We had the good fortune of connecting with Shasta McBride and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shasta, Let’s talk about principles and values – what matters to you most?
Honesty is the deepest form of intimacy. But first you have to get really honest with yourself and find out what you are about. I see the healing possible with this confession on the individual and collective level and think that it is only through this process that humanity finds peace with itself. When one becomes unarmored and is able to come into balance with themselves–to accept who they are–then there is peace. This may look like writing your guts out alone in a room, or swimming in the ocean enjoying the waves with your family, but the feeling is the feeling of peace within yourself because you’ve looked “it” in the eye, whatever it is, and come to peace with it.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My work is a study on the natural softness found in the nighttime sky, the ocean, women, water, and flowers. This contemplation helps me feel the inherent beauty of life found everywhere. It also helps me to feel the timeless quality of existence. My hope is that my work creates beauty and soothes the viewer into peace.
I love to learn technique, processing, and technical editing. For example, I have been imagining in my head how to make razor-thin paper embedded with certain micas and gold, figuring out how to take one of my digitally edited double-exposed images and create a sun print or cyanotype with it
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’d spend an afternoon on the Getty museum lawn after enjoying the current show, and then I’d go to SunLife in Malibu for a smoothie and sunset swim at Point Dume. I’d go to the Huntington Gardens Rose Garden and Japanese Garden, and then hit up the Norton Simon to take in their Tara statuary. For a bite I’d go to La Pergoletta in Los Feliz where they make their own pasta and it has a very unpretentious neighborhood vibe. I’d take my friends to Leo Carillo and hiking way, way up past Griffith Observatory, to do a big loop up there where there’s all kinds of magic. I’d hang out at Paper or Plastik on the edge of Little Ethiopia and go to the Korean spas for a scrub and soak.
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’d like to shout out to Brent Pearson of Future Eyes. He originally created Future Eyes lenses and prismatic filters that I’ve been using for the last several years mostly in underwater photography and polaroid experiments. But this past year during covid he created two group art shows at Innerspace Gallery in DTLA that I was able to be a part of. I cannot express how much it lifted my spirits during the pandemic to have something to focus on and participate in. I am really grateful to Brent for creating this event and his ongoing events and online curation as it’s helped me find a larger artist group in LA.
Portrait of Shasta McBride by Rebecca Culbreth