Gabriel Sanchez is a gifted, spiritual, super positive, ultra clever, inspiringly honest, and a distinctly memorable photographer who 100% knows what he wants, and how he wants it. Gabriel describes his style as “Neo-Vintage” and we are proud to say he’s a big fan of our Pastels pack! Mr Sanchez hates crooked horizons, absolutely lives in the NOW, has a big love for music and those hard to capture “in-between” photo’s! Enjoy.
Good vibes and endless inspiration,
Preset Shop Team
Who is Gabriel Sanchez?
Who am I? Well, I’m a simple man from the beautiful island of Puerto Rico whom currently resides in Miami Fl. I work in photography professionally, however it is not all that defines me. Half of my life is dedicated to psychology. I am a graduate student pursuing a career in clinical psychology. I guess I use my skills to talk to my clients and build a relationship. I enjoy anything that pushes the boundaries of my creativity and keeps me entertained. I see photography as my creative outlet, a place where I can give life to the ideas than run through my mind and actually see the results.
What is your current state of mind?
My current state of mind is driven by the words “live now”. It is easy to get involved in routines and all the “have to’s” of life. Thus, we sometimes forget that life is happening at this very moment, every moment. I believe the present is the most important moment and that we have to enjoy it to the fullest. No matter what the circumstances of out lives are we always have a choice in the present that will create our desired future.
What is the best advice you have received so far about photography?
This would have to be… to ‘forget about gear’. The only thing that matters is the moment captured. It does not matter if you took your photo with a top of the line camera with the best glass, or with your iphone. An image is much more that it’s resolution or its megapixels, it’s about the moment that is captured and the message being shared. This advice helped me free myself from “gear lust” and helped me focus on my photography. It helped me be more passionate about shooting instead of worrying about what gear I should get, or “need to get”.
What do you love the most about your job?
What I love most about my job is that it’s MY job. It’s just me doing what I love, sharing my visions and creativity with others, feeling in control of my destiny, and having the time of my life all while getting paid. What’s not to love?
How would you describe your style?
I guess I would describe my style as “Neo-Vintage”. I believe I was certainly born in the wrong era. I am a big fan of vintage and I try to incorporate it in all of my images. Sometimes in the processing, sometimes in the feel/vibe of a photograph, and sometimes its blatantly vintage. However, I like to bring the vintage to the times we are living in; always trying to keep up with the modern times. I understand that this combination may not make me “unique”, however it appeals to me, and transcends into my work/photographs in a genuine way.
As you look through the viewfinder, what is the most critical moment in the capture of your image?
The “in-betweens”. There is certain magic in these moments. Be it a change of pose, change of expression, or a sigh from the person I’m shooting, it is in these in between moments where you can capture the essence of a person. They are not easy to capture, and may not come by often. But with practice, capturing moments like these can make the difference between a good image and a great image.
What photographers from the past or present have influenced you the most?
I am influenced by the works of many. People like Joe Mcnally, Zack Arias, Jeremy Cowart, Terry Richardson, Sarah Silver… Many I can’t name because I don’t know who they are, I saw a really good image that changed my perspective and have no idea who took it. Others are amateurs and friends whose ideas and views help me keep growing as a photographer. Influence can come from anywhere as long as we are open to it.
What’s the most important thing you want potential clients to know about you?
The most important thing I always tell my clients and would like potential clients to know is “this is your photo-shoot!”. I like to let people know they are in control of their results. Sure I have my guidance and expertise, but in the end, its my clients vision what I’m trying to portray in my images.
What has been your favourite photo location or session?
This is a hard question to answer. Every location I’ve shot at has a story, a memory of what happened within that session. Its hard to pick, but if I have to say one location it would be downtown Miami. There is something unique about it, it inspires me.
What advice do you have for somebody who wants to pursue fashion photography?
My best advice for them has to be “keep at it!”. Fashion photography is not just “one” thing. It’s a whole world with many different avenues and possibilities. One has to find their niche and stand out. With so many photographers out there, and the difficulty of getting jobs, it is easy for one to get discouraged. However, hard work does pay off…
In today’s economy what changes are driving the fashion market place and how have you adjusted?
We currently live in a world of immediacy. Social media has taken over all businesses, phone cameras produce good quality images for them to take advantage of, and everything is needed as soon as possible. Couple this with today’s economy, and you get clients who need fast, cheap work. I guess I have adapted to this in the best way I know how. I try to keep ahead of the game by offering competitive price points and having fast turnaround times without compromising the quality of my work.
What misconceptions do you think outsiders have about the fashion world?
