It’s refreshing to see someone young focusing on the photography portion of photography.
That was a confusing sentence.
Let me explain.
In Scott Pacaldo’s photos, you can see his passion for photography. He doesn’t care about his gear. He only recently got a full-fledged DSLR while many of his photos were shot with an old iPod. Proof in my mind that all you need is passion and the will to go out there and shoot.
I must have come across Scott’s work in Tumblr. He had a penchant for sharing random photos and joining photo projects. At some point, he shared his #24HourProject. It got me interested. I downloaded the free photobook and decided it would be fun to feature him on ZeroThreeTwo.
*One of his photos was featured in our post, 30 Random Beautiful Photographs From Filipinos.
Here’s our talk with Scott Pacaldo about photography:
032: Hi Scott! Who are you and what do you do?
Scott: Hello! First and foremost, thank you for having me here. I’m Scott Pacaldo or ‘iskat’ for most of you Bisaya out there. I define myself as a dreamer, a creative and a Cebuano to top that. I love to collect photobooks. My recent favorite is the Kinfolk Magazine.
I used to sit behind a desk from 8pm-5am til I came to my senses and realized that I wanted to pursue my passion for photography.
I really enjoy Street / Reportage / Documentary photography a lot! In contrast, I also like Portraiture. From there, my love of taking portraits stems to Fashion, Lifestyle and Editorial styles. Apart from these, I enjoy the other genres, but nothing compares to the feeling when I’m shooting those mentioned above.
Sounds like you have a wide range of photography interests. Who are your influences?
I have quite a number of artists I look up to – from the old masters to the modern creatives. To name some; Henri Cartier-Bresson, Elliott Erwitt, Vivian Maier, Daido Moriyama, Sam Abell, Aik Beng Chia, Carlo Gabuco, Tonee Despojo, and Hamada Hideaki.
When did you start shooting?
I have vivid memories of me as a disposable-camera-toting kid shooting candids of people at home. I left photography while I was growing up, but my love for the craft returned around late high school because of the influence from my friends.
How did you learn?
I’m self-taught. I read tons of photography articles both online and offline. I’m fond of reading quotes from various photographers. It’s surprising. You learn a lot about them, their works and their way of thinking from just a single line of thought.
Can you name one key takeaway or learning that inspired you?
“Shoot only subjects that interest you – This way you are always inspired to work.”
Let’s talk gear. What kind of camera do you use? Lenses? Flashes?
The iPod Touch and the occasional family Point & Shoot were my go to cameras. It’s what helped me rekindle my interest in photography. The boom in mobile photography and Instagram really helped too. I was fortunate enough to afford an upgrade and buy my own DSLR.
Since 2012, I’ve been shooting with my Canon 60D for Street and Lifestyle photography. I only have two lenses; the 18-135mm kit lens and my favorite 50mm 1.4 lens which I use almost every time. I prefer natural lighting, so I rarely use my flash unit.
What goes to your head when you take a photo? Are they planned? Do you wait for the exact moment? Or do you shoot as many as possible and hope there’s a keeper?
I’ve never given much thought to it actually. I usually just take a stroll and observe people and the things happening around. If there’s something that interests me, I’ll take a shot and move on; this happens in less than a minute.
I don’t linger in one spot because that will only draw eyes towards you, unless I’m shooting for a street portrait where I’ll interact with a stranger. For certain photos, I have to wait on someone or something just because the background, lighting or setting is perfect.
Four years into street photography, I found out that there’s never really an “on/off” switch. Your eyes and your mind are in constant search of these invisible frames that have certain elements that define your style.
How do you choose which pictures to show to other people?
I often edit my images by batches. I go through each of them and rate it based on quality (composition, technicality, etc.). When posting on Instagram, I like to neatly group my photos into threes where each of them compliments the other with a common element among the three photographs. By doing this, it feels like I’m curating my own gallery, and the viewer sees a well-polished presentation of my works on their mobile. Being OC also helps. haha
#24HourProject is a worldwide street photography project started by two Instagrammers namely Renzo Grande and Sam Smotherman. The idea is to document the human condition of multiple cities during one single day. I heard about it in 2012, but only had the time to participate this year. I would have missed it again if it weren’t for another Cebu street photographer, miguels_foto who tagged me on the announcement (Thanks bai!).
Participants were allowed to shoot and share every hour or select their best images after. I went for the latter as post-processing my images is part of my creative process.
Photography projects are awesome, it drives your creativity. The #24HourProject was a nice opportunity to mix in three of my interests; Photography, Cebu, and Photobooks. Cebu – because it’s a dedication, giving back to the place where I was born and raised. Photobooks – because they’re a photographer’s memento and I’ve always wanted to create one.
What is the best way for people to keep up with what you are doing?
You can find me anywhere online under the pseudonym “eeskaatt” (drop by and say hi!).
For convenience, here are some links:
IG/Tw: @eeskaatt | @scottpacaldo | @akosugboanon