We had the good fortune of connecting with Jose Camacho and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jose, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Photography has been ingrained in my life since I was a kid, typically going around town snapping interesting sights with an old film camera. Of course, it was a far simpler time in the 1990s before I delved into the world of DSLRs and editing with Lightroom, but I always enjoyed capturing photos everywhere I went. By 2015, I jumped into paid events after a photo I took for Paul van Dyk was shared on his Instagram, using an entry-level DSLR at clubs and events with friends soon after. I’ve always loved electronic music, so being able to save those brief moments of pure bliss of people at shows while listening to phenomenal music was a dream come true! With the world halted in 2020, I had to reinvent myself and the sort of photography I focused on after clubs and festivals were shut down. After saving up on camera upgrades, a drone, and an an LLC by the summer, I registered A Barefoot Photographer as a way to describe who I am (a full-time barefooter) and what I enjoy most with photography!Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
With any profession comes its challenges to not only gain recognition but the experience needed to earn such recognition. Many of the events I was initially a part of were unpaid, usually hosted by a fellow fan who merely had the resources to book various internationally-known artists in the electronic music community. Shows would be small; at times, only 50-100 people would show up as it was rare for many to generate the sort of pull more established brands like Insomniac could do. Still, neither I or the various people involved in making these shows a reality gave in to the steep climb ahead. To date, I’ve been a part of United Trance Nation since its inception, creating its logo, flyers, and taking photos for at least 30 shows hosted at the (late) Lizard Lounge, Levu, and other venues. By late 2018, I was soon invited to take my photography to new heights at prominent festivals at Dreamstate, Beyond Wonderland, and EDC 2019. These were events that not anyone with a DSLR could merely show up with, so I was extremely fortunate to venture into uncharted territory with tens of thousands of music fans! However, I think the biggest thing that sets me apart from others is that I’m as laid-back as you’ll find, typically rocking a tank-top, shorts, and not much else! For the past few years, I’ve been barefoot, finding shoes to be a literal pain with chronic back, neck, leg, and foot problems until I ditched footwear entirely and feel SO much better since. Even before that, I’ve always felt I provided exceptional service by going after those kind of shots few would venture. From Mayan ruins in Tulum to aerial work hundreds of feet in the air, I’ve found the places I venture nowadays are best enjoyed feeling the ground while causing people to be amazed at my odd fashion sense! To me, it seems to make people more at ease as I’m definitely not your typical photographer!If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Since purchasing a drone last July, I’ve found the skies above downtown Dallas to be the most scenic. I came here in 2010, unaware on just how much the city would grow on me, and outwards in the years since with constant development across the metroplex! Trammell Crow Park offers perhaps the best view of the full skyline amidst a beautiful park. I’d say a trip to Dallas wouldn’t be complete without taking a trip to a few BBQ and Mexican spots in the area! While there’s fine dining spots like Gloria’s or Mi Dia, spots like Taqueria El Si Hay and even a new spot called Lucky’s Chicken would be some of the foot spots I’ve enjoyed in DFW. Since my best friend is already in Dallas, it makes it pretty easy finding good spots like Sapa House or Ra Sushi, but a night wouldn’t be complete without a visit to see his cats and a night filled with melodic tunes! However, there’s also great stuff lately with the folks at Aftrlife Entertainment that need to be seen and heard firsthand!Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for the support and encouragement of friends over the years, including those I unfortunately no longer speak with. 2014 started off pretty rough, finding myself homeless after a series of bad decisions a few years prior. I didn’t have much besides the clothing on my back and a few wonderful friends who aided me out of one of the worst times ever. If it weren’t for the people within Trance The Music, Texas Trance Addictz, United Trance Nation, Aftrlife Entertainment, and Green Hat Productions letting me taking photos at various events, I likely wouldn’t be where I am today. While I offered many events for free to gain a portfolio and experience, it didn’t take too long for well-established artists to use my photos for press shots, festival photos from Electric Daisy Carnival, Dreamstate, Beyond Wonderland, and more! While I’ve strayed from club photography lately due to COVID and a lack of shows, I thankfully haven’t had a lack of business thanks to some wonderful supporting friends who’ve helped me secure real estate photography and even a few upcoming music videos! I’m thankful every day to those who continue to support what I do and helped me get where I am today!