Northbound traffic on Interstate Highway 880 is reduced to a crawl, the result of protesters against cuts in education funding blocking the freeway further noth, in Oakland, Calif., Thursday, March 4, 2010. (D. Ross Cameron/Staff)
This collection is supplied through Golden Road Brewing, a brand that’s pleased to rejoice California’s hazard takers and visionaries. Like photographer Jenavieve Belair, Golden Road beers replicate solar-soaked Cali days mixed with a creative spirit and an entrepreneur’s feel of ambition.
Jenavieve Belair bleeds Southern California. Through her lifestyle and style photography, she’s been capable of capture the motion, magic, and overall vibe of surfer towns, skateparks, and swimming holes. She’s a master behind the lens at telling the tales of lengthy, languorous, sun-drenched California days.
But Belair’s photography does greater than seize an unmarried second. There’s a feeling of motion to her work that drags you alongside at the back of the skateboarders. You feel such as you’re inside that antique select-up truck with the impossibly attractive Southern California blonde. It feels actual because it’s far from actual to Belair.
“People tell me that my works bleed Southern California, and that’s because I bleed southern California,” she explains. “I live the same life my photographs do.”
The pix aren’t taken using an avatar outsider; they’re reacting to what the artist sees. Belair’s reality comes via in every shot.
Belair’s lifestyles weren’t usually amber-soaked afternoons spent on sandy stretches of Orange County’s famed “Blue 42.” Her adventure commenced within the fields and forests of Minnesota. Belair became one of these youngsters who always had a digicam placing around her neck or in her backpack. She lived an innovative lifestyle by snapping pictures of her sister, circle of relatives, and buddies. But at the same time, as a teen attempting to find a path, the medium of pictures spoke to her, and she spoke via the medium.
Still, while in Minnesota, pictures become a greater hobby than a process. “I began to chase after photography once I moved to California when I was 18,” Belair explains. The pass to Orange County for university made becoming a photographer more practicable in her thoughts, but her career didn’t magically appear. As with any creative enterprise, it started as an aspect hustle — balanced via masses of “real world” gigs alongside the manner. Belair did something she had to do to buy equipment and pay for movie processing.
“I’d be a waitress one day,” she recollects, “then visit the smoothie save the next day, then I’d be a nanny the subsequent.”
Even her first expert jobs weren’t halcyon dreamscapes, surf scenes, or seashore hangs. She started at night, wading through the throngs at bars and clubs, figuring out how to make social media paintings for her.
“My first actual image job turned into taking nightlife photographs in bars,” Belair says. “I think I made 50 greenbacks a night, and I did that for years.”
Eventually, expert nightlife snapshots result in weddings and circles of relatives photography clients. Her entrepreneurial spirit began paying off. Belair’s eager eye toward lifestyle-defining photography with California as her backdrop helped propel her profession, but it’s the honesty in the one’s pictures that solidified it.
If this all sounds a bit “Cali hipster dream-existence” — all yoga-fit blondes with ideal skin, shaggy-haired skater dudes, classic motors, surfboards, and endless summers on the seashore — that’s a form of the point. Between jobs, Belair rides her skateboard along with her canine to the grocery keep. She bums around the very seashores she shoots at. She’s frequently featured friends or neighbors in her pix.
This is her life writ large in everybody. Her photos are personal, attractive, and — thanks to the ones two factors — genuine. She noticed a dream and positioned everything else 2d to chase it, thereby embodying the SoCal hustler’s ethos. How can you hate on her for forgetting to hang with fashions at swimming holes while she laid all that foundation? Fortune favors the formidable, as they say.
While Belair seems acutely aware that the clarion California vistas she captures are freighted with an excessive degree of desire fulfillment, she’s no longer happy restricting herself to 1 shade palette or location.
“I apprehend how a whole lot people love the southern California aesthetic,” she notes. “But developing for your technical ability and being able to shoot anywhere is genuinely crucial to me.”
In the stop, Belair is jogging a commercial enterprise based totally on her innovative endeavors and which means being open to opportunities that allow her to replicate her Southern California vibe without limiting her Cali-bred creativity. That requires a huge skill set and a willingness to method every difficulty as precise and new. It’s amusing, however, also rigorous.
“The component I used to let go and be innovative with is a job now,” she says. “A process that calls for taxes and meetings and conversations.”
As such, each image she takes is the fruit of a lifetime of exercise in her craft — networking, lunches, conferences, putting in a commercial enterprise, nurturing contacts, identifying tax codes, and editing. Belair admits it can all be overwhelming at times; however, the hard work and hustle are worth it in the long run. Through her particular take a look at of existence in southern California, we get a glimpse into a world that conjures a solar-sopping wet dream while simultaneously feeling within attain.
It’s proof of the magic of images and, in a fair grander feel, a testimony to the place where Jenavieve Belair lives and works.