Van Nuys Cruise Night

March 04, 2021

We meet a lot of talented artists through our Photo lab LA events. One those who has become a regular is Jairo Morales. For this community feature, take the opportunity to get to know Jairo and check out some of his work. Jairo - take it away...

What's up everyone, my name is Jairo Morales and I’m a photographer from Northridge, CA. I first picked up a camera 4 years ago in hopes of documenting the graffiti that was being put up around my area. At times I would sneak into sketchy abandoned buildings and would find some graffiti gems in there. From shooting graffiti & street art, I slowly started gravitating towards other subjects. This included getting out of my comfort zone and meeting awesome strangers in the streets. Street portraits have become something I love to do that to me feels like a special, one-of-a-kind moment that could never be duplicated. I always like dipping my hands into everything, but jumping from street photography to portraits was a bit complicated for me. I eventually figured it out with lots of practice.

Another subject I enjoy shooting that goes hand in hand with my love of graffiti is the lowrider scene. Shooting during the Van Nuys Cruise Night here in the San Fernando Valley has been a lot of fun and a learning process. I like meeting the folks that pull up with their cars, getting to know a bit of their story and getting their portrait when I can. Scenes like these are why I do photography, you can’t duplicate them even if you tried.

This past July, I had the chance of documenting my trip out to where my parents are from in Michoacán Mexico. It had been 10 years since I had gone out there so being there with my camera was a lot of fun. As of 2018 I’ve also been working on double exposures edits. A lot of what I shoot is usually never planned and just spontaneous moments. The only thing I plan is the way I will be editing my shots, while I’m getting ready to shoot the photo, my creative mind starts thinking of how exactly I will be making my photos look and just like that I bring my ideas to life. I like to keep my options open so I can have the experience in different fields since I don’t limit myself to one thing.

I’ve recently also started a small brand called We Run The Cities where I’ll be using my photos as t-shirt graphics. I always like telling people who are starting and that come to me for advice, just don’t think about it. Just go out and experience the world, shoot a little bit of everything, and eventually you’ll find what you enjoy shooting the most. I hope that in the future, people who I have shot while being out and about, find my photos and remember the good moment we had even if it was just for a few minutes, or my scenes from the streets make an impact in someone's life and inspires them to pick up a camera.

For more on Jairo Morales hit up his Instagram here