We had the good fortune of connecting with James Gross and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi James, what is the most important factor behind your success?
Believing. It starts with a simple idea, a simple desire, or a simple want. After that, whatever you conceived starts to grow, until it becomes bigger and bigger and larger than life. In my opinion, if you don’t believe in yourself it makes it a very hard up-hill battle to get to the top. If you don’t believe in yourself, your company, your brand, or whatever it is that you are selling (service or good) then no one else will believe in it. There are many brands that have stood the test of time because they believe in what they are doing, and they know they are doing it for the proper reasons. There have been many days where I had low moral or motivation to get projects done, or to keep pushing and if it wasn’t for others believing in me too, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Not only is believing a huge part of my brand’s success, but also how I operate my business. I didn’t get into photography as a business, but I did because it was my passion and my first true love. I do my shoots, how I’d want someone to shoot my photos as well. A lot of the time it’s about having perspective and understanding a lot of the time we aren’t just selling a product, but also a service.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
The one thing about my art is that I do my very best to ensure that the viewer is enticed by the photo in some way. I want them to be drawn, and to feel the raw emotion of that moment in time. I prefer having a dark, cinematic vibe with a majority of my work. I do believe my style is different than the norm because it is so moody. That is one thing that draws a certain crowd to become my clients, when people know that they need the dark moody work, I’m able to deliver. This can sometimes be a challenge, because certain clients you may want to work with, may not fit in with your brand as cohesively as you’d like. But at the end of the day you have to accept that you are an artist who makes a living based on what YOU ENJOY CREATING. I want the world to know that as creatives we have to do our best to retain our true vision, and we don’t always have to be put in a box. We can still implement other styles in our work which is where the talented creatives thrive.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
For any visual creatives visiting Los Angeles, the beach is always an usual spot but I recommend trekking up to Malibu because they have some amazing sunsets. Luckily the mountains are pretty close to so some of my other photo locations would be Yosemite, Big Sur & Joshua Tree. These spots are not disappointing especially during the sunset hours. I recommend doing helicopter tours of downtown LA as well, it’s worth the price point.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would love to take this moment to shout out my friends that have been following my journey since high school, since that’s where my roots are. They are the ones that allowed me to annoy them with my camera, allowing me to bring it with us during our hang out seshes. They are the ones who never discouraged me and always pushed me to do what I love. Without my real and true friends that were there in the beginning, I wouldn’t have the amazing current ones I have now that support me. I have had an amazing support system throughout my whole career and they are the ones who have given me so much positive reinforcement that i’ll always be grateful for.
Photo Credit – Spawnzone