Today we're talking to Steven Pacho. I admire this guy so much for being who he is: a friend, fearless creative, and straight hustler in the photography business.
Name: Steven Pacho
Tell me a little about yourself: I'm 26, a Fresno State Alumni, and graduated with a degree in business marketing. I am actively seeking a career in advertising as that is my passion alongside photography. I used to be a huge gamer and competed in professional Halo tournaments for 10 years. I love coffee and pizza!
When and why did you start your photography business?
I started my photography business in November of 2019 and haven’t looked back since! This is around the same time I had just bought a camera and started learning from other experienced photographers on Youtube. I started my photography business because not only did I love taking pictures and being creative in that world, I also have a knack for engaging in business, studying strategy, and coming up with new advertisements. At that time I really didn’t have any work experience in the marketing realm, so I said to myself, “Ooo I can use this opportunity to grow my business and marketing skill set.”
What do you most enjoy about your photography business?
I enjoy connecting with my clients/models and bringing out the best expressions out of them. Not everyone can just show up like a seasoned actress and display the feelings and expressions we’re trying to capture. When I start to dig in deep and bring out their emotions or fun expressive side, that’s when shoots are the most enjoyable for me.
What is most challenging about being a photographer?
One of the most challenging things about being a photographer is finding different locations to shoot at. Sometimes either the client or I don’t want to shoot at an overused spot locally and try searching for new locations. Majority of the time these decisions are left to me and I have to pick somewhere fast. Editing forsure! It’s a general habit amongst almost all photographers to do all these shoots then have a long gallery of pictures to edit and tend to put it off. This is something I have worked on over time to ensure I get back pictures to clients in a timely manner. Another challenging part is shooting live action or events as there are many moving pieces and you have to be alert to capture awesome highlights.
What projects are you currently working on right now?
I am currently working on my booking site through Square. I want to make as convenient as possible for clients when it comes to booking, availability, invoices, receipts, and more. When it comes to my personal social media, I am currently posting a brown theme of pictures which features things like coffee, my camera, Fresno buildings and art, and me in front of backgrounds I find aesthetically pleasing.
What is on your blog?
My blog is titled, ‘Stevenfinity The Blog’ which features local adventures to food places, coffee shops, events, and photography experiences.
What is your favorite project you’ve ever done/worked on?
Hmmm that’s a good one, I would have to say rebranding my photography business! I love it, it’s now named Primeside Photography, the colors are dark blue and gold, and it has a camera logo above the title. I started changing the designs and names on all my marketing materials such as business cards, fliers, and across all social media platforms.
If there’s one piece of advice you can give for other photographers what would you tell them?
Shoot as much as you can, experience is everything! Be organized, take care of everything such as location, ideas, dates and times, equipment, props, and more. Give your clients peace of mind and let them know you have everything taken care of. Also during your shoots be sure to direct and vocal. More than 90% of the time your client is going to want to be directed on stances, posture, pose ideas, face gestures, and evoking emotions They most likely won’t have a mirror in front of them so you have to be there for them to give them direction. Lastly to tag on that, go back and forth after taking a few shots of them to show them what they look like, this will help them adjust their body or face gestures to how they like.
Thank you so much for featuring me on your blog, I am beyond grateful to have this opportunity.
You can follow Steven on his personal account @Stevenfinity or his photography page @Primesidephoto on Instagram.
This is a very special series about an amazing individual and friend named BK. We sat down and he shared information about his Warmth Drive happening this month in Fresno.
Name: Brian Kelly
What is Let Creators Create and how did it start?
At its core, Let Creators Create is a platform for artists of all backgrounds to show their work. They can share current projects that they currently have going on, projects that they're thinking about doing, and already completed ones. It's also a place for them to get feedback. It's really meant to be a channel that an audience can tune into, support, and interact with.
Let Creators Create has been around for almost two years now. Myself and my boys K- Rock and ItsG (local rappers here in Fresno) felt like putting on our own shows. We were looking at different venues, but we didn't see anything and nothing ended up happening. Later on we had a connection who gave us an opportunity to have a show at the Bitwise theater at the time. We didn't want the show to be just us, we wanted to work with other people. We needed a title that could fit well with the whole event - something that would be inclusive and bigger than just us three. That's when the title Let Creators Create came to be.
What type of projects do you have going on right now?
Right now we have the Warmth Drive where we're collecting warm clothing and hygiene items until the 23rd of this month. I really wanted Let Creators Create be connected to this because the reality is that sometimes artists do become homeless - it's part of the process that we don't like to talk about. In general there's a lot of people who are a couple paychecks from being in very bad/potentially homeless situation. I feel like it's important for artists and creatives to be connected to this because they know what it feels like to be in that position.
Who do you work and partner with?
For the Warmth drive I look to reach out to companies and brands that already have their own sense of identity and a strong presence already. At the end of the day real recognizes real and I gravitate to people who do things for the right reasons. There's people like Johnny Q and others who put on the Monday mixers - those are the ones I like to reach out to. Tower Yoga and Tower Blendz are also companies that I partner with and that you can drop off clothing for the Warmth Drive as well.
What inspires you?
The inspiration came from connecting with Des from the We Are Not Invisible Foundation. I met her years ago and I've seen her work and help change many people's lives. She coordinates potlucks in the park on Eaton Plaza to help feed the homeless and take a step closer to end the hunger in our community. The next one is coming up on November 23rd where I will be taking the donated goods from the Warmth Drive and pass them out to the people there. It's just important to make people feel like there's help out there and that someone actually sees them.
