Taking a moment to reflect on my first summer back in San Diego. It's been seven years that I haven't been in San Diego and it's been an interesting experience. I've immersed myself in it's art community, met some awesome talented artists that have made a name for themselves in SD. I've been to the beach more times than I can count because I'm privileged to live 2 miles away. I've taken up a part-time job as a server to help sustain myself as I pursue my photography career which is so much fun. I've reconnected with old friends and made some new ones. And I've swallowed up my pride to move in with my mom to save some money, get my shit together so I can get back on my feet financially and get grinding.
I never really wanted to live in San Diego, I grew up in Carmel Valley. I went to Earl Warren Middle School, graduated at Cathedral Catholic High School and never looked back. My experience was growing up in a predominately white neighborhood and it did bother me because I did experience a lot of sexist and racist comments toward me. North San Diego for me was a place I didn’t see myself going back to, I lived in LA and NYC, and to me I had culture shock. I began to appreciate my own culture even more and others. My mind had a different perspective because I was surrounded by so many different ones. My world became vibrant and I wanted to capture it.
Moving back, I keep my experiences from LA and NYC close to me. They changed the way I think about everything and to have an open mind. And now that I’m more conscious of my surroundings and decisions, I choose to experience San Diego differently and with an open mind. I debated with a 50 year old ish white woman in Encinitas about the absence of diversity in that specific area, and she scoffed at me and said I was so wrong! I told her to look around her in the restaurant we were sitting in, and behold she looked around the room and saw only people with her skin-tone. San Diego is diverse mostly segregated, but in different and sometimes very specific areas. With my camera I want to showcase cultures that represent San Diego and it just so happened that as I was meeting my friend one evening, I came across the La Vuelta Car Cruise festival in Barrio Logan that happens every other weekend in Summer. I highly recommend driving down to Barrio and enjoying old school cars, peeking into art spaces, enjoying a Michelada at one the restaurant bars and explore the neighborhood.
Let's take a look at the shots I took using my Yashica T4 and 35mm Minolta manual camera using Fuji film and Vista.