March 3, 2020
LET THERE BE LIGHT
Photography by Kevin Icabales
Interview by Melanie Meggs
Whether it's capturing candid moments or telling a unique story, Filipino street photographer Kevin Icabales has a style all his own. With a bit of tongue-in-cheek humour, he has been able to capture a scene in a way that only he can. In this interview with Kevin, we ask him about his journey into street photography and what motivates him to pursue such unique and creative photography. From his beginnings to his current success, we explore the art of candid photography through the lens of Kevin Icabales.
And God said, let there be light, and there was light. - GENESIS 1:3
“Photography is all about light. Seeing and experiencing the wonders of His creation urges me to see beyond what I cannot do. I know that I can be creative because He created me in His own image and likeness.”
IN CONVERSATION WITH KEVIN ICABALES
THE PICTORIAL LIST: Kevin, can you start off by telling us about how you first became interested in photography?
KEVIN ICABALES: I started photography after I graduated from college. My twin aunts bought me a DSLR for a graduation gift. I started shooting weddings and concerts. I realized that I love taking pictures of decisive moments or candids. That passion led me into street photography and I knew where I was called to do.
TPL: Where do you find your inspiration?
KI: I find my inspiration from my family, when I let them evaluate my work, and also, how they will respond emotionally towards my photos. Also, seeing the viewers change their ways and making them reflect their lives from my photographs makes me eager to continue doing so.
TPL: Has your style of photographing changed since you first started out?
KI: My style of photographing has changed a lot when I started street photography. I am more aware of what to put and exclude inside my frame. It is like making music with lots of scales in your mind, then eventually you will pick the best melody that works. For me, this genre should be the start of all aspiring photographers. You will not just learn the technical stuff but also it will build your character as well.
TPL: Where is your favourite place to photograph?
KI: My favorite place to shoot is around metro Manila in the Philippines.
TPL: Do you think equipment is important in achieving your vision in your photography? What would you say to someone just starting out?
KI: I believe that an equipment can never outdo what your vision wants to create. These are just mediums of your creation. Let us break the mindset that says, "You take good pictures because you have an expensive camera". You cannot say that "the food is delicious because the stove is expensive", same goes with photography. If you have the means to buy higher equipment, then go for it. But always remember that the best camera is the one that you have at the present time.
I find my inspiration from my family, when I let them evaluate my work, and also, how they will respond emotionally towards my photos.
TPL: What characteristics do you think you need to become a photographer? What’s your tips or advice for someone in your genre?
KI: Always be strong and humble. Be a man or a woman of integrity because it all starts there. Be open and accept constructive criticisms towards you and your works. Meet new like-minded people, build rapport and inspire one another because each of you is a unique individual.
TPL: Have you ever been involved in the artistic world before photography?
KI: I was inclined to music before photography. I was a guitar and vocals in our rock band when I was in college and I also write songs.
TPL: Do you have any favourite artists or photographers you would like to share with us?
KI: My favorite photographers are Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Doisneau, Garry Winogrand and Elliott Erwitt.
TPL: Are there any special projects you are currently working on that you would like to let everyone know about?
KI: I am currently working on an Ad Gone Wrong project. I'll let you know once available.
TPL: "If I wasn’t photographing what would I be doing?...
KI: Singing and songwriting."
In his rise to street photography excellence, Kevin Icabales has truly found his own unique style. His candid images and creative eye for storytelling have made him a successful photographer. As he continues to explore the art of capturing candid moments, be sure to follow Kevin on Instagram to stay up-to-date with all of his photography. With his unique vision, Kevin Icabales will no doubt continue to make waves in the world of street photography.