Questions with a Pro

©Jeremy Ruzich

I’m so honored and proud to be featured this week on the Strictly Business blog of my professional society, the American Society of Media Photographers. I love the work I do and could talk about it for hours, so this brief interview ended up being maybe not as brief as they intended…

Below is an excerpt. But you can jump over and skim the whole thing here! Thanks, ASMP!

We asked: How do you successfully photograph with the viewer in mind? Do you think this effort changes the way you approach your work?

Jeremy said: I’d say I “put myself in their shoes,” but let’s be honest: we all have different sizes and styles, and I can’t know what it’s really like to walk through everyone’s diverse and exotic life experiences. So what I try to do is take everybody’s shoes off.

I’m looking to connect with the viewer on a deep, universal human level; the level of emotion and vulnerability, of bare feet on raw earth. The level we often forget about until reminded by something like a story of a mother’s love for her daughter, or a story about longing for some sense of home, or about fractured relationships beginning to heal…

And the only way to successfully do this: listening and watching intently; being fully present to the people and places and communities; and letting them tell their stories for themselves, as much as possible.

Light and its lack

and its Lack
is as far as
we can see
as far as
we can tell
the difference between
and the
in which it all burns

Take me
to a place
where no Light
Find me
the darkest corner
void of any
Meet me
in the deepest Shadows
where the Sun
will disown us

And I will show you
the road we travel
is true Black
Quench the lamp
at your feet
and let the rest
of you see
for once
Quit looking
and feel
the inside
of your eyelids

Creatures of Light
conceived in the Night
most fearful of that
which stays out of sight
Scared of the Dark
since being pushed
from the womb
how quick we forget
Light is our Kin
but Darkness
our Home


called once

I was spoken
not to
but into
by tongue
salivating onto dust
mixed into clay
a word
a life
you can say

I am the salve
that returns sight
to the blind
a slip upon your eyes
that cracks and contracts
as it cures and dries
you will see
and give praise
only once
I am
washed away

I am the warm breath
like wind in the cedars
hissing through teeth
and tongue and lips
the first sounds
you hear
past muddied fingertips

I am the word
scribbled on earth
a soft curved
finger width line
drawn in the sand
and you will join me here
once you let fall
the stones in your hands

I was called
groaned into the air
and ground into dirt
not a sentence
nearly a question
simply a living