When we first came across Christian’s work via his Tumblr, we couldn’t help but being impressed instantly. His photos contain a solid mixture of Los Angeles’ harsh grit, fine women and some of our favorite musicians. We hooked up with Christian for a small talk about his path to becoming a photographer, sour candy and of course, the city of Angels.
Can you tell us something about how your passion for photography began to grow?
I started out pursuing videography. Photo is something that came about way later. I more just wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. So I went to the best photographer that I know, my buddy Oscar and he explained some basics of the camera and encouraged me to shoot film. It wasn’t until around summer of 2013 I got really into shooting film and shooting people. I’m finding a lot of fulfillment with what it has grown into.
How did you develop your style? Did you study at an art academy or are you an autodidact?
I’ve never taken a photo class and probably never will.
Where do you catch your inspiration, and do you have any role models you look up to?
There are couple photographers right now I really look up to. Geordie Wood, Kent Andreasen, and Christina Paik are just a couple off top. All of them have really different styles too.
What themes do you try to pursue in your work?
I don’t know if I really have any themes that I try to pursue. I’m just trying to stay true and have fun.
What do you consider as your own personal masterpiece yet?
I’ve got some stuff I’m more proud of then others but nothin I’d call a masterpiece. Hopefully someday I feel that way about my work.
How does LA influence your work?
There’s just a ridiculous amount of talented people. Luckily, I’ve gotten the chance to meet a good amount of them. Seeing people my age and younger making great art whether it’s photo, music, clothes or whatever always pushes me.
Tell us about your favourite food. What are you having when you really want to treat yourself?
Umami Burger. Some people say its hype but I disagree. I’m definitely bout it.
Describe a perfect day in the life of Christian Long.
Days where I feel like I need to write down my thoughts are usually the best days. I need to have more of those.
Do you have some hidden talents no one knows about?
I’m very good at using movie quotes in real life situations. Although if you don’t watch the movies I watch you would never know.
'It really shouldn’t matter, but ever since I started shooting film I can’t go back. It just feels better.'
What are your favorite films at the moment?
By far the best movie experience I’ve had in the past few years was The Place Beyond the Pines. From beginning to end. Derek Cianfrance, the director, is a genius and that’s also been one of my biggest inspirations. Not that I am looking to do something based off of it but it has just inspired me to push myself further with my work.
What’s the last song you’ve listened to / had on repeat?
I come from a hip-hop background musically. Everything from Tribe and Nas to Kanye and Drake. Lately I’ve been on a big dance music kick though. Been bumpin this dude Darius on Roche Musique super heavy. He just dropped his EP Romance not too long ago and I’ve had that on repeat for sure. Also any Huh What & Where or Soulection artists. Those two LA Labels are putting out amazing music daily.
Do you have any brand or person in mind whom you really like to collaborate with?
I definitely have a couple in mind. Most of the people or brands I work with right now are people that I contact myself because I believe in what they’re doing. Everything I want to do is in reach though it’s just a matter of producing good work and getting the brands and artists as stoked to work with me as I am with them.
Do you always have a camera on you, if yes, what kind of gear is always in your bag?
I try to. Don’t really have any gear just my ae-1 and some film.
What memorable responses have you had to your work?
Anytime I get any sort of compliment from someone who’s opinion I respect it means a lot.
What brings you joy?
Besides creating good work with friends and all that I really like Sour Candy. Still waiting on Sour Patch Kids to hit me with a sponsor.
Digital or analog?
It really shouldn’t matter, but ever since I started shooting film I can’t go back. It just feels better.
What’s on your wishlist? Can you name something you’d really really like to get your hands on?
A Contax g2. And I really need a scanner too.
What pisses you off?
Littering. Just hold on to whatever you have until you get to a trash can.
Where do you see yourself ten years from now?
Not too far from where I am now. Hopefully I will have travelled around a little but basically doing the same thing just on a larger scale. Directing films, taking photos, writing, chillin with friends & fam.