As soon as we met photographer Felisha Tolentino, we instantly started putting her to work (like here, and here). Felisha is quite the accomplished 20-something, and though she may be young, she totally gets around (with her camera, that is). She’s shot bands like Green Day and Sandy Pussy, worked a lot with The Cobrasnake, and also knows her way around a fashion shoot—and she’s still in college! Since you’re going to be seeing a lot more of Felisha’s work in the near future, we caught up with her recently to talk embarrassing stories, future plans and spirit animals.
What kinds of projects are you working on now?
I’m working on another zine and trying to graduate college! I’m almost there!
Where could we find you on a typical Saturday night?
If I’m not shooting something, you’d either find me at a concert or drinking whiskey and dancing with my BFFs getting down deeper and down with the Spice Girls!
How would your friends describe you?
According to my BFFs, I’m super motivated, always down for anything, obsessive, and last but not least… tiny!
What kind of photography and art are you inspired by?
Bob Gruen’s photos inspire me the most. His rock n’ roll portraits are so iconic, and I think it has a lot do with his skill not only as a photographer but also as a human being. You can tell that he forms great relationships with his subjects, because they always look so comfortable and natural. And they give great attitude!
Are you one of those photographers who hates getting in front of the camera?
YES! If someone has a picture of me, it’s probably candid, though I must admit, candids can sometimes be the greatest.
Where do you see your career going in five years?
I hope to have so many jobs that I won’t have time to catch up on my TiVo! And hopefully I’ll be so busy that I’ll need people to update my social networks for me! Shooting all over the world, touring with bands, and going on road trips with my friends would be the dream.
Tell us an embarrassing fact about you.
I don’t know how to ride a bike! So embarrassing… Anyone wanna teach me?
What is your spirit animal and how does that animal embody your personality?
I’m actually a talking cat. Think Salem from Sabrina the Teenage Witch.
What kind of subjects do you most like to work with?
I love photographing musicians. Don’t get me wrong, I do love shooting fashion, but sometimes it gets to be too meticulous when you’re so focused on the clothes and the poses. When you’re documenting bands, you’re catching their vibe, sound and personality. You’re not focused on setting up lights or a set—you’re living in the moment with them, and capturing it in a super natural way.
What’s the worst way someone has told you “no” when you’ve tried to take their photo at a party?
I’ve only been denied once, because let’s be honest, everyone secretly loves getting their photo taken! Well, except me! But anyway, at a Fashion’s Night Out Event, the hottest couple was walking towards me, so I started to ask them if it would be alright if I took their picture. But, before I could finish, they yelled NO! I didn’t even get to say please!