Did you ever as a kid listen to old audio tapes in school, about history or science, and a professor or doctor explains the subject to you almost like if they were having a physical conversation with you? Get a glimpse into the minds of photographers documenting the intricacies of our time. On These Street's "Profiles" photographers are sharing a little more than just their photographic work. In this series you can get to know more on who the person behind the camera is, you will learn how they got started on practicing the art of photography, and see what fuels them to be out documenting our streets. ||

 Photographed + Written by Jayrol(@jayroi)

"I decided to share my story on Little Haiti. This is one of the first pieces of my coverage on the migration issue here at our border. It follows a priest named Gustavo Banda and his church, Templo Embajadores de Jesus. He has turned his community church into a place for migrants to stay at before trying to enter the United States. At times he may have up to 150 people staying at the church. On top of that, he has used some of his land to build housing for migrants who have decided to stay and live in Tijuana. This all began when Haitians were migrating from Haiti, and Gustavo decided to take them in and house them. The community is now known as Little Haiti. His big dream is to have a clinic and school on site for the migrants that come through his shelter.  When I asked Gustavo why he does this, he told me that “I’m in love with these people, they are beautiful people”. His story is truly inspiring and shows how each one of us has the opportunity to make an impact." - Jayrol

"Hello, I go by Jayrol. People always ask if it’s a nickname. It is actually my given name. My parents' names are Jake and Carol. It is a tradition in the Philippines for parents to combine their names to create their child’s. I recently found my birth certificate and it states my name is “Baby.” I imagine my parents needed more time to create my actually name. But you are welcome to call me “baby.”- Jayrol

"I was born in Baltimore, Maryland. I grew up in the DMV which is the DC, Maryland and Virginia area. To be even more specific, I grew up in a place called Chantilly, which is an area in Fairfax, VA. It’s what you would expect from a classic suburban town. Shopping centers, cookie-cutter housing and a good school system. I was raised by a single mother, and took care of a sister who is 9 years younger than I am. She worked a lot, but like many single mothers, she somehow paid the bills, cooked meals every night and even somehow spoiled my sister and I. So to everyone who grew up with a single mom, make sure you give her a kiss." - Jayrol

"I have been photographing since 2008. My first DSLR was a Nikon D50 that I bought at a Sears clearance sale for $450.00. The first photo I ever took with it was a recycling bin we had outside my home filled with soda and beer cans. My first job was at a wedding photography studio. I worked as lead photographer during the week and weekends, and also as the Head Editor. I will say that as much as I love photography, once you are doing it everyday, it becomes a job just like any other. I became burnt out. Especially with wedding photography, while I do believe it's a great place to learn all different styles of photography, there is a threshold due to how most weddings run through the same formula. I turned into what felt like a camera robot. In those 5 years, I went to about 150 weddings, and that doesn’t include corporate events, bar/bat mitzvahs, and any other sort of project that came my way. Fast forward to 2014, my Fiancé and I decided we were going to pick up everything and move to Los Angeles. This is where I truly found what I wanted to do with my photography. I started doing street photography, which led me to my true love of documentary photography. It is not just a way to make money, it is my calling." - Jayrol


"My most memorable photograph is this photo of a Latina girl holding a dress. This photo says a lot. It was taken at a migrant shelter in Arizona. I was walking around the shelter and noticed this girl standing in beautiful light from a doorway that came from a makeshift laundry room. As I was watching her, I could just see and feel the energy of her loving this little dress. In the midst of a crisis and severe uncertainty, she was happy. In that moment she was happy. That alone brought up a lot of things about my own life, thinking about the things that I appreciate and value. For me, it shows how resilient we are as humans, and that we don’t really need much to survive or even be content." - Jayrol

"I'm interested in hearing and sharing stories from others. It is amazing how as humans, we all go through hardships and traumas, and yet there is so much resilience and beauty within that. Once someone opens up, you start to feel the energy of human connection, and you get to see and experience everyone’s uniqueness. I love listening to how people are shaped and formed by their experience, and hopefully I can help bring those stories to life through my photography." - Jayrol

"I believe photography is a special way of capturing an emotion. It’s unique in that it’s a frozen image of something real. As a photographer, you are not really “creating,” you are actually stopping life in its tracks for fraction of a moment. For me, this makes it one of the hardest forms of art. In that second, you must think of your settings, compose, frame, focus, then shoot, while trying to make it creative and emotionally impactful. That exact moment in time will never happen again. When you photograph something decent, it tells a story. It evokes a feeling, and it could just be a cool piece of art that you captured.  The amount of information one photograph can deliver is amazing. I mean, to think that one photo could motivate the whole world is pretty ridiculous. If only I could capture that kind of photo." - Jayrol 


Jayrol San Jose



Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published