Guestagrammer of the Week: Craig MacLeod
Momenta welcomes this week’s guestagrammer, Craig MacLeod!
Current job: Freelance Photographer
Current location: San Diego & Los Angeles
Connection to Momenta: I first encountered Momenta as a student at their Project LA 2014 workshop where I was introduced to Homeboy Industries in Downtown LA. Homeboy supports high-risk, former gang-involved men and women with a continuum of free services and programs in addition to operating several social enterprises that serve as job -training sites. Since that workshop I have been able to continue to document the immense impact Homeboy has on the local community and having them use my photographs to help their mission is a great privilege and extremely rewarding – so thank you Momenta for the introduction!
Tell us about your journey as an image-maker and how you got to where you are today.
I’m excited as my journey as a freelance photographer is just beginning! I moved from the UK to California in July 2014, and I took that opportunity to switch my career from commercial business lawyer to freelance photographer. As a lawyer, I found photography a great way to keep the creative side of my brain energized. Now, working as a photographer, my 20 years in business helps me collaborate with clients and understand their needs – often times I am more a “Producer of Images” for a client than a photographer.
What stories or issues are you most passionate about covering?
Kindness, fairness and equality of opportunity are hugely important to me – people becoming their best selves, unhindered by prejudice and bias. I love the opportunity to be a visual storyteller, helping Not-For-Profits raise awareness for their causes, helping young entrepreneurs who are starting out to get their name out there. Somehow people are very open to me – the “Scot with the Leica” learning about their lives. I am privileged to meet lots of fascinating people of all ages and with all sorts of stories to tell. I’m also passionate about learning all the time – whether through reading (see Inspiration below!) or attending a wide variety of workshops and conferences.
Where do you look for inspiration for your work: books, movies, authors, photographers, art, certain people?
Everywhere! Reading books by experienced and talented photographers is particularly inspiring. Two incredible books I’ve enjoyed recently are: “It’s What I Do” by Lynsey Addario and “Hold Still” by Sally Mann. Print is my preferred medium, and I have boxes of photos and articles, food for thought for future projects. I subscribe to the print editions of The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times and far too many magazines to list! Working in both San Diego and Los Angeles, I am surrounded by so many creative people. I’ve met some incredibly talented and friendly people here who have helped me progress as a photographer.
What social media or news feeds do you follow regularly?
The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times, the BBC, Getty Images Reportage and The Daily Beast are all compulsive! I’m new to Instagram, so I’m having fun following some great photographers.
What is one passion you have outside of photography that might come as a surprise to our readers?
Since moving to California I’m learning to surf! When not falling off a board I’m in the ocean swimming. I’m lucky to live two streets away from the beach and love being in the water. It’s where I don’t have a camera with me and where I can quiet my brain a bit.
What can we expect to see next week from your “guestagramming” on our Momenta Instagram account?
In October 2014 I answered a post in the Momenta Workshops Alumni Group Facebook Page from Jessica Pepper-Peterson. She was looking for a photographer in the San Diego area for Classroom Champions to showcase their work with Lex Gillette (Paralympic World Champion and World Record Holder in the Long Jump) using Google Glass to mentor local school children. I’ve been privileged to document this amazing project as well as similar ones for them in Philadelphia, New York and New Jersey. As this was due to being part of the Momenta Family a small selection of my work with Classroom Champions had to be the subject of my “guestagramming”!
#seizethemomenta, and follow @momentaworkshops on Instagram August 30 – September 5 to see Craig’s great work!
About the author…
Manuela Marin Salcedo
Manuela Marin Salcedo is a research and development team member and content developer at Momenta Workshops. Her expertise is in visual communications and social media.