For this week’s column I wanted to work on a project with Florida transplant Tom Villarreal. I met Tom a few years back at a contest in Florida and got to ride with him and kick it with him while I was there. Skip ahead to now and we still link up to chill and ride when we can. I always like supporting riders that I think do things the right way and one of them is Tom. He is underrated in my opinion and definitely deserves some time in the spotlight. He has been putting in work and making moves in L.A. riding a bunch and trying to book commercial gigs. On the way down to meet up with Tom I was thinking about what direction I wanted to take with this week’s piece and to be honest, I was kind of struggling with a concept that I was going to be happy with. I went back and forth with a few ideas and then all of the sudden it hit me that I was actually creating the concept of the article without even writing it yet. Basically I decided to write TTL #57 about what it takes to keep up on a weekly column so if you have any interest in learning what goes into it, and the thought process that goes into every feature then this is for you.
Step One- The concept.
Every column starts out the same exact way with me thinking of an idea that I can make a good feature out of. Sometimes this process takes a few days, sometimes it takes a few seconds and sometimes it takes until the very last minute before the Tuesday night deadline to come to me. I have always said that I just let this column evolve and happen naturally and this week was no different. It is a constant struggle to come up with original, read-able, interesting content week after week but that is what I like about doing this. No one ever said when I signed up for it that it was going to be easy so each week when the feature posts I breathe a little sigh of relief, at least for a couple of days until the next deadline.
Step Two- Shooting the photos.
Each and every column comes along with a set of original photos that are mainly lifestyle based and shot with available light. It has become one of my favorite styles of shooting more than ever since doing the column. I love the feeling of showing up to shoot with someone with nothing more than 1 camera, 1 lens and no camera bag. It feels so natural to shoot that way and when I am working on interviewing someone it all seems much more personal and less intrusive that way. I can capture more of the moments that happen when they happen as opposed to setting up every single shot.
Step Three- Writing.
When I write, sometimes into the early morning hours, I try to write in a way that feels natural. I hate reading writing that sounds contrived and too technical and I try to avoid that for sure. I also like to make sure the readers know that I am writing exactly how I want without having to worry about anyone telling me what to say, or how to say it. Fuck it, I guess that’s the best part of having your own column. This is also where I should mention that I spend a lot of time transcribing interviews that I’ve worked on and making sense of the conversations between myself and the person I’m interviewing. Also, if I do any questions for them online, I make sure to tighten up their answers so that they are grammatically correct without changing too much.
On that note, be sure to check back next Wednesday for the fifty-seventh edition of Through the Lens and as always feel free to leave any questions in the comments section or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will hit you back as soon as I can. Feel free to follow me on Twitter and Instagram @jeremypavia.
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