The latest episode in our series of interviews is dedicated to find out more about Josu González and his photos that have gone viral on the social media.
Hello! Thanks for your time!
How did it all start – did you plan to become the rave photographer you are now, or it happens by accident?
Hi! It is a pleasure to share some stuff about my job.
Actually everything has been quite progressive. I started in techno clubs and events about five years ago, although I had already been involved in small request in the past, but it was not until last year that Unlocked BCN (@unlocked_bcn) gave me the opportunity to “doctorate” as rave photographer in their events, being able to be more involve and be completely free of what style concern under their brand and standards. With them I also began to work on the video field, which until that time had been something residual.
During 2022 I also had the chance to go with Wehbba (Drumcode) on tour, which helped me to be involved with artists at that level and I guess it made me a little more versatile of what my job as photographer concern.
Which of your photographs went viral first and what did you feel?
Not viral as such, but when I work with established brands like HEX Techno Movement (@hex_technomovement) it’s easy to reach more people from different places. I prefer sustained growth than a more ephemeral rise.
What is your goal and what do you search for when it’s time to capture a moment from a rave?
I’m currently working on improving the honesty of my photos. That means, I am not really interested in having epic moments that of course are important, rather images that faithfully convey what the ravers feel, that connection between music and body. I aim to get that few days later watching the images or videos viewers can be transported back to that place.Where were those taken?
I guess there are many moments. My favourites are always the ones that come up unexpectedly and luckily I’m there. Moments where it is something more than a striking photo… perhaps everything I say is very subjective. To name someone, a few weeks ago at Matadero Club (@matadero_club), there was a really emotional closing. The crowd was very engaged and it was kind really exciting shot that moment, and other one.. my first event with Unlocked in 2021, my first one rave event.
From the photos you took, is there any that are your personal favourite and why?
To be honest, I still feel like a rookie so a photo that seems cool to me today may cause me indifference later on. It’s okay for things to move! I like to see how the perspective of my work changes, after a while.
What was the first event you were photographing backstage? Describe the difference between being in the crowd and in the DJ booth.
I started working on the stage earlier than on the dance floor. My first steps were with my childhood friend André, from Groove Amigos (@grooveamigos), to whom I owe the opportunity to be photographing events specialised in electronic music today.
The time I spent with the Wake Up Electronic Parties (@wakeupelectronicparties) team was also important. About the preference in terms of being in the crowd and DJ booth. No doubt I enjoy the dancefloor. What makes the difference is the point of view from the crowd and also I think events are made for people, so that should always be the most important point. And within that, I prefer the vibe of clubbing respect the large spaces.
Do the events send you special invitations or are you in collaboration with them? You seem to get booked like the DJs that play there.
Yes, there are diferent ways. Promoters contact me if they like my work. Sometimes it’s the artists themselves or the club.
Are there any additional projects you are involved in?
Within techno, I’ve also been working as cameraman on some unrealeased videoclips with my friends Acid Thermal (@acidthermal) and Wanko (@wanko_artist). I am very grateful to have teamed up with them and I am sure there will be many interesting things to come in the future!
How important is the editing for a photograph? Do you have any lightroom preset of your making or something similar to use?
The first thing I do when I work in a new event is spend hours finding the style I want to achieve to that specific event. It is something that has to match to what the client is looking for but at the same time I feel comfortable with my own style. Along this process I create the presets to speed up the workflow.
The goal is to work with my own style as long as the client don’t require something very specific. Being able to have creative freedom wherever I go and for customer to contact because they like what I do.
Do you have any tips for event photographers?
I guess that this is not an easy world in many aspects to work -schedules, travel, etc- so what I can say is: if you do it, always do it with passion. And merge, be one with the crowd! I can’t conceive of shooting an event without being one of the ravers.
is there any place you want to mention so that our readers can check your work?
You can see my work on my IG @josugonzalez_live as well as on my website www.josugonzalez.com.
Thank you very much for taking me into consideration… see you on the dancefloor!