Some may think that the fashion world is just people wearing trendy clothes, and may question its legitimacy. But it’s much more than that. Fashion, like any other art is an expression of creativity. Designers craft the clothes with their ideas and visions, models give life to these, and we as photographers interpret these ideas for consumers. It’s a network of people who directly or indirectly work together for an end goal.
What type of cameras do you shoot with?
I am a Canon shooter. I currently shoot a 5d mkiii and I love it. It is the camera I use for my professional work and it delivers amazing results. As secondary cameras I have a few vintage film cameras. There is nothing like shooting film. It’s a unique experience, much more simplified, and you really have to think before you shoot. Also, when you go from a film camera back to a DSLR you appreciate all its functions even more. Also, I cannot forget my Iphone. It is with me 100% of the time and provides decent enough images for me to get a quick shot and not have to say “I wish id brought my camera”. That’s it as far as cameras, I like to keep things simple and focus more on photography rather than gear. Although I have to admit, I have my eye out for a mirrorless Fuji.
What is your favourite photography accessory, other than your camera?
Hands down a 5-in-one reflector. These things are extremely versatile and can really make a difference on your images. They can bounce light, soften light, create shadows, reduce shadows, you name it. I can leave for a photoshoot and not even bother to carry my lights, but I can never leave without a reflector.
If you had to choose one lens which one would it be and why?
Without a doubt a 24-70mm f/2.8 IS. The reason for is versatility. The 24-70mm focal range is very nice. You can shoot wide at 24mm to capture a whole scene, or make some shots look dramatic. You can also shoot at the telephoto end to compress the background and isolate subjects. This lens is also versatile in the sense that it’s somewhat ‘fast’ at f/2.8 for low light shooting without having to compromise. My 24-70mm is on my camera more than any other lens I own.
What is your favourite computer editing software?
How important is Photoshop in your final images?
Honestly not at all important. I believe that humans should not be altered for the purpose of an image, and I also believe that images are to be ‘captured’ and not composed via software. To me the best images are those with a raw nature to them, and that capture the essence of beauty. I like to keep a sense of realism to my images. I think that tools such as Photoshop or any other editing software should be used to enhance images, not transform them into something else. I believe that the ability to have a vision, create a scene, plan the outcome, and capture a beautiful moment before the shutter goes off, makes the difference between an ‘ok’ photographer and a great one.
Cos we just have to ask…!! 😉 What is your favourite +PS tool/s?? And how have they improved workflow time?
As of now my favorite +PS tool for color images is the Pastels preset pack. It’s so versatile! So many options to chose from also. It serves me as a great base to begin my photo editing, and it pairs nicely with my vintage mentality. For monochrome images I love to use the +PS Retrograde BW Collection. The tones from this pack are just on point. It really does cut my workflow time down. All I have to do is find a preset I like for the particular image I’m working on, then tweak it ever so slightly to get my end results.
Do you maintain a studio or do you rent one when needed?
I do not maintain a studio at the moment. I have all my gear set so that I can create a studio setting on pretty much any location. I feel that this helps me be more proactive in my work. However, there is also the possibility of renting a space when needed.
Three photography pet hates and why?
1. Crooked horizons! Please stop! It absolutely drives me insane when I see crooked horizons in an image. I feel that images should be able to stand on their own without the need to angle a camera to create “interest”. If an image is not strong enough to stand on its own, then it’s not a good image. It is also very easy to straighten slightly crooked photos on any software these days.
2. Overly smoothed skin. Hey, I like smoothing skin as much as the next guy, however my problem comes when people stop looking like humans and look more like cartoons. To me it just looks plain ugly when the smoothing is taken to that level. It can truly ruin a perfectly good image.
3. Cutting off body parts. There is a right way and a wrong way to crop body parts. There are certain rules that need to be followed so that these crops are interpreted as intentional and not accidental. Images are supposed to draw the viewer in and make them feel something. This feeling should not be “ where is this persons arm?” or leg, or whatever is being cropped out.
What keeps you awake at night?
Late night edits. I can’t begin to edit a series of images without finishing them. I feel that if I edit them on a later day my perspective, vision, and emotions change thus affecting the output of the product.
Where would you wish to wake up tomorrow?
Right where I am. There is no place I’d rather be. I am surrounded by positive vibes and lively emotions, the rest is irrelevant.
What five words would your friends use to describe you?
Caring, empathic, determined, fun, and probably a little crazy.
What five words would your clients use to describe you?
Creative, fun, active, capable, professional.
Do you play music whilst shooting?
Yes, yes, yes, and YES. Music is the essence of life, it gets people moving. A shoot without music is like a shoot without a camera.
If so, what are you digging right now?
Anything and everything, except for country music.
What lies ahead for you?
Hopefully more photographic adventures and opportunities. I will keep working hard to grown my business and hopefully good things will follow.