AR: I would describe my work as contemporary and experimental. I try to experiment a lot in my work because I don’t like staying comfortable. Not staying comfortable helps me progress and stay creative.
CH.89: Where do you draw your inspiration from?
AR: I draw inspiration from many places, but I always feel inspired from amateur photographers. They have so much raw passion for photography and it always energizes me to get out and take new photos.
CH.89: Can you talk a little bit about what your creative thought process is like when starting a new project/ piece of artwork?
AR: I usually start with a concept that I write down in my notes. These concepts are usually vague with scribbles about a color I want to use, feeling I want to convey, etc. I then start developing the idea more by adding in symbolism and personal meaning to the shoot. This always helps me create more meaningful work. After that I generally create a shot list, find people to get involved with the shoot, pick out wardrobe, find a day, and then shoot.
CH.89: Is there anything in particular that you would want people to take from your artwork?
AR: If people feel any kind of emotion when viewing my work, I feel like my goal is met. Creating an emotional response is always the most rewarding thing to me.
CH.89: Can you talk a little bit about your lifestyle as an artist and what that is like?
AR: I’m currently studying photography at ASU. As a student my days are pretty hectic with classes and homework, but I always make time to take a few photos of the things I see daily. Lately, I’ve been using my iPhone to take pictures and want to make a zine including all the iPhone pictures. Trying to fit in personal work and school work is a hard task to manage and usually results in some late nights, but I love feeling productive and working on multiple things at a time.
CH.89: When starting out an artistic task, do you think it is better to have a particular direction/set plan guiding your way? Or, is it better to act on impulse and go from there?
AR: I like to have a loose draft of what I want to shoot. Every shoot is so unpredictable so I like having an idea of what I want, but never rely too heavily on my planning as I feel it dampens my creativity.
CH.89: What is one major lesson you’ve learned as an artist thus far?
AR: The major lesson I learned so far is to make work that pleases myself rather than making work to please others.
CH.89: Do you regard personal style & taste to be of highest importance?
AR: Personal style is so hard for me. I feel like it’s very important, but I always am changing my mind about what my “style” is. I haven’t fully found it yet, but feel like I’m getting closer.
CH.89: What do you consider to be the hardest thing about being an artist?
AR: Getting out of creative ruts and feeling burnt out. Definitely the worst aspect of being an artist for me.
AR: I love being able to talk through my art. Not having to say physical words and letting my art speak for me is what I love about art.
CH.89: Is there anyone in particular, any artist’s that inspire you in any way?
AR: There are so many artists that inspire me. A photographer that has been inspiring me to use more color in my photography is James J. Robinson (@james.pdf). His use of color and low light shooting ability is inspiring to me. Another artist that inspires me is Tom Sachs. His mixed medium and style is inspiring and also so unique.
CH.89: What do you think of technology in terms of being a useful tool for artists today?
AR: Technology is a blessing and a curse to artists today. Personally, I have been leaving my digital camera at home and taking out my film camera more. It slows down the photographic process and makes me think more about the shots I’m taking.
CH.89: Do you think being an artist allows you to view the world differently from those who don’t follow creative paths?
AR: Being an artist definitely allows me to view the world differently. Specifically being a photographer I view lighting differently and always see possibilities for new photos.
CH.89: Do you enjoy traveling? If so, do you have a favorite city?
CH.89: Do you have a favorite author or book?
AR: The Alchemist- Paulo Coelho
CH.89: Any future goals or plans for your artwork?
AR: I want to print more of my work and have a goal to have my work published in some magazines.
CH.89: What does being an artist mean to you?
AR: Being an artist means that I have the power to create emotion filled work that affects people.
CH.89: What’s the last song you listened to?
AR: Master of None- Beach House
CH.89: Any last words on the aesthetic of your artwork?
AR: Clean and simple. Art shouldn’t be complicated and I try to show that in my work. Thanks for reading.