Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m James Carpenter! I grew up and still live an hour south of Boston in Massachusetts South Coast. Alongside of being a photographer I also study graphic design at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.
When did you realize your passion for photography?
I always knew I was a very visual person. I remember being in 4th grade asking for a video camera, the ones that used cassettes instead of SD cards or internal memory. I would record anything in my back yard or around my home and come up with weird little story lines. When I started Middle School I was given a digital camera from my parents and began to capture random life moments around me. Although I always new I had an interest in photography it did not become my life plan until my senior year of high school. I was in a painting class and randomly showed my teacher one of my photos from a darkroom photography class I had taken. She made me change my mind about all of my plans for college last minute. I think I was going to be attending Plymouth State University for Environmental Planning (YIKES) but instead I was pushed to take an extra class and begin applying to art schools around New England. Now, I remember that being the pivotal moment of my art career.
How has becoming an Instagram influencer impacted your life or career?
I think it is important to say that I never expected Instagram to be a start of my photography career. I was using the social media to just take photos of my friends around my hometown and applying the early staged VSCO filters. Even when I began getting more involved with the community in Boston it was just about meeting new people, taking photos, and walking around the city enjoying time with one another. I never could have imagined that I met some of my best friends through the app while also being allowed to work alongside some of these people. Instagram changed my life drastically, it has pushed me to different ends of the country, I have made lifelong friendships, and been able to start a career with successful companies at an age when most are having the time of there lives in college.
What is your advice to aspiring photographers on Instagram?
BE FRIENDLY! Instagram is a social media and it has built itself around a community of creators that encourage each other and it is meant to be kept this way. I have learned the most from other photographers I have met through the app and I hope to see others do the same. Also, get outside and explore! There is so many things going on around you and it is so important to involve yourself with not just photography but any other forms of art. AND DO NOT GET CAUGHT UP IN THE LIKES, it is not important. Produce the work that you want to share and do not get caught up in the follower count or the amount of likes and comments you get on an image. Go to the Instagram meet ups, talk to everyone, learn about everyone, and just have fun. I have attended and held meet ups in different corners of the country and these have been some of the best memories of my trips.
As a photography stand point it is incredibly important for you to take photos of everything. That is the only way you will grow and really begin to develop yourself as a photographer.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Go to Shake Shack. Often.
Instagram: @jamesscarpenter | Website: jamescarpenter.tumbler.com
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