"Do what you can, where you can, and while you still can." - BK's Grandma :)
Honestly, you might be living in a box if your not in tune with the creative scene in Fresno. We are so much more than being known for monthly art-hops, taco truck throwdowns, and having passionate Downtown revitalization efforts.
This is a space for the story behind the creatives. This is the story of the people. I wanted to start my first segment focusing on John Quiroz; founder of Love The Captive.
Name: John Quiroz
Title: Curator. Farmer. Plumber. Founder of Love The Captive.
What is Love The Captive?
After I was done playing music in 2005, I noticed there wasn’t a collective of promoters in Fresno. There was a few, but none that were doing anything outside the box. I decided to start coordinating shows. Back then it was all about the music and the shows. We threw them anywhere we could – in churches, warehouses, houses, literally anywhere.
We never took a break. There’s been some years where we’ve done 10 shows in a year and there’s others where we’ve done 250 in a year. Nonetheless, we never stopped. For 14 years, Love The Captive has been known for shows.
What is LTC’s mission?
Our mission is to enhance and grow the careers of the artist’s we represent. We don’t believe in boundaries or systematic lines. We don’t believe in area codes and divisions – we’re all human. It’s not so much of a Fresno thing. It’s an everyone thing.
What is Summer Sweat?
Summer Sweat started when I was working at Peeves around 4- 5 years ago. The idea for Summer Sweat then was multiple stages, multiple genres, and hosted right on Fulton Street. I wanted to do something fun in the 100 degree plus Fresno weather, while others looked at the weather as a drag I wanted to embrace it and look at it more as a celebration. In the past it's been both a local and non-local lineup. Now for the first time ever in 2019 it’s made up of all locals that are all a part of LTC; which I'm really proud of.
What’s new for you guys?
Pretty soon we will be launching as a marketing agency for musicians and artists. No longer will you see “Love The Captive presents.”
We decided to make this change because throughout the years, we’ve accumulated many talented individuals who have certain skills. At this point we no longer need more people to do more shows, what we really need is a true music industry. A place where people can work on their music, record in studios, and get booked on tours. A place to market them in the right way. So it’s not like someone saying, “Hey my music is out” and hoping somebody listens to it. We want to feed and market these guys. I will still continue to do shows but under another moniker.
I’m excited, because this is my baby. The baby is now a teenager and it’s time to grow into something bigger.
What inspires you?
My family and my youth. I love looking back at my upbringing and the things I’ve experienced growing up. I don’t look back with the mindset of wishing I could go back to re-do things, but I look at it more of as motivation and security of where I’m going. My mom always had music bumping to Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin, and Whitney Houston. All these artists opened me up to different sounds. The sounds opened up my mind, and by the time I got to high-school I just wanted to get to know people and their stories. That’s what really motivates me, people.
This has been weighing heavy, but in a good way. I've been so inspired lately from my yoga practice as of late. It's opened up a lot depths of realization which makes me hungry for even more soul-searchin'. This post isn't about yoga and I'm not saying that I've finally figured out my life nor that I'm perfect.
But with this particular topic of asking and receiving I've been open enough to explore and ask myself what I truly want; especially in my work and personal life. Balancing these two is extremely important to me. Once I find out what I really want then I can start crafting the type of questions I need to ask. In addition of who I want to surround myself or I also like to think of it as "Who I want in the gym with me." Because you know, we workin.
As a creative or any other area of field; whether you're an engineer, a writer, entrepreneur, teacher, realtor, artist or chicken catcher there will always be a gray area that you don't know the answer to. There will always be once piece of the puzzle that you need your network to help you with. I think of the super women and men in my community and ask myself, "How do they do it?" "How are they so dang good at what they do and make it look easy?"
Let's take Christine Brown for example. She's the lady of Fresno. I could disappear from the world for a bit but when I come back I am always shown love and encouragement from her. She is super goals. Period. I remember sliding into her DMs one time and telling her just that and she immediately responded with "You can have what you want too. Starts with the mindset, I promise."
I took that slice of information that she said and created space for it. Don't even ask me how long it was cooking for. Fast forward a few months later and here I am taking action for the things I want. The process was and still is an animal at times.
I'm talking about the process of going through what you don't want. Knowing you don't want it but still putting yourself through it. Dealing with the bullshit and then finally having enough and reaching that breakthrough moment.
So fast forward to now and I've finally figured out what I really want (or at least I think I do LOL.) It took a lot of listening to my natural desires. Understanding that I don't need to be the "next" anyone. I asked myself and I received those answers. Currently, I'm still blogging, working as a public relations coordinator, volunteering on a Board of Directors position, and picking up djaying. I think I'm kicking my "quarter life crisis" in the ass.
Personal growth is not a pretty process and won't ever be. I want to stress that there's always room to re-invent yourself, to make time for yourself and grow. There is no timeline for "figuring it out" either. For me, once I knew what my goals looked like, I did what I could to set myself up to succeed then asked help with what I needed. You build community this way too.
You also have to know that there will always be times that you don't get what you asked for, or when something hasn't worked out they way you imagined or expected them too. That is one hundred percent okay. I've learned the journey is meant for yes's and no's. Whatever is meant for you will always be yours.
So what I'm trying to say here is that I want people to stay inspired and stay working on their goals. I want to celebrate the baby steps that people sometimes overlook. I want people to speak on what they want and not be afraid to get to know their community and grow their network in a positive way. There's always going to be roadblocks but the end game is insanely beautiful.
This post isn't just about me asking and receiving, this post is about how I see others doing the same exact thing and killing it in Fresno. It's contagious to be around and I hope others see it the same way too.