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Rolando Diaz

As an ASMP Professional member, what are you hoping to gain?  

I’m always looking to build my professional network, find career advice, and uncover new industry resources. My affiliation with ASMP will not only provide value as a Photographer, but as an individual as well. The opportunity to meet and network alongside top industry professionals presents an opportunity for me to learn from other’s in my field. Membership will also enhance and maximize my visibly as a photographer. Getting the most out of any trade association is like anything else in life -- you're going to get out of it as much as you put into it. So plan on seeing me around for awhile.

Within your abilities, how can you add to the photographic community?

Why is South Florida not like NYC when it comes to photographers or creatives in general for that matter?  I find myself educating my potential clients on the basics of why we need to charge what we do. "Licensing? But I already paid you to shoot the images?" We provide a professional service. Just like bankers, attorneys, and doctors. For most photographers like me, we have spent the last 20 years perfecting our craft. We must be educators and we cannot let our craft be diminished by our point & shoot society. We are the best at what we do and we must be compensated accordingly. By standing up as a professional, charging whats expected, adhering to image licensing standards, and exercising your legal right when it comes to copyright infringements, you will not only be helping yourself, but every other person that makes a living with camera on hand will benefit from it. 

© Rolando Diaz

Was there a defining turning point in your career that led you to become a 

professional in the photography industry?

Photography has been a part of my life since I was 12 years old, and playing around with an old film camera. I shot just about everything I saw. From family events to self-assigned product shoots. My family didn’t always get my artistic choices. They’d ask, “What the hell is that? You chopped off your cousin’s head!” To me, it just looked better that way— no offense, primo. In high school, I built my own darkroom. Learned how to develop and print. I’d go to rock concerts, shoot a few rolls of film and stay up all night developing. The next day I’d make a good chunk of change selling prints at school. Years later, I found myself at a desk job but with camera still in hand, constantly documenting the everything around me. However, the word “photographer” somewhat intimidated me. I never consider myself one.  Well, I have been a professional photographer since 2008, my images have been recognized with awards from ASMP, IPA, and most recently appearing on the pages of American Photography 28. So what it all comes down to is this: desks jobs ended up boring me. Photography on the other hand? It enlightens me; it’s my true love, and it’s here to stay. The word no longer scares me, and when people ask what I do for a living I reply, “I’m a photographer!”

© Rolando Diaz

What keeps you passionate about being a photographic professional?

Being a Lifestyle and Travel photographer since 2008, my camera and I have seen more than 30 countries including many of the most exotic places in the world. I still find myself stunned by the amazing imagery that can be found anywhere in this world. From the biggest capitals to the smallest villages and countrysides. Relics that have stood the test of time and offer a glance back in time to a world that once was. The picturesque piazzas teeming with people going about their everyday life. The narrow alleys leading to the heart of old town squares. Capturing this is my passion.  “Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I am going to take tomorrow.” — Imogen Cunningham"

© Rolando Diaz

Is there anything that you would like to share about your photographic 

endeavors/interests with the other members of ASMP?

"Fluent in both english and spanish, most people call me Roland ( way to lazy to pronounce the extra syllable in Rolando) "Even though I’m always doing something in my busy schedule, (it’s hard to stay still for me) I’ll aways find the time to help anyone out. So if it’s for help on a shoot, inquires on any of my work or technique, assisting, or even helping set things up for the next ASMP event — I’ll be more than happy to give a helping hand.