NO TRAFFIC JAMS
“Here's a few from my first and upcoming series 'No Traffic Jams'.
In this series I will be showing primarily Aroostook County, some other little towns in Maine, and all of Maine’s glory through my 'point of view'.
Aroostook County is the state of Maine's most northern county and borders with Canada. Here in the county you'll find plenty of potato farms, millions of forest acres, straight piped pick up trucks, and freeze your ass off weather during the winter months. But it's not all bad here in the sticks....there is very little traffic (hence the title), hard working friendly people, BEAUTIFUL scenery, and affordable living.
Aroostook County is my home and for the most part I'm happy to be here and I hope you end up enjoying my home state through this transformation.”
So, what made you want to start this series?
I guess it was something for me to focus on. I was having dry spell (photographers block) whatever you would like to call it... I thought to myself well maybe if I find something to focus on and turn it into some type of project without a deadline, I can actually produce something. I also wanted to show rural Maine as more than just a place where fishermen catch lobsters, farmers grow potatoes, and to show that there is beauty in small towns with next to nothing for population.
What are you looking for when you go shooting? What catches your eye?
I’m looking for smooth yet defined textures, something I know that’ll pop if that makes sense, along with that I’ve found myself paying closer attention to light and minimalist landscape scenes. I don’t really care for photos with a lot going on, it seems to take away from the importance of the subject.
Oh and color, color is huge! Mainly with these winter skies in Northern Maine, it seems the colder it gets, the better the sky...which is a bitter sweet moment when it’s below zero out and I’m out in it.
What differentiates an average photo to a great one, in your eyes? Do you shoot lots of images and then sift through them when editing? Or do are you selective about the photos that you take?
The difference from an average photo to a great one is more than just the subject, it’s the subject’s surrounding, the angle, the color. Whether the photo is a landscape photo or an abstract one, I feel you can just tell when there is effort put behind it, based off of the things mentioned above.
For the most part I usually get at least 3 of the shot at the same angle/distance , and then I’ll repeat at a different angle and distance. So I take a bunch and sift through to see which one looks / feels right.
Whose work has inspired you? & How have they influenced your images?
If I can give a top 3 I would say:
@OrdinarySacramentos eye, &
They each have something completely different about them when it comes to photography, but I love the idea of getting all 3 of those things in one picture in my own way - now whether or not I succeed is another question, haha.
What does photography mean to you? What motivates you to take pictures?
Photography means more to me than just a hobby - 3 years ago it was something that replaced a heavy opiate addiction of mine.
When I was 19 (I’m 30 now) my father unexpected passed away from a heart attack, the morning I found him dead on the floor it killed me. My mother left my sister, father, and I when I was 3 years old due to alcoholism and other problems, so my dad was basically my mother and best friend. So after he had passed I started hanging around the wrong people and abusing prescription pain killers, and a few years down the road I had made my way to smoking heroin / fentanyl. Almost 3 years ago today I had said enough enough and my gf and I decided to quit together, we both knew we deserved better. A few weeks after quitting I had realized I had so much free time on my hands, no more chasing drugs, no more getting high, and no more bullshit shenanigans on trying to make a quick dollar.
So I was on Instagram one day and came across quite few magazine pages and thought to myself “I know I can do this, and would love to give it a try.” Well the rest is what you see on my Instagram page and website, and I am forever grateful that I have uncovered this passion of mine.
Note that I would never to be able to do this without my girlfriend Danika though. She has been my support system since day one with photography, and lets me get away from the house to do these things.
What's next for you?
I haven’t really thought of what’s next for me. I work a full-time job that often requires overtime, I am a father to a one-year-old, but I hustle and grind it out every day when it comes to photography, I do research on what galleries are taking submissions, and the same goes with magazines.
If I could choose what is in my future it would be to do this for a living, a comfortable living at that. Would love to live by that saying;
“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”