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Meet Anthony Delgado of 2RAW in Compton

Today we’d like to introduce you to Anthony Delgado.

Anthony, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
It all started when a friend of mine sold me a camera he “found” about five years ago. At the time, I was into doing graffiti (where I got the name 2RAW) and going to LA car meets.. I thought it would be cool to take my camera along and take pictures of friends and strangers doing our thing. I loved the idea of capturing the raw moment as it was. I began carrying my camera everywhere I went and was captivated by freedom that street photography gave me. No rules, just how I liked it. As time went by, I started realizing that photography was yet another way for me to express myself artistically and at the same time to help others express themselves as well. But I still hadn’t developed a style until about a year or two ago, when I realized my visuals had the power to really make statements about the way I view the world around me.

Over the past two years, I started investing more time and money into my craft. Along the way, I met a lot of like-minded artists whose expression lied in music and making clothing. In my mind I felt that my visual expression could take the messages of these artists to the next level. They were telling their story through lyrics and clothing designs and I was telling my story through imagery. Eventually, photography was not enough for me and I decided to teach myself how to shoot, edit and direct videos. That’s how I got to where I am now. I consider myself very diverse and adaptable to any style of shooting at this point whether it be music, clothing, or whatever else comes my way. Eventually, any project I touch will undeniably be “2RAW”.

Has it been a smooth road?
The hardest part of being a visual artist, or any artist in general, is believing in yourself and staying inspired through all the everyday struggles of life. Everyone always sees the end result of the projects, but are never aware of what’s going on behind the scenes or what it took to organize it… It’s never as simple as coming up with an idea and then just executing it. I believe it’s also important to find a purpose in what you’re doing or else it all feels pointless. On top of that, making your work stand out and meaningful (to yourself first) is always a challenge within itself. There are so many other people doing what you’re doing. So, making the work unique is hard at times. Not Impossible though.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the 2RAW story. Tell us more about the business.
I am a photographer and video director. I shoot all my photographs on a 35mm camera. I also shoot, direct, and edit all my own videos. My specialization is in directing and coming up with ideas and concepts that capture the beauty of the struggle, as I see it. I invest a lot of my own money into my concepts and am good at bringing people together for projects. I am most proud of having put together so many projects with a zero to little budget. That’s the beauty of it: making something out of nothing. Everything I do is true to myself. Following trends or hype has never been my thing. I believe if people are going to love and appreciate my work then they will love and appreciate it for what it is. My visuals are meant to appeal to ALL people who identify with growing up in the struggle. Whether it be black or brown, we are one alike through the cultures and struggles we share. I tell stories for us.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I see myself working with larger budgets for sure. Whether it be money from investors or larger companies. I see my name on large campaigns and alongside large music artists. I think for the most part my style will stay the same, but the quality of imagery will improve for sure with more access to lighting, equipment and resources. I can also see myself having the access to give local talent (such as myself now) the opportunity to work on projects that can potentially further their career.

Contact Info:

  • Website: shotby2raw.com
  • Email: shotby2raw@gmail.com
  • Instagram: el2raw
  • Twitter: el2raw


Image Credit:

@coal.fm

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