You’re our Photographer and Photo Editor! What does that mean and what do you do?
I help concept and execute Man Repeller’s photographic content. My day-to-day involves scheduling shoots; scouting locations; meeting and photographing subjects somewhere in the five boroughs; venturing out into the streets with an immaculately styled subject; prop styling still lifes with Emily and our visuals intern Louisiana; making selects and editing images; the occasional clone stamping and collage making; and dreaming up more ideas for the future of MR photography.
Where were you before this/doing what?
I was a couple blocks away, working on the creative team at Outdoor Voices. That’s the activewear brand that makes you feel like an Ellsworth Kelly painting on a treadmill. This feature on a local marching band was my favorite story I shot there. Before thaaat, I studied at the Rhode Island School of Design. I also interned at Into The Gloss while I was a spry collegian.
What did you go to school for?
Photography! Turns out that came in handy.
How did you get started at Man Repeller?
I had been following the evolution of MR for a while, and eventually pitched a couple stories while I was still in school. Here’s one! Many moons later, when I was thinking about jumping on the media train because I knew it operated on a cycle that came really naturally to me (and always kept me excited and engaged), a friend recommended me to the team, for which I’m eternally grateful! The photography stars aligned and I stayed up really late filling out my edit test.
Favorite part of your job?
Meeting and photographing fascinating people for the site.
The privilege of capturing the sartorial creations of Leandra, Amelia, Harling and the rest of the team. They hand over a tableau of brilliant, captivating visual material to me and I get to turn them into photographs.
Getting back to my desk with a full memory card, waiting in anticipation to scroll through a fresh batch of images as they pop up on my screen.
Least favorite part of your job?
Sometimes I overheat because of the lighting setup in our studio.
What’s one thing that surprised you in your path up until now?
I really love Google Cal and organizing information into spreadsheets and pitch meetings. And that you can get a lot of quality writing done in the Drafts section of the Mail app while on the subway!
What do you want to be when you grow up?
A person who gets to alternate between photography and writing assignments, champion creative people by doing so and make the work of designers and artists more accessible to a broader audience. And also, someone who has a happy little family in a colorful apartment.
What’s one piece of advice you can offer to someone who wants a job like yours?
When I started at MR, I realized it was truly possible (and not a myth invented by motivational speakers) to love your 9-to-5. Don’t let the obstacles discourage you: the assisting gigs and administrative duties and retouching projects will only make you a better, more detail-oriented photographer in the long term, and also more fired up to be behind the lens. Also, a skort is the lynchpin of an ideal uniform for the photographer who wants to look presentable when they’re getting kinda sweaty.
What’s one piece of advice you have for someone who has no clue what they want to do?
You can always connect the dots in retrospect. You have to start somewhere and it will inevitably help you narrow in on an ambition. Looking back, you won’t be able to envision how you’d do Job B without what you’d learned from Job A, however arbitrary it may have felt.
Tell me something weird about you.
Feature photo of Edith by Louisiana Gelpi.