found at: Hartford Art School (West Hartford)
With Krystian von Speidel
What is it like to live and work as an artist in Hartford?
It's very different than photographing in New York City. People there are more willing to pose in front of the camera since they're exposed to thousands of cameras every day by simply walking down the street. Photographing strangers requires more patience in Hartford and West Hartford. It was such a self-fulfilling pleasure to meet and talk to people one on one who live and work around the university I attend.
Which artists have served to inspire and encourage your work?
This is like as asking a musician what their favorite song is. The list is endless; inspiration comes in small doses from everyone. To name a few: Diane Arbus, Richard Avedon, Richard Renaldi, Larry Fink, Walker Evans and Gregory Crewdson.
When was the time you were most scared?
The camera sometimes gets me into certain damper situations due to the discomfort some people have in front of it. In a certain neighborhood I can be seen as an intruder or instigator and be questioned or interrogated about my intentions and credibility. To be approached by an angry pedestrian not having a good day can be very intimidating.
Your art balances an unforgiving starkness with an inherently sympathetic quality. How do you manage to marry the two?
I am simply the mediator between the camera and person. Someone needs to be there to take the photograph; I think it should be me. The photographs are raw and real that's part of where the starkness comes from, that's just the way they are.
What are your most irritating qualities?
I talk too much and if no one talks back I talk to myself.
What is the riskiest thing you‘ve ever done?
Wanting to become a professional artist.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
Graduating but not in the sense of barely graduating but graduating at a high ranking in terms of skills, reputability and academics. Also being able to experience and be equipped with all the tools necessary to starting a successful career.
What is your biggest regret?
Spending small increments of money rather than just saving the bulk amount for equipment.
What is your greatest desire as a Cum Laude graduate of the Hartford Art School?
To be recognized and accepted by the larger population as a photographer and a person of sociability. Also to have longevity as a photographer and continue my developing career on the right track. I'd like to one day have campaigns hanging on billboards to be viewed by the public unwillingly, rather than making the conscious choice of walking into a gallery.