I have spent most of my working life in the Event business; I started as a mobile DJ when I was 16 now 48y/o, picking up gigs where I could for a few bucks or just for fun. Since I was in my early 20’s, I worked in Event Security. We were sent to work at various exciting jobs such as the Academy Awards where my role was to sit with the attendees near the front to help protect the honorees, travel to Super Bowls where I would stand behind the players on the field, countless concerts, escorted 3 Rose Parade Grand Marshals along the parade route, I later was promoted to lead the Security personnel at the Rose Bowl. I also worked part-time at the Playboy Mansion and later got hired as Security Manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers. My current full-time job is with Event Eleven, a boutique event planning business serving as Project Manager which leads me to how I got involved with Photography and Photo Booths.
I have always enjoyed Photography and would see how a great Photographer would make our beautiful and extravagant events appear twice as good. I was always in awe and wonder what is it the Photographer sees that others don’t? I remember I had an old wine fridge I placed on Craigslist as a Barter for anything. A guy called me and said he had an older model DSLR Nikon D80 he wanted to trade for my fridge; I jumped at the chance to own a Nikon even though I knew nothing about them. I immediately began to take classes online and later took classes at various schools such as Samys Photo School, I mentored under celebrity Photographer Hernan Rodriguez, I read and still read everything I can about Photography. I am the type of person that becomes truly dedicated when fascinated with a subject. I now have several Professional Model shoots, Weddings, Quinceaneras, Graduations, and other events “under my belt.”
I became interested in Photo Booths when I was on a shoot, and the client requested prints “on the spot” of pics I took, I took my little Canon Selphy printer and walked around taking pictures and printing as I walked around the party. I realized Photo Booths have been in existence for some time so I didn’t think I invented something new but wanted to try my hand at creating a style of Photo Booth that nobody has or have yet to see, I thought of one of those old box cameras with the little drape on the back and accordion lens and said to myself I need to create something like that. I designed and built a cherry wood Photo Booth camera setup using my first Nikon as the DSLR; I found an antique light with a wooden tripod, I took the light out and placed the Booth camera system on top of the tripod creating the look of a vintage camera. I also did the same for my background light. People love the look; they also like the fact that my setup is different than what you see from other Photo Booth operators. I now spend my “off time” working whether its meeting clients are going over their upcoming shoots with me or chatting with clients to help create the most fun & memorable Photo Booth experiences for their guests.
I enjoy coming up with fun ideas for our green screen backgrounds or frame design. I now have two full-time jobs I love. It’s also not surprising to see me and my wife Joanne roaming the streets of DTLA looking for extraordinary fabric to create backdrops which I see myself after learning how to run a sewing machine. Photography and Photo Booths has become a fun way to spend our weekends for my Assistant/Wife and our daughter Katie my second assistant. We also have a 3-year-old son Lucas who loves taking pictures on his toy camera.
Celebrities such as Jamie Foxx and a few others have taken notice and have recently used our services for their private functions...
Our readers would love to get to know you more Tulio. Tell us about yourself, what is unique about you?
I am very critical of myself and my work. A perfectionist to the highest degree.
Tulio, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Photographer?
I would love to see one of my Photographs in a frame hanging in a gallery. I started as a Photographer because of a trade for an old fridge for a low-end Nikon.
Who is your inspiration in life Tulio? How do you keep inspired?
I am inspired when realizing my photos will be cherished for a long time after I'm gone. Who doesn't have an old photo of grandma in her wedding dress?
We all make mistakes Tulio; we wish we could take back. Please tell us about time being a Photographer ; you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
During one of my classes, I was taking a fellow student showed me a picture he took of a photo and I just smirked and looked away. I noticed his whole demeanour changed. I felt like I hurt his feelings and made him feel insecure about his photography skills. If he is reading this, I'm sorry my mind was somewhere else. I should have shown more respect for your work.
Tulio , when you’re working with a large number of clients, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. As a Photographer, how do you go about prioritizing your clients’ needs?
I will skip sleep if need be to give them all the same quality experience. I need 5-star ratings, 4 star is not acceptable.
Please tell us Tulio, about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities as a Photographer?
When shooting at Weddings, I will allow others to have the couple for their needs during the day because my time begins just before sunset which is prime time for Photographers.
Tulio, please give us an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way at work.
I create drawings, renderings, photos of similar things to my idea. Once that person sees your vision, and you raise the excitement of the finished product/result in its a breeze.
Tulio, please tell us about your proudest professional accomplishment as a Photographer. There might be many, but there is always this proudest moment that you just want to share with everyone. What is it and why?
Walking into a home weeks after a shoot and noticing my photos in frames all over the home to include the restroom.
Tulio, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
I love throwing in the one Photoshopped photo with the bride or quincenera walking along a beautiful ocean scene or on top of a mountain overlooking fields of green.
What advice would you give to the people who want to be successful as a Photographer?
Don't be afraid to take that shot! Keep shooting!
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state below what type of collaboration you are looking for?
I would love to represent some Photographer's equipment brand. What an honour to have the brands that make equipment for pros want you to shoot their products.
Now for the best part Tulio! Please upload 5-10 photos so we can get to see your work.
Tulio Diaz @imagesby2