Gloria. Copyright 2006 Miguel Omaña.

Mexican teen Gloria

Photo I shoot with my model Gloria.

I always shoot undiscovered faces or girl-next-door inexperienced ladies. Hence, most of my models have been from Mexico or Texas. It is amazing to work with them because they have a genuine drive for what the artistic side of photography represents. Eventhough I retribute their time spent in the form, they do it for the gratification of proving themselves.

I’ve discovered “civilian” women that focus on how much they are gonna earn are not only tough to work with — photographwise — but they’re actually not good at it… at all. When the art springs from the heart, amazing things can happen. That is why I stick with undiscovered girls, and not only teens like in this case — but also adults or even moms. And let me tell you, I love this approach.

Friends of friends, instagram girls, or just ladies I literally meet on the street — I invite them. Some decline, most don’t. Any other photographer may have different approaches, experiences, or well… even more budget. This is my way of doing photography art, I enjoy it and from what they’ve told me so the ladies.

My photography teacher from university once told me not to rely on paying models, to find other way of paying them like photo prints. The reason because I pitch in a bit of my budget in them is various reasons. I like to give in something in return of their time spent. There is nothing more important to me than time. To leave their jobs to go straight for a shooting instead of home, or to be changing wardrobe instead of the movie night she had prepared with her boyfriend, that means tons to me. The other reason I do pay a small amount is to keep them happy in order to have the possibility of a shooting in the near (or far) future. After all, many of them are not my friends or colleages, but raw strangers. And to believe in me based solely in my work and my words is huge.

Gloria. Copyright 2006 Miguel Omaña.
Gloria. Copyright 2006 Miguel Omaña.

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