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INTERVIEW WITH LESTER VILLARAMA What does photography mean to you? Photography is an escape for me. It has been a great way for me to explore different creative concepts and styles to express different emotions. It started out as a hobby but it is quickly turning into something that I long for and want to do more. Photography has allowed me to connect with different people who I wouldn’t normally run into in a regular basis and it has also helped me break out of my shell.

wall in Chicago. We picked a day where it was supposed to snow but it ended up raining instead so I had to adjust and make the rain concept work and it turned out even better than I was expecting.

How did you develop an interest in photography? Photography was part of my major back in college. It was one of the prerequisite classes that I had to take, so that’s how my basic knowledge of photography started. I remember that I hated going to that class because I was forced to interact with subjects and as an introvert, that can be a daunting task. I was always self-conscious and wasn’t confident with my skills as a photographer so it was hard for me to do that. I was always anxious when we were tasked to do a group project or a project where I had to work with someone because I didn’t know how to direct or I wasn’t confident with my concepts and vision. Years later, I started working full time for a full service marketing agency and we would get sent to different cities / states for work trips and that’s how I developed interest in landscape photography. It wasn’t until I moved to Los Angeles in 2015 that I started portrait and fashion photography.

What were the challenges that you most commonly faced and how did you deal with them? The most challenging thing about my photography journey so far has been the people that start drama and negativity. People get so negative, envious and entitled that it can sometimes consume you. But I’ve learned to ignore and cut all those toxic people because it will definitely affect you. The best thing to do is create for yourself and for those who believes in your art and don’t mind the negative people. There’s always going to be haters and people who don’t appreciate your art but you’ll find the right audience sooner or later who will appreciate and embrace you.

How do you as a photographer make sure that the person you want to shoot looks the way you want it to? The key is having a general concept and a great team as well. I always say that you need to be able to adapt to different situations especially if you are shooting on location. You can’t have a closed mindset because there are a lot of different factors that can affect your vision especially when shooting outdoors. In December 2018, I had a winter editorial concept that I had planned with top model Alex Se-

From your point of view, what makes a good picture? Photography is subjective, for me a good picture is something that conveys emotions and something that is visually appealing.

How important is it for a photographer to “connect” with his subjects to bring out their true self? This is definitely a must, because you want the subject to feel at ease and comfortable during the shoot. This will allow them to be more engaging and it will bring out more of their personality during the shoot. This is also the part that I enjoy, because as an introvert, I don’t really go out a lot and meet new people. The shoots give me an opportunity to connect and meet new people from all walks of life. Which one is your favorite lens and why do you prefer it? It’s definitely the 55mm f/1.8 prime lens that I use the most. I also love the 24-70mm and my wide angle lens.

Which photographers influenced you, and how did they influence

your thinking, photographing, and career path? I don’t really have a specific photographer in mind because I don’t like boxing myself into just one style. I love to try different styles and I honestly get inspired by a lot of different people and things. Some of the names that come to mind: Bruce Weber, Mario Testino, Mert Alas, Chuck Thomas, Daniel Jaems, Irvin Rivera, Francis Gum, Mark Nicdao, BJ Pascual and so many more! What, in your opinion, is most important to consider while shooting portrait pictures? Can you walk us through the actual process that you use to set up a portrait? Which editing software do you usually use? With portraits I make sure I am able to capture emotions so I try to do portraits maybe an hour into the shoot so that the subject and I are both warmed up and more comfortable with each other. For location shoots, I try to find an area where the model can be lit good and the sun is not too harsh. If lighting is too harsh, the model’s focus can shift from trying to open the eyes instead of projecting emotions. Exactly what it is you want to say with your photographs, and how do you actually get your photographs to do that? It really depends on the concept, but most of the time I love showcasing emotions. I tend to lean towards photos in which you can feel the subject’s emotions and energy. I love capturing natural movements and emotions. In your free time, what kind of pictures do you like to shoot? I love doing Night Photography in my free time. A lot of cityscapes, skylines and roads using long exposure photography!

NO. 16

Profile for B Louder Magazine

B Louder Younger 16 - Fashion Season (Cover 2)  

Print Version: https://www.peecho.com/print/en/610296 Contributing Photographers: Jonathan Nicholas, ONUR ALVER, Lester Villarama, Elina Pa...

B Louder Younger 16 - Fashion Season (Cover 2)  

Print Version: https://www.peecho.com/print/en/610296 Contributing Photographers: Jonathan Nicholas, ONUR ALVER, Lester Villarama, Elina Pa...

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