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Meet Bryan Octaviano of Octohpus

Today we’d like to introduce you to Bryan Octaviano.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Bryan. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
I was always attracted to photographs ever since I can remember. I would look at photos of advertisements and think they were really awesome. However, living in the Philippines, photography was looked at as a very expensive hobby, and photography wasn’t an ideal career option for me based on my parents’ wishes.

When we moved here to the valley back in 2001 and Myspace started booming, I started to get my interest in photography. Everyone wanted a cool super photoshopped profile photo, so I started playing around with mine too. I never had the best stuff when it came to taking photos. I couldn’t afford a DSLR or a fisheye lens, so I worked with what I had.

I started off shooting with a Nikon Coolpix that I borrowed from my mum and my Sony Ericson, which had a really cool panorama feature that I would use to take really long portraits since it morphed the image like a fisheye. I took pictures of everything and everyone. I wasn’t great at it, but it was sure fun and exciting.

Since then, I started to develop a good eye for light and angles. It wasn’t until I was 23, that I started to really get serious about photography. I bought my first film camera from my friend Sue, a Vivitar V3800n, and I instantly fell in love with its double exposure function.

I mostly do my creative shoots in film since it feels more natural and raw, especially when I play around with double exposure. I know photoshop has the same feature, but I like the more natural process of it. It’s like knowing that you only have 36 shots and you have to make each one count.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Not at all. I wish It was all nice and dandy, but there were times where I want just to quit. I always run into self-doubt about the work that I always had to get over. Your self can be your biggest critique, and you can sometimes be harsh on my creativity.

If not my self I end up having to put my day job as a priority since photography isn’t what’s paying the bills at the moment. I really don’t like to give myself an excuse but I know sooner or later I will get over the slump and move forward. The business side is also challenging for me.

Beside from managing and putting a curating a shoot, it’s a bit hard after working on 10-hour shift, Everything I learned from photography and business is all trial and error. I sometimes catch my self running blind, and whenever I hit a wall, it felt like a dead end.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Octohpus story. Tell us more about the business.
I feel like my style is always changing. But I mostly focus on portraits, fashion, and lately, I have been getting into food photography. I am known for my multiple exposure portraits and editorial. I believe that my style is a bit unorthodox from the typical film shooter, but it still has a vintage style.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Being a photographer is almost like playing a game of luck. 90% of the time that if you think it will go wrong will go wrong. Murphys Laws I guess.

From trying to time the perfect light, to having models run late, equipment malfunction, time frame, etc. But it is part of the job to find the solution and get moving with the program. I guess I have been lucky when it comes to models and people who help me run the shoot.

They have been helpful and understanding most of the time. But when it does go bad, it turns sour really quick. That is when bad luck turns into a harsh lesson, and I just try my best to learn from it.

Pricing:

  • $150 for 3 outfit content shoot
  • $125 for 2 outfit content shoot
  • $100 for 1 outfit content shoot
  • $50 per dish for food photography

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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