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Raoul Ortega / Photographer, September 2011 Vhcle Magazine Issue 7

To start off, I'd like to ask about your photography work. How would you describe it? How would you characterize it?

My work is very nostalgic. I like to evoke emotion when given the opportunity and really take the time to orchestrate the mood and atmosphere of the subject and environment within the composition I am capturing. 

I focus more on telling a story and I spend more time observing the negative space around the subject. It's not just about the subject but the space around the subject that is essential in creating the mood. I portray these qualities in all of my photography. 

When you first started out in photography, you talk about creating nostalgia with your photos. What do you mean by this? 

As a kid I was always fascinated when I would look at all of my Mom's old photos. I was always drawn to the ones that had a story behind them. This didn't lead me to become a photographer early on, but rather it became the driving force behind what would later become my design and photography style. 

Was this applied to the shoot that was presented at the Launch 2011 event? 

I presented three sets at the event from which I worked with the fashion designers of Van Der Neer. Each shoot was theme-driven and told a different story. With two of these shoots I wasn't introduced to the fashion until the day of the shoot, but I was able to guide intuition in accordance to the atmosphere and vibe of the models and their wardrobes. The most recent of the three, I was able to see the fashion and location of the shoot well in advance which gave me ample time.  

You talk about your photography that it's an experience with quiet and/or subtle details. Would you care to explain what this means?

Being able to orchestrate an idea with quiet and subtle details is an extremely effective way to create greater depth in photography or any form of creativity of that matter. The manner of orchestration is relevant to the subject at hand but can be derived through many different approaches. A good example of this is when I'm working with models. I like to encourage them to really get into character and really fully engage themselves in the role at an emotional level. For my big shoots I like to play music to aid this idea. There are many other subtleties I can consider as well, like cropping, saturation, camera angles and the position of the body. 

You've recently created a short film of yourself titled 'Visual Composer'. What is the philosophy behind the this term and why is it important to understand these elements when creating art?

I began headed on the path of the graphic designer but soon found myself deeply involved in photography. Over the years I was able to blend the two disciplines on a conceptual level. I really wanted to describe my work under one title. The philosophy behind the term begins with the importance of understanding the basic elements of whatever you are creating. Get to know the rules, all of them. The knowledge gained from this evolves into your palette of creativity. This palette is later used as a base of support for your risky decisions to break the rules to reach a new and innovative benchmark with your work or in the general. By no means am I able to reach this level with all of my work but it's definitely what I strive to do. 

Favorite Drink?

It's pretty close between a White Russian and an Old Fashioned, but at the end of the day the Old Fashioned just does it for me.  

2011:  Raoul Ortega / Photographer
Raoul Ortega is a Sacramento based visual composer comprising of skills in the disciplines of graphic design and photography. Inspired by the sounds, textures and colors of everyday simple occurrences and most of all the quality moments he shares with his son, Raoul lives each day to the fullest. He is a storyteller when it comes to his work and expresses nostalgia in the compositions he creates. His ambitions for the future of our visual culture have him working hard to do his part in shaping it. 
Website: www.jetstreamprojector.comhttp://www.jetstreamprojector.comshapeimage_20_link_0
See more of Raoul Ortega’s featured work in Vhcle Magazine Issue 7