1. Camera most often used?
Contax g2 for personal. Canon for work.
2. Who's your favorite photographer(s)?
Philip-Lorca diCoorcia, Nan Goldin, Slim Arrons, Ed Templeton (Deformer was the first photo book I ever bought).
3. Favorite subjects to shoot?
People. I like faces + stories. I like imagining their past and future based on the present
4. Sources of creative inspiration?
Living in New York. Every day I see something or someone that I think would make a good photo. I try to carry my camera around but I get lazy and burnt out. Mostly from retouching and spending too much time in front of my computer.
5. Intention behind your photographs?
There's no intent. I don't think like that. It's more like, as a child, I was always envious of people with photographic memories, so I found a way to create one for myself. A lot of times I can't remember when something happened (my memory is shit). But I can always go back to the time + date stamp on a photo and that usually helps me retrace my steps. For example, the night I met my wife. We were all out at a bar, celebrating someone's birthday (I don't remember who). A friend introduced me to her. Over the course of the night, I took some pics of people at the party, not knowing that 7 years later that woman would be my wife. Every now and then, I look back at those pics and I remember exactly what it was like the first time we met. I definitely couldn't do that without a photographic aid.
6. How did you start taking pictures?
I wanted a bb gun but my parents were hippies so they gave me a camera. A Nikon FM2. We lived in Santa Barbara so my dad got a Brooks student to come by once a week and teach me how to use it. I remember being extremely disappointed, all my other friends had awesome pellet guns with those cool silver co2 cartridges. When I was 13 I wanted to shoot windows and cans, not a roll of film.
7. What's the story behind the woman spreading her pussy in the bar/club?
That woman is/was a man and that pussy used to be a dick. Think of it as show and tell, but for a little more mature audience.
7. Future projects in the works?
Not really, I mean nothing specific. This might sound dumb but living in New York is a future project. You never know who you're going to meet, collaborate with, do cool shit. That's the only reason I live here. Otherwise I'm dying to move back to SB and live a mellow life. No subways, less noise, more mature. But there's nothing for me to do there. Everything is here. Maybe LA too but I hate traffic and the smog sucks.
You can view more of Atisha's work on his website here.