MIKE NARCISO: INTO THE LIGHT
I was introduced to photography in the 1960s when I ended up in a photography class by mistake. It was a “life takes a left turn moment” and I went with it. I started shooting bands and portraits of my friends just for fun.
I spent most of the ‘70s in the art department at San Jose State University where I earned an MA in fine art. During that time, I received a grant through the art department to document the art community. I worked for over a year and shot more than 80 portraits of local artists. That was the first time I earned a living using my camera, so I decided to turn to commercial photography.
After five years of tech work for Silicon Valley, I wanted to get back to my portrait work. I thought shooting album covers would be a perfect place to start. I packed up my studio and moved to Los Angeles where I started all over again. I was making my way into the music business shooting covers, recording sessions, and bands when my wife and I were getting ready for our first son. During that time, we both lost family members, so we knew it was time to move back to the San Francisco Bay Area where it all started. I found LA to be a creative place to work, but I was worn out from all the hustling. I was ready for a break. I quit shooting and worked in construction, thinking I’d get back to photography in a year or so.
Fifteen years later, I built a small studio behind my house, put down my hammer, and got back to what I love the most. Regretting putting my photography on hold for so long, I set out to start all over again for the third time. Now I’m just trying to get my work out there. I’ve been exhibiting again and I’m trying to build a commercial base. I’m still shooting portraits and fine art work, but now I’m also shooting still life/photo illustration work geared towards the food and wine industry.
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