Open Submissions: Luis Burgos
Open submissions is an initiative by Bruno Magli that gives photographers an opportunity to submit their work to be apart of our campaign. We have worked with a handful of photographers to have them capture content through their point of view. Learn more below about our first participant, photographer Luis Burgos.
Q. How did you get into photography?
A. My freshman year of high school I signed up for a painting class, and it did not go well. I switched to photography, and I just remember spending hours in the darkroom without even realizing how much time had gone by. I loved the process of measuring light, seeing how it fell, shooting as a witness, developing the film, making a contact sheet, printing images. I still love all these things seventeen years later.
Q. Tell us about your style of photography.
A. I like psychological portraits and storytelling, so my images tend to be emotive with subtle details to drive the visual story arc. Aesthetically I describe myself as a colorful minimalist.
Q. Tell us about your inspiration behind this shoot.
A. The initial idea was based on the ending of Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon, "If you surrender to the air, you could ride it." I wanted to show a journey to surrender, of moving away from the office and into nature. The concept evolved a bit when I got to style the shoot. I felt like I was dressing Elio's new boyfriend. A younger man that makes him wonder, "Oliver, who?" I imagined Prince on a year abroad in Italy meeting Elio and dancing the night away in his Bruno Magli shoes.
Luis shoots Prince wearing the Barone Mon-Strap
Q. Anything specific we should know about the photo industry today?
A. It's getting a lot better! Much more diverse, less of a boy's club, and more ethical in how the industry approaches work and the crew.
Q. Any exciting personal projects coming up this year?
A. I'm working on a long-term personal project of creating a photobook Haggadah for Passover seders. The Haggadah tells the story of Exodus and gives instructions for the seder. My modern-day version takes a look at "Moses of the City," and imagines what his story would be like today with poetic interpretations of Egypt, Pharaoh, and the plagues.
Q. What are some other interests you have? Tell us a little about them.
A. I write poetry when I feel overwhelmed as a way to focus my mind, finding the exact words to describe how I feel. I am a long-distance runner with two marathons under my belt. Running helps me think when I feel stuck. I also play the viola for fun.
Luis shoots Prince wearing the Davio Sneaker
Q. Who is your biggest influence?
A. Robert Mapplethorpe
Q. What is your favorite activity to do with your friends?
A. I like to catch up with friends while hiking. I get to move around, I get views, nature, exercise, and I get to hang-out with my friends. Plus, we usually follow-up our hiking adventures with a nice lunch or dinner.
Q. What does Bruno Magli mean to you, or what do you like about it?
A. Bruno Magli means luxury craftsmanship. From the quality of the leather, to the beautiful designs, you can feel the love and attention put into each piece.
Q. What is your favorite style of shoe from your shoot and why?
A. The Arezzo, the hand-burnished two-tone effect looks amazing on camera and adds depth/shadow to it all.
Q. How would you describe your personal style, what are key-pieces that you can't live without?
A. I describe my personal style as Casual Luxury - I'm comfortable and casual, but you can tell there's fine craftsmanship in the items I like to wear. I can't live without my short shorts or oversized oxford button-downs.
Q. What is a good mantra or affirmation that you live by?
A. "Actually, I don't have to do anything right now but breathe," I tell myself this any time that I become overwhelmed because the truth is, when push comes to shove, in order for me to keep on living, I just need to keep on breathing. The rest is noise. So now, when I feel anxious, I pause and take time to just breathe for a while. I let go of the to-do lists and the deadlines and just allow myself to feel what makes me alive.
Q. Any other personal notes you want to add?
A. To all the other photographers out there making their way towards their goals, define success for yourself, and treat every opportunity like it's your big break.