In 1985, photography found me.
As a fledgling reporter for a national car magazine, I was halfway out the door to write my first story when my editor yelled at me, “Hey, bring back five B/W shots that we can use.”
“Great. Who’s the photographer?”
It was the start of a constantly twisting, rewarding journey. I burned through bricks of Tri-X and Ektachrome 400, trying not to make the same mistakes twice. The feedback was invaluable. My work got published every month and got better technically. More importantly, I became a stronger visual storyteller. I learned to shoot quickly with available light and quickly realized that the difference between a usable photo and one that misses can happen in microseconds. My mantra then was, “See it, shoot it.” Still is.
The next decade was spent taking classes at the Otis College of Art & Design and co-owning a graphic design firm with a world-class designer as a partner. As a result, I’ve had the rare privilege to be in the room watching some of the most accomplished photographers and fine artists conceptualize and produce astounding work. It’s always a subtractive process, a stripping away of everything that’s unnecessary to express a powerful idea in its ultimate simplicity.
It can be painful at times, and while great artists might question a given technique or lighting scheme, they never, ever question or compromise their vision. Well beyond technique, creating art is ultimately about trust. Trusting your vision, but more importantly, never second-guessing your right to have it.
So after decades of pursuit, my goal is to capture more than that “decisive moment.” It’s finding opportunities to elevate even the most mundane things and circumstances into something that’s powerful and hopefully revealing. That’s because great photography dips into an endlessly replenished wellspring of human truth. Even if the subjects aren’t human and on the surface, some of the images may seem artificial or even contrived.
For me, photography is an act of discovery. It’s perhaps the most unconscious, automatic thing I do. So much so, there are times I don’t fully “see” the images I’m shooting when I trip the shutter. It comes down to that trust thing.
Lenscratch: "Unnatural," 2017
Los Angeles Center of Photography: "Creative Portrait," juried by Greg Gorman; 2016
Los Angeles Center of Photography: "Street Shooting Around the World;" 2014
Steve Huff Photo
Motor Trend Magazine
Sports Car Graphic