artist | opportunist | rebel
Story by Sara Bannoura • Photos by Christian Lindgren
Aly Camacho kept a secret from her parents for as long as she could hold her tongue. She originally started college double majoring in French and Education. The second day of classes, Camacho ran to switch her major to her true passion: photography.
“My parents never wanted me to do photo,” Camacho says. “It’s been such a struggle.”
Camacho’s mom got pregnant at the age of 20 and had to live in a trailer park with her husband. The hardship her parents experienced made them skeptical about photography as a career.
“[My mom] thinks photography is so competitive that I won’t find a job,” Camacho says. “She feels that anyone can just pick up a camera and then become better than me. So she doesn’t think I can make it as a photographer.”
A few weeks into the second semester of studying photography, Camacho complained to her parents about a media class. Her mom asked what a media class had to do with studying French. Camacho finally admitted she was no longer in the language and education fields.
Her parents were outraged about the change of major. They see photography as a hobby, not a career. But Camacho says art relates to everything.
“I think art itself makes the world go round,” Camacho says.
The stubbornness of her parents never stopped Camacho from constantly learning to be a better photographer. She started with film photography in high school. Film cameras helped her see things differently and pay more attention to lights, shadows and details of loading and developing film.
“Film is beautiful because of its rawness and delicacy,” she says. “It’s a part of me now. I don’t go anywhere without a camera. It’s my lifestyle.
”From music shows and festivals to simply photographing her friends, Camacho always sees an opportunity to create a new image. When photographing people, she does not focus on the action or the event, but rather on the human experience.
“For a lot of my photos, it’s not always the story,” Camacho says. “It’s more about the emotion. I try to convey that through colors and patterns.”
Despite her parents’ discouragement, Camacho believes she can succeed in the photo business if she has the right attitude. She plans on applying for photo gigs, attending events and networking with creatives to make a name for herself. She never leaves her camera behind so she can take on whatever opportunity comes her way.
But Camacho still wants her parents’ support. She thinks of her parents when she is out shooting and editing. She wants her parents to look at an image and think, “wow, who did that?”
“I just really want to prove to them I can do what I want to do,” Camacho says. “That’s why I strive myself to be better.”