Every Wednesday, we’re gonna start featuring a little more local art and little more local photography. And to kick this tradition off, we caught up with local photographer and cinematographer, David Cabrera to talk a little bit about what he does, as well as his take on all things photography.
David is an established photographer working here in the Miami area and beyond. And he also has a website called upnupdaily.com. You have definitely seen his work if you’ve been in and around the Miami scene. And we’ve definitely posted his stuff before. Just yesterday, he released a new video project with local artist J. Nics and co-director Joseph Cinnante of Last Rights (watch it here). Click below to read on and to get to know Mr. David Cabrera…
305: Introduce yourself and a little bit about what you do….
My name is David Cabrera and I’m a photographer/cinematographer based out of Miami. To see what I do visit WWW.UPNUPDAILY.COM.
305: How did you transition from first picking up the camera to making it a career?
I had never really thought about photography until I got my first camera back around 2006, a little while after I started my blog. I was tired of going to every site and seeing the same content, so I figured taking pictures (even though I had no clue what I was doing) would be a good way to differentiate it from everything else out there. I was hooked from the moment I took my first photo and became pretty much obsessed with learning as much as I could. I remember spending hours on end looking things up online and then taking photos around my house/neighborhood practicing what I had just read about.
After a while I started getting really positive feedback from a lot of people who I had a lot of respect for and I started booking shoots here and there – the first actual “shoot” I did was for a D.A.D.E. lookbook. Then, Chris Oh from Culture Kings at the time (now with Primary Flight) approached me about having some prints in a group show he was having. The day we hung up the prints, literally within an hour or so, someone came in and bought the majority of the series for what if I remember correctly was around $600. I don’t think Chris knows this, but that was the one defining moment that gave me the confidence to know I could make a career out of this and I haven’t looked back since.
305: What do you find most interesting in using Miami as a backdrop in your photos/photoshoots and video projects that you work on?
I’ve had a few people tell me that after moving away they’ve kept up with what’s going on down here by looking at my work and that’s one of the best complements I could ever receive and something that I’m very proud of. I’ve never liked the thought that Miami IS South Beach or that all this city has to offer is within a few square blocks. So it’s always been a goal of mine to showcase the parts of the city that don’t usually get as much attention.
I feel like a lot of great things are about to happen for Miami and a lot of incredible talent is coming out of here right now and that is an ongoing inspiration for me, I’m just happy to be a part of it while trying to document it as best I can and do my part.
305: Where do you want to be in your career 5 years from now…?
To be honest with the way technology keeps changing there is really no way of telling what can happen 5 yrs from now. I would say though that my career goals on the photo side of things include having a solo gallery show, opening a studio, getting more work published, and continuously developing my style. Also, in the last couple of years I have really immersed myself in cinematography, and I look forward to working with various directors, shooting both films and music videos.
305: What is your favorite thing to shoot? As in, favorite subject matter?
Performances are definitely my favorite thing to shoot, I love the spontaneity of it. When shooting a performance there isn’t really much time to think, it’s all about the hustle to get those images that truly capture the energy of the moment – it’s a beautiful thing. One of my long term career goals is to tour with an artist and later put out a photo book.
305: Describe your style in 5 words or less.
Clean, Miami, Mine
305: Do you think the move from Camera manufacturers to include HD Video on their SLR’s and the sudden surge of “photographers/videographers” – was a positive or negative move? Describe the pros and cons.
I think it’s a beautiful thing, that technology has basically created a whole new market that really wasn’t there before. For me personally it has opened a lot of doors and has given me another way to share with people how I see things. A lot of people think shooting video is as easy as picking up the camera and hitting record, but there really is so much more to it. I remember becoming completely obsessed with cinematography, pretty much just like what happened with photography at first. Some might argue that this technology is watering down the industry, but I think growing with/adapting to technology is a must in this business.
305: Any last words, or do you have any projects that you have coming up that you want to mention?
Well, we just dropped the video for J.Nics ft. Reks “Never be Free” yesterday, which was co-directed by myself and Joseph from Last Rights. I have a video project I shot for Kiki Valdes that should be dropping within the next few weeks, as well as several projects with Derick G that are in the works. Also, we just shot the video for Maybach Music’s Deuce Pound Quise ft. Rick Ross’s “Let Da Top Down” that was directed by Dre Films, as well as several photography based projects that I’m really excited about.