
DYD: How old were you when you first started to gain interested in art and photography?
Francisco: I started and gained an interest when I was 17 years old. I owe it all to Stanley Kubric’s movies, which I see to be art. On other hand, I remember that I had a phone which I made use of to take photos. I actually still have those photos. From that moment on, I started to research more pertaining to photography.
DYD: What has been your biggest mistake in life so far and how have you learned from it?
Francisco: I think my biggest failure was not having looked into photography before.
One of my other big mistakes was taking a photo of police officers committing corruption. It was some days after my father gave me my first camera, they looked at me and sprinted towards me, i did not try to run, I just stayed where I was standing, they were really angry and they tried to take my camera away from me. Nowadays, I work in a news publication and I really like it because I’ve learned a lot.
DYD: What has been your most favorite shoot you’ve ever done, and what is your most favorite photograph of all time?
Francisco: This picture is special to me because I feel that it has something spiritual within it. To me, it means ‘hope of Centroamerical people’ who always transfer here to the USA. The guy of the photo is my brother whom I haven’t seen in a very long time.
DYD: What gear have you relied on during your progression as a photographer?
Francisco: I have a Canon 60D. I like canon because I feel comfortable with it. I also have a Pentax K1000 which is an analogue camera. This Pentax is really important to me for many reasons, two of them being that I can plan photos better but at same time feel kind of limited.
DYD: Can you tell us about any great moments you’ve had as a photographer?
Francisco: I have met a lot of people because of photography. A couple months ago was The Zoque Carnival happened, it is an interesting tradition here in Chiapas. That day I took a photo that made remember my sister who passed away some years ago. That photo made me cry after seeing it. I enjoy these split-happiness-and-sadness kinds of moments.
DYD: In your opinion, how does a great photographer live?
Francisco: To me, a great photographer; wakes up early, reads, knows how to visualize everything around him-/herself, does research, shares important moments with strange people, walks away and travels a lot.
DYD: Which local and international photographers inspire you?
Francisco: Recently, I’ve met; Ariel Silva, Jesus Hernández, and Jacob Jarcia y Marcopolo. They are four local photographers who excel because their work is good, each one of them visualizes their surroundings. They range from focusing on details, people, and showing their vision of the world straight out of the pictures from their cameras.
Andrea Godínez inspires me because the way her mind works. I really want to go adventuring with her and take some pictures together.
International photographers that inspire me; Narciso Contreras, Pedro Meyer and Kevin Carter. Each of them have different styles, live in different places and show the reality of the world in different times.
DYD: What genre of music do you listen to the most? Does this genre of music influence the way you see life and take photos?
Francisco: I listen different kinds of music. “Lila Downs” however, is one of my favorite musicians. She is a Mexican woman who I admire. She tries to manifest societal and governmental aspects in her music. This is exactly what I want to do through my photography.
DYD: When you close your eyes and imagine the perfect photograph, what do you see?
Francisco: I imagine a photo that I never took of my sister, I imagine a better México and I imagine many good moments but reality here is different.