So I recently stumbled across The League of Us’ Tumblr, full of photos of people, places, things. But they weren’t your standard pictures.
Bright and full of happy smiling faces? Nope.
These are the types of photos that you can’t just glance over without a second thought. You look, you are captivated, and you’re not sure why.
The best way I can describe these photos is … well, real and uniquely beautiful.
I had to learn more so I reached out and found Geo on the other end.
The founder of “The League of Us,” Geo is a professional photographer living and working in Los Angeles, Calif.
He’s had a camera in his hand since he was 16 years old and it turns out that he’s a Sony fan, shooting with the Sony Alpha a99 camera. We had the opportunity to sit down and chat with him. Check out the Q&A below.
When/how did you discover photography?
Geo: I started shooting at the age of 16 but my love for photography developed way early on. As a kid, I loved looking through old family albums – perusing the pages of photos to look back on my lineage. It was like a history book all about my family and it was fascinating. I picked up a camera because I knew I wanted to continue chronicling … not just my family but life in general. I want to add to the rich visual history that already exists.
How would you describe your style?
Geo: I’d say my style is “urban street” but clean.
I started off shooting live concerts … lighting, strobes and then ventured into street photography, which then evolved into urban landscapes.
Lately, the urban landscape photos are getting a lot of love.
When asked about his inspirations, Geo says he draws from daily life.
Geo: I’m a curious being – constantly looking around and evaluating my surroundings. I search for any possibility of light and shadows that spark my interest.
Do you look up to any photographers?
My favorite photographer is George Brassai (1899-1984). He’s Hungarian. For his time, his works are very simplistic and feature amazing composure.
Do you shoot only with Sony? What’s been your experience with the camera so far?
Yep, just Sony. I started off with Sony because I know that they’re relatively new in the photography market compared to other companies. I’m all about going against the grain, supporting the underdog.
I’ve been stoked on my camera, especially the mirrorless technology and in-camera stabilization. I also love that I can use different lenses and systems with the adaptor.
One of the other things I like about my a99 is the menu system. For me, it’s easy to get around. It’s intuitive and I can pretty much operate the camera blindfolded now. Just like with anything, you have to learn it, grow with it, and adapt to it.
What other gear do you use?
a. Lens – My lens right now is a Sony 28mm 2.8. Can’t wait to try the Carl Zeiss 24 f/2 and the 24-70 mm f/2.8.
b. Tripod – Manfrotto 190XPROB
c. Filters – Just UV filters for lens protection
d. Flash - 2 HVL-F56am 1 HVL-F60AM all triggered by Pocket wizard X’s. It’s a great, reliable set up.
e. Camera bag – Incase DSLR Pro Pack. It’s airport friendly and I can get to everything I need easily.
f. Others – I also use a Blackrapid RS-7 camera strap
In the field, what are your camera settings of choice?
a. Aperture I usually shoot at the widest aperture possible so F2.8-1.4
b. Shutter speed For handheld, I try to stay at or above 1/100th. With flash, 1/80th and with tripod mount, I go for slower shutter speeds.
c. ISO I tend to stay in the range of 50-4000
d. White Balance I usually leave it up to the camera and correct later on in post.
e. Focus – Manual/Auto Auto focus is left on AF-S (autio focus single shot), but I select spot or local to adjust where I want the camera to focus on my subject.
f. Image Format – RAW/JPEG RAW RAW RAW! Pretty heavy files, but you can recover and correct so much!
What do you do to improve your skills?
Geo: I am an avid shooter. That means I don’t pull out my camera just for gigs, I take it with me everywhere I go so I can constantly shoot everyday life. I keep my eyes trained and up-to-date.
I also try to do different things here and there to see what intrigues and resonates with people.
Among your works, which one is your favorite and why?
Geo: I was shooting at one of Tyler the Creator’s shows with the Sony a300. At one point, he went into the photography pit to sing to the crowd. Everyone’s excited, the energy is high – just a great moment to capture. You’ll notice a fan is actually flipping him off, but in this environment, it’s not a sign of disrespect but more of a sign of celebration.
The second one I’m proud of is a landscape photo of lightning. It was my first time trying to capture something like this, and with this type of photo, you’ve got to have a lot of patience. Literally, you just have to sit there and wait … So I stood at the mountainside waiting for lightning to strike.
After a good 4 to 5 hours of waiting, I was ready to throw in the towel and pack up. One strike finally hit and I was able to capture it. It’s in the dead center of the frame, spread out perfectly. It was amazing.
What tools do you use for post-processing?
I’m a real big fan of Lightroom for quick touch-ups, and then they get uploaded and shared online.
What are your goals with your photography endeavors?
I’m going to venture out and try a lot more travel photography. And my ultimate goal is to just keep growing with it. Do it daily and live by it.
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