I got a chance to interview Rocco Basile about his work and his scholarship program that he offers to both young and seasoned photographers as an opportunity to advance their hobbies, earn a living and showcase work to the world. Please read on to find out more:
Why did you choose to use only black and white photos?
I am enticed by black and white photos due to their outstanding nature. Since black and white color come in shades of gray, I also get the opportunity to create images that I want. Remember, black and white photography can deduct the image into its true essence in respect to subject, light and composition because there are no competing hues to dazzle or distract the mind from the object of focus. To get the most out of my shoots, I always make it a point to identify my subject, create a compelling composition and see how the light will play out before shooting.
What is it about photography that inspires you? Especially black and white?
Black and white photography pays close attention to the elements of composition, context and perspective and that is something I highly appreciate. I also like the fact that this form of photography usually trends towards realism or surrealism and matches my inclination for fine art photography. If you want your photos to appeal to the inner senses, make them sharp and clear without overlooking your timing.
How did you come to the decision to offer the scholarship?
As a professional photographer and founder of Rocco Basile Photography, I believe I am duty bound to grow this art. The photography scholarships are designed to offer both young and seasoned photographers an opportunity to advance their hobbies, earn a living and showcase work to the world.
What do you want the scholarship to inspire in the applicants and winners?
The scholarship and internship opportunities we offer target upcoming photographers who want to advance their careers. Some of the young people who have received benefits from our scholarship have gone on to become respected professional freelancers in their own right and in the media industry.
Are there many photographers that do black and white photography?
Most professional photographers I have talked to are into black and white photography due to its versatility, fewer distractions and use of subtlety tones in the midst of a world of colors. The versatile nature of black and white photos means it is adaptable to various formats of photography including portraits and landscapes. The color scheme also adapts well to different lighting conditions. Although an argument can be advanced that you can shoot color photos and convert it into black and white, I believe the element of fashion and familiarity supersedes any perceived limitations.
Do you allow photographers to showcase their talent on your site?
Yes, we offer photographers free space in our gallery in southern California and website to showcase their work. We also have a mentorship program where professionals often come to speak to young photographers.
The program encourages sponsors to come to the aid of deserving photographers, who often face many challenges in the course of work. I must admit that the emergence of Instagram has also given budding photographers the perfect platform to share their photos and promote their careers.