Today we’d like to introduce you to Andres Garzas.
Andres, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
My first memory of going to the theatre was seeing E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. I was four and I was amazed, I think I never fully recovered from such an emotional experience.
I am originally from Madrid, Spain born and raised. Films have always been my passion and also photography and books. As any other kid, the future was opened with too many options and I needed to choose a path. I hesitated and Ihad no idea what to go for so I finally started a Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies in Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
I learned a lot during those five years. I made some friends but my turning point was when I found out there was a figurecalled director of photography, I was hooked. Then I started from the very bottom, as a PA and then as a camera trainee and in a few years I was involved in big commercials, films and music videos as a Camera Assistant. I worked for more than ten years with such great directors as Milos Forman or Pedro Almodovar.
Around 2010, I was still working as a Camera Assistant and trying to develop my career as a cinematographer. I wanted to be a full-time DP, so I started to focus on more independent projects such as documentaries and short films in order to build a powerful reel that finally will take me to my goal. The bet worked and soon I was working full time as a director of photography in music videos and big budget commercials.
In 2013 I moved to the States and in 2018 I became a proud member of IATSE Local 600 International Cinematographers Gild.
As an artist I think that is crucial to constantly challenge yourself so I attended to the Global Cinematography Institute in LA where I had great instructors such as David Stump ASC, Affonso Beato ASC, Christopher Probst ASC, Yury Neymar ASC or Claudio Miranda ASC just to name a few. I also studied at Maine Media Film School where I had the chance to learn from Steven Fierberg ASC and Rodney Taylor ASC and I continued my education at San Antonio de Los Baños (Cuba) where I learned Color Correcting. One of the things that I love the most from my job is that you are learning non stop and I was very lucky since I studied at the last edition of Budapest Cinematography Master Class with Vilmos Zsigmond ASC.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
Curiosity and culture are two pillars in my way of perceiving the World. Having knowledge about history, science, literature or art has helped me a lot to find out who I am and how I see the reality around me. I have the need to connect, it can be anything: an idea, an image, a director, even a smell or taste… We usually work in filmmaking with a script so my main responsibility is to use it as a starting point. Then I talk and listen to the director in order to participate in his universe to develop my own vision and create the film together. In my opinion filmmaking is all about collaboration, that is why connecting at a storytelling and emotional level is mandatory.
In order to run this process is more than necessary to be present. Living in the moment is a state of active, open, intentional attention on life itself, I like to focus in the now. I need to start from a very clean and fresh “regarde” in order to connect with the soul of every project (film, documentary, commercial or music video). I have my own personal tools to achieve it: mindful observation helps me to enhance my position as an observer, to leave my thoughts aside and let feelings grow through my vision.
Regarding the craft, I don’t think it really matters what type of gear you are using, it’s more about “how do you perceive reality” and how you include your vision in the images you take. Of course the technical knowledge its absolutely necessary. I explore the camera and the lenses for each film and find out its visual personality. The collaboration with all the departments is crucial to bring to life each project. Of course, depending what kind of gear you use you are gonna achieve different results but I think that the most important asset of a filmmaker or photographer is keep developing her/his eye/vision.
You have to nurture the child in you. I let reality to surprise me as it was the first time to experience anything. And my hope is that when somebody sees my work it will take him to a unique universe and experience and hopefully connect in an emotional level.
How can artists connect with other artists?
Go to museums, live gigs, installations, film festivals, theatre, live reads… don’t stay at home waiting for somebody to call you. Be pro active! And the most important thing: have fun doing what you love!!
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
I keep shooting commercials and music videos but I am specially excited about a feature that I have just finished shooting on Super 16mm with a very talented female director. Also I am so looking forward to start an upcoming romcom with a fantastic writer/director.
You can follow these projects and the upcoming ones in my IG @garzas_dp and if you want to check out my portfolio you may visit my website www.andresgarzas.com. I love to talk with followers and other artists, so I invite them all to contact me. Let’s talk about art and life!
- Website: www.andresgarzas.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @garzas_dp