Originally from Ecuador, Ricardo is now based in New York City, living out his dream as a visual artist. Having recently collaborated with the beautiful Maren Clemsen, he was kind enough to share his story and work from that session. Check him out below.
Say hello to Ricardo:
Where are you from? What prompted the move to NYC?
I am originally from Ecuador. I knew I always had a passion for photography and videography from a young age. Then as I got older, I decided that I wanted to study what I loved, so I moved to Orlando, Florida to study Digital Arts and Design at Full Sail University. Once I graduated, I did a couple of jobs in Orlando, but very quickly realized that it was not the city for me. After a few trips to New York, I knew I had to get myself to the city somehow. Then last summer, I was offered a job in Manhattan, and without thinking twice, I accepted it!
Besides photography and videography, you’re also a digital artist. What sparked your passion for the arts?
The ability to capture anything in the moment and keep it forever. Whether it be a beautiful landscape or a happy moment, you can capture it all through your lens. Digital media is something that has always been present in my career. Like most designers, we all start our career by creating branding for small companies and coding websites for them. After that, my skill-set was evolving even more on a daily basis with new technologies emerging often. Keeping up with these technologies put me first in line for many different jobs that gave me great experience in areas like print, marketing, sound design, film production, and many others. Although many people will find these jobs overwhelming, I found myself falling in love with the creative process inherent in each of them.
How would you describe your visual style?
I’ve always been a huge fan of film and the looks that you get with it. For the past couple of years, I have tried to emulate the film look on most of my pictures and found that there is something about the imperfection on a photo that makes it feel more human.
What types of photography do you do?
I love all aspects of photography, from the very technical like astrophotography to the very basic like a selfie. For the past couple of years, I have been doing portraits, events, lifestyle, fashion, runway shows, and many others. But lately, I found that fashion and lifestyle is where I have the most fun shooting. There is something about that rush in the creative process that I find very exciting.
What qualities do you seek in models?
I always look for authentic models that don’t hide their true self. A lot of times when you meet a model for the first time, you have to make sure to establish a connection for them to trust you. Otherwise, it’s hard to make all the emotions show during a shoot. At the end, the most important thing is to enjoy and have a good time.
Tell us about your shoot with FStop user, Maren Clemsen.
I spoke a few times with Maren before the shoot, and we were looking for variety by trying out many different outfits to show different moods in many places. Since this was our first time shooting, I wanted to capture a photo of who she really is inside and her passion for dancing. So we used some fairy lights to illuminate the scene and created some magnificent poses to show her strength.
Do you have any projects you’d like to show off?
I am currently working on many different projects, but all of them live on my Instagram page for now, @ricardomantilla
What is your most life-changing event?
Moving to New York City has been the most life-changing event for now. So far, it has been also one of the best decisions of my life.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
In five years, I can see myself opening my own studio where I can bring in more talented people willing to learn and work for their passion.
For anyone who wants to get in touch with Ricardo, here’s some contact information:
Ricardo, thanks for sharing your work and story with us! 🙂
If any artists out there want to collaborate with FStop, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Also, remember to download the FStop app for iPhone